From people to properties, systems to strategies, management is key. Find the right management style today, that will reap the biggest rewards...

Democratic Management

People are given relative freedom. They can make their own decisions on various aspects of their lives, such as in their livelihood and education. Where they decide to seek employment is up to them. They can choose to work in a strict and disciplined workplace or a company that is casual and freethinking. If they wish, they can also work with a company that has a democratic type of management.

Among the many styles of management, democracy is a popular choice. It is a good approach to handling people because it encourages them to work well. They do not feel like slaves of the organization. Their voices are heard and the inputs they offer are taken into account. The employees of this company tend to stay long because they are often satisfied with management policies.

The Definition of Democratic Management

A democratic manager is an encouraging type of manager. With a democratic manager, employees are given the chance to participate in decision-making. They also are given a chance to help in solving problems within the company. This type of management pushes an employee to be more productive and the resulting work is often high quality and high quantity. The worker’s morale is boosted with the thought that he is trusted; thus he performs well.

Democratic management shares responsibilities. Even if the manager has the final say in every decision that is made, he still asks around for input and possible solutions. The effect of this management style is long-term. The employees remain loyal to the company because they know they are trusted and valued.

Advantages of Democratic Management

A democratic type of management has several advantages.

  • The management still has control over decision-making. Even if they ask employees for inputs and ideas, they have the final say.

  • Productivity is increased. When workers feel trusted, they are motivated to do well.

  • Communicating with workers foster teamwork. They are all dedicated to making sure the company achieves its goals and target, and they work as one cohesive unit.

  • Stress is reduced in the workplace. The employees are happy with their superiors and they feel they can be open with them.

Essentially, this management style is advantageous because it has balance. The employees feel welcome and consider themselves truly a part of the company but they still rely on top management for decisions. Company policies take into consideration ideas and suggestions of the workers, but the power still rests on the manager. 

Functions of a Democratic Manager

A democratic manager is responsible for the group of people under him. He is looked up to when decisions have to be made. But he also takes other roles, such as:

  • Develops plans so that the employees can evaluate their own performance at work. He gives the employees a chance to analyze their job accomplishments and work on areas that they are not so good at.

  • Give employees opportunity to establish goals for the company. They can suggest targets that are good for the company.

  • Encourage employees to be promoted and grow on the job. The democratic manager wants his workers to move up in the organization.

  • Monitors the improvement of workers’ performance.

  • Trusts his subordinates by sharing with them information that impacts their work. The manager lets his employees know most of the important news and changes within the company.

Effect of Democratic Management on its Employees

First of all, democratic management inspires cooperation within the workplace. Even if the end decision is not on the workers’ hand alone, the fact that they are asked for inputs and ideas is already a big deal. When management talks to employees about situations and circumstances behind every major decision, the employees are happy to be trusted. Second, creativity is inspired. Management knows that great ideas and innovation spring from motivation. If the workers are motivated, they can perform very well.

Next, goals become achievable. Management openly communicates to the employees about their goals. Their company’s target is not the sole responsibility of the workers. Instead, they all work together to succeed. Lastly, the employees become loyal to the company they belong to. They are pleased to stay with an organization that sees them as an integral part of the organization and not just mere workers who do their bidding without questions.

The Open-Door Policy

When it comes to democratic management, the open-door policy is in place. There is no such thing as confidentiality within the company because everyone is informed of all concerns. If it is a huge corporation, representatives of each department or section are asked to join meetings for all policies to be made. It is a participative type of management.

This policy is most appropriate when there is a major problem within the company. At this point, top management needs all the help it can get. Inputs from the lower hierarchy might be valuable and present a workable solution. When changes will have to be implemented in the organization, having a democratic management is a big help. Especially when changes affect the employees directly, it would be good to let them know of such things. This avoids disgruntlement of the employees because they are not kept in the dark.

Democratic versus Autocratic Management

Most employees are not aware of the management approach in their company. Rank and file employees simply follow the company’s regulations. They will only realize the distinction in management style when they talk with people in other organizations.

Autocratic management automatically presumes that workers will not be productive if they have a choice. The manager is always watching his workers and punishes them for errors and mistakes. Morale in this company is often low and there is a high turnover of employees.

Democratic management, on the other hand, gives its workers relative freedom. The employees are confident with their positions and work together for the good of the company. They are more loyal to the organization and would have to think twice about leaving them for another job.

While most employees would want to go with democracy, it is still top management who decides what style to follow.