There are four basic management styles described in the management literature:
Each of these styles has certain advantages and drawbacks, and there is no way to objectively compare their effectiveness: in some organizations directive democrats may be more successful than permissive democrats, in other organizations directive or permissive autocrats may exhibit high effectiveness, and visa versa. Effectiveness of the management style directly depends on the type of organization and nature of work performed.
The style of permissive democrats seems to be the best solution for the Department of Justice filled with highly skilled professionals. The involvement in planning and decision making provides them with the sense of belongingness to work and they demonstrate more commitment in performing their duties. However, the style of permissive democrats has one essential limitation: active involvement of the subordinates in the process of decision making, coupled with lack of strict control often produces a deceptive impression that the manager adopts a laissez-faire attitude and simply does not perform his direct functions, namely controlling (Muczyk, 2004).
Probably this confusion can be held responsible (at least partially) for the failure of Eileen to keep obey the rules. However, the fact that 8 other members of the team did not have similar problems with discipline suggests that Eileen's case is unique in this organizational setting. Therefore, as a new manager for strategic planning and design within the department of justice, my first step will be to closely analyze the system of relationships established and maintained by my predecessors within the team. The analysis will largely focus on defining the style of management keeping in mind that highly experienced, skilled and responsible employees do not require excessive supervision and control, unless in emergency cases.
The next step will be to work individually with Eileen and her colleagues in order to find out the reasons for her misconduct. A series of individual interviews is likely to provide rich and very useful information necessary to find out whether Eileen is a victim of some subjective prejudice or stereotype or she does have some personal problems which prevent her from becoming a full member of the team. Probably, there is a person within the team that maintains negative view of Eileen and successfully promotes this view among other members of the team. At this point the manager should keep in mind that his position does not automatically make him a leader - the most influential persons within the team.
The so-called 'workers of influence' theory is particularly important to understand the distinction between managers and leaders. The key