Participative Management

A management style where responsibility and decision-making authority is conferred to front-line employees.

Commonly mistaken for a type of management where employees are encouraged to contribute ideas towards identifying organizational improvements (such as cost-cutting measures), participative management is one of the most important as well as most widely utilized strategies for developing organizations.

It is rooted in the concept of servant leadership, a type of management in which employees at all levels are given greater control and coordination of the basic activities and functions of the enterprise. Decisions are taken through inclusion of every one of those who will be affected by them.

The principle is simple: workers gain more satisfaction and work better when in a supportive environment. The difficult comes when managers are required to share information, delegate authority, and confer responsibility identify and set organizational goals to front-line employees.

Delegating decision-making and distributing responsibility requires trust and courage, which in turn require involvement and vulnerability. Because of this, participation requires more effort and a higher level of emotional development. 

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