What Is Autocratic Leadership And Its Characteristics?

What are the similarities between Queen Elizabeth I, Napoleon Bonaparte, Adolf Hitler, Bill Gates, Abraham Lincoln, and Vladimir Putin? They are all illustrations of autocratic leadership, which occurs when one leader has total, dictatorial control over a group or organization, or, in the case of these notable autocrats, large empires.

Autocratic leaders often make all decisions with little to no input from others. It is critical to identify tyrants from these types of leaders. All dictators are autocratic rulers, but not all autocratic rulers are dictators.

What is Autocratic Leadership?

Autocratic leadership is a method of running a corporation with little or no involvement from others. This sort of leader prefers to guide the company’s course based on their intuition and understanding. Such type of leadership is also known as authoritarian leadership.

Autocratic leadership may be extremely successful in small organizations with only one or two persons on the leadership team. Because there are so few individuals in charge of making choices in small businesses, autocratic leadership might be a natural match. However, for big firms with several levels of leadership and management, it is typically preferable to use an organizational leadership style.

Some leadership specialists oppose autocratic leadership because of its lack of collaboration and checks and balances. Despite this, they believe that it might function effectively in a crisis for any size firm. In difficult circumstances, a company needs a leader who can make important choices that are rapidly implemented and highly productive.

Characteristics of Autocratic Leadership

The autocratic leadership style’s goal is to establish centralized authority and use that power to accomplish desired objectives, whether for a for-profit business or a non-profit organization. This leadership style is distinguished by different personality traits. 

Here are a few characteristics of autocratic leadership:


A successful autocratic leader can make choices quickly and under all conditions. They can save a corporation from a crisis by doing so. This attribute is important because as long as a leader can make quick judgments, everything should go well at work.


The world will follow a leader that is confident in their deeds. When done correctly, confidence may be a highly desirable attribute. There must, however, be a balance. Overconfidence on the side of an autocratic leader with no alternative voices to express ideas or concerns can have a negative influence on the productivity and performance of the firm.


A company’s employees must have trust in its leader and feel that they can rely on them. In turn, the boss will discover that the staff is also dependable. One method to demonstrate this degree of confidence is to demonstrate that responsibility exists for everyone in the organization, including the leader. Employees in this business culture should regard the boss as a confident and rule-following mentor. As a result, the employees are certain that they are being managed by the correct individual.


When speaking with people, a person needs to know how to sound clear. The remarks of a leader should present employees with a clear knowledge of what is expected of them.


To maintain optimal efficiency and production, leaders must successfully excite and inspire their people. To inspire productivity and loyalty to the organization, a great leader use positive motivating approaches such as rewards, praise, and official recognition.


The autocratic leader makes all big and little decisions, which makes them answerable for the repercussions of their judgments. When a leader conducts responsibly, it has a favourable effect on his or her staff. This contributes to the subordinates’ faith in the boss.

Nevertheless, autocratic leaders are not interested in using their authority to oppress others; rather, this leadership style is more concerned with utilizing authority to propel the group forward. It is beneficial in cases where a company is through continual change or is in the midst of a crisis. As it simplifies the organizational structure and rapid decision-making capacity, it will be able to respond to situations more quickly than other leadership styles.

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