7 brilliant ways successful leaders start presentations

presentation in leadership

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presentation in leadership

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“The beginning is the most important part of the work.” —Plato

When we speak, we have about 60 seconds to capture our audience’s attention, establish credibility, orient them to our topic, and motivate them to listen, says Darlene Price, president of Well Said, Inc., and author of “Well Said! Presentations and Conversations That Get Results.”

If you waste those precious opening seconds with a joke, an agenda, an apology, housekeeping details, a string of thank-yous, or a rambling, pointless paragraph littered with “ums” and “uhs,” your audience’s minds are likely to drift, and you may not get them back. “You need to put the art in the start, the most important part of the work,” says Price.

That’s a tall order for any speaker — and it requires us to develop and rehearse a well-crafted, attention-getting opener.

Price offers seven options:

1. Tell a captivating story.

“Of all the starters in your toolkit, storytelling is among the most powerful and consistently successful,” Price says. “As humans, we’re hard-wired to enjoy and learn from stories. From bedtime stories and campfires, to Broadway theaters and boardrooms — heroes, villains, conflict, plots, dialogue, and lessons learned draw us in, remind us of our own lives, and hold our attention.”

The story can be about you personally, which tells the audience first-hand why you’re invested in and passionate about the topic. Or you can tell a story about another person who the audience can learn from. “Another option: Tell a fable, wisdom tale, historic event, or anecdote,” Price says. “The idea is, start with a brief 60- to 90-second narrative that launches your speech and captivates your listeners, and make sure the story encapsulates the key point of your message.”

She suggests you consider these questions as you craft your version of “Once upon a time”: What challenges have you (or another) faced in relation to your topic? How did you (or another) overcome them? Who or what helped you or harmed you? What lessons were learned? What do you want your audience to gain, feel, or do as a result of the story?

2. Ask a rhetorical, thought-provoking question.

“As Shakespeare wrote in ‘The Merchant of Venice,’ ‘If you prick us, do we not bleed? If you tickle us, do we not laugh? If you poison us, do we not die? And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge?'” says Price. “As a speaker, you ask rhetorical questions for persuasive effect; you don’t expect the audience to answer aloud, rather silently to themselves.

When crafted and delivered well, rhetorical questions influence an audience to believe in the position of the speaker. “Clearly, Shakespeare’s character Shylock is leading his listeners to think ‘yes’ four times in order to justify revenge against Antonio. What do you want your audience to say ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to?”

In addition to yes or no questions, you can also arouse curiosity and motivate your audience to think about the answer, she says.

3. State a shocking statistic or headline.

Price says the vice president of sales for America’s leading healthcare IT company successfully sells software solutions to hospitals by starting her presentations with the following:

“According to a new study in the Journal of Patient Safety, medical errors leading to patient death are much higher than previously thought. Preventable adverse events, known as PAEs, cause up to 400,000 deaths per year for patients who seek care at a hospital. That means medical errors are the third leading cause of death behind heart disease and cancer. Our vision is to create a world free of medical errors, and we need your help.”

“The statistic, bold claim, or headline needs to be directly related to the main purpose of your presentation,” Price explains. “Its impact ideally persuades the audience to listen and respond positively to your recommendation and next steps.”

4. Use a powerful quote.

“Employ the wise words of a well-known person, because the name allows you to tap into his or her credibility, likeability, and notoriety,” she says. The quote must have meaning and relevance to the audience.

Imagine you’re urging a group to reach consensus, or giving a talk on conflict management. You could open with: “Mark Twain once said, ‘If two people agree on everything, one of them is unnecessary.’ Even though some of us disagree on the xyz issue, each of us is necessary in reaching a resolution.”

5. Show a gripping photo.

A picture is worth a thousand words — “maybe even more,” Price says.

“Use photos instead of text, when possible,” she suggests. A quality photo adds aesthetic appeal, increases comprehension, engages the audience’s imagination, and makes the message more memorable.

Price offers the following example of an effective use of an image:

The president of an electronics equipment company needed his managers to cut costs. Rather than showing mundane charts, graphs, and spreadsheets, he opened the meeting by asking, “What sank the Titanic?” When everyone in unison replied, “an iceberg,” he displayed a beautiful high-definition image of an iceberg on the screen: the tip of the iceberg was clearly visible above the water; the much larger portion was dimly visible below the surface of the water.

“The same thing is about to happen to our company,” he continued. “Hidden costs — the dangers beneath the surface — are about to sink this company. I need your help.” This visual metaphor spawned a creative, productive brainstorming session that inspired every business unit manager to diligently hunt for what they labeled the “icebergs,” says Price. The result was saving millions and ultimately the company.

6. Use a prop or creative visual aid.

“A prop is a magnetic tool that hooks your audience and keeps them watching — or listening,” Price says. A visual aid can also help emphasize a point.

Price uses the example of a sales VP at a large insurance company, who happens to be an avid tennis player. She says he wanted to kick off his annual meeting with a bang — so he “brilliantly used his tennis racquet to emphasize ‘acing the competition,’ ‘rallying together as a team,’ and winning a ‘grand slam’ through great customer service.” Year after year, other speakers were compared to this leader’s creative ability to present a motivational message, she says.

“Think about how you could use items like a big wall clock, a colorful gift bag, juggling balls, a deck of cards, a bunch of carrots, or another prop, to introduce your topic, captivate the audience, inject humor, and drive home your message.”

7. Play a short video.

Imagine kicking off a product management meeting with a video of compelling customer testimonials, or opening a fundraising event for endangered species by showing an Amur Leopard playing with her cubs in the wild.

“Videos evoke emotional responses,” Price explains. “Unlike text and bullet points on a slide, you can employ people, pictures, and sound to reel in the audience, add drama, and communicate the gist of your message quickly.”

As Walt Disney said, “I would rather entertain and hope that people learned something than educate people and hope they were entertained.”

This article is published in collaboration with Business Insider . Publication does not imply endorsement of views by the World Economic Forum.

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Author: Jacquelyn Smith joined Business Insider as the careers editor in February 2014.

Image: an empty meeting room is shown. REUTERS.

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10 Presentation Ideas For Leadership Teams and Training

10 Presentation Ideas For Leadership Teams and Training

Leadership teams shape organizations for better or for worse. They’re responsible for guiding teams and moving things— big or small— forward. So what makes a great leader versus one that causes employees to leave a company?

