The main objective of this blog is to reflect my perception about leadership, incline towards portrayal of personal qualities, desires and ambitions. The work will even highlight reviews and feedback from the peers, pointing out my strengths and areas of development. It will further demonstrate an example of well-recognised leader who inspires and motivates me.
‘‘A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way’’ (Maxwell, 2016). My personal vision of leadership is to inspire others to think and learn more in order to achieve more. I think a leader is one who takes the blame for a failure, and credits everyone on success. Coming from a high context culture, with existence of unequal distribution of power and authoritative style of leadership in organisations, my vision of leadership is inclined towards a change where democratic style of leadership is valued. A proactive role of subordinates in decision making process contributes to development of an organisation (Mullins, 2013). This involves equal opportunity of participation and thoughts, with transparency within the central hierarchy. My personal understanding of democratic leadership will guide a way forward towards elimination of politics, communication gap and unequal distribution of powers within an organisation.
Yukl describes leadership as a process of influencing others to lead a way forward (Yukl, 2010). I would like to outline how ‘M005LON- Leading in A Changing World’ aided to my knowledge, in regard of Yukl’s statement. Knowledgecast and seminars inclined towards numerous class activities and case studies helped me in understanding key points of leadership, described as follows:
- A leader should emphasise strengths of subordinates, and allocate individual roles and tasks accordingly.
- Involvement of subordinates in decision making process can help in generation of new ideas and innovations.
- Buckingham (Buckingham, 2005) (What great managers do) informed me about importance of tweaking roles, in order to capitalise uniqueness of every individual.
- Appreciation of subordinates makes them valued and develops self-esteem.
- Virtual teams and meetings can help in overcoming cultural differences, resolving conflicts, resulting in better decision making process and expression of opinions.
- Effectiveness of different leadership/management approach at workplace.
The above points from knowledgecast and seminar sessions aided to my understanding of leadership, and further helped me in developing a vision to achieve desired goals and ambitions.
Steve Jobs, the co-founder and former chairman and CEO of Apple Inc. was truly an inspirational leader. His democratic leadership style reflected involvement of subordinates at a centralised level, with encouragement of discussion and ideas from peers.
The co-founder was responsible enough for his failures, and never blamed his subordinates for let-downs and disappointments. His ethical leadership traits are evident with product oriented goals, everything else secondary (Forbes, 2016). His vision reflected development of enduring company with subordinated inclined towards manufacturing of great products, not profits. Even though his personality reflected impatience, cantankerous and toughness, he used to encourage people around realising their contribution to the organisation. To develop a personal relationship with fellow subordinates, Jobs used to encourage face to face meetings developing a sense of belonging and value amongst the co-workers. ‘Stay Hungry- Stay Foolish’ is a famous quote from Jobs inspiring his followers to aim for innovation, bounding no invention is permanent and change drives the society moving. One example of Jobs adaptability skills is training of 12 years to overcome and develop lack of empathy and effective leadership skills (Isaacson, 2012). The former chairman even engaged in interpersonal conversation with subordinates, in order to enquire about their personal lives, families and upbringing of children (Isaacson, 2012). The personal traits and characteristics reflected by Steve Jobs inform me of importance of communication, regardless what position, company or job-profile you are working for. His vision and ethics at work are an inspiration for millions, including me.
The following video demonstrates how Steve Jobs inspired and motivated people, with his effective leadership skills:
According to Sadler, Peer feedback implements towards development of self-appreciation and adds to management of self-awareness and learning (Sadler, 1989). Liu and Carless believe peer assessment is a quicker and more accessible, avoiding anxiety and antipathy involved in tutor based feedback (Liu & Carless, 2006).
The seminar activities from ‘M005- Leading in a Changing World’ involved each group member’s appointment as a group leader, leading to peer review and feedback. The feedback received from my colleagues suggest traits and qualities of a democratic leader. My team members appreciated how I allocated the work, in regard of individual strengths and uniqueness. The feedback forms received even highlights appreciation of opinions from peers, organisational skills, listening abilities and consideration of available options and opinions. One my colleague condemned unequal distribution of work, which can be marked as my area of development. Another area of development, realised by my colleagues is lack of appreciation and acknowledgment. I will work harder, and get Mullins key factors of democratic leadership into consideration, in order to overcome such weaknesses and transform same as my strengths. The feedback received was informative, positive and encouraging, and will contribute and add value to my learning.
I aim on developing mentioned skills further, while pursuing my MBA. The skills particularly to be focused on counts active listening, equal distribution of power, effective communication and gratitude towards peer group. This skills can be developed with active participation in class activities, reading wider range of books (leadership) and in-class presentations.
PEER FEEDBACK FORMS
Buckingham, M. (2005) ‘What great managers do’ Harvard Business Review 83 (3), 70-79
Issacson, W. (2012). The Real Leadership Lessons of Steve Jobs. Harvard Business Review.
Liu, N. and Carless, D. (2006) Peer feedback: the learning element of peer assessment.Teaching in Higher Education, 11(3), pp.279-290.
Mullins, L.J. (2013) Management and Organisational Behaviour. 10th edn. Harlow: Pearson
Sadler, D.R. (1989) Formative assessment and the design of instructional systems,Instructional Science,18 (2), 119-144.
Yukl, G. (2010) Leadership in Organizations. 7th edn. Harlow: Pearson
Zenger, J. (2016). Forbes Welcome. [online] Forbes.com. Available at: http://www.forbes.com/sites/jackzenger/2013/08/22/the-big-lesson-about-leadership-from-steve-jobs/#7d5b88766a94 [Accessed 19 Jun. 2016].