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What Is Charismatic Leadership And Why Is It Important?

group of employees working a communal desk

Does your business have charismatic leadership? This powerful management style can be a game changer for you, your team, and your entire organization.

All it takes is the right skills and the will to succeed.

In this article, we discuss the concept of charismatic leadership and why it can be a game-changer on a number of different levels.

What Is Charismatic Leadership?

Bright open concept office space

Charisma

Oxford Languages (the same folks that manage the Oxford English Dictionary) defines charisma as:

Compelling attractiveness or charm that can inspire devotion in others

This attractiveness and charm most often manifest as a je ne sais quois that most people can recognize but that few people can define. Psychologists refer to this as personal charisma.

Personal charisma is the manifestation of complex social and emotional skills that allows an individual to:

  • Communicate effectively with others
  • Affect and influence others on a deep emotional level
  • Forge strong interpersonal connections quickly

From a business perspective, personal charisma is not the same as charismatic leadership, but charismatic leaders possess most, if not all, of the traits that indicate personal charisma.

Think of it this way: Not all individuals who have personal charisma are charismatic leaders, but most charismatic leaders have personal charisma (whether inborn or developed).

That’s good news for businesses, owners, and managers because it means that individuals can learn the components of charisma to become this unique kind of leader.

Before we dig deeper into the concept of charismatic leadership, let’s discuss leadership by itself so we fully understand the theory behind the practice.

Leadership

Leadership is a nebulous concept (and the definition is often contested), but most experts agree that it boils down to one of the following:

  1. A practical skill encompassing the ability of an individual, group, or organization to influence or guide other individuals, teams, or entire organizations
  2. A process of social influence in which a person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task

So what makes a leader a leader? To answer that question, sometimes it’s easier to look at what a leader or leadership is not.

Leadership has nothing to do with:

  • Seniority
  • A position in the hierarchy of the business
  • Titles
  • Personal attributes

As that last bullet attests, leadership does not depend on personal attributes. By extension, then, leadership does not necessarily have to be charismatic.

Your business may benefit from another management style, such as:

  • Democratic
  • Inspirational
  • Authoritative
  • Results-Based
  • Laissez-Faire
  • Or any number of others

It all depends on what’s right for your business.

Now that we’re on the same page regarding charisma and leadership as separate concepts, let’s put them together to get a fuller sense of what makes charismatic leadership so powerful.

Charismatic Leadership

Charismatic leadership is a management style that combines persuasive communication, interpersonal connection, and charm with the goal of motivating and inspiring others to excel.

This style of leadership is very effective at tapping into employees’ emotions in order to create a feeling of purpose, passion, and trust that contributes dramatically to workplace productivity.

It is, however, different from other leadership styles — such as autocratic and laissez-faire — in that it focuses more on interpersonal relationships and interactions between the person in authority and their subordinate(s).

And because charismatic leadership is driven, in large part, by cultivating a strong relationship between manager and managed, it relies on a number of core characteristics that facilitate the connections.

Characteristics Of Charismatic Leadership

charismatic leadership who is holding a coffee mug that says Kickass Woman

1) Humility

No one is perfect. A charismatic leader understands this and exercises a sense of humility at all times.

Humility manifests as a willingness to accept mistakes and a realization that each person is part of a team — even the leader.

2) Communication

Charismatic leadership means communicating effectively at all times.

These leaders speak clearly, concisely, openly, and professionally so that everyone on their team understands the message they’re trying to get across.

Good communication also encourages each and every team member to speak freely and without fear of repercussion.

3) Confidence

Confidence is, in many ways, the cornerstone of charismatic leadership.

A leader with strong confidence conveys to their team — be it explicitly or implicitly — that no matter what happens, if everyone works together, they’ll be able to reach a beneficial solution.

4) Empathy

Where charismatic leadership is concerned, empathy plays an important role.

When a leader is open to their team’s feelings, concerns, and passions, they’ll be better able to foster the sense of team that helps everyone push through to success.

5) Maturity

Charismatic leadership also includes a healthy dose of maturity. That doesn’t mean that it’s all about chronological age — young people can exhibit maturity as well.

Rather, it has more to do with skills, experience, drive, and the successful application of knowledge (wisdom).

6) Self-Awareness

Too often, individuals in positions of authority don’t recognize the stress they may cause their employees and what effect their own actions have on others.

A charismatic leader strives to understand both themselves and their role within the team.

7) Enthusiasm

Enthusiasm is contagious and has a beneficial effect on others. Charismatic leaders strive to exhibit a passion for the job, for the team, and for the business at all times.

8) Optimism

Optimism and confidence are closely related. But while confidence is a feeling that no task is impossible, optimism is a way of viewing even seemingly negative developments as an opportunity to thrive.

An optimistic leader sees the glass as half full, while the pessimistic leader sees it as half empty.

Why Is Charismatic Leadership Important?

Two charismatic leadership partners high fiving each other

A new generation of employees have graduated from high school and college and are now actively looking for careers.

Generation Z (born between 1997 and 2010) is like nothing the business world has experienced before because they’ve never known a time when the internet didn’t exist. They’re also accustomed to adapting to the rapid change of new and emerging technologies.

As such, they expect the institutions they join — both academic and business — to embrace these paradigms (connectivity and tech solutions) just like they do. That may not seem like it applies to charismatic leadership, but, in a very real way, it does.

For this new generation, technology is their foundation. It’s always been there and it will always be there.

So, unlike other generations (Baby Boomers, Gen X, and Millennials to some extent), Gen Z doesn’t need or want a leadership style that emphasizes the importance of technology for success.

They already know that to be fact.

What they do want and need is to feel valued, impassioned, and part of an organization that recognizes their hard work and skills. Charismatic leadership can provide that in spades.

Not only can charismatic leaders help your business guide and develop this new generation of employees, but they can also help you attract and retain both high-performing and high-potential employees of other generations.

Find Time To Practice Charismatic Leadership

schedule time to practice charismatic leadership with the sling app

If you want to find time to practice and improve your charismatic leadership skills, use Sling to create the perfect work schedule for your team.

Formatting, producing, distributing, and editing the employee work schedule doesn’t leave a lot of time to develop your people management skills.

Not to mention the time it takes to keep track of employees clocking in and out, labor expenses, payroll, and overtime.

The Sling app simplifies and streamlines all of those processes so you can work on yourself.

Not only is Sling an extremely powerful work schedule creator, but it’s also a mobile time clock, labor cost analyzer, intra-business messaging system, newsfeed manager, and employee task list all rolled into one easy-to-use package.

You can even use one Sling account to schedule employees across multiple locations. Now that’s power and flexibility!

Add in the onboard artificial intelligence that notifies you when there’s a scheduling conflict or you missed a request for time off, and you’ve got the perfect system for managing your employees.

The Sling app is free, easy to use, and will help you spend your time more efficiently so you can concentrate on honing your charismatic leadership skills even further.

From the retail and service industries to the healthcare and non-profit sectors, Sling will help you coordinate your own schedule, your team, and your entire organization more effectively.

For more free resources to help you manage your business better, organize and schedule your team, and track and calculate labor costs, visit GetSling.com today.

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