When you think of a great leader, it’s probably a specific characteristic that comes to mind. Qualities like respect, self-awareness, trust, influence, collaboration, and strong communication skills can set extraordinary managers apart from mediocre ones. But how leaders listen, learn, and communicate with their employees is just as important. Because of that, leaders— regardless of the industry— need to hold themselves accountable and continuously seek out ways to grow as a manager.   

It’s not uncommon for companies to host offsites or retreats to bring the leadership team together for brainstorming, planning, and training. This helps align leaders across various departments, teams, and offices, while offering them the tools they need to be more successful in their role. 

When preparing a presentation for leadership teams and training, it's crucial to focus on content that resonates with the audience's strategic mindset and their role in guiding the organization. Here are some leadership presentation ideas to help inspire your own content.

Leadership presentation ideas

Presentations can act as a platform to encourage learning and collaboration among different leaders. Do you have a leadership retreat coming up? Here are 10 leadership presentation ideas to help train and motivate your own leadership team. 

Effective leadership strategies

As a recurring training, you might share effective leadership strategies with your executive team. This presentation would act as a refresher of the latest trends and best practices in leadership. This could include insights on empathetic leadership, fostering a positive company culture, and embracing diversity and inclusion.

Change management

How should managers and leadership teams address the challenges and opportunities associated with change within the organization? A change management presentation would provide strategies for how leaders can navigate transitions successfully, with the least amount of disruption to the team.

Strategic planning and decision-making

A strategic planning and decision making presentation will offer insights into the process of setting achievable goals and making informed decisions. Organizations might also use a strategic planning presentation to lead their own company brainstorming sessions at a leadership all-hands meeting. 

Team development and engagement

Team development and engagement is important for the overall success of the team. In this presentation you might share techniques for fostering a high-performing and engaged team, including methods for providing feedback, coaching, and creating a supportive work environment.

Communication skills

Communication skills can make or break a leader. A training session on effective communication in leadership roles could be beneficial for both managers and executives of all levels. Here you could offer practical tips for clear, transparent, and empowering communication.

Leading through uncertainty

Given the current business landscape and layoffs happening across various industries, leadership teams need to know how to handle hard situations. This presentation idea for leadership teams would discuss strategies for navigating uncertainty and ambiguity, including how to maintain resilience and inspire confidence in a team concerned about job security. 

Embracing innovation and creativity

It’s no secret that AI is here to stay, and teams are having to pivot to accommodate new technology. Use a thoughtful presentation to encourage leaders to embrace innovation and promote a culture of creativity within the organization. The slides in this deck could showcase the benefits of adopting innovative approaches and thinking outside the box.

Building high-performance teams

Leaders need the right tools and knowledge to be able to guide positive performance. Employers might offer a training “how-to” on best practices for assembling and nurturing high-performance teams. This deck should include strategies for fostering collaboration, trust, and accountability among teammates. 

Data-driven decision making

As a leader, leveraging data to make more informed decisions should be top of mind. This leadership presentation idea can highlight the importance of leveraging data and analytics in decision-making processes, and offer guidance on how to incorporate data-driven insights into leadership strategies. This could include ways to implement KPIs, OKRs, or other effective ways to track the performance of individual contributors and campaigns. 

Ethical leadership

A wildly important leadership topic is ethics. Upper management should be well-educated in ethical leadership, and how that impacts the success of the team. An ethical leadership presentation could include the significance of ethics, the impact it has on organizational culture, employee morale, and long-term success, and how to ensure it’s top of mind in each department on a daily basis.

Beautiful presentations to drive your message home

You have a presentation topic, now what? The hardest part of presentation design is going from idea to deck with little design skills to back you up. Thankfully, there's a presentation software for that. Insert: Beautiful.ai. Beautiful.ai helps leadership teams create beautiful presentations so they can pack a bigger punch with their message and inspire their audience. Presenters can use one of Beautiful.ai's customizable pre-built presentation templates — like the training presentation — or leverage our AI-assistant to create a presentation from scratch specific to their topic. By creating beautiful decks you can engage your audience, drive your message home, and leave your leadership team feeling inspired to make a difference.

Jordan Turner

Jordan Turner

Jordan is a Bay Area writer, social media manager, and content strategist.

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Ideas and insights from Harvard Business Publishing Corporate Learning

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Powerful and Effective Presentation Skills: More in Demand Now Than Ever

presentation in leadership

When we talk with our L&D colleagues from around the globe, we often hear that presentation skills training is one of the top opportunities they’re looking to provide their learners. And this holds true whether their learners are individual contributors, people managers, or senior leaders. This is not surprising.

Effective communications skills are a powerful career activator, and most of us are called upon to communicate in some type of formal presentation mode at some point along the way.

For instance, you might be asked to brief management on market research results, walk your team through a new process, lay out the new budget, or explain a new product to a client or prospect. Or you may want to build support for a new idea, bring a new employee into the fold, or even just present your achievements to your manager during your performance review.

And now, with so many employees working from home or in hybrid mode, and business travel in decline, there’s a growing need to find new ways to make effective presentations when the audience may be fully virtual or a combination of in person and remote attendees.

Whether you’re making a standup presentation to a large live audience, or a sit-down one-on-one, whether you’re delivering your presentation face to face or virtually, solid presentation skills matter.

Even the most seasoned and accomplished presenters may need to fine-tune or update their skills. Expectations have changed over the last decade or so. Yesterday’s PowerPoint which primarily relied on bulleted points, broken up by the occasional clip-art image, won’t cut it with today’s audience.

The digital revolution has revolutionized the way people want to receive information. People expect presentations that are more visually interesting. They expect to see data, metrics that support assertions. And now, with so many previously in-person meetings occurring virtually, there’s an entirely new level of technical preparedness required.

The leadership development tools and the individual learning opportunities you’re providing should include presentation skills training that covers both the evergreen fundamentals and the up-to-date capabilities that can make or break a presentation.

So, just what should be included in solid presentation skills training? Here’s what I think.

The fundamentals will always apply When it comes to making a powerful and effective presentation, the fundamentals will always apply. You need to understand your objective. Is it strictly to convey information, so that your audience’s knowledge is increased? Is it to persuade your audience to take some action? Is it to convince people to support your idea? Once you understand what your objective is, you need to define your central message. There may be a lot of things you want to share with your audience during your presentation, but find – and stick with – the core, the most important point you want them to walk away with. And make sure that your message is clear and compelling.

