Laissez-faire leadership can be a scary venture for a business (especially initially). It can feel like you’re a passenger on the plane you own while somebody else flies the aircraft. Sure, you can get many other essential tasks done while someone else operates the controls, but what if the pilot goofs up?
Those who conquer this fear of failure, can reap many benefits for their business along the way by taking this approach, however. Just what is the laissez-faire leadership style and why should you care? In honor of National Delegation Day (coming up on August 28th), let’s go a little more in-depth on the topic.
What is the Laissez-Faire Leadership Style?
Also known as the delegating leadership style or free-reign leadership, this model only gives guidance to staff that’s deemed the most necessary. The belief is employees will do their best work if they’re free to find their unique solutions to challenges and work demands.
The laissez-faire leader can experience a number of positive results. What are some benefits of delegative leadership? Let’s take a look.
Makes Sense When Your Staff has the Skills Needed for Success
Back to that airplane analogy, you’ll feel far more comfortable handing the controls over to someone who knows what they’re doing. This can be a tough balance because there will always be more skills your staff could learn. There needs to be some established trust before the laissez-faire approach will work.
This is a great leadership style to use when you hire known experts (or up-and-coming ones). The best approach is to allow them to solve problems you can’t. Sure, provide some accountability, but you don’t want to cramp their style either.
Creative Fields are a Great Place to Use Laissez Faire Leadership
Delegative leadership doesn’t work best in all scenarios. And there are certain settings where laissez-faire leaders will thrive better than in others. For example, creative fields such as ones that deal with design tend to operate better under a laissez-faire model.
In her article for Very Well Mind entitled, “What is Laissez-Faire Leadership?,” Kendra Cherry shares the following:
“Working in a creative field where people tend to be highly motivated, skilled, creative, and dedicated to their work can be conducive to obtaining good results with this style.”
Works Well When Your Projects Are at the Right Stage
Although laissez faire means “hands-off”, to say it should be completely that way in your business would be an exaggeration. A better description is that it’s generally meant to be hands-off.
To be successful in your business, you may need to employ different leadership styles at different times. For instance, the start of a project may require more direction and oversight. However, once you get further into that same project, you may get more satisfying results by giving a lot more autonomy to your staff.
Could a Virtual Assistant or Virtual Assistant Team Help Your Business?
In conclusion, the laissez-faire leadership style works great when your business is dealing with proven experts. When used correctly in an appropriate setting, you can also drastically increase your company’s productivity and quality of services.
At Smart to Finish, our team of virtual assistants can provide excellent results with minimal supervision, freeing you up to complete those essential tasks. We can also do the delegating for you if you’re short on time.