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What sort of management style should I use?

  • Blog
  • 05 December 2017

Growing your business and employing staff means that you’re suddenly responsible for more than just your own way of working.

Management skills are a crucial component of growing and running a business, especially when trying to retain and develop staff. So how should you manage your team? What are your options in terms of management style, and which one is right for your business?

What sort of management style should I use?

Deciding on a management style

There are a number of management styles to consider. Each works in a specific way and benefits different businesses in different ways.

Choosing a management style can depend on the type of business you run, your staff, or even how different teams within your business need to operate.

The crucial element is to find a way of managing your team that suits you and your business.

Finding the right way to manage your team can reduce staff churn and build loyalty to your business. It can also lead to more engaged, motivated staff, who know what is expected of them and what your company needs to achieve.


This is the style which more closely controls and monitors staff. It’s very to the point and relies on staff following explicit instructions.

In businesses that are incredibly meticulous and process focussed, such as manufacturing or construction, this might be an effective means of managing staff. However, you should avoid this becoming too domineering, as this can have an adverse effect on staff morale.

Having detailed processes and training in place can ensure staff understand what is expected of them. As a manager, your role would be to oversee quality and lead by example.

People first

Adopting a more people-focused style of management involves trying to keep staff motivated, positive and engaged. It’s also concerned with avoiding conflict and ensuring staff feel as though they are professionally respected.

This is good for keeping morale high and encouraging communication. In creative industries, where collaboration is crucial, fostering this sort of environment can reap major rewards. This includes higher productivity and a stronger company culture.

As a manager, your role should be to mediate, ensure clear lines of communication and problem solve, as and when necessary. Your focus is essentially on maintaining the happiness of your staff.


Working within this management style requires you to have a solid vision for your business and where it’s headed. This includes goals you need to achieve and what you should do along the way to maximise your business’s potential.

In this role, you encourage your staff to work towards the vision you’ve outlined and then allow them to work without your input. The idea is that you then step in to help whenever there’s a problem and get work back on track.

This is a good style to consider if you work in an industry that needs a clear end goal, but allows for a degree of freedom in terms of how that goal is reached. For example, if you work in marketing, there are different skillsets and ways of working to consider. This management style identifies clear goals to work towards, but still provides the level of freedom staff need to work effectively.


This management style is ideal if you have a team that requires a degree of training.

Tradespeople working with an apprentice, for example, could consider this method. A mentoring style looks more at encouraging growth and development, and helping staff build the skillsets that will be most beneficial to a business.

In this role, you’re expected to be a source of expertise and work closely with your staff to help build their skills and experience, and provide opportunities for growth and development.

It’s possible to mix and match different elements of managerial styles to find a way of managing that suits you and your business. You should look at what’s working well, assess what you’re doing that might be less helpful to staff, and amend your leadership method accordingly.

How can FSB help you support your staff?

FSB offers a variety of packages, including a wealth of services and features that can benefit your business and your staff. These services include:

  • Employment protection
  • Start-up business advice
  • Health and safety

The packages that we offer are suited to either new businesses, already established companies, or those looking to connect with other fellow business owners. To take a look at our packages and the benefits they could bring to your business, please visit our Package Comparison page.

FSB Employment Protection from FSB

A wealth of important information and advice, available online in-case you face dismissal or discrimination claims and employment tribunals.

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