You also need to tailor your presentation to your audience. Who are they and what might they be expecting? Say you’re giving a product pitch to a client. A technical team may be interested in a lot of nitty-gritty product detail. The business side will no doubt be more interested in what returns they can expect on their investment.

Another consideration is the setting: is this a formal presentation to a large audience with questions reserved for the end, or a presentation in a smaller setting where there’s the possibility for conversation throughout? Is your presentation virtual or in-person? To be delivered individually or as a group? What time of the day will you be speaking? Will there be others speaking before you and might that impact how your message will be received?

Once these fundamentals are established, you’re in building mode. What are the specific points you want to share that will help you best meet your objective and get across your core message? Now figure out how to convey those points in the clearest, most straightforward, and succinct way. This doesn’t mean that your presentation has to be a series of clipped bullet points. No one wants to sit through a presentation in which the presenter reads through what’s on the slide. You can get your points across using stories, fact, diagrams, videos, props, and other types of media.

Visual design matters While you don’t want to clutter up your presentation with too many visual elements that don’t serve your objective and can be distracting, using a variety of visual formats to convey your core message will make your presentation more memorable than slides filled with text. A couple of tips: avoid images that are cliched and overdone. Be careful not to mix up too many different types of images. If you’re using photos, stick with photos. If you’re using drawn images, keep the style consistent. When data are presented, stay consistent with colors and fonts from one type of chart to the next. Keep things clear and simple, using data to support key points without overwhelming your audience with too much information. And don’t assume that your audience is composed of statisticians (unless, of course, it is).

When presenting qualitative data, brief videos provide a way to engage your audience and create emotional connection and impact. Word clouds are another way to get qualitative data across.

Practice makes perfect You’ve pulled together a perfect presentation. But it likely won’t be perfect unless it’s well delivered. So don’t forget to practice your presentation ahead of time. Pro tip: record yourself as you practice out loud. This will force you to think through what you’re going to say for each element of your presentation. And watching your recording will help you identify your mistakes—such as fidgeting, using too many fillers (such as “umm,” or “like”), or speaking too fast.

A key element of your preparation should involve anticipating any technical difficulties. If you’ve embedded videos, make sure they work. If you’re presenting virtually, make sure that the lighting is good, and that your speaker and camera are working. Whether presenting in person or virtually, get there early enough to work out any technical glitches before your presentation is scheduled to begin. Few things are a bigger audience turn-off than sitting there watching the presenter struggle with the delivery mechanisms!

Finally, be kind to yourself. Despite thorough preparation and practice, sometimes, things go wrong, and you need to recover in the moment, adapt, and carry on. It’s unlikely that you’ll have caused any lasting damage and the important thing is to learn from your experience, so your next presentation is stronger.

How are you providing presentation skills training for your learners?

Manika Gandhi is Senior Learning Design Manager at Harvard Business Publishing Corporate Learning. Email her at [email protected] .

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8 Leadership Presentation Skills Your Team Need From You

Jun 24, 2017 by maurice decastro in communication skills , leadership , presentation skills.

team meeting

Do you have the leadership presentation skills your team need from you?

Presentation skills are often referred to as a ‘soft skill’ in many organisations.

At Mindful Presenter we believe that there is nothing ‘soft’ about the art of communication. We would go as far as to say that it is the most important skill in the world today.

According to the late Psychologist Abraham Maslow and the more recent thinking of Tony Robbins, we know one thing for certain.

Human beings need to connect with one another

Abraham Maslow calls it belonging/love, whilst Tony Robbins refers to it as connection/love. At Mindful Presenter we believe that, ‘connecting is everything’.

Whether you are an engineer, lawyer, teacher or tailor, the way we communicate with each other is extremely important.

Having the ability to speak doesn’t necessarily make us good at it.

Anyone can share information

Whether our content is clearly understood is an entirely different matter.

Some leaders think that there are no technical competencies attached to communication.  That belief fuels the myth that communication doesn’t affect the financial success of their business. There is often an assumption that just because we can speak well during an interview, we can all communicate effectively.

What’s the problem?

Poor communication is a bit like high blood pressure. If you neglect it for too long the consequences can be disastrous.

At school we are taught to read, remember and repeat

We learn a wide range of skills, although, effective communication isn’t often one of them.

Some of us move on to higher education and the growing pressure to pass exams increases exponentially. We learn to read, remember and repeat at a much higher level.

How much time is invested in helping us to speak with confidence, clarity and impact?

We leave school, graduate from college or university and suddenly find ourselves in a new world

It’s a world where the most important skill we need to survive, let alone thrive, is communication. One day we are asked to present our work or ideas to colleagues or customers and the panic sets in. It’s no wonder that so many people have some anxiety about public speaking.

What leadership presentation skills does your team need from you?

Start with abandoning the delusion that communication is a ‘soft skill’.

Here are 8 leadership presentation skills we need to help our teams to communicate more effectively.

1. Create trust

Trust begins with honesty, openness and transparency.

Invest as much time and energy as you can encouraging your team to speak openly.

Create a culture where everyones voice is valued and respected.

Nurture an environment where people can feel and be themselves

Assure your team that they don’t have to edit everything they say just because you are the boss.

2. Start connecting

Every organisation has its own internal communication culture.

Much of the ‘corporate speak’ our teams hear every day isn’t very helpful.

Stop churning out emails and updates in a language that very few people understand. It’s not how most people speak themselves.

Only send it to those who it’s completely relevant to.

Make it personal, human, relevant and engaging

Whether you are writing it or saying it, make sure that it’s focused on connecting with the team.

3. Show vulnerability

If you want your team to present their ideas with passion, purpose and energy, lead the way.

Show them how to do it first

Help them how to be open and know that it’s fine to feel vulnerable.

Show them how to lighten up, relax and not take everything so seriously. Help them to be themselves rather than simply their job title.

Avoid the ‘corporate speak’ by being yourself

Show them that’s how you want them to be too.

4. ‘I don’t know’

In our presentation training workshops we help professionals to find the courage to simply say ‘I don’t know’.

