Blog Post 15

Part A

Using several theories/models from class, explain how leaders impact individuals, groups, and overall organizations. Make sure to explain, with the theories and models, what the leaders should do and what outcomes could be expected.

Leadership, although somewhat hard to isolate or define, is a key component to the success of any group endeavor, whether personal or professional. Even a trip to the mall involves some sort of leader – the person who motivates the others to get moving, leads the discussion about when and where, etc., etc. There are many different ways to go about being a leader and there are good leaders and bad leaders, but leadership almost always has a profound impact on the people, groups, and organizations that are involved.

On an individual level, leadership can help or hurt followers in a number of different areas. The components of transformational leadership — individualized consideration, idealized influence, inspirational motivation, and intellectual stimulation — are especially formulated to consider how a leader can (hopefully positively) affect her followers (Cherry 2015). Transformational leadership’s entire purpose is to grow the follower both personally and professionally; Langston University says that “it creates valuable and positive change in the followers with the end goal of developing followers into leaders.” In order to best facilitate this growth, leaders should be understanding, diverse in their thoughts, strategic, motivating, empowering, have good communication skills, and not be afraid to challenge their employees and let them handle responsibilities that are maybe outside of their job description or experience level (Hein 2013). This will cause employees to be more confident, efficient, and effective, and they will also grow into better leaders themselves. The theory of situational leadership is also concerned with leadership’s effects and practice as they pertain to individual followers. When using situational leadership, leaders change their style of leadership according to the competency and receptiveness of each individual follower (May). This will give each level of follower the amount of help and encouragement that they need as an individual and their performance will continue to increase.

As for a more macro level, leaders have a huge impact on the functioning of groups and organizations. Transformational leadership plays a large part in group leadership as well as individual leadership, but there are also a lot of other factors at play (Bodner). One of the most important styles of leadership for groups is adaptive leadership, which comes into play when a group or organization is going through a transitional period (Torres, Reeves, and Love). Adaptive leaders look at the big picture, identify the adaptive challenge, regulate distress, maintain disciplined attention, give the work back to the people, and protect leadership voices from below. In essence, they need to pay attention to both the problem at hand and how it is affecting both each individual follower and the group dynamic and morale. These techniques help groups and organizations transition through difficult times such as organizational change with as little stress on the employees as possible (Northouse 2010).

Simply put, leaders make sure that everything runs smoothly and that followers are getting the care and attention they need to grow as employees, people, and leaders themselves. This results in better performance from both individuals and groups. Good leadership is essential in the successful functioning of groups of any size, and has a tangible effect on the people within its impact radius.

Part B

1. Based on what we’ve learned in the class, what is your definition of leadership? Define leadership, then demonstrate why you define it this way. Give insight about why your definition has or has not changed, and why.

My definition of leadership has done A LOT of evolving. It started out as this:

Leadership is when a person or group of people take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire followers to work together to achieve a common goal.

Then, at week seven when I last did this look-back-evaluation-thing, it looked like this:

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge and skills to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire each follower to work with the group to achieve a common goal.

Since then, it has changed even more:

Leadership is when a person or team has the knowledge, skills, drive, adaptability, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower followers from all cultures and backgrounds to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

As you can see, it has gotten very unwieldy. I think it’s impossible to contain all that leadership entails in a simple one-sentence definition. There are so many factors that affect it and different choices you can make and they are all still leadership, even if they are bad leadership choices.

If I had to take everything I learned about leadership and compile it all into a manageable form that isn’t like six pages long, I guess this would be it:

Leadership is when you take responsibility for yourself and for those working with you to achieve a common goal.

I think responsibility is the key component of leadership; as a leader, you are ultimately responsible for the effectiveness of your team, but there are a lot of other small responsibilities that go into that. You’re responsible for leading your followers through stressful situations like organizational change, you’re responsible for not overloading your followers and helping them grow, you’re responsible for making sure your followers work together well as a unit. Really, it’s just being concerned with everything that the group needs to function, and being responsible for making sure it functions as well as it can.

2. State your level of agreement to the following statements on a scale of 1 to 5 and provide a short justification for each.

a. I am a leader  – 5, strongly agree.

