One of my pet peeves in leadership is the controlling leader. I recently wrote some warning signs that indicate a leader may be one. You can read that post HERE, but I keep seeing the type. Controlling leaders are in every type of organization, including in the church. (I also wrote about the difference in leading people versus controlling them HERE.)
I recently saw a controlling leader firsthand while working with another organization. It reminded me that the main reason I’m so opposed to controlling leaders is that it is counter-productive to healthy organizations…and I love healthy organizations.
In fact, here are 3 results I see in teams and organizations with a controlling leader:
Leaders leave – You can’t keep a leader when you control him or her…at least not for long. Leaders need room to breathe, explore, and take risks. Controlling leaders stifle creativity, and a real leader will soon look for a place to grow.
Followers stay…many times…but they are often miserable – There are people wired to follow a controlling leader. If I were using counseling terms, I’d call it co-dependency. Sometimes due to fear of venturing out on their own or because of a false sense of loyalty, they stay, but the controlling leadership makes them miserable.
Organizations stall – Controlling leadership always limits the organization to the strengths, dreams, and abilities of the controlling leader.
Dear leader, take it from a leader who has to discipline himself not to control, controlling leadership simply doesn’t work. Have you learned that principle?
Have you worked for a controlling leader? What would you add to my list of the results of controlling leadership?