It’s not really a presentation skills issue, it’s a leadership one

We work with people everyday who are told it’s unacceptable to say ‘I don’t know’. They work in a culture where they are expected to know the answer to every question.

Make it acceptable and easy for people to be honest and tell you they ‘don’t know’.

Help them to find the answer.

5. Lighten up

Imagine this:

– It’s the monthly management meeting.

– Everyone arrives and sits in exactly the same seat they sit in every month.

– The team takes it in turn to go around the room to share their update.

– They read out the same KPI’s that they do every month in the same voice.

– Each presenter fends off a barrage of questions from the most senior person in the room.

It’s predicatble and tedious

Do whatever it takes to make every meeting different, fun and engaging.

Most of all make them something that your team can look forward to rather than dread.

6. Keep it conversational

No one likes to be lectured to.

As leaders we each have an opportunity to connect with our teams in a far more conversational manner.

Keep your message personal, focused and tailored to the people you are speaking with. Involve them, and ask them how they feel.

Please don’t lecture them.

7. Feelings matter

Be absolutely clear before you begin to speak how you want people to feel.

How do you want them to feel:

– The moment you begin to speak

– All the time they are with you

– The moment they walk out of the door

Most people will forget most of what you said by the time they return to their desk.

They won’t however, forget how you made them feel

Please keep in mind that there is nothing ‘soft’ or easy about communicating effectively.

It’s one of the hardest things we have to do every day.

Help your team to get good at it

Give them the presentation skills to speak with confidence.

8. Leave nothing to chance

Revisit your leadership presentation skills across the 8 important areas above..

Once you’ve committed to help your team to find, value and express their true voice, take action.

– Book them onto a powerful public speaking course .

– Invest in some really good one to one  public speaking coaching .

– Get your team some excellent presentation training

Photo by Jason Goodman on Unsplash

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Storytelling Can Make or Break Your Leadership

  • Jeff Gothelf

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Five ways to construct a compelling narrative around your ideas.

Telling a compelling story is how you build credibility for yourself and your ideas. In this piece, the author draws on his experience as a speaker, publisher, and author to illustrate five characteristics of effective storytelling. He suggests that strong stories must be audience-specific, clearly contextualized, human-centric, action-oriented, and humble. Whether you’re winning over a colleague, a recruiter, or an entire conference audience, making sure you stick to these guidelines will help you convey care and compassion when presenting even the most daunting of ideas.

“It’s a new goal-setting framework.” That was one of my large enterprise clients’ attempt at an inspirational rallying cry for their rollout of Objectives and Key Results , or OKRs. As you might expect, it wasn’t met with much enthusiasm: “Why do we need a new goal-setting system?” managers and employees protested. “What will this mean for my evaluation? Am I still on track for that promotion?”

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  • Jeff Gothelf helps organizations build better products and executives build the cultures that build better products. He is the co-author of the award-winning book  Lean UX  and the Harvard Business Review Press book  Sense & Respond . He works as a coach, consultant and keynote speaker helping companies bridge the gaps between business agility, digital transformation, product management and human-centered design. His latest book,  Forever Employable , was published in June 2020.

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Leadership Topics for Presentation

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Have a presentation or a meeting coming up? Need to find leadership training topics to present on or leadership topics for discussion? The Leadership Mission has you covered! Below is our list of leadership training topics, leadership topics for discussion, leadership exercises and leadership team building activities we have compiled that are impactful for leaders at any level. These are designed to get your wheels turning and have proven to be successful across many different organizations.

Want to jump quickly to one particular section? Here are some helpful links!

Leadership Training Topics

Leadership Topics for Presentation and Discussion

Leadership Team Building Activities

Leadership exercises.

The following leadership training topics are great for leaders at any level. These work best in smaller meetings or groups. These topics are designed to generate great discussion and hopefully yield higher functioning managers.

Soft skills

Soft skills are personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people. These are critically important in today's workforce as now more than ever our workforces require employees to be able to communicate, work as a team, listen and get along with others. Here is a very brief list of soft skills but this topic is HUGE and you could easily turn each of these topics into presentations.



Time management

Critical thinking



Stress management


Conflict management


Openness to criticism

Change management

Today's world changes faster than arguably any other time in history. Between 24 hour news cycles, social media and the explosion in communication methods between individuals, managing change is an essential skill any leader must have. There are a couple of excellent books on this topic by John Kotter called Leading Change and Our Iceberg is Melting. You can also have a good discussion about how your team deals with change and how much change your organization has (or hasn't) had over the years.

Managing effective meetings

Meetings consume so much of the average working person's time. No matter what kind of job you have, meetings are most likely a part of their day or week at some point. How effective are your people at running effective meetings? When was the last time anyone ever thought about it?

A great subtopic for this presentation can be a study and/or game you can play with your attendees call meeting or email? I'm sure you could easily find a handful of examples of meetings that could have been emails (and vice versa) and let your attendees have some fun guessing. Don't be surprised when your team becomes very candid during this meeting about the need for meetings!

Performance management

Managing the performance of others is an extremely important part of any leader's job. Leader's must also be managers and cannot simply rely on connecting with and "leading" people. At the end of the day, we all have hard metrics we are responsible for. One of the most important ones, is the performance of those that work for us.

This topic doesn't get nearly as much attention as it should and I guarantee you can get some good discussions going around the most effective way to do this for you organization. You can discuss how often this happens, annually, bi-annually, monthly? You can discuss what format it is done in and how the teams respond to them. Get your groups thoughts on the effectiveness of your current system and brainstorm if there isn't a better way.

The Six Styles of Leadership

Developed by Daniel Goleman, the six styles have been a staple part of the discussion around situational leadership for awhile. They describe the different ways you need to lead depending on the situation, the people and various other factors. There is plenty of discussion to be had with this topic and is great for new leaders!

The six styles are as follows:

Visionary — mobilize people toward a vision. Works best when a clear direction or change is needed.

Coaching — develop people for the future. Works best when helping people and building long-term strength.

Affiliative — create emotional bonds and harmony. Works best to heal rifts in teams or motivate people in stressful times.

Democratic — build consensus through participation. Works best to create consensus or get input.

Pacesetting — expect excellence and self-direction. Works best to get quick results from a highly competent team.

Commanding — demand immediate compliance. Works best in crisis or with problematic people.

