This is one of the best quote for any organization that need to develop effective leadership style to survive in this competitive era. Organizational leadership has been cited as the critical part for an organization to achieve best management approach that identifies what is best for a team or individuals so as to bring the best out of them and improve organizational performance (Sarros et al., p. 289). According to Tannenbaum et al. (2013, p. 320), a leader is someone who create vision and develop actions that are implemented by team to successfully transform vision to reality. The most important aspect of Maxwell’s quote is that a leader can be meaning that everyone has capacity to be a leader. By religious background has enriched me with great knowledge on what it takes to be a leader particular the need to have determination, courage and disciple so as to be a great leader like Moses, Joshua, Solomon and many more who contributed to great success of Israelites. One of the best biblical verse that encourages leaders to press on with their roles is in Galatians 6:9, ‘Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up’ (Good News Bible, p. 228).
A leader who knows the way has a vision and sets the goals that sees an organization achieving a preferable competitive state in the future. According to organization learning theory, organization learning is achieved through inquiry where the leader interacts with the team members so as to set clear vision (Siemens, p. 39). The theory necessitates developing a vision and changing goals and actions to adapt to rapidly changing external and internal environments (Kolb, A.Y. and Kolb, p. 1216). I believe I am a leader since I have created my own vision in relation to academics, I believing in having the best performance. By knowing vision, I am always working hard to learn more so as to achieve best results that are in line with my academic vision. Furthermore, I collaborate with by course mates so as to excel as a team.
Many great businessmen have attributed their success to vision. Steve Jobs believed that a great vision lead to excellent products that satisfies the need of customers and will make the customers continue buying company’s brands (Isaacson, p. 96). Steve saw future in his Apple Company by developing vison and plans making it a reality to best deliver electronics that gained huge market base (Finkle and Mallin, p. 31). Many authors have pointed out that visualizing future state of organization is a vital for business leaders to achieve competitive advantage, successful leaders have been associated with great visions while downfall leaders have been attributed to lack of vision (Blanchard and Miller, p. 41).
However, it is important to note that a vision should match trends over time since non-responsive vision may lead to erotic results. It is believed that the vision is impacted by context of time and thus it is necessary for leaders to have a vision that maximizes on present opportunities while being prepared for future uncertainties (Kouzes and Posner, p.48). The Dot Com businesses saw opportunity in use of internet to connect with customers and ground their activities to match advancement in information and technology. Vision therefore creates opportunity for leaders to lay foundation for success of their organizations. There are many advantages associated with envisioning exciting possibilities in an organization. Firstly, a vison inspires organization and its employees to work harder to bridge the gap between the present and future of an organizations (Boyatzis et al., p. 19). This motivate employees to undertake duties and responsibilities to implement vison and achieve goals. The organization has to make various changes to respond to business needs thus the vision form basis for decision making. A leader who knows the way therefore knows what has to be achieved for the company to be successful (vision).
A leader who goes the way is a good example to subordinates by working the talk. This leader not only tell junior employees what to do but also does what he/she is saying. The leader has to pursue what it takes to achieve future state of organization. The leaders must possess special attributes like courage to enable him/her undertake particular actions regardless of hardships or risks involved (Tannenbaum et al, p. 24). Leading by action influence behaviors, thoughts and attitudes of subordinate staff (Hannah, Walumbwa and Fry, p. 776). I believe I have been a great inspiration to my younger siblings. Whatever I do, I always do to perfection. Furthermore, I have encouraged many youths to discover their potential particularly resisting peer pressure and working towards achieving person goals. Leading by example has been great inspiration to many.
The organizational learning theory acknowledges that organization is prone to abnormal outcomes that deviates from what was expected. A leader who is part of actions in an organization is able to interact with members effectively and build a strong relationship. This relationship encourages adoption of theory-in-use that is characterized by brainstorming to solve problem rather than espoused theory that strictly follows formalized regulations of organization when solving problem (Savaya and Gardner, p. 149). The espoused theory is known to kill creativity and innovation of employees since they are forced to follow strict instructions when carrying out their jobs. Theory-in-use offers huge potential for employees to learn through social forums like inquiring from co-workers or their leader. A leader that undertakes action with employees is able to indulge in double learning where he/she is able to change organizational assumptions that govern actions so as to create conducive environment for employees to showcase their talents and abilities in solving organization problems (Hoerl and Gardner, p.33).
The leaders who act on things they say are able to translate intentions and ideas to reality. David Cameron, former Britain prime minister is a true leader who believed in treaties of European Union. However, when the citizens made decision through vote to cease being member of European Union, Cameron resigns since he did not like that idea (Goodwin and Heath, p. 323). This is leading by example where a leader sacrifices personal financial loss so as not to undertake what is opposite to what he/she believes. The case of Cameron can be seen as setting standard for what is appropriate. Many leaders have failed their followers by not setting right examples.