As I said in week 7, I have a strong tendency to end up the lead in projects and work situations, even if I’m actively trying not to. I like to lead discussions and hear ideas from people, I’m confident in my own abilities, and I love to help others, and that just lends itself to a leadership position.

b. I see myself as a leader – 5, strongly agree.

My confidence in myself as a leader has strongly risen as the semester has progressed, largely (but not solely) due to this class. I still know that I might not always have the best solutions and prefer to implement more of a team leadership atmosphere, but I’m comfortable being a leader and I am confident that, in most situations, I’m good at it.

c. If I had to describe myself to others, I would use the word “leader” – 2 disagree.

I still believe that describing yourself as a leader in so many words is a little pretentious. I think if someone asked me “Are you a leader?” I would say yes (see question 1) but I wouldn’t say “I’m a leader” like I would say “I’m a reader” in regular conversation.

d. I prefer being seen by others as a leader – 4, agree

I still have a preference for being seen as a leader rather than a follower, but I realize that there isn’t anything wrong with being a follower.

3. What are three actionable steps (SMART Goals) that you will take in the next six months in order to improve your own leadership?

  1. I will create a spreadsheet of goals, both personal, academic, and professional, that I can use to motivate others and give anyone I might be in a group or project with a clear goal to work toward.
  2. I’m going to create a list of my strengths and weaknesses as a leader, and from there try to improve on the weaknesses without compromising the strengths.
  3. At the end of the semester (so soon) I’m going to ask my groups for feedback about my leadership qualities, and get a better idea of what I’m good at and what I need to work on, so that I can apply that information going forward.

 

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Blog Post 15

Blog Post 13, Dec. 6th 2015

PART 1: EXAMPLE OF AN OUTSTANDING LEADER FROM A DIFFERENT CULTURE

Cleopatra

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Although it’s difficult to say with 100% certainty that Cleopatra was a good example of multicultural leadership since she lived so long ago, I’m confident that she fits the bill because, according to BBC, she ruled Egypt with success and also worked well with the Roman military to secure the rule of Egypt. I’m not well versed in either of those countries or their cultural attitudes toward leadership, but I am sure they were very different and that politically navigating within each would require an extensive understanding of each culture and its values, and how to apply them to a leadership situation.

PART 2: RESULTS OF DIMENSIONS OF CULTURE QUESTIONNAIRE

The society I had in mind while answering these questions was RIT.

Uncertainty Avoidance: 3.5

Power Distance: 3.5

Institutional Collectivism: 3

In-group Collectivism: 7

Gender Egalitarianism: 4

Assertiveness: 5.5

Future Orientation: 5.5

Performance Orientation: 6.5

Humane Orientation: 4.5

PART 3: QUESTIONS

a. Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

I do agree that RIT fits at least most of these results. I think it fits that uncertainty avoidance is low, since RIT stresses innovation and ingenuity so much. We are definitely encouraged to respect our leaders, but American society was built on questioning the establishment and I think that’s reflected still in the authoritative systems we’ve built; however, students still are far removed from professors in the amount of power they hold over things such as their grades, hence the low but not nonexistent power distance score. America as a whole is known for its emphasis on the individual and assertiveness, so the low institutional collectivism and assertiveness scores are no surprise. In college, doing well in order to plan for the future tends to be the primary purpose, so we have high future and performance orientations. We are alright at being considerate of others, but still primarily focus on ourselves and our own success, which makes sense with the middling humane orientation score.

Gender egalitarianism is a subject that I’m very passionate about, but I don’t want to get into it too much here. Suffice it to say that I don’t think it’s as high as it should be. Women are starting to be more encouraged to obtain higher education, but men still tend to hold higher status. It’s frustrating.

The high in-group collectivism score might be biased around the people I spend my time with who all have highly educated, successful parents, and take pride in that.

b. How does the knowledge of culture affect your definition of leadership, if at all? 

Culture is universal and affects all aspects of life, especially the way we interact with each other. In order to reflect the importance of culture to leadership in my (now rather lengthy) definition, I’m going to make the following changes:

Leadership is when a person or team has the knowledge, skills, drive, adaptability, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower followers from all cultures and backgrounds to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

c. How does the knowledge of culture affect how you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

It doesn’t make me feel more or less of a leader, but it is another thing to keep in mind when making leadership decisions or actions. Hastings (2007) mentions that the best way to be inclusive in a multicultural workforce is t0 “Listen to different points of view, communicate in an open, give-and-take fashion, and welcome new ideas.” Since this is the way I try to conduct myself regardless of the situation, I’m sure that my newfound awareness of the cultural differences when it comes to leadership will only help me be a better leader.

d. What cultural characteristics do you need to display to be a better leader?

