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Outcome of self-assessment quizzes and key strengths and weaknesses

your text. You were asked to reflect carefully on the outcome of each quiz and to identify some practical actions you can take to improve your own leadership ability.

The objective of this exercise was to help you to build self-awareness and identify leadership attributes that represent strengths and weaknesses and opportunities to improve. You were expected to go beyond your own leadership development needs and consider future challenges you or your organisation could face.

  1. Bring together the outcomes from your leadership self-insight quizzes

You need to do this holistically and see how the insights from individual quizzes can be comprehensively presented. Consider the implications for leaders in today’s complex and turbulent environments. Acknowledge sources as required. 

The purpose of this step is to gather information on your key leadership strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for improvement that you need to present as part of your PLDP. 

  1. Provide a succinct summary of your key strengths and weaknesses

Include a brief summary of your key leadership strengths and weaknesses at the beginning of your plan (based the outcomes of your leadership self-insight quizzes). This can help to link your developmental objectives and actions with your developmental needs. It is also a useful communication mechanism when you discuss your plan with a supervisor or mentor.

  1. Assess the need for more information on your behaviours

You may decide at this point that you need additional information from your colleagues on your strengths and weaknesses as a leader, rather than rely solely on the outcomes of reflection and self-assessment exercises. There are several options for doing this: causal conversations, informal interviews, previous performance evaluations. Consider how your perceptions of yourself are similar/different from the perception of your colleagues.

4.Articulate your vision for developing as a leader

In one sentence, describe your aspiration as a developing leader. For example, you may wish ‘to be a leader who is ethical, collaborative and continuously learning’. 

5. Specify your developmental objectives

Write down your developmental objectives. These should be specific and written in a way that allows progress to be measured (e.g. ‘to become a more effective team player, as assessed by my team members’). It is recommended that you include 3-5 objectives in your plan 

  1. Specify actions to achieve each developmental objective

For each developmental objective, describe the actions you plan to take in order to achieve them. These actions should be SMART (i.e. specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and linked to a timeframe).

They could be a once-off action (to establish a mentoring relationship with Anne Smith by 30 September, or  an ongoing action is (to ask my colleagues for feedback on my leadership behaviours after major projects are delivered)

  1. Describe the resources that you will need to implement your plan

As you draft your plan, consider the resources you will need to fully implement it. Resources include assistance from key people (e.g. mentors and human resource specialists), time to implement actions, funds (e.g. to pay for specialist training or a coach) and guidance materials such as books

  1. Describe the mechanisms you will use to get feedback on your leadership behaviours and track your progress
  1. Describe your strategy to review and revise your plan in future

Your plan will need to be reviewed and updated in future. Describe how and when you will do this. Annual reviews are typical. You may wish to link this review process to an existing one. For example, if you currently have a professional development plan that is regularly reviewed as part of your organisation’s human resource management system, you could link your leadership development plan to this system.

10. Discuss your plan with your supervisor/mentor. What recommendations were made? What revisions did you make?

There are no prescribed number of references required for this assessment. Acknowledge sources that you use to help you with your leadership plan. You will need to acknowledge your text book and perhaps a few readings.

Outcome of self-assessment quizzes and key strengths and weaknesses

Leadership is an ability through which a person is able to direct and influence his followers to achieve pre-decided goals (Daft, 2014). A good leader is able to lead his people to accomplish their work with cooperation and belongingness. A successful leader is able to motivate his followers to wok under pressure and is able to solve their conflicts amicably (Daft, 2014). For a manager in a leadership position in a business organisation, it is very important to inculcate leadership abilities. For this purpose, professional development plan needs to be made with objectives, vision and action plan. Following is my professional development plan to increase my leadership abilities.

Through the self-assessment quizzes, I was able to understand importance of leadership skills and my own ability to lead in complex situations. A leader is a person who can influence his followers or subordinates into following his vision, advice, guidelines or way of work (Daft, 2014). For an able leader it is important that he assigns roles and tasks as per ability to his subordinates and holds each person accountable for his performance (Campbell, 2018).As per the results of my self-assessment of leadership abilities,  if I was in a leadership situation I would assess abilities of all my subordinates and assign tasks as per ability. This would help me in attaining the goals of the organisation through a combined and coordinated effort.

