Interpersonal Leadership Styles: Importance, Skills, Pillars

If you want to succeed in your project, you will require many technical and interpersonal skills when you are a team leader or a manager.

Developing interpersonal leadership skills with your team members is necessary, as this will contribute to good results. It has a role to play in enhancing the work of leaders as they may need to go way beyond the previously planned program.

It would be best if you considered that you would work with people at all levels in an organization. This is both in the interior and exterior of the company.

There are a few people you do not see face to face, but still, you would need to establish a bond with them to enhance the quality of your work.

?What Is Interpersonal Leadership?

Interpersonal leadership is a form of leadership that has the potential to make a difference and enrich the lives of others.

The main objective of this leadership style is to bring the best out of every person. Interpersonal intelligence is to understand other people and to work comparatively with them.

To be effective with others, you need to be effective with yourself.

?Reasons Why Interpersonal Skills Are Important In Leadership

There are different reasons why interpersonal skills are important for a leader. It would enable leaders to develop meaningful relationships with their employees and co-workers.

Leaders who possess emotional intelligence and interpersonal skills have an important role to play would motivate them to have a potent workforce.

The task is easy to spot an emotionally intelligent leader. To be empathetic, you need to notice the patterns in behavior and use them to observe relationships with them.

?Importance Of Interpersonal Skills In Leadership

The skills of people play an important role in the workplace. But for interpersonal skills, you need to have strong social skills.

Apart from that, there are diverse reasons to acquire strong interpersonal skills.
Coming to interpersonal skills it is going to matter in every area of your life, no matter how large or big you are.

This is why acquiring interpersonal skills would be a must-have for every employee.

Between leaders and managers, there is a definite distinction. The managers ensure that the employees understand their roles, responsibilities, and due dates.

Most people become managers, but not every manager is an effective leader. The better piece of news is that interpersonal leadership skills can be learned and not innate.

Various leadership programs in place help you to develop interpersonal leadership skills.
Interpersonal leadership skills affect every area of the business.

The skills come to the fore when you enter a negotiation. If you are focusing on being a leader and not a mere manager, below are some of the interpersonal leadership skills you need.


Effective leaders must develop communication skills, and a successful leader must showcase proper communication.

Leaders with poor communication skills stick to the command and leadership style that would be effective in certain settings.

You must be effective with your directives and adopt a clear and concise outlook.

Active listening

Listen to understand and not merely reply. Pay attention to each person you converse with and ask yourself what you would learn from that conversation.

Let the members of your team know what you hear from them. This will engage them, and they are willing to provide feedback when you request them.


Feedback is important for a variety of reasons. The first important thing is that you want a consistent level of performance from your staff.

In due course of time, the team members would appreciate the negative feedback if they knew that you had presented them with good intentions.

Trust and honesty

Be as transparent and honest with your employees as possible during crises. Everyone will look up to you for guidance, so it is up to them to give a reason to treat how you act.


The team will likely trust you if you have the company’s best intentions in mind. Show your employees they are valued and spend time with them one-on-one; sometimes, you need to adjust the approach while keeping the situation in mind.

Empathy and compassion

Both these skills go hand in hand with self-awareness. With these skills, you are going to understand the thought process of others as you will be able to trust humans and make them feel at home.

?Interpersonal Leadership Styles

A manager can achieve success personally and impose his opinion and position, and an effective leader has a team of followers, whereas the manager has a set of subordinate employees. Below are some of the interpersonal leadership styles

List Of Interpersonal Leadership Styles

  • Coercive leadership
  • Affiliative leadership
  • Authoritative leadership
  • Democratic leadership
  • Coaching leadership
  • Pacesetting leadership

Coercive leadership

It is a form of autocratic leadership as the leader is known to give commands and orders. This is a style that should be used only when it is essential as, in the long term, it can break the work environment.

Workers may become demotivated and stop collaborating and sharing ideas as fear may creep into them.

Affiliative leadership

Such a leadership style goes on to incorporate harmonious relationships among people that allow employees to work according to their freedom.

It is a form of leadership that you need to incorporate if you are looking for harmony in your team and when the people are new to this leadership style.

Authoritative leadership

This is a leadership style where the leader is a visionary and has a long-term vision. They are going to mobilize people with a degree of enthusiasm.

Such a leadership style showcases a considerable degree of commitment to an organization. The rule of success applies to everyone as it allows them to experiment and innovate.

