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How autocratic leaders make strong independent decisions

Autocratic Leadership
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Leadership profiles

Autocratic, or authoritarian, leadership is an extreme leadership style where the sole focus is the leader. The leader only makes choices or decisions based on their own values or beliefs, and do not look to others for consensus, advice or input.

This form of leadership utilizes total independent decision-making on behalf of an organisation. The leader usually possesses total authority and exercises complete power over the people, utilizing guidelines, procedures, and policies to impose their will and perspective on others.

It is an effective leadership for routine jobs, where employees require close supervision and will not question leadership. Employee roles that work for such a leadership style are directing traffic, police work, cleaning, etc.

What does having a higher score mean?

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You believe in sole decision making and believe your opinion and perspective is the right one. This management style is ideal if you are in an industry where total command is required, like the army or the police force. You believe that specific rules and processes are to be followed without question, and prefer to have that authority over your teams.

What does having a lower score mean?

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You do not believe in a rigid leadership style, preferring to leverage your empathy and modesty for a more integrative team approach.

To nurture your Autocratic Leadership:

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Ensure your role has documented procedures and processes you can adhere to, and enable you as a manager to have the rules in place for your team. You must be self-confident to use this leadership style, as it entails independent decision-making capabilities.

Use this checklist for self-evaluation

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  • Are you self confident?
  • Do you work to your values and beliefs?
  • Are you in a decision-making role?
  • Can you exercise full authority in your role?

Examples of Autocratic Leaders:


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I often reflect on my thoughts

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I do not often think about the way I am feeling

< Strongly Disagree
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I enjoy exploring my “inner self"

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I often reflect on my feelings

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Others would benefit from reflecting more on their thoughts

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I am interested in analysing the behaviour of others

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I value opportunities to evaluate my behaviour

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It is important to understand why people behave in the way they do

< Strongly Disagree
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When I’m feeling uncomfortable, I can easily name these feelings

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I usually know why I am feeling the way I do

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I am often on auto-pilot and do not pay much attention to what I am doing

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Sometimes I am careless because I am preoccupied, with many things on my mind

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I often dwell on the past or the future, rather than the present

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My mind often wanders when I am trying to concentrate

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I often find myself thinking about how to solve past negative events

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When things go wrong, I often think about them constructively for long periods of time

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I tend not to look back and think about how I could have done things better

< Strongly Disagree
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