Table of Contents
In order to develop oneself into a true leader for the future, evaluation of the current strengths and weakness have to be undertaken so that a clear future path for leadership can be developed. A critical reflection needs to be undertaken on the basis of the article written by Drucker in 1999 which would provide analysis of strengths, values, contribution for leadership and short term and medium term leadership plan.
Strengths as a Leader
Through the understanding of the feedback analysis provided by my team members, I have understood that my key strengths lie in my self confidence and ability to become a team member. For a leader it is important to first have belief in oneself and his own qualities before inspiring and motivating others in the team (Townsend, 2007). For this purpose a self analysis was undertaken along with 360 degree appraisal by my team members in order to confirm on my strengths. These were understood to be similar in nature which would help in giving performance in the future tasks also. The future plan would be developed upon the analysis of positives and negatives for me that would help in the development of leadership plan.
I have understood my own positives through my own experience and behaviour which is important for developing the future plan. Analysis also helped in analysing certain gaps as a leader. I realized that I need to work on my communication and motivating skills further so that a string team can be built for the future. The role of a leader has been played well due to the intellectual analysis of self and others in the team (Harris et al, 2013). The strength as a leader has been proven to be of high quality that can be further developed in the future. The current strengths need to be upgraded and advanced to become a better leader to include more team building.
Values of the Leader
Values are the guiding principles and beliefs of a person which determines the course of life he will lead. These are the basic foundation that would convert the leader into the kind of leader he will become. The values can be understood to be either instrumental or terminal based on whether the leader is looking at the end result or the means to achieve it (Eich, 2008). Values then lead to the development of the ethical conduct of the leader that would develop into the right or wrong of every decision. It is clearly understood that values of a leader would impact his own working style. But along with individual values, even the organization they work for also has certain values. If the value system of the leader does not match with the organizational values, he may not be able to perform and may leave the company.
My own analysis has helped me in understanding my own values which are based on performance, team work and long term vision. These values have been analysed by my personal reflection on what kind of leader I am through a self analysis (Neck & Manz, 2010). These values of performance provide the necessary push to me and also help me demand performance from my team members. I am results driven and expect that each member would believe in my values while performing. But my values say that I expect members to perform based on their own capabilities and not as per my demands from them.
These are based on my values of the team building that I want to gain. I believe that each member has their own capabilities which would help them understand my vision and perform. I am a god listener as I am very active in taking inputs, feedback and suggestions. This has helped in building my leadership style of a people oriented person who has high emotional intelligence. Values play in critical role in building my leadership style that needs to be evaluated with the value system of the organization (Terrell & Lindsey, 2008). If there is a mismatch between the two, then it would not be possible to work at such an organization. For a leader to perform in an organizational setup, the values need to match.
This is true for my own enterprise that I would want to open in the future after gaining sufficient experience of the market. My values of long term vision and performance orientation would become the value system of my own organization as I would be the founder of that setup. But on the contrary my values may not match with the values of my team members which are a matter of concern as they would not behave and work as per my value system. This may lead to many conflicts, non performance, subordination issues and many other challenges. Thus my own value system highly guides my development into a successful leader and would help me manage my team in the most productive manner (Roberts & Westville, 2008). But while working in an organization, certain changes and modification need to be made that would help in developing a common platform for value systems to merge.
Contribution as a Leader
Leaders can become nation builders and changers if they decide to develop themselves and their team members. Earlier when leaders were only working as managers, their contribution was not looked upon as important. But as their role and designation has changed, it has resulted in every leader recognizing the contribution that they should make to self fulfilment, team members and also the organization they work for (Ladyshewsky, 2007). Upon analysis of my qualities and values, my contribution would be more towards doing some meaningful work and developing the team members to their best potential. This would work in a two way manner to support the organization and the economy. Leaders are looked upon as change agents who would take the responsibility in their hands to do something drastic and still take everyone along. Thus a leader’s contribution should be towards self and also towards others who are the followers.
From my perspective, main contribution would be in the form of achieving the highest level of performance for me and my team members. This is based on my values to be performance oriented and how I give importance to my team also to bring out the best from them. I would be responsible for my performance individually but for my team members I would be taking a competency mapping exercise so that I can develop a growth plan for each one of them. This would be a meaningful contribution for the relationship building within the company (Nesbit, 2012).
When people bother for other people and their development, then a closer relationship oriented culture is built for the betterment for the organization. The second important contribution is in the way of knowledge development that would provide a more detailed analysis of each member and what potential they have. This would be key for organizational development as when each team is able to work as per their maximum potential, the overall organization can achieve their objectives and goals easily. Thus also create knowledge for the company to be used by future managers and leaders. The strengths and values identified earlier by me would be combined in a manner so that leaders develop themselves along with their partners (Gray, 2007).
