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A thought on the dictatorial management style

April 16th, 2009

I was talking with a young Australian Chartered Accountant recently and he told me he had just received his full CA qualification and was planning to leave the firm he’d been with for several years.  When I asked why, he said he was sick of working for a dictator!

I recall reading an excellent comment on this by Hans Finzel in his book, The Top Ten Mistakes Leaders Make.  I quote:

No one likes to live under dictators–they take all the fun out of life and work! Dictators in the business world hog all the decision-making. They feel that by virtue of their ownership, position, intelligence, or birthright, they are in charge of every key decision that will be made in the company or organization. These traditionalists do not see the value of facilitative leadership or the power of teams.  Needless to say, dictators attract weak workers and cannot create a positive, empowering workplace.

I often wonder how common this style of leadership is in professional service firms.  I believe it’s more common than many people think or are willing to acknowledge.  What a huge cost that is to the growth of the firm, its clients and especially its team members.

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