A recent survey has confirmed that management styles vary by age. Brush up your vocabulary for discussing management on our Open Learning site.
How we talk about management styles
- Listen to three managers and their employees talking about their management style.
- Read the script, note some vocabulary used to talk about management styles, then listen again.
- Review key expressions for describing management styles.
- Test your understanding of the expressions by doing the quiz.
I would describe myself as a hands-off manager. I like to give clear directions, delegate responsibility and then step back. I want to empower my team to use their initiative and feel a sense of achievement.
Employee of Manager 1
I like the fact that my manager trusts me and there are great opportunities for personal growth and development. But to be honest, I often feel there is a lack of guidance and support. And I believe we would work better as a team if our manager was involved in our coordination.
I have a very directive, top-down style of management. I closely control what the team does and impose strict standards on performance and quality. It’s necessary in order to prioritise and get the job done. Anyone not measuring up will quickly be shown the door.
Employee of Manager 2
I dislike my manager’s aggressive, authoritarian style. It’s too rigid and we never get the opportunity to contribute our own ideas. I don’t feel valued or motivated. If you don’t treat people with dignity, fairness and respect, you’re never going to get the best out of them.
I’m a firm believer in democracy. I encourage everyone to have an input and give them a voice in the decision-making process. This helps to develop a common sense of purpose and motivates the team to support, coach and mentor each other.
Employee of Manager 3
My manager has worked hard to build a strong team spirit and morale is high. That said, I sometimes feel that too much consultation slows us down and we start to lose focus. Occasionally it would be nice if my individual achievements were recognised.
- I’m a hands-off manager. I give clear directions and then step back.
- I want to empower my staff to feel a sense of achievement.
- Anyone not measuring up will quickly be shown the door.
- I allow everyone to have an input.
- I give my team a voice in the decision-making process.
- I like to develop a strong sense of purpose.
- There are great opportunities for personal growth and development.
- I didn’t feel that she had a real sense of fairness.
- She doesn’t know how to get the best out of us.
- It would be nice if my individual achievements were recognised.
Listen and repeat
Listen to and then repeat the key expressions. Focus on:
- the rhythm of the language
Each expression will be said twice.