Areas of Improvement for Leadership
After undertaking a reflective analysis of self on the leadership qualities, it is important to identify and analyse the areas of improvement as a leader so that leadership qualities can be enhanced. I have analysed myself to be having self confidence but I feel I lack the confidence in others which lead to many conflicts in the team as others are not convinced on my ideas and suggestions. When other members in the group do not agree to my advice, I get irritated and frustrated and that converts into an intra conflict and intern conflict situation. This I have realized is a weakness in me as a good leader that needs to be worked upon for becoming a better future leader (Pavlovich, 2007). I have to develop my emotional intelligence in order to be able to correlate to others in my team and avoid all destructive conflict. In this regard I need to develop conflict situation as a constructive one so that new ideas and working methods can be identified. This would be gradually learnt with practice and accepting conflict as a positive aspect of working.
Secondly another area of improvement as a leader is the development of team building skills which comprise of motivation, negotiation, counselling, inspiring and delegating. The self analysis has helped me in analysing my strengths and values that prove that still improvement is needed in the way team members are managed (Jean-Marie et al, 2009). As a leader I have to develop trust in my team and delegate work to them in a manner that helps them to achieve the best as per their competencies. For this it is important to developing a motivating style of working that helps the leader to make other happy and inspire them to develop themselves also.
This is very important as a leader is a true leader only when he is able to counsel and motivate his fellow members into achieving the team and organizational objectives (Isaksen & Akkermans, 2011). This requires development of creativity also in the leader in order to develop new ideas and suggestions which can enhance the performance of the team. This will motivate the employees to also develop upon creativity in each work that they do which can further enhance the productivity of the company. Thus as a leader, I myself have to develop the technique of brainstorming where each member can participate to improve his own level of functioning and also contribute creatively in the developing of future course of action (Schippers et al, 2008).
Development of Learning Plan
Based on the above reflection of my strengths, values, area of improvement, I need to develop a learning plan for short, medium and long term growth and development that would help me to achieve the desired goals (Leithwood & Jantzi, 2008). These would be built around the time frame in which they have to be achieved, what opportunities to learn they will create, which limitations they will overcome and what social support system is desired to maintain and reach these targets.
Short term (3 months)
Short term of 3 months is a very less time to make any meaningful contribution to the overall leadership development. But the action plan can still be made and certain changes can be made in the way I should work as a leader for the future. The learning opportunities that can be built in the short term are related to understanding my team members better by improving my emotional intelligence. This can be achieved through improved interaction with the team members regarding both personal and professional discussions that would improve the interaction and understanding. But certain challenges that can be faced for this kind of change is that other team members may not accept me and my increased level of interaction in a positive manner (Seashore Louis et al, 2010). This requires me to take help of other social people around us who can help like the tutor or the other classmates. Thus in order to improve the communication level and understanding certain social support in the form of other members would also be needed.
Medium term (12 months)
In order to improve my leadership skills, even 12 months in not a sufficient time but certain efforts can be made. After understanding the issues above, certain changes with respect to conflict management can be learnt so that new opportunities for better group management can be developed. As my negotiation skills are poor which generally lead to conflict among the team, I need to learn to change my way from competing to avoiding (Atieno Okech, 2008). This would help in respecting the other person’s point of view and appreciate the differences that exist. I also need to practice is regularly so that it becomes part of my conduct and personality.
Under this I should focus on converting any conflict into a positive one so that this can be learnt as a practice for long. I may face certain limitations under this as other team members may not adjust to my new ways of handling conflict. Along with this their ways may not be compatible with my ways of managing conflict. Hence these issues need to be catered through a strong social system which would comprise of mentoring and counselling by other people in the organization (Crevani et al, 2010). They can play a very important role in building up rapport among my team members by helping us undertake this change. This needs to be helped through focusing on the results of the conflict and taking it as learning.
Long term (2-3 years)
Leadership can be properly imbibed in my personality and persona through a long term efforts and initiatives taken by me. The overall learning opportunities and skills can be acquired through a long term approach of changing the personality traits, ways of responding, actions, behaviours, dealing with others and social self. Hence during the long term certain important learning about how to be a creative and transformational leader can be imbibed (Hickson, 2011). This can be done through taking up a small duration course on leadership and how creativity can be built in. along with these practical workshops can be attended so that practical approach to transformational learning can take place.
The learning opportunities in long term are immense and can transform myself into a different leader altogether that is more effective (Tsai, 2011). Through this long term approach also many challenges may be faced but they can be managed and overcome as time is available in our hands. All issues related to time, budget, resources, changes in behaviour can be managed in the long run as all the factors become variable. But even under this long term approach certain social support of friends, family and tutors would be required to understand the gaps and build upon them (Raelin, 2011). Also I need to provide sufficient time to build upon these qualities and develop myself into a more productive, creative and transformation based leader for future job opportunities.
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