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Personal Leadership Philosophy

Updated April 19, 2022
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Personal Leadership Philosophy essay

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According to Webster’s Dictionary, leadership is the power or ability to lead other people, the act or instance of leading [1]. Despite the countless other definitions for leadership, they all covey to me similar message of what makes a good leader. My determination and commitment to excellence and the opportunities that the Navy has given me to lead others and observe leadership through those above me have helped me to develop my leadership philosophy. I believe that, based upon my life experiences and the leadership philosophies of others, a leader is someone that inspire and mobilize others with the desire to strive for personal and professional achievements both on and off duty while supporting the command and believing in the mission – not as a job, but a purpose.

My first impression of what a good leader entails was flexibility, adaptability, moral rights, and the ability to lead by example. Great leaders know when it is time for a change and take all the necessary measures to accomplish the mission. I encountered several effective leaders during my years in the military as well as on civilian sectors. Looking back, the one constant on those leaders were the variety of different leadership styles they exhibited. They all were different in how they approached their duties and how they felt was the most effective way to lead their subordinates. Most of them were effective but had different strengths and weaknesses. After two years at my first duty station, a new division chief assigned to the unit. His leadership style was a combination of bureaucratic and autocratic leadership. He ensured all of us follow the rules and carry out tasks by the book, rarely consider anyone suggestion and delegate power. A week after he took over, he implemented a new system and changed the work schedule. The old schedule was the person who worked a 24 hours shift gets two days off. He decided to keep the duty personnel at work after 24 hours shift. His reasoning was we could use the bunk bed to sleep between inbound/outbound flights. Not all people can manage to fall asleep in a noisy warehouse or can get quality sleep between loading and unloading cargo to a plan. Most of my colleagues struggled to drive home and operate a forklift after 36 hours shift. His leadership philosophy suited to our duty because the job was routine and require limited skills. On the other hand, personal growth and moral went down. What I learned from working under the chief was, a leader needs to ensure that each team member regardless of rank or position understands how change impacts them and over communicate consistently during this time and get feedback. Also, a leader should take time to understand the system in place before making changes.

Throughout my life, I have encountered the chance to experience the position of being a leader. I have gained essential qualities of being a good leader through captaining a high school soccer team, leading teams both in civilian and military, being a follower and being a part of a family. My leadership philosophy is self-awareness, flexibility, credibility, lead by the example, always learn and respect others, embrace diversity, and be persistent. I lead by always trying to do my best in whatever I do. A Kouzes’ and Posner’s eighth truth of leadership is that leaders either lead by example or they do not lead at all- [2]. I lead with learning mindset, knowing that mission and people change. I listen attentively seeking to understand and leverage the experience and talents of others fully. The Kouzes-Posner First Law of Leadership states that “If you don’t believe in the messenger, you won’t believe the message.” [2]. I led with a flexible mindset; most military members would rotate in and out of their command in a short period of time. This created a need to develop a leadership style flexible enough to work with a variety of individuals from vastly different cultures, and values.

The past few years I had the pleasure of leading 14 people on highly demanding 24/7 alert duty. My division was assembled with people from different background, culture, and educational level. As a leading petty officer, I learned a lot about myself and I am more assured in my abilities to lead. Some of the valuable leadership traits that I obtained and strengthened are: how to be a team player, a better listener, outspoken and to have more patience. Even though I have gained a lot, I still have more things to learn to become a better leader such as being more assertive, becoming a better public speaker, and learn how to be realistic and not too optimistic.

Based on my experiences to date, I believe I have critical elements to lead effectively and productively. My education and personal experiences have assisted me in developing the analytical leadership and problem-solving skills necessary to overcome challenging problems and work well as a member of a team to further improve my new unit.

It takes a lot more to become a great leader than all those qualities I listed. To become a better leader, I will excel and devote time to continuous learning, reading, observing others and deliberate practice. I am honored by the opportunity to lead and mentor Cast Guard members and observe leadership through those above me.

Personal Leadership Philosophy essay

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Personal Leadership Philosophy. (2022, Apr 19). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/personal-leadership-philosophy-2/

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