Participatory leadership is a leadership style in which all members work together to make decisions, regardless of position and rank. This type is also known as democratic leadership, because everyone has an important role and is involved in problem solving.
The role of the participatory leader is more of a moderator or facilitator to offer guidance and keep the discussion balanced and under control. Therefore, a leader who adopts this style not only sits quietly and gives many orders, but also participates.
How does a participatory leadership style work? Let’s see the steps below.
Starting a Discussion
The first step, the leader is obliged to start a conversation, as well as having the authority to determine the procedure or SOP for the discussion to take place. The rules are fixed even though the topics discussed are different. For example, each member expresses his opinion, then the leader responds or adds it.
The second step, a leader is recommended to provide the information needed when solving problems in the form of insight to his team members. This knowledge can be in the form of skills based on experience. This information is important to share, not only to increase the knowledge of employees, but also to support them in expressing opinions, providing suggestions, and ideas.
Participative leaders must also be able to determine which information and knowledge can be shared, which cannot. Even though it is only insight , if it is misdirected, it can be interpreted differently because of the unequal level of knowledge. As a result, it can influence decision making.
Motivate Members to Express Ideas or Solutions
The third step, the participative leader must be able to encourage team members to give their respective opinions on a problem to be solved. The trick is to do brainstorming that can hone the creativity of members. Leaders can also create a more open work environment so employees feel respected and are not shy about voicing ideas.
Processing Ideas and Information
The fourth step, the leader summarizes the ideas and information for the group. After that, analyze, explore, and understand all the pros and cons of the information that has been collected. In the participatory leadership style, leaders need to sort out which information is the best that will be used as the basis for solving a problem.
Making the Best Decision
The fifth step, the leader makes decisions from the information that has been analyzed. In general, the decision-making process depends on the dimensions of participation. The participative leader usually makes decisions based on consensus, where all team members agree with the decisions taken.
Communicating Decisions That Have Been Made
The last step, the leader must inform the decision to all team members and provide reasons that do not harm any party. In this section, members can provide suggestions or criticism of the decisions that have been determined. After that, both the leader and the members carry out the decision according to their respective roles and duties.