The Negative Ways Leaders Influence People

This edition of Mentor Online is adapted from an item by Dick Biggs in Executive Leadership.

Leadership is about influence related to the attitudes and an action of those that the one is charge is responsible for leading. Here are three primary negative leadership styles that leader’s project that can have a negative effect or influence on people:

Tyrant – The best way to demoralize individuals and work groups is to coerce by means of forcing compliance or allegiance.

Dictator – The leader that intimidates with threats of termination or other punishment is usually followed only by insecure or weak persons. The dictatorial leader can exert results but the most lasting are loss of respect and a heavy dose of resentment.

Controller – The leader that manipulates wins while losing. The winning gets results like personal gratification or meeting production goals. The losing is measured by reservoirs of mistrust and suspicion in those being led.

None of these styles has any place in the portfolio of the 21st century leader. Each of the styles is actually based upon a misunderstanding of what motivates persons. Each of these three negative influences is a de-motivator.

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Retired Lutheran (ELCA) clergyperson. Founder & owner of Brookover Leadership Development & Consulting, Inc. (1967)

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