I think that, in order to become a better leader, I need to get better at identifying my own culture and how it affects the way I behave, both in leadership situations and in my regular daily life. I consider myself very tolerant of other beliefs and customs, but as Northouse says, everyone has a little bit of an ethnocentric bend to them, whether it is conscious or not. I need to improve the way I evaluate my actions from a cultural standpoint. I also need to get better at having conversations about culture with those from different backgrounds, because the more I know, the better.

Blog Post 13, Dec. 6th 2015

Blog Post 12, 20 Nov. 2015

PART 1: AN EXAMPLE OF SHARED TEAM LEADERSHIP

I think a project I’m working on right now in my Magazine Publishing class is a great example of shared team leadership. For our final project, we’re conceptualizing, designing, and producing an iPad application for the Vignelli Center at RIT. Everything from the content to the schedule to the project plan is up to my class, but we are required to have a product at the end that would be reasonable to build upon, even if it is not entirely completed.

Just so you get a better idea of what it is we’re actually doing, here are some preliminary drafts of our brand guide and a page of the app:

Everyone on my team shares an equal amount of responsibility for the project, and we make decisions in a very open-forum like matter. There are some people who are more vocal and tend to take control more often, but there is no one clear leader/manager. We all have our specialties and we are all competent and know what we’re doing, so we share the leadership amongst ourselves.

Taking that and putting it into the context of the conditions and characteristics of team effectiveness and excellence that can be found in the text, we have most of the conditions of group effectiveness and characteristics of team excellence that can be found on table 14.1, especially a clear, elevating goal; a results-driven structure; competent team members; external support; a compelling purpose; and a supportive organizational context.

PART 2: RESULTS OF TEAM LEADERSHIP QUESTIONNAIRE

I filled this out based on the team for the project that I described in part 1.

Team

  1. Clear, elevating goal: 4
  2. Results-driven structure: 3
  3. Competent team members: 4
  4. Unified commitment: 3
  5. Collaborative climate: 3
  6. Standards of excellence: 2
  7. External support and recognition: 3

Leadership

  1. Focus on the goal: 2
  2. Ensure collaborative climate: 4
  3. Build confidence: 4
  4. Set priorities: 1
  5. Manage performance: 2

PART 3: QUESTIONS

a. Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

It would be hard for me to disagree with the results because this was more of my evaluation of my team than an actual survey, so all the answers are my own and I by definition agree with them. I think it accurately reflects the way my team operates – sometimes our leadership gets muddled and confusing since we don’t have an appointed project lead, but we are all very competent and manage to get things done well regardless.

b. How does the knowledge of shared team leadership affect your definition of leadership, if at all?

I think team leadership is already reflected in my definition of leadership:

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge, skills, drive, adaptability, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

However, I think the word “team” is more clear than the word “group,” so I’ll make another one-word change to my definition:

Leadership is when a person or team has the knowledge, skills, drive, adaptability, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

c. How does the knowledge of team leadership affect the way you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

I think that, as long as there are others on the team who are the same amount of dedicated and motivated as I am, I would have no problem sharing leadership with my team. However, most of the time it feels as if everyone else takes a more laissez-faire approach to projects, so my type-A approach to leadership tends to take over everyone else’s leadership in the project in question. But, if someone on the team knows more about a certain area of the project, I will happily let them take the lead so that our product is the best it can be.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that under some circumstances I can participate really well in shared team leadership, and in others it is more difficult – but it doesn’t really make me see myself as any more or less of a leader. According to Pearce, Manz, and Sims (2009), shared leadership is not always an effective approach and “should only be considered for situations where the tasks of the people involved share a certain degree of interdependence.” I think, so far, I’ve been able to identify when it would work and when it wouldn’t work and proceed accordingly.

d. What team leadership characteristics do you need to display to be a better leader?

