Affiliative managers are most interested in creating harmony. This is a very “People First” style of management. These managers are perfect when things are going as they should and operational targets are being met or exceeded. Affiliative managers are also able to work in situations where conflicting sides must work together in the short-term.
The characteristics of an affiliative manager include:
- Affiliative managers work hard to bond with their employees
- These leaders strive to create a family atmosphere
- They often put the emotional needs of their employees above task completion
- Affiliative managers value a favorable work-life balance over increases in performance
- They avoid addressing conflicts head-on instead of focusing on bringing people together
- They reward personal characteristics as much or more than other accomplishments
Affiliative management is an effective style when work is routine and performance is where it needs to be relative to organizational goals. Affiliative managers are successful in situations where work is repetitive or understood by all and the department is not undergoing change. Affiliative managers are also successful in bridging across conflicting sides provided there is ample time for this to be accomplished.
This management style is not a good choice if employee performance needs to improve to meet goals or when changes need to be implemented quickly. Affiliative managers struggle with task-oriented employees who are not interested in developing work based friendships or peer groups. This style of management is best used alongside others as on its own it leaves the manager in jeopardy when performance increases need to be made quickly.