Managing an inbox

This is something that gets taken for granted all of the time and would make a great leadership topic for presentation. The organization, efficiency and 'cleanliness' of inboxes today can be a sensitive subject. No one wants to admit to having thousands of unread emails just sitting there but chances are, most of your leaders do.

How do you as a company manage that? When was the last time anyone cared? Effective inbox organization can do wonders in taking a manager from good to great. It might also get a good conversation started around communication as a whole in your organization.

Managing a calendar

Just like the inbox, calendar's are criminally misused or underused. They can be a great way to manage the obvious things like meetings and calls. However, they can also be a great way to hold teams accountable, document what you did for reflection and serve as a sort of task list for leaders.

Don't make the assumption that everyone knows how to use the calendars. Technology changes so fast and new features come out all of the time. Even if someone in leadership learned how to use outlook ten years ago in college, it might be completely different now!

Leadership Topics For Presentation & Discussion

This section is about topics that make for great discussions or presentations. Whether it be a small group or large one, these topics are always important in the world of business today.

Virtual leadership

Thanks to 2020, so many of us have had to get used to working virtually, which means we've also had to lead virtually as well. This topic is sure to generate discussion on what is working, not working and how everyone feels about it.

This is sure to be an important topic moving forward as companies must decide what their "new normal" is going to be. You might be surprised at how effective or ineffective working virtually is/was. It might open the door to other conversations surrounding flexibility in the workplace.

Most businesses come down to some sort of execution. Whether it be making widgets, serving guests, healing patients or selling goods, every business has some sort of metric when it comes to executing the core function of the business. When was the last time you discussed not only the results but overall execution as a whole? Can you guarantee that the way things are supposed to be done are actually being done?

Additionally, you can discuss training of new hires, repair and maintenance of equipment, employee productivity and anything that goes into actually getting the job done.

When was the last time your organization had a conversation about your company culture? Are expectations meeting reality? Does your team/company know what culture they are supposed to be creating? Having an open and honest conversation about your company culture is a healthy exercise for any company.

It is extremely important that there be a strong moderator for this conversation as it is easy to go off the rails with this subject. That statement shouldn't dissuade you from having the conversation though! A great book on this topic is Good to Great by Jim Collins.

Company specific leadership topics for discussion/presentation

Do you have specific tasks, goals, metrics or items that your leaders should be discussing with their teams? Have you set an agenda that is being pushed down through the organization? Putting together a list similar to this specific for your team might be helpful for your mid level leaders. This list can give them a clean and easily accessible company approved list of topics they should be discussing with their teams.

Giving your leaders a list of exercises that they could practice either by themselves or with their teams makes a great leadership training topic. It is always extremely important to develop yourself as a leader and the other leaders in your organization. Here are some leadership exercises to get you started.

Quality circles

This isn't so much a topic as an activity but is highly effective, especially if your group allows for crossover from different departments, regions, etc. It is amazing how sometimes just putting a fresh set of eyes on a situation can create positive discussions or solutions around a problem. Spend some times thinking about your attendees and split them into smaller groups.

Come up with a top 5 list of challenges or obstacles that each group might be facing and have them discuss it in a "nameless & rankless" frank discussion. Assign a note taker to each group and charge them with capturing key points and takeaways and for keeping the group on point.

Difficult leadership situations

This is a great topic to discuss with your leaders, especially if your group has a good mix of leadership experience and tenure in it. The following situations are always important to talk about and discuss/share with other leaders. The growth that can come from just talking through some of these situations is priceless. Depending on the size of your group, you can either discuss as a whole or break into small groups and have them discuss the following topics:

Dealing with difficult or problem employees

Handling your team's stress and pressure

Letting someone go

Delivering bad news

Leading an initiative you don't agree with

Managing underperforming employees

Internal leadership challenges

This often gets such little attention, yet is one of the most important factors leaders must deal with, their own feelings. Managing your own emotions and generally how you feel about something is way easier said than done. Just like the previous item, having a good mix of leadership experience and tenure is a great.

Just talking about how their fellow leaders handle the following topics can be vitally important for new leaders and great reminders and encouragement for experienced leaders. Unlike the previous item though, it is crucially important that attendees feel comfortable being open. It is one thing to talk about topics that impact others or are conceptual and something entirely different to discuss personal struggles!

Staying humble

Self confidence

Overcoming fear

Handling personal stress and pressure

Avoiding burnout

Staying motivated

Compartmentalizing competing priorities

Keeping work life balance

Situational leadership scenarios

Situational leadership is extremely important in today's modern workforce. Diversity of all types in employee bases has exploded in the last several decades. That means managers and leaders cannot treat everyone the same. A leader that understands using different leadership styles with different people and at different times is critical.

Develop some scenarios that are relevant to your group and ask them to decide how they would approach one differently over another. There is a fantastic book written by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson on this topic called the One Minute Manager that is a quick read and is very beneficial to new leaders!

The following items are great team builders for small groups or meetings in any professional setting. They are designed to bring team's together, develop teamwork and give any observing leaders some data points about their people!

Build a building

Break your group into small even teams and provide them with their building materials consisting of any combination of the following:

index cards

tooth picks

playing cards

Don't stress over which materials you give them, just as long as it is enough to build a free standing building with! The object is simple, which team can build the largest free standing structure.

Things to consider with this activity:

How will you divide your teams? Be purposeful in how you break them up

Have the teams assign a 'project manager' ahead of time

Take mental notes of how the teams interact and how the assigned managers perform

Qualities of a leader

Break employees into teams and have them share leaders they admire (in any industry). Take notes on the characteristics that these leaders share, then give employees time and space to reflect on the characteristics they share with those leaders before identifying skills they would like to develop in themselves

Use employee notes on skills they would like to develop to design your own training opportunities.

Use employee notes and compare them to your organization. A sort of 'expectations vs reality' mental exercise.

These lists are in no way exhaustive we just think these leadership training activities are great for effective presentations or meetings that will grow the leadership abilities of your team! We'd love to hear from you in the comments below! Or feel free to shoot us an email [email protected]

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Leadership Presentation Templates

Elevate your leadership presentations with our dynamic leadership powerpoint templates and google slides themes. from management principles to teamwork dynamics and goleman's six leadership styles, our fully customizable templates cater to every aspect of leadership. engage your audience with stunning visuals and insightful content. download for free.