Kocolowski (2010) said that the primary success factors for team leadership are “decentralized interaction, collective task completion, reciprocal support and skill development, shared purpose, and a unified voice, all enhanced via social interaction that involves mutual accountability, partnership, equity, and ownership.” In order to be a effective team leader and facilitate these success factors, I believe that I need to improve my coaching and training skills, which Northouse says are an integral part of relational and task internal leadership decisions, respectively. Teaching/coaching is never something I’ve been great at and I’m not very patient, so I have a tendency to leave people behind who don’t already know what they’re doing or at least make a very active effort to learn, which would not be beneficial in a team leadership environment.

Blog Post 12, 20 Nov. 2015

Blog Post 11, Nov. 13th 2015

Part 1: An Outstanding Adaptive Leader

Angela Merkel

Angela Merkel is the current chancellor of Germany – the first woman to ever hold that position (), and also, “practically speaking,” the person in charge of the European Union (Fortune Editors 2014). Such a position, especially taking into account the economic and political turmoil in Europe in the last several years, would require very strong adaptive leadership skills, particularly the ability to “get on the balcony” and see the bigger picture, because the problems she faces are probably very rarely “technical” in nature and require deep thought and decision-making skills. Nicolaides and McCallum (2014) say that “adaptive challenges…require unlearning old assumptions and attitudes and learning new ways of knowing, doing, and being.” This heavily applies to anyone in a position such as president or chancellor, because there are rarely if ever clear-cut answers to the problems and questions they face on a daily basis.

PART 2: Results of Adaptive Leadership QUESTIONNAIRE

Average Self Difference
Get on the Balcony 21.4 21 0.4
Identify the Adaptive Challenge 13.8 17 -3.2
Regulate Distress 20.6 18 2.6
Maintain Disciplined Attention 17.6 19 -1.4
Give the Work Back 13.8 14 -0.2
Protect Leadership Voices from Below 18.2 21 -2.8

PART 3: questions

Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

As you can see by the differences between my self evaluation and the average of the respondents’ evaluations, there are several I agree with and a few that have a larger difference. I have a tendency to trust the respondents to my surveys more than my own answers, because I know how hard it is to be objective when one self-evaluates. Apparently I’m much better at regulating distress than I give myself credit for, which I’m happy to learn. However, it also appears that I’m drastically overestimating my ability to protect leadership voices from below, so that is something I need to pay more attention to. Also apparently I’m much worse at identifying the adaptive challenge than I thought. I think it’s because I have a problem “separating a problem’s technical elements from its adaptive elements,” which Heifetz, Grashow, and Linsky (2009) identify as a key component of this aspect of adaptive leadership.

How does the knowledge of adaptive leadership affect your definition of leadership, if at all?

I think it’s important that my definition of leadership changes in order to incorporate adaptive leadership, but since the definition of adaptive leadership is so broad and incorporates so many things, I’m just going to make a small change to reflect the entirety of the fledgling theory:

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge, skills, drive, adaptability, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

How does the knowledge of adaptive leadership affect how you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

I think it helps me see where I may have been lacking in my previous leadership endeavors; it doesn’t really change the way I feel about my leadership abilities, but it does give me a plan on what to do differently going forward.

What adaptive leadership characteristics do you need to display in order to be a better leader, if any?

As reflected by my adaptive leadership survey,  the components I’m most lacking are identifying the adaptive challenge and giving the work back to the people. The second one has always been difficult for me, because I get paranoid about not finishing projects and tend to take on the bulk of the work for myself. If I want to be a truly effective leader who helps her followers learn and grow, I’m going to have to learn to delegate and let followers work through difficult problems on their own without stepping in.

**P.S. – sorry this whole thing is in bold text for some reason, I couldn’t get it to stop doing that.

Blog Post 11, Nov. 13th 2015

Blog Post 10, Nov. 5 2015

Part 1: An Outstanding Servant Leader

Anna From Frozen

According to the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership, “A servant-leader focuses primarily on the growth and well-being of people and the communities to which they belong.”  Anna spends all of the movie Frozen trying to help her sister, who is going through a rough time, largely to her own detriment. Ana exhibits several behaviors throughout the movie that are crucial to servant leadership, including emotional healing, persuasion, ethicalness, and putting followers first (Spears 2010).