Additionally, it is important for a leader to motivate his followers or team members to work harder (Campbell, 2018). I would find ways to encourage them to work harder and I will keep watch of their efforts. This will help in goal-oriented work in today’s modern complex business situations (Daft, 2014).

It has been propounded in leadership theories that a friendly and participative leader is more successful (Lussier, 2009). I have realised through my self-assessment that I would try to be friendly with the members and try to make the working conditions pleasing. However, being friendly and pleasant does not mean that members would be allowed to do whatever they want. They would need to abide by the rules and working criteria of the organisation. This would help in reducing chaos. However, I would try to show a democratic leadership style and be helpful and considerate of their feelings.

Business world today is very complicated (Miner, 2015) . Situations facing a leader may be diverse. Certain situations like cultural issues require patience and acceptance while certain other situations like discrimination require action (Daft, 2014). Therefore, I would assess each situation separately and use psychological cues to assess various emotions. As a leader I still need improving in areas like conflict resolution and understanding my own anger.

In a leadership position I have the ability to understand when people are distressed and can provide motivation in a tense situation to work unhindered for the goals. As a leader I believe in participative leadership style and try to build a consensus while taking difficult decisions This helps in inculcating a sense of belongingness in members so that they work together to achieve common goals (Mayo, 2009). According to my self-assessment, I try to be good and kind. However, I need to work more to stay calm in a distressing situation.

Articulating a vision for developing as a leader

During a dispute or a situation of disagreement I try not to stay fixed on my position and try to hear out other opinions as well. This helps in creating a friendly atmosphere to remove the tension (Palestini, 2009). I strongly state my opinion but try to hear other’s opinion as well. I do not avoid a person who wants to discuss a disagreement but encourage discussion on the matter. I do not believe in keeping my opinion to myself as that can lead to no discussion on the matter (Schein, 2010). I try to reach an agreement and in doing so I can give in on a few points if others are willing to do the same. I try not to hurt people and appreciate a good point made by the other party. Therefore, I possess abilities to encourage discussion among people during a situation of conflict which is an important leadership skill (Swanwick, 2011).

According to my self-assessment I believe in taking initiative. However. I am not aggressive and have qualities of being kind and compassionate. I feel one must try to create consensus and focus on goals and career building of the members.

As per my self-assessment I have always tried to express my opinion in a critical situation so that I get perceived as honest and interested in all aspects of a situation. I have tried to suggest ways of improvement to all concerned so that goals can be achieved in a better way. Thus, I have been interactive.  Therefore, I possess abilities of becoming a leader which require polishing.

Leadership is an ability through which a leader can convince the members to follow his guidance (Zhang & Bartol, 2010). There are various personality skills which are required for a leader like charisma, friendliness, compassion, empathy, listening skills etc (Daft, 2014) . Following is an assessment of my strengths and weaknesses which can help me in inculcating key leadership skills.

I believe in participative style of leadership and in order to be a participative leader I harbour the strength of being interactive and able to involve people in discussion. I have a friendly and helpful nature which can inculcate empathy and compassion as a leader. I have a sense of judgement which helps me in assessing a situation and the impact it has on others. In a situation of an argument or conflict I try to listen to all parties and try to bring forth the important issues so that a consensus can emerge. Therefore, I have listening skills which can help me in motivating members to generate new ideas and work towards common goals (Daft, 2014). If I augment these strengths I can become a better leader.

My major weakness is that I tend to get angry and have difficulty in staying calm in a stressing situation. However, with practice and experience this nature can be controlled and I can evolve ways to remain calm (Daft, 2014). I have an innate compassionate nature of which some people can take advantage. Therefore, I need to improve my skill of judgement of people and situations to become a better leader. Additionally, inexperience with conflict management and communication skills is another weakness. If I augment my strengths and find ways to improve them while working on removal of weaknesses, I can become a better leader.

