Understanding Autocratic Leadership

Autocratic leadership, also known as authoritarian leadership, is a style characterised by individual control over all decisions and little input from group members.

Autocratic leaders typically make choices based on their ideas and judgments and rarely accept advice from followers. Autocratic leadership involves absolute, authoritarian control over a group. We discuss in this article the characteristics of autocratic leadership.


Characteristics of Autocratic Leadership


Exhibiting Self-Confidence


An autocratic leader possesses self-confidence so that subordinates feel confident and instill their faith in the leader. In many cases, such as in meetings, the leader tends to get overconfident, which is a bad sign. It leaves no room for discussion and innovative ideas to be discussed, which is not healthy for the organisation.


Being Accountable


In autocratic leadership, whatever the result of any task is, the leader is responsible for it. The leader is always accountable to outcome decisions despite criticism. Being accountable for actions make a leader more dependable.


Being a man of Clarity


The autocratic leader always takes the final call on any task. They lay out the workplace conditions to avoid overlapping rules and attain maximum efficiency. However, not all leaders restrict the creativity or innovation of their teammates. If they do so, there is a higher chance of the employees leaving the company.


Being Responsible


One key characteristic of an autocratic leader is that he is the one who calls the shots in the end, so all the successes and failures are attributed to him. The leader is always willing to take the responsibility, criticism as well as appreciation for the outcome of any task.


Being Structured


Generally, a fixed structure is usually followed by autocratic leaders while performing or undergoing any task. This also talks a lot about the work environment and the work culture of that particular workplace. Usually, under an autocratic leader, the workplace is structured in such a way that it is overly strict and not very flexible.


Motivation as a key Driver


An autocratic leader is driven by motivation because he is the sole decision-maker of the organisation. Due to this, the result of the decision, whether positive or not, is solely the responsibility of the leader in place. This motivates him to do any task at his full potential because the tasks and decisions feel personal.

So as we can see, autocratic leadership has its own positive traits that if blended with other leadership styles is able to drive the organisation towards sustainable development.

Paul Nyausaru is an OD Practitioner and leadership coach. For all your OD interventions and leadership development training you can get in touch with him on whatsapp/call +263774062756 or Email pnyausaru@gmail.com


Chiedza Kadare is an OD Practitioner. You can get in touch with her on whatsapp/call +263 77 283 0986 or Email chiedza.kadare@gmail.com


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