Part 2: Results of servant Leadership Questionnaire

1. Emotional Healing – 25; High

2. Creating Value for the Community – 19; Moderate

3. Conceptual Skills – 24.5; High

4. Empowering – 20.5; Moderate

5. Helping Followers Grow – 20.5; Moderate

6. Putting Followers First – 21; Moderate

7. Ethicalness – 24.5; High

PART 3: QUESTIONS

a. Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

I do agree. The two people I had complete the survey are good friends of mine that I’ve also worked with on a major project in a class, and they both know me very well. I think ethicalness is extremely important, especially in a school or business environment, and I go out of my way to be fair to everyone I work with. I think that my conceptual skills are very good and I like to think in a big picture kind of way. I’m a little surprised about how high my emotional healing score is, but in a good way. I try to take my followers’ and teammates’ feelings into account, and apparently I have more success than I realized.

b. How does the knowledge of servant leadership affect your definition of leadership, if at all?

I think that servant leadership was already partially reflected in my definition where I mentioned that leaders help their followers develop their skills and grow, but I think I can add in another element to the definition after learning how servant leaders really empower their followers and give them autonomy and decision-making opportunities:

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge, skills, drive, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire and empower each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

c. How does the knowledge of servant leadership affect how you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

Servant leadership makes me feel like I’m a better leader than I thought. A big part of my lack of confidence in my leadership skills is because people don’t tend to frequently identify me as someone who is very in charge, but servant leaders kind of lead from the background and that is something I feel like I can identify with.

d. What servant leadership characteristics do you need to display in order to be a better leader?

The servant leadership characteristics that I am most lacking are empowering and creating value for the community. I think those are both difficult to display in an academic situation, because you’re so often trying to learn along with your team and it’s hard to empower others to make decisions and help them grow when you’re not incredibly sure about the decisions or skills you need yet either. However, I definitely think it’s possible, especially as my education advances and I’m more and more confident in my abilities, so I will keep the community and follower growth in mind going forward.

Blog Post 10, Nov. 5 2015

Blog Post 9, Oct. 31th 2015

Part 1: An Outstanding Authentic Leader

Aragorn

Lord of the Rings example of a leader #2 is Aragon, my second favorite character from the series (see my post that includes Gandalf from a few weeks ago). Aragorn has a strong sense of duty and leads the Fellowship across Middle Earth to bring the fight to Sauron. Aragorn does maintain a sense of mysteriousness, but he is as open as he knows how to be with the Fellowship and admits when he’s not sure what to do. I think it is easiest to use fictional characters for examples of this type of leadership because it is based so much upon motivation, and it is impossible to ever know what a real person’s motivation really is. With fictional characters, however — especially “hero” tropes like Aragorn — the story is about their motivations and you get far more insight into who they actually are than you do from observing someone in the real world.

(Sorry again for being a huge nerd)

PART 2: Results of Authentic Leadership Questionnaire

Self-awareness: 13

Internalized Moral Perspective: 16

Balanced Processing: 15

Relational Transparency: 13

PART 3: Questions

a. Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

I do agree that my highest traits are probably internalized moral perspective and balanced processing, because both of them are self-regulatory. Having a high internalized moral perspective means that my values and beliefs are less susceptible to outside pressure than those with low internalized moral perspective (Tobias 2011). I tend to agree with that, because I know what I believe and while I am open to the thoughts and opinions of others (as exhibited by my high-ish balanced processing score) I cannot be swayed from my beliefs by pressure alone. I also agree that my self-awareness and relational transparency could use improvement; I think this has been illustrated in the results of my past leadership questionnaires, as well.

b. How does the knowledge of authentic leadership affect your definition of leadership, if at all?

According to Kruse (2013), authentic leadership occurs when leaders are self-aware, are results-driven, have “heart,” and focus on long-term strategy. In order to reflect this in my definition, I need to make the following (bolded) changes.

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge, skills, drive, and vision to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

I feel as if these two nouns summarize the missing components of authentic leadership in my definition and kind of encompass the rest of the elements of this particular model.

c. How does the knowledge of authentic leadership affect how you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

It has helped me see that I know that I am authentic, I may not come off that way to those following me. Without better relational transparency, I will probably keep coming off as closed and unapproachable. I don’t think that means my leadership is less valid or bad, but it may make my followers less likely to trust in me and more skeptical of my values and motivations. Bettering my self-awareness will help me better my relational transparency, because I will be able to see how my actions might be perceived by my followers and make better choices in that regard.

d. What authentic leadership characteristics do you need to display in order to be a better leader?