  • Creativity at Its Best: Say goodbye to generic slides. Our templates feature creativity, ensuring your audience stays engaged and inspired.
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What is leadership.

Leadership is influencing and motivating others to achieve a common goal. It involves creating an idea, communicating it to others, and setting an example for others to follow. Leaders must be able to inspire and direct people to work together to achieve success.

What are Leadership Presentation Templates?

Leadership Presentation Templates are a collection of pre-designed slides and backgrounds created to help leaders or managers to deliver presentations and messages effectively. These templates allow you to explain topics such as team building, decision-making, communication, motivation, and problem-solving.

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You can use these Leadership Slides in various scenarios, including corporate training sessions, university lectures, public speaking engagements, and professional development workshops.

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If you are unknown with PowerPoint, choose a pre-built Leadership template for your need. There are many templates available online to help you create the best presentation. Choose a unique design or layout to showcase the growth using diagrams and graphs. If you want to create the Leadership PPT Slides by yourself, visit our tips and tricks page to make your custom PowerPoint.

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Leadership PPT Templates can be used by anyone looking to create a professional presentation. They can be used by students, teachers, business experts, entrepreneurs, and others to create engaging slideshows.

Why do we need Leadership Presentation Slides?

These slides can help managers and top people to communicate their vision, strategies, and goals to their teams. They provide a visual representation of the message that can be easily shared with the group and help to keep everyone on the same page to avoid confusion.

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There are some great sources for free Leadership PPT templates from slide egg. Our websites have a selection of professionally designed templates that you can customize to suit your specific needs.

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PODCAST: Parents of CT students with disabilities struggle in meetings with school leaders

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For Connecticut parents with special needs children, planning and placement team (PPT) meetings with their school district are a barrier to a smooth education experience.

WSHU’s Ebong Udoma spoke with CT Mirror’s Jessika Harkay to discuss her article, “For CT parents, special ed meetings with schools are ‘a battlefield’,” as part of the collaborative podcast Long Story Short. You can read her story here .

WSHU:  Hello, Jessika. You say Connecticut parents of children with disabilities describe the yearly meeting with school officials as a battlefield. Is that why you decided to do a deep dive into this?

JH:  Yeah. So it was interesting how the story came about. I was actually hosting a panel at a special education conference late last year. And we opened the panel up to parents to ask some questions to lawmakers of experts. And one of the women who I ended up using in my story is Jennifer Cotto. She was saying it is so frustrating going into PPT meetings, you always feel ignored.

WSHU:  PPT meetings, which stands for Planning and Placement Team. That’s what they call these meetings for children with disabilities.

JH:  Yep, exactly.

WSHU:  And what do those meetings determine?

JH:  So those meetings determine the educational services. So they just start with the conversation with parents in that first meeting of, ‘Hey, we’ve identified a few patterns or behaviors that may require special education,’ then they undergo testing. After that, they come back and talk about what your student needs in the school system to succeed, ideally.

WSHU:  Now, tell us a little bit more about Jennifer Cotto. She’s from Watertown. What was her experience?

JH:  Yeah, she was talking a lot about just feeling belittled and ignored. She said that her daughter, although being diagnosed with autism, is very high functioning; she can hold a pencil, she can speak, she can articulate her ideas, but there are still certain things that her daughter needs. So she was just talking about a lot of times when she would go to her district and say, ‘Hey, the reason my daughter is doing so well is because we have outside services.’ But the district kind of just brushed her to the side and said, ‘No, we just think that maybe she can grow out of it, maybe that we’re diagnosing her too early.’ And Jennifer’s like, there’s no way you can diagnose a child with autism too early.

So she was just talking a lot about her experience of feeling like she was always ignored, especially because her daughter was doing so well in the school system in pre-K. So after those initial conversations with her, I just started asking experts, lawyers, advocates, and just saying, ‘hey, is this a widespread problem?’ And pretty much everyone was saying, yes. It really depends on the district and what director of special education you get, but a lot of the time, it really is hard to kind of navigate and feel like an equal teammate in these meetings.

WSHU:  But there’s a larger problem that seems to be responsible for many administrators’ attitudes. And that is the cost. Now you say that Connecticut spends about $2.7 billion statewide a year on special education. How does that play out in the local districts?

JH:  Yeah, I think that’s a problem that we’ve been seeing grow, especially recently, as this population of students with disabilities also is growing. And so first, we’re seeing that teacher salaries obviously are one of the biggest parts of a school district’s budget. So you need to hire more teachers who are trained in special education and can handle these students. That’s one of the aspects. But the second part of that, also, is if a student has serious needs and can’t be educated in the district or can’t have their needs met in the district, now you have to outsource them. And that could be tens, even hundreds of thousands of dollars, sending these students to get their free public education elsewhere, whether that’s a private school, a different district or even out of state.

WSHU:  I was amazed when I saw that Bridgeport actually has the highest number of special ed students. How does that affect the district’s budget?

JH:  That kind of goes back to what I was just saying: first, it’s a huge staffing problem, trying to hire more staff to accommodate these classrooms and these individualized needs. Right? The first problem with a budget is just being able to pay the people educating these children. The second part, again, is outsourcing. If a student can’t get their needs met in the district, you can pay 1000s of dollars to send them elsewhere, which is what the second half of that special education cost is.

WSHU:  How does this affect the parents? Because you have a quote here about the squeaky wheel gets the grease, that means that the more vocal the parents are, the more they can get services for their children. How does that play out?

JH:  I think it’s particularly interesting when you’re looking at students of color or those who come from low-income backgrounds where a parent may not have the time to sit down with and do binders and binders of research, right? There’s a quote in my story that talks about just the jargon behind education and the legal jargon of, oh, what can we provide our students with what is available to me? And that takes a lot of research. Even with me, I was going through these pamphlets, and I was looking up words, and I was confused as well. So, let alone a parent who also has the stress of just trying to keep food on the table and a house over your head, on top of trying to support your child, but who also has these educational challenges.

I think that one of the interesting aspects of stories like this is just looking at how some people do have the resources, some people do have the background, the parents I quoted in my story said they were familiar with the systems because of their previous work professionally. But then there’s parents who may not have that background, and they’re trying to navigate this system, and they may not be able to afford an advocate or a lawyer to advocate on their behalf. So I think that’s an interesting conversation of just how this impacts children and families who may not have the means or the time to research special education and the rights.

