|Subject Name:||People, Culture and Contemporary Leadership|
|Assessment Title:||Individual Reflective Journal|
Create an individual reflective journal that explores the People, Culture and Contemporary Leadership theories and concepts that have been covered in the subject.
An important part of undertaking postgraduate study, is that you actively reflect on what you’ve been learning and how you could apply it to assist your own professional development. This learning should have included a number of topics which include:
During this time you should have written a weekly diary notes recording your experiences (both positive and negative). This assessment requires you to combine these into a Reflective Journal that answers the following questions:
To ensure the success of your reflective journal make certain that you incorporate the following:
You should refer to at least five (5) relevant theories that you have covered in the subject in your presentation to support your answers.
Please refer to the Assessment Marking Guide to assist you in completing all the assessment criteria.
MBA401 People, Culture and Contemporary Leadership: Assessment 3
Individual Reflective Journal
Leadership plays an active and vital role in the growth and operational aspects of an organization. There are different kinds of leadership styles; leaders apply their leadership skills to the organization to achieve the organizational goals (Arnold et al. 2015). Every leader has a set of skills depending on their leadership styles, and every leadership style has its own strengths and limitations (Amanchukw et al. 2015). As per the psychometric test was taken, my leadership traits are Resourcefulness, Organizational, Responsible, Assertiveness and Transformational Leadership. The purpose of this reflective journal is to assess my leadership style and what can be done in order to enhance my leadership skills. This journal will use the five theories (Fiedler’s Contingency Theory, House’s Path-Goal Theory, Hersey & Blanchard’s Leadership Theory, Vroom & Jago’s Normative Decision Model and Leader-Member Exchange) of a situational leadership model to reflect my insight about my leadership skills; this will include both my strengths and limitations as a leader.
The difference between a leader and the other people is the strategic thinking ability. This ability can be gained or enhanced, and this is what leadership development is. Leadership can be developed through skill-based programs, feedback intensive programs. According to the leadership questionnaire assessment results, for a beginner, I have high-quality leadership skills.
Fiedler's Contingency theory stated that effective leadership had been originated in a particular situation and when the leadership style matches the situation then it can be called the effective leadership style of the individual (Boehe 2016). By incorporating Fiedler's Contingency theory, I am a Task-Oriented Leader because of my organizational leadership trait. This states that I am good with team organizations and project handling, as responsibility is also another leadership trait as per the result. My leadership style would help me with getting things done as per the organizational requirements.
House’s Path-Goal Theory clearly defines that a leader must need to be flexible and supportive in different situations (Farhan 2018). As per the House’s Path-Goal Theory my leadership style can be related to the initiating structure behaviour, as per this structure my leadership style falls under the Directive behaviour As the leaders with this behaviour are better at sharing the task requirements with the team members and coordination, my assertiveness will be suitable trait for me as a leader.
As per the Hersey & Blanchard’s Situational Leadership theory, there is no such leadership style that can be considered as the better one. This theory suggested that the leader must need to be flexible as per their followers’ abilities rather than focusing on organisational factors (Meier 2016). In terms with Hersey & Blanchard’s Situational Leadership model, my behavioural style is categorized as Telling as per the H&B terminology. This is because as per the assessment result, I explicitly tell my followers about what is expected from them, and I monitor their work closely. As per the interpretation structure, my leadership style emphasis is a high task - low relationship.
Vroom and Jago’s Normative Decision Model depends on these three factors, Decision Quality, Team Commitment and Time Constraints (Vroom et al. 2015). As per organizational traits and responsibility traits, I make decisions based on my followers' needs. Due to these traits, I fall under the C category, which is a Consultative leadership behavioural trait as per this decision model.
According to the Leader-Member Exchange Theory (LMX), relationships between a leader and their subordinates can be segmented in three steps, Role-Taking, Role-Making and Routinization (Martin et al. 2016). LMX7 scale is used to assess the degree of leadership skills in terms of team handling and mutual relationship. In terms of LMX scale, I have will get high LMX relationships with the team members because of my transformational leadership traits and organizational skills. This theory is very different because it scales the leader as per their relationship with the team members and as per the large LMX scale, a leader in this scale are willing to consult team members during decision making and as well as motivating and inspiring them to gain more confidence. Therefore, in terms of my leadership traits and their scores, I have a high LMX relationship skill.
As leadership styles can be categorized into different types in terms of various theories or models, five widely used theories or models are used to scale my leadership style. Depending on these five theories, the above-mentioned outcomes are my leadership style.
Leadership is necessary for any organization, but effective leadership is a crucial requirement. Imperfect leadership can encounter problems; therefore, a perfect and effective leadership is required for a business to function smoothly. But even though an organization holds effective leaders, there various organizational factors that can inhibit these leaders from performing. Therefore, organizational factors can assist an effective leader as well as inhibit from doing so. Organizational environment and the culture in the organization can become two important determinants for leadership effectiveness (Cole 2018). Organizational environment and culture has a close relationship with each other and should be well aligned in an organization. Environment for the leadership is embedded with ambiguity and complexity (Jones et al. 2018). Therefore it is important for organizations to define the individual leadership roles. Other factors that affect leadership effectiveness are resources, employee roles and technology.
The following are the organizational factors that may assist or inhibit my leadership effectiveness:
Organizational Culture: Every organization has its own work culture; this culture is the combination of an organization's history and its current and past leaders. As the organizational culture is difficult to change, this culture can either help or restrain me from using my leadership skills and style effectively.