In order to be a more authentic leader, I need to work on exuding an air of openness or “relational transparency” (Burke and Cooper 2006). I believe I possess the motivation and drive and I’m on my way to possessing the self-awareness, but as a relatively shy person I think I often come across as closed off. I can remedy this by connecting on a more personal level with my followers and sharing more of my personality rather than a professional persona.

Blog Post 9, Oct. 31th 2015

Blog Post 8, Oct. 22nd 2015

Part One: An Outstanding Transformational Leader – Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence emerged as a movie star and role model for young women everywhere a few years ago when she starred in the Hunger Games. Recently, she has started using her renown to advocate for equal pay between genders in Hollywood (Smith 2015). According to Bernard M. Bass, transformational leaders set high standards, “stir the emotions of the people,” and set clear goals (1985). Through her letter to Lena Dunham’s feminist newsletter Lenny Letters, Lawrence expressed her discontent with the pay gap, stimulating a conversation about gender inequality in Hollywood that’s still going on. Lawrence has long been an advocate for body positivity and is poised in a prime position to take advantage of her fame and employ transformational leadership to facilitate real change in one of the most discriminatory industries in the country.

AN OUTSTANDING pseudo-TRANSFORMATIONAL LEADER: Charles Manson

Pseudo-transformational leadership occurs when someone employs effective transformational leadership styles in order to further their own self interest. Charles Manson is an extreme example of what happens when transformational leadership goes wrong — but no one can deny that he was an effective leader. He convinced followers of his, frequently referred to as a “cult,” to commit several murders in the 1960s (2015). Charisma can be used for good and for ill, and Manson definitely used his extraordinary charisma for ill.

Part 2: MLQ 5X Questionnaire Results

I wasn’t exactly sure how to record my results to this questionnaire, so I took the average score for all the questions in each section.

Transformational Leadership Styles: 3.4/4 

Transactional Leadership Styles: 2/4

Passive/Avoidant Leadership Styles: .5/4

PART 3: questions

a. Do you agree or disagree with the results? Why?

I agree — especially in the context of the projects on which I’ve been in a leadership role so far, most of which have been academic. It’s difficult to be a transactional leader when I can’t promise everyone an A for doing hard work because I won’t be the one handing out the grade. In an academic environment, everyone should motivate themselves to work hard to achieve the grade they want to get and learn everything they can get out of the class. For that reason, when I am in a leadership role, I focus more on problem solving and developing skills, because to me that is what matters in an academic context. I don’t employ laissez-faire leadership styles because the idea goes against my type A personality.

b. How does the knowledge of transformational leadership affect your definition of leadership, if at all?

This is one of those things that I always kind of knew but didn’t have the terminology to describe or the thought process to model. That being said, explicit knowledge of transformational leadership will require me to change my definition from

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge and skills to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire each follower to work with the group to achieve a common goal.

to

Leadership is when a person or group has the knowledge and skills to successfully take initiative, whether they choose to or have it thrust upon them, to inspire each follower to develop their skills, grow, and work with the group to achieve a common goal.

I feel as if this change reflects the efforts transformational leaders undertake to really change their followers and help everyone be the best they can be.

c. How does the knowledge of transformational leadership affect how you see yourself as a leader, if at all?

The knowledge of transformational/transactional leadership kind of confirms that I’m on the right track to becoming the kind of leader I want to be, and that that is indeed the direction to go in to maximize my effectiveness as a leader. I don’t want to be someone whose followers just get the job done and then go home and forget about what they did; I want my followers to really get something out of their work, both personally and professionally.

d. What authentic leadership traits do you need to display in order to be a better leader?

I think I need to be more charismatic and to learn to ask people about things outside the context of work. I’m really good at being available on my own time for work-related needs, and I love to help people understand how to do things or how to look at problems from a different direction. Sometimes I may come off as dismissive, which is detrimental to the idea of transformational leadership, so I have to work on engaging with my followers on a more personal level.

Blog Post 8, Oct. 22nd 2015