Consultative management style is a midway between authoritarian leadership and participative leadership. Many companies today want their managers and leaders to practice consultative management style. There is obviously a fair share of pros and cons of this management style but before we delve into that, let us understand what the style actually is.
Consultative Management Style: Explained!
When a manager takes into account the various views and opinions of everyone in the team or at least those who are connected with a decision or process, it is called consultative management. Consulting every stakeholder is not just right but also a wise practice. One never knows who can have the next big idea or the ideal solution to an impending problem. A manager or leader cannot always have the best solution or the best way forward. It is quite possible that someone in the team or someone in any specific niche will have a better suggestion, idea and resolution or may just have a modified version of what the leader or manager may have already thought.
The power of making decisions still rests with the manager and no one has any veto but the leader does discuss issues, problems and even solutions, ideas and plans with relevant team members.
Pros & Cons of Consultative Management Style
There are many advantages of this style of management. First of all, consultation often paves the way for better solutions. Managers and leaders are less likely to commit mistakes when they factor in contrasting opinions and various options. When someone is the sole decision maker and is only guided by his or her thoughts, the room for error is pretty huge. A major advantage of this style of management is that employees or team members feel motivated and they feel involved in the larger scheme of things. They feel valued and they think of themselves as an integral part of the team who can make a serious contribution.
The problem with consultative management style is that it can create confusion and indecisiveness. If a manager or leader is not very decisive and doesn’t have faith in one’s standpoint then consultations can easily compel the manager or leader to doubt his or her decisions, to question his or her abilities and the whole process of consultation itself can be never ending. Consultative management style can often lead to conflicting and chaotic handling of situations.