The presidential election offers up an example of the two styles: Donald J. Trump is a dominant leader, while Hillary Clinton has more prestige-leaning qualities, Professor Maner said. Steve Jobs of Apple, who was known for his brash, uncompromising style, was a classic example of a dominant leader. Warren Buffett, who has a less forceful demeanor, falls into the prestige category, according to the professor's classifications.
The dominant style has a negative cast and can lead to damaging behavior like bullying. Over all, the prestige style tends to work better in our culture, he said.
But dominance is not always bad for an organization, he added. "If you're running a company and you have a very strong vision for the direction the company needs to move, and your job as a leader is to get everybody aligned and moving toward that vision, then dominance actually works quite well."
Dominance can also be effective in times of organizational crisis, he said. "You want somebody to come in and lead the charge — there isn't time for a big brainstorming session."
The prestige leadership style is most effective when a leader does not have a strong vision and instead wants employees to come up with innovative and creative strategies, he said.
In a working paper that Professor Maner has written with Ms. Case, he details the way that the prestige style can get leaders into trouble. Because they gain their prestige by building relationships, they will sometimes make a popular decision over a wise one, he said, and "they also have trouble giving negative feedback to employees."
While most leaders tend to lean toward dominance or prestige, the best ones know how to use both styles — and to deploy the right one at the right time for the good of their organization, Professor Maner said.
By Phyllis Korkki of The New York Times. Read the original article here.