WSHU:  You talked with the state education officials, and there are some state resources to try and help out with this; what exactly do we have?

JH:  So the biggest thing is the Department of Education. They have a page on their website that kind of has, I think it’s called like the Bureau of Special Education or something like that, where it has a direct line where you can talk to people. And they talked about a few other partnerships that they have across the state with different advocacy groups. Another group that was mentioned to me is called PATH, I think. And they also offer free resources to people if you don’t have the means to afford an advocate, they offer an advocate for you. So there’s different things. It’s just a matter of finding the right research. And I think that also part of the conversation is just having these resources more available, rather than you having to search for them, making them more easily accessible.

WSHU:  And that was part of what was involved in legislation that was being considered this year. Although I don’t think much has been done, it seems more like a task force to look into this. Could you just tell us a little bit more about that, Jessika?

JH:  Yeah, so the task force was started back in 2021. Their responsibility is first just looking at the cost of special education, but also looking at the over and under-identification of students and the reasons behind that. So they’re expected to present their findings to the legislature this year, later this year. And then next year, before the session starts, they’re supposed to offer recommendations, which I think will be really interesting. But then we saw legislation passed this year that was looking at just PPT meetings again, and the notification of them. So now state law will require a five-day notice for those meetings, but then also the presentation of those rights when they receive that notice.

WSHU:  How about trying to get educators to have a better dialogue with parents? What has been done about that?

JH:  Yeah, so one thing I’ve heard is that the problem isn’t necessarily with educators themselves. I think most parents are happy and can see the effort that teachers in the classroom are making toward helping their students by providing these resources. But the big dilemma was with these administrators, who are kind of middlemen in the top-to-bottom hierarchy, right? And so the biggest thing is just transparency, from what I hear.

If you can’t provide a resource, tell us why and tell us what you can do and set or how we are working towards improvement. Just having those open conversations and those dialogues and I think another part of that is just also how you speak with one another. I was just talking to someone this morning, from feedback on this story, saying, we’re told here’s when the PPT meeting is. The time and place, just straight and told that without even being asked, ‘Hey, does this work with you? What is a good time?’ So I think it’s just kind of reframing conversations that may be taken some type of way, or feel like there’s that unequal power dynamic, even though parents are supposed to be that equal team member. So that’s kind of what I’ve been hearing. It’s just changing these conversations and how we speak to one another.

CT Mirror's Long Story Short

Long Story Short takes you behind the scenes at the home of public policy journalism in Connecticut. Each week WSHU’s Ebong Udoma joins us to rundown the Sunday Feature with our reporters. We also present specials on CT Mirror’s big investigative pieces.


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[Updated 2023] The 5 Leadership Styles Along (With PPT Templates Included)

[Updated 2023] The 5 Leadership Styles Along (With PPT Templates Included)

Lakshya Khurana


Leaders make an organization, whether a company, a school, or a government organization. The main goal of a leader is to establish an environment conducive to success, with unrelenting focus on encouraging communication and teamwork among people they lead. 

Leaders also provide direction, vision and inspire and motivate people to achieve organizational goals. Competent management and effective leadership are necessary for businesses to meet their goals.

How you manage your team depends on your personality and how you interact with others, regardless of the size of your team (it may be 10 or 10,000). Knowing your preferred style of leadership is the first step to enhancing it. 

In this blog, we'll discuss the most-renowned five prevailing leadership styles with readymade PowerPoint Templates.  and then go into how to identify and cultivate your own style. 

If you want to improve your leadership skills , read our full blog here .

Coming back to leadership styles, the five most common leadership styles are autocratic, participative, delegative, transactional, and transformational. Each style has its advantages and disadvantages when it comes to leading people.

The leader takes complete control over all decisions, usually excluding staff from the process and dictates procedures and goals.

  • Participative

Leaders are open to employee feedback, value their teams' opinions, and involve them in decision-making. Participative leaders pay close attention to the individuals they lead.

Autonomy and adaptability are values that such leaders support. The freedom this leadership style delegates can be advantageous when the people being managed are highly trained, educated about their occupations, and capable of working efficiently with minimum monitoring.

  • Transactional

The transactional leadership style adheres to traditional managers' stereotypes, emphasizing organization, monitoring, performance, compliance, and goal-setting while motivating employees through incentives and penalties.

  • Transformational

Vision is everything, as these managers encourage their staff members and use empowerment, empathy, and recognition to energize their groups, assist them in achieving their objectives, and inspire them to go above and beyond to realize a common purpose.

This primer done, we now dig deep into top 15 PPT Templates that SlideTeam has curated to help you identify and build leadership styles of your own. 

As always, each of leadership ppt templates are 100% editable and customizable. The content-ready nature means you get a starting point for your presentations and a much-coveted structure. The editability feature means you can tailor the presentation to your audience requirements.  

Let’s take a tour now!

Template 1: Leadership Styles Quadrant Matrix for Motivation Enhancement

Positive thinking and a clear vision create motivational leadership. Motivational leaders are action-oriented, establish clear objectives, and give their people the resources and tools needed to succeed. They bring out the best in their team members and encourage them to work together toward a common objective. The quadrant template offered here evaluates where you stand on the opposing forces of direction versus supporting behaviors. This is a clear visual indication of your leadership style and helps you decide what to do to improve. Get this template now, and start work on your leadership skills with immediate effect. 

Leadership Styles Quadrant Matrix for Motivation Enhancement

Template 2: Leadership and Board Leadership Styles Best PPT PowerPoint Presentation Gallery Deck

Increase focus on issues affecting individuals with our predesigned leadership and board leadership PPT Template. Use the presentation template to discuss leadership styles like commanding, visionary, affiliative, democratic, pacesetting, or coaching. It will help you to improve your leadership and provide good governance for your organization. Download now and deliver your ideas. The tabular format mapping each leadership style to a leader’s mannerisms makes it clear to distinguish between the types.  

Leadership Styles

Template 3: Six Leadership Styles for Every Business

The six leadership styles that US author and world-renowned authority on emotional intelligence Daniel Goleman developed are illustrated in this PPT Template. For project managers and business owners, the idea has enormous advantages. It aids in creating a brief evaluation and a clear connection of the effects of leadership on people and their surroundings. Most often, leaders must be able to change their leadership styles as the situation demands. Download now to study the six styles that range from visionary to autocratic.

