Leadership philosophy examples are generally legends in organizations. Leadership is a very critical topic in every organization and normal life too. Leaders somehow have the power to persuade and motivate their team members. This motivates the employees into doing work or carrying out any action. Leadership philosophy is the measure of ways they use to do so.

Leadership philosophy is the way that leaders have, to persuade their employees to work. It also motivates them to communicate messages to them and to delegate responsibilities. Different leaders have different philosophies varying in strictness & leniency, authoritative & democratic, taking responsibility & transferring responsibility and believing employees & not believing them with work. In any case, there is a need to understand that different situations and different types of organizations demand different leadership philosophies. There is not a single type of the leadership philosophy that is right or wrong. However, there should be a consideration about adopting the leadership either as appropriate for the situation or inappropriate for the situation. Moreover, different leaders have different leadership philosophies. Most of the time, it is their inherent leadership philosophies that get them the jobs they are in.

Leadership philosophy examples

There are three common types of leadership philosophies. Democratic, Autocratic and Laissez-faire. They are known as leadership styles or leadership philosophies.

Here, we will be discussing each one of these philosophies. Below are some of the leadership philosophy examples illustrating these philosophies.

1. Democratic

Democratic leadership philosophy is the one in which the leader is somewhat lenient with his employees or teammates. There is an acceptance and appreciation of the input being given. The leaders listen to what their employees have to say. There is an equal possibility of implementation of the suggestions. The organizational goal’s accomplishment is due to collaborative efforts and input of all the employees and their involvement. A manager with democratic leadership philosophy may say, “Why don’t we all wear pink dresses during October that is the breast cancer awareness month?” instead of “You all have to wear pink dresses throughout October”.

One of the leadership philosophy examples of the democratic philosophy is of Google. The former CEO of Google, Larry Page, is an exemplary leader for all leaders around the world. He was friendly with his employees and teammates at Google and is a really down to earth person. He was known to value the input of people he was working with and accepted the worthy suggestions made by them.

The success of his company, Google, shows it all: his success in being a leader. There is a very famous joke in Google offices about Larry Page. It goes like: “A Brainiac who works in the lab walks into Page’s office one day wielding his latest world-changing invention—a time machine. As the scientist reaches for the power cord to begin a demo, Page fires off a dismissive question: ‘Why do you need to plug it in?’”. This way, Page did not only get the work done by his employees but also managed to keep them happy at all times.

2. Autocratic

Autocratic leadership philosophy is the one where input from employees does not have the permission to give their input. The leaders here know where they stand. They do not believe that they need input from anyone else to make their decisions. The decisions taken by these leaders are final. There is a reinforcement of these decisions on the employees whether they like it or not.

As it can be seen, this can be extremely demotivating for the employees. The treatment of employees as machines with no emotions can be demotivating. A manager with autocratic leadership philosophy usually says, “ You all have to wear pink dresses for the entire month of October”. However, it is not about negativity alone in this leadership philosophy. It is quite suitable and advantageous for certain situations. Employees need discipline under certain emergency conditions.

One of the best leadership philosophy examples of autocratic philosophy is of the army while another one is of a hospital. Both of these places require immediate actions, so the time for discussions and input is not present. Moreover, the decisions made here are critical to the nation’s safety and a people’s health, respectively, both of which are matters of serious concern. So, there is no room for error, and expert leaders need to take decisions as soon as possible. Other places that might require managers with autocratic leadership philosophy are restaurants, firms’ sales and manufacturing departments and courier services.

3. Laissez-Faire

Laissez-faire leadership policy is the one where leaders delegate full tasks and responsibilities to their subordinates and trust them with their jobs. The subordinates are believed to be capable of handling the work on their own without any help from the upper leadership. This leadership philosophy offers the highest degree of autonomy or independence to the employees. However, it should be noted that no matter how much delegation a leader does, the final responsibility for the task rests with the leader himself.

This can be beneficial and disadvantageous at the same time. It is beneficial because employees have the motivation to excel in their jobs. They feel that the entire responsibility rests on their shoulders. It can be disadvantageous if the employees do not complete the work with up to the mark quality. Some of the leadership philosophy examples that require laissez-faire leadership philosophy include organizations that involve in a high level of creativity. The best example will be of  an advertising agency or social media workplaces.

This is because these places require a high degree of creativity and personalization at work. Each customer needs an advert according to their needs. The personalization in work requires the use of laissez-faire leadership philosophy. The upper leadership does not have time to discuss each and every customers’ needs. Moreover, places, where all employees are expert in what they do, will be having a laissez-faire leadership philosophy. For example, law firms. Law firms have experienced and expert lawyers who almost never need upper leadership help to solve their cases. So, each lawyer has their own cases to solve which they solve with their own understanding, responsibility, and efforts.


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