Specifying developmental objectives

Peer review and feedback helps in assessing own abilities and knowing the perception of others regarding own skills. (Aspin, 2012). In order to assess my own strength, skills and weaknesses in a better way I conducted a peer evaluation through casual conversation and interview of five of my colleagues.

In this respect I came to know that I am perceived as a friendly and a helpful person. They also thought me to be honest and interactive. Additionally, I was perceived by my colleagues as a person who was team oriented and believed in involving other in all activities. In this sense their perception was similar with mine in terms of strengths. In terms of weaknesses they thought I was slightly indecisive because of my nature to be compassionate and empathetic. In this sense also, their view matched with mine. I felt that in a situation of conflict I tend to voice my opinion strongly. Conversely, my colleagues thought that I did not voice it strongly enough and trusted other’s views too easily. In this respect their opinion was dissimilar with my personal perception of my self

My colleagues also felt that I should try to improve my communication skills further and enhance my conflict management skills. They believed that I get stressed easily and must increase ability to calm myself in a distressing situation. For a leader it is important to be in a position to observe a situation on its merit (Daft, 2014). Therefore, they felt that I should improve my analytical skills. Hence, their perception of me was similar with my own perception on skills like friendliness, honesty and team work. However, they felt that I should enhance my judgement, conflict management and analytical skills to be more effective.

As a participative leader I intend to carry my organisation towards desired goals through team work, collaboration and cooperation of my members. I would motivate members to work together and help each other to attain common goals. I intend to steer my team towards goals achievement via performance orientation, cooperation and sense of belongingness.

Following are my leadership development objectives which will give a direction to my leadership vision

Objective

Measurement criteria

To improve my interpersonal skills so that I can work with people in an effective manner

Taking practical tests with the help of supervisor or colleagues to ascertain improvements

To increase my communication skills so that I can articulate my thoughts in a better way to be effective in whatever work I am doing.

Taking mock exams on written and verbal communication to ascertain improvement

To enhance my decision making and analytical abilities so that I can analysis situations which may arise in my job as a leader or a team member

Taking reasoning and analytical skills tests online

To increase my subject knowledge so that I can give advice to team members and solve their queries effectively

To qualify subject related exams with 70% narks.

To improve my ability to work under stress and short deadlines so that my efficiency increases and I can be an effective leader and team person.

Use of simulation techniques and online tests to assess improvement in stress taking abilities

Table 1: Source: Made by Author based on (Campbell, 2018)

Action Plan

Following action plan will help in enhancing my leadership abilities. This action plan is for six months duration.

Objectives

Actions to be taken

To improve my interpersonal skills so that I can work with people in an effective manner

· Increase my people interactions through discussion on organisational, management or Current affairs issue with a friend twice a week for six months

· Read two books on team work and problem solving

· Interact with mentors and supervisors to seek advise on improvement of inter personal skills.

· Try to involve myself in college contests like declamation and debates so that I get maximum opportunities to improve inter personal interactions

· Take a short-term course in interpersonal skill improvement

To increase my communication skills so that I can articulate my thoughts in a better way to be effective in whatever work I am doing.

· Reading two articles each week from a reputed management journal or magazine each

· Taking six-month course for communication skills

· Take online mock evaluation of communication skills

· Meeting mentors and seeking guidance for improvement in communication skills.

To enhance my decision making and analytical abilities so that I can analysis situations which may arise in my job as a leader or a team member

· Reading about five major business leaders and their style of solving problems and taking critical decisions with in next six months

· Reading at least two cases a month on leadership decisions and skills

· Take admission in a short-term course which can improve my leadership and decision-making skills

· Solving at least 15 reasoning problems daily

· Solving one case on leadership and analytical skills in every 15 days

To increase my subject knowledge and current affairs so that I can give advice to team members and solve their queries effectively

· Reading class notes every day

· Reading extra books from the library to enhance knowledge further

· Taking extra training about the course material

· Reading online material on the subject matter

· Attending seminars related to subject matter

· Reading one newspaper every day

· Listening to daily business and current affairs news and making notes  

To improve my ability to work under stress and short deadlines so that my efficiency increases and I can be an effective leader and team person.