Democratic leadership style

In this leadership style, the workers have a say in accountability and flexibility. This form of leadership is effective when the leader is not certain of the future or what needs to be done in order to generate new ideas. The style would lose its meaning when the employees are not educated.

Coaching leadership style

This leadership model’s main objective is to develop people’s talent. It would enable the employees to identify their strengths, weaknesses, and future career aspirations.

Such a leadership style works best when employees are aware of their weaknesses and are keen to improve their performance.

Pacesetting leadership style

The leader sets guidelines and expects people to follow them. The standards are clear to the leader, though a few of the employees feel overwhelmed when they have to comply with standards formulated by the leader.

?Pillars Of Interpersonal Leadership

Interpersonal leadership is about inspiring others to do their best to achieve a shared purpose. While most effective strategic leaders think outside- an effective interpersonal leader adopts an inside approach to people. Starting they focus on the above traits


People appreciate some form of structure. While a lot of structure may turn out to be baffling, it would free them to act within boundaries.

You can use them to allow people to focus on things that matter within reliable boundaries.


Being an interpersonal leader, you can inspire others by giving them some form of leverage. In some cases, you may turn out to be leverage and allow them to act.

The key is not to disapprove of them in any way. The moment you have gone on to give someone a degree of accountability, they are in charge.


Interpersonal leadership is not about earning your team members’ confidence but helping them have confidence in their own abilities.

True aspiration tends to emerge from within, and you must allow people to believe in their strengths. It works better and develops a degree of self-confidence.

?How To Improve Your Interpersonal Skills In Leadership?

There are numerous ways by which a leader can improve their interpersonal skills. Leadership coaching is a great intervention to develop these skills and link them to viable business outcomes. There are a few places to start.

  • Be considerate and show compassion– practicing compassion helps to refine your interpersonal skills as a leader makes an effort to understand the emotions of others. It is going to strengthen their relationships with them.

  • Showing interest in others– leaders can practice turning down people who tend to confide in them. It will develop the perception of an individual willing to lend a helping hand, which may turn out to be crucial when developing connections.

  • Do not complain– there is no point in complaining as leaders are known to listen to the problems of others and avoid solutions.

  • Learn to give credit– give credit to the team members when they deserve it. Celebrating the success of others would not deviate from your path. It gives the impression that you are a trustworthy team player.

?Key Takeaways

  • Interpersonal leadership skills are crucial for managers to effectively communicate, collaborate, and build relationships with their team.
  • Managers with strong interpersonal skills can create a positive work environment, foster trust and respect among team members, and inspire employees to work towards a common vision.
  • Effective communication and conflict resolution skills are essential for managers to maintain a harmonious and productive workplace.
  • Interpersonal leadership skills enable managers to understand the needs and perspectives of their team members, leading to better decision-making and improved employee engagement.
  • In today’s business landscape, where teams are increasingly diverse and distributed, developing interpersonal leadership skills is more important than ever.
  • Managers can improve their interpersonal leadership skills through training, coaching, and seeking feedback from their team members.
  • Cultivating strong interpersonal leadership skills can lead to increased job satisfaction, better team performance, and improved organizational outcomes.


Interpersonal skills can be acquired through various practices. It is a critical requirement of any work to maintain productivity, positivity, and team dynamics to achieve organizational success.

Every member of an organization is bound to benefit when they develop interpersonal skills. Being a leader, you are aware of the skills that the workforce lacks, and there are numerous ways by which you may go on to improve your interpersonal skills.


Why Are Interpersonal Skills Critical In Management?

Interpersonal skills in management are critical for effective communication, collaboration, and relationship-building.

They inspire teams, resolve conflicts, build trust, and create a positive work environment. These skills enhance leadership effectiveness and contribute to organizational success.

How can leaders effectively switch between interpersonal leadership styles?

Leaders can effectively switch between interpersonal leadership styles by being adaptable, understanding the situation’s needs, and considering their team members’ preferences and characteristics.

Developing a versatile leadership approach and regularly assessing the effectiveness of their style can help leaders determine when and how to switch between different styles.

How do interpersonal leadership styles impact employee engagement?

Interpersonal leadership styles greatly impact employee engagement. Styles that emphasize collaboration, empathy, and involvement in decision-making tend to foster higher levels of engagement and motivation among team members.

Employees who feel valued, supported, and included are more likely to be engaged and committed to their work.

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