Many problems experienced by children are largely attributed to failure of parents to provide proper guidance. Some parents consciously or unconsciously set certain codes for family like dressing, diet and other behaviors yet they do the opposite and thus children imitate what parents do. Many psychologists are of idea that parents should be good role model to their children since the young ones are under constant observation and are likely to adopt behaviors like smoking, alcohol abuse, violence, eating well or any activity exhibited by parents or any other adult (Carr, p.15). Gandhi gain huge recognition and great followers by leading in doing what is right.
The organization present opportunity for modelling good behaviors to employees so as to develop best corporate culture. The supervisor who criticizes certain behaviors like spending more time on social networks and arriving late for work while doing the opposite is uncalled for a leader who goes the way. Jack Welch became successful in business by adopting idea of abolishing unnecessary restrictions to achieve boundary-less organization that allowed employees to think of new ideas freely (Parkes et al., p. 17). He kept his word and many employees follow his action thus transforming General Electric to being successful company.
A leader needs to maintain close contacts with employees so as to empower them to achieve the vision. According to this phrase, a leader should do with other employees what is needed to pursue the future state of the organization. There are many strategies that can be adopted by leaders in order to persuade employees to work hard. This means that a leader must collaborate with junior employees rather than expressing authority. A leader is able to develop positive influence over his/her employees by encouraging them to what is right and also working with them.
Good communication boost confidence among employees. There are many mediums that leader can use to interface with employees including emails, phone calls, face-to-face conversation and company website. The leaders are expected to demonstrate truth and fairness so as to communicate vision effectively to others. It is also important to allow employees share their views concerning processes in organization so as to offer additional support they may require to do their jobs better. Employee engagement can further be achieved by treating employees with respect and dignity (Ajala, p. 144). This is to motivate them to be happy and in return they are able to offer excellent services to clients and make customers happy.
Ajala, E.M., 2012, June. The influence of workplace environment on workers’ welfare, performance and productivity. In The African Symposium (Vol. 12, No. 1, pp. 141-149).
Blanchard, K. and Miller, M., 2014. The secret: what great leaders know and do. Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
Boyatzis, R.E., Smith, M.L., Van Oosten, E. and Woolford, L., 2013. Developing resonant leaders through emotional intelligence, vision and coaching. Organizational Dynamics, 42(1), pp.17-24.
Carr, A., 2015. The handbook of child and adolescent clinical psychology: A contextual approach. Routledge.
Finkle, T.A. and Mallin, M.L., 2010. Steve Jobs and Apple, Inc. Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies, 16(7), p.31.
Goodwin, M.J. and Heath, O., 2016. The 2016 Referendum, Brexit and the Left Behind: An Aggregate?level Analysis of the Result. The Political Quarterly, 87(3), pp.323-332.
Hannah, S.T., Walumbwa, F.O. and Fry, L.W., 2011. Leadership in action teams: team leader and members ‘authenticity, authenticity strength, and team outcomes. Personnel Psychology, 64(3), pp.771-802.
Hoerl, R.W. and Gardner, M.M., 2010. Lean Six Sigma, creativity, and innovation. International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, 1(1), pp.30-38.
Isaacson, W., 2012. The real leadership lessons of Steve Jobs. Harvard business review, 90(4), pp.92-102.
Kolb, A.Y. and Kolb, D.A., 2012. Experiential learning theory. In Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning (pp. 1215-1219). Springer US.
Kouzes, J.M. and Posner, B.Z., 2011. Credibility: How leaders gain and lose it, why people demand it (Vol. 244). John Wiley & Sons.
Parkes, M., Milner, K. and Gilbert, P., 2010. Vocation, vocation, vocation: spirituality for professionals in mental health services. International Journal of Leadership in Public Services, 6(3), pp.14-25.
Sarros, J.C., Tanewski, G.A., Winter, R.P., Santora, J.C. and Densten, I.L., 2002. Work alienation and organizational leadership. British Journal of Management, 13(4), pp.285-304.
Savaya, R. and Gardner, F., 2012. Critical reflection to identify gaps between espoused theory and theory-in-use. Social work, pp. 145-154.
Siemens, G., 2014. Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age.
Tannenbaum, R., Weschler, I. and Massarik, F., 2013. Leadership and organization. Routledge.
Finkle, T.A. and Mallin, M.L., 2010. Steve Jobs and Apple, Inc. Journal of the International Academy for Case Studies, 16(7), p.31.
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