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How trust and delegation can influence responsibility and accountability

Passive Leadership
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Leadership profiles

Passive (or laissez-faire) leadership is based on trust and delegation, allowing employees to work at their own pace with flexibility and responsibility, this style is ideal for a self-motivated team.

The leader is available to his team if necessary, but avoids taking primary responsibility. They can fail to make important decisions and have difficulties in managing conflicts, instead of allowing employees to self-rule and be self-guided.

This leadership style can be useful for a research laboratory where individuals are highly skilled, experienced, educated and are expected to take on more responsibility.

What does a higher score mean?

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You are a passive leader, believing your team has the capability and capacity to self-manage. This allows you to take a role more as a mentor, influencer and to guide your team rather than discipline them into compliance.

What does a lower score mean?

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You prefer to take a more active leadership style than this passive approach to leadership. You can leverage a more assertive and perhaps achievement striving approach to your teams, hoping to provide active guidance, rather than waiting for them to come to you.

To nurture your Passive Leadership:

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Embrace your ability to delegate. Trust your team and employees to self-manage, keeping an open door for them to approach you when they need guidance or help. Ensure your role has independence and a flexible work structure, with very little responsibility, enabling this level of delegation.

Use this checklist for self-evaluation

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  • Do you have a large responsibility and accountability in your role?
  • Can you delegate to your team and trust them to deliver?
  • Do you have to make important decisions often?
  • Do you enjoy managing conflicts?

Examples of Passive Leaders:


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