Six Leadership Style for Every Business

Template 4: Leadership Styles Economy Study Considering Business Level Strategies

Strategy formulation is an essential process in business. Talk in-depth about leadership considering business-level strategies and their significance. Use this PPT Template to research theories and inform your audience about diverse leadership styles and economic studies. This PPT template is a handy tool for providing direction for your actions.

Leadership Styles Economy Study Considering Business Level…

Template 5: Leadership and Broad Leadership Styles Talk PPT Presentation Portfolio Styles

Use this fantastic PPT Template, designed to describe broad leadership styles. This slide presents a leadership style based on the relationship and tasks. It also explains how leadership styles can use employee capabilities to establish high-performing teams. Download now and demonstrate how a leader should manage their team to complete a project or business venture.

Leadership Styles

Template 6: Customer Management Systems Leadership Styles Concentric Marketing Commerce Strategies

The customer service industry has to use leadership strategies pretty frequently. Analyzing each one and finding the best for your business is key for business success. Use our readymade PPT Templates to compare and contrast leadership styles and create concentric marketing commerce strategies. Download and obtain the information.

Customer Management Systems Leadership Styles Concentric…

Template 7: Four Leadership Styles Hersey and Blanchard Corporate Leadership

According to the Hersey-Blanchard Model, no leadership style is superior. The approach advises that leaders should adapt their techniques to those they lead and their strengths rather than concentrating on workplace conditions. Our predesigned PPT template on four leadership styles helps discuss the task and relationship-relevant leadership styles. Download now and see leadership as a fluid dynamic than mere fixed personality traits. 

Four Leadership Styles (Hersey & Blanchard)

Template 8: Leadership Styles Based on Authority Democratic Corporate Leadership

Leaders must showcase specific emotional intelligence skills like self-confidence to have their way. They must create a vision and motivate others to follow it. Use our predesigned PPT template to discuss leader’s action plans according to their leadership style. It will help them to decide what should be done and how to do it. The ultimate aim is to achieve strategic business goals. Get this template now!

Leadership Styles based on Authority

Template 9: Four Effective Change Leadership Styles for Managers

Influential leaders adapt their behavior or approach to leadership in response to conditions. This PPT Template presents data on leadership styles. You can discuss authoritative, rational, positive influence, and supportive leadership styles in detail and choose what fits best for effective business results. This PPT offers an excellent foundation for defining the extent of change and determining how to support the workforce during the transition. Get this presentation template now!

Four Effective Change Leadership Styles for Managers

Template 10: Situational Leadership Style Matrix with Followers Readiness

Leaders must modify strategies to suit conditions. Leaders deal with levels of follower-readiness by altering their relative emphasis on work and relationship behaviors. Use our PPT template matrix to showcase leadership style behavior according to tasks. Use this template to also discuss development levels of followers and build strategies. Get this template now!

Situational leadership style matrix with followers readiness

Template 11: Leadership Styles Based on Authority Consultative PPT PowerPoint File Shapes

Recognizing your leadership style lets you give staff members the right direction and feedback. Disperse knowledge on authority-based leadership styles such as autocratic, democratic, free-rein, and persuasive using our PPT Template. Download this presentation template now!

Leadership Styles based on Authority

Template 12: Key Behaviours of Four DISC Leadership Styles

Introducing the DISC model PPT Template to discuss the critical behavior of leaders to understand themselves. The DISC model analyses four personality factors to determine a person's overall behavioral style and preferences, i.e., Dominance(D), Influence(I), Steadiness(S), and Consciousness(C). Using this PPT template, you can discuss behavior and its impact on the organization. Download and share your ideas with your team to create the maximum impact with minimum fuss. 

Key Behaviours of Four DISC Leadership Styles

Template 13: Organizational Multiple Leadership Styles Matrix

Leadership styles and techniques can differ depending on how complicated an organization’s structure is. Highlight organizational multiple leadership styles with this matrix chart PPT Template. Business leaders can use this presentation template to discuss leader details, goal alignment, unstructured issues, acceptance, fairness, disagreement, and common acceptance. Download now!

Organizational multiple leadership styles matrix

Template 14: Addressing Strategic Leadership Styles Strategic Planning Guide for Managers

This PPT Template allows you to display details about leadership, mostly on innovative, directive, and collaborative styles. You can discuss the qualities of each leadership style and advantages and disadvantages. Compare and contrast and make decisions. The slideshow is helpful for strategic planning managers and entrepreneurs. Get it now!

Addressing the various strategic leadership styles

Template 15: Leadership Styles Integrated Model for Employee Management

This predesigned PPT Template works as a guide to improve the performance of others. You can use this integrated model to discus motivation, recognition, delegation, flexibility, structure, and global focus. It will be helpful to modify your leadership style according to the situation. Download now and start on the path to build a strong leadership style.

Leadership style integrated model for employee management


Leadership is both pleasing and challenging. The opportunities for rewards are numerous, but so are the obligations. Everyone has what it takes to be a leader in their field. Here is the road map to becoming a good and effective leader. Use these templates to make the necessary modifications and establish excellent leadership in your organization.

FAQs on Leadership Styles

What are the four main leadership styles.

No company can run effectively without leadership. Your leadership style determines how you influence those around you and how your actions affect the success of your business or division. The four main leadership styles are:

In autocratic leadership, a single person controls the organization or team. An autocratic boss dictates everything to subordinates. 

The democratic leadership method entails soliciting feedback and subordinates; the idea is that everyone can participate in decision-making.

  • Laissez-faire

It entails empowering your staff, remaining detached, and trusting them to complete the task without continual supervision or questioning.

Transformational leadership involves establishing an ambitious goal and organizing your team around it.

What are the seven leadership styles in management?

Business leaders can adapt and lead effectively in any situation by being aware of the traits of below seven different leadership styles:

  • Autocratic or Authoritative Leadership
  • Democratic or Participative Leadership
  • Coaching Leadership
  • Strategic Leadership
  • Transformational Leadership
  • Laissez- Faire Leadership
  • Charismatic Leadership

Each of these styles has both pros and cons attaches to it. The best course of action for a leader is, of course, to see which style fits which situation. This is very hard to do in practice, but good leaders do give it their best shot. 

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