Organizational Environment: Like culture, every organization has their work environment. Depending on their values and legacy, it can be defined over the years for an organization (Jones et al. 2018). Their values as an organization, their goals and concepts can impact my leadership skills and its effectiveness.
Organizational Resources: Every individual in an organization is dependent on the resources that organizations have. These can be staff members and their skill, finances or other physical resources that organizations have. For a leader, their objective is to use these resources to achieve the organizational goals. Therefore, my effectiveness as a leader will also be dependent on these resources, with skilled staff and better finances I can be much more effective as a leader, and if it is the opposite, then it will restrain my skills to achieve the goal.
Employee Roles: Employees performs the tasks and responsibilities in relationship with their organizational role. Employees have several levels of approaching style and maturity for a given task and their role in achieving their goals also affect the leadership’s effectiveness (Cole 2018). Employees can face roadblocks in their tasks, and as an effective leader, I must help them with overcoming it. My transformational leadership skills will be helpful in such scenarios.
Technological Aspects: Technological aspects also can dramatically influence or change the business environment. Technology is always changing the business operation procedures, and as an effective leader, I must adjust my management style in accordance with it. To be an effective leader, I have to adapt to new scenarios quickly. Also, lack of technological availability can also harm my effectiveness as a leader.
There are also other organizational factors that affect effective leadership skills and to be an effective leader; I have to learn quickly to adapt in various situations and make the most out of it.
It is not possible to instantly transform someone into a leader. To be a successful leader, leadership skills are necessary, and to gain these leadership skills or to develop these skills; continuous learning is needed. Training and development programs can be deemed helpful in this regard as well as on the job learning (Hezlett 2016). There is several training, and developmental programs and various discussion methods for such development and seminars and workshops regarding this subject can also be attended to gain knowledge about leadership skills.
In order to develop my leadership skills, I can use various methods that are readily available, such as University education, e-learning, case studies, management games. These methods can be helpful in terms of both theoretical and practical aspects. Management games and case studies can help with the practical knowledge of the leadership requirements and be helpful with experience gaining. On the other hand, e-learning and University, education can help with the theoretical aspect of this learning (Bolden 2016). Also, I can refer to videos and podcasts by industry legends to gain more insights about the leadership skills and development of these skills as well.
There are also other methods can also be used while I am inside the school, I can use conference or discussion methods, classroom training, simulation method, seminars or workshops. These methods can be used to develop my creativity and communication skills as a leader. Also, a leaderless group discussion can be conducted anywhere and can also help me with learning from this kind of discussions.
Another method of training that can help with leadership skill development is internships or outdoor learning. While, working in a real-life scenario, through an OTJ or On the Job program can be beneficial with real-life experiences (Bolden 2016). By volunteering into these kinds of internship programs, I can gain real-life experiences as a leader; this will help with enhancing and with evaluating my existing leadership skills and gain new ones.
As I continuously engage myself in these activities, I can tailor my own development program.
As discussed above, there are several methods and training programs to develop leadership skills. There are many leadership skills key points, but these are the following 3 key points I have found to be most valuable in continuous leadership development:
Communication: As a leader, communication is an important tool for their job. Every leader has to succinctly and clearly explain the team members or followers about their goals or specific tasks. Also, in various cases, a leader has to motivate and inspire their team members. Therefore, communication plays an important part in the job role for a leader. Communication skills also involve listening, as well. Therefore, a steady flow of communication is necessary between a leader and their team members (Erasmus, Strydom and Rudansky-Kloppers 2016)). The leader needs to convey the team members about their goals clearly. As a result, in order to be a more effective leader and to enhance leadership skills, a leader must work on their leadership skills.
Responsibility: Leaders are responsible for their team members; their successes and failures are a leader's successes and failures. Therefore, a leader has to be responsible and be open to the feedback and acknowledge the mistakes. Responsible leaders do not look for other’s mistakes; they learn from the mistakes and evaluate their mistakes. By evaluating their mistakes and past experience a responsible leader plans for future goals and forecasting (Thorpe 2016). With the learning from past experiences, an effective leader motivates and inspires their team members to achieve their goals in the future. Therefore, to be a better leader, responsibility is a valuable skill to develop.
Flexibility: A successful leader has to be flexible about their goals and requirements. Mishaps can always happen, and sudden change can occur anytime in business as leader dynamic characteristics are therefore necessary. Ability to accept sudden changes is a valuable ability for a leader. Also, there may need to learn new skills or new ability to respond to various issues, as an effective leader, this flexible approach is necessary. As a leader, enhancing this particular skill will deem helpful to be an effective leader.
These are the three key points that I find most valuable as a leader and these 3 are the most valuable skill that needs continuous development to be an effective leader.
This is a reflective journal about my learning about leadership, and this journal also explains about my leadership style as well. In order to determine leadership style, leadership psychometric tests were taken, and the test result was analysed using the 5 leadership theories as well. The individual result from these theories then documented in this journal to paint a clear picture of my leadership style and also my understanding about this is recorded as well. Also, further in the journal organization factors and their impacts on my effective leadership skills are also discussed. The required methods to continue developing my skills as a leader are also reflected in this journal. Also, 3 key leadership skills that I feel most valuable are also discussed in this journal.