· Using time management techniques like setting small goals so that work can be distributed and deadlines can be met

· Attending at least three seminars which can help in boosting self-control and self-belief

· Improving my planning skills and becoming more organised in handling tasks and subtasks

· Improving the ability of starting a work early

· Maintaining a dairy of work schedule and evaluating if all the work is going by schedule

Table 1]2: Source: Made by Author based on (Campbell, 2018)

Stating the objectives and making action plan is the first step towards realising the goals (Boonstra, 2012). However, to realise my vision and my objective I need to pinpoint the resources I need. Following is a resource allocation plan to realise my objectives.

Resource

Place

Time Frame

Method of resource use

Budget

Books on reasoning, leadership styles, conflict management, stress management and communication skills

Can be obtained from college library or an online book store

Must read two books per subject with in 1 month

Reading and making notes

$100

Online reading material

Internet

Two hours per day for one month

Reading online

$50 for purchase of online reading material.

Conferences and seminars

Workshop and seminar arranging institutes

At least one every month for leadership skills and communication skills

Attending the seminars and making notes

$250

Reading case studies which can be helpful in enhancing various skills for the purpose of achievement and polishing of leadership abilities

Library or internet

Two cases a month

Solving leadership cases

$50 for purchase of online reading material.

Short term courses on communication skills, analytical skills, conflict and stress management

Finding relevant courses through internet search

1 or 2 courses in six months

Attending course

$500

Access to college and state library

College library

One month

Subscription

$100

Internet connection

Home or college

One month

Subscription

$50

Computer

Home or college

One month

Use of my personal computer

No charges

Table 3: Source: Made by Author based on (Campbell, 2018)

By utilising these resources, I can achieve my objectives as per the made action plan.

Objectives

Evaluation and feedback mechanism

To improve my interpersonal skills so that I can work with people in an effective manner

· Making notes of discussion and repeating the points discussed again once a month

· Writing a book review and sharing with supervisor for feedback

To increase my communication skills so that I can articulate my thoughts in a better way to be effective in whatever work I am doing.

· Summarising the articles, I have read in oral and written format. Sharing the summary with supervisor for feedback

· Test results of the course

To enhance my decision making and analytical abilities so that I can analysis situations which may arise in my job as a leader or a team member

· Taking mock test

· Asking peers to evaluate change in decision making abilities

To increase my subject knowledge and current affairs knowledge   so that I can give to advice team members and solve their queries effectively

· Taking online tests on subject and current affairs.

To improve my ability to work under stress and short deadlines so that my efficiency increases and I can be an effective leader and team person.

· Evaluation of small goals and taking account whether they have been met or not

· Making notes of the main points understood in seminars and sharing with supervisor for feedback

Table 4: Source: Made by Author based on (Campbell, 2018)

It is very important to review a professional development plan (Collin & Hammond, 2013). It helps in assessing the short comings and amending the plan based on the review. Aa the plan made is for a period of six month, a six-monthly review can be carried out to evaluate the impact of the plan on further development of my abilities (Collin & Hammond, 2013). I had undertaken various activities to achieve my objectives. These can be reviewed through the flowing strategies

Defining actions and resources needed to achieve developmental objectives

Taking a mock test designed through an online source or the supervisor to assess whether there has been any improvement in communication skills, stress management, decision making skills, interpersonal skills and analytical skills. Learning can only be enhanced by proper evaluation hence I will take the feedback provided seriously and inculcate it in any future plan. (Aspin, 2012)

Observing own behaviour to assess changes in approach to situations or conduct during any situation is helpful in arriving at a conclusion on enhancement of abilities (Aspin, 2012). Therefore, another strategy is to conduct own assessment or peer review of conduct. This will help me in finding shortcomings in my plan and making a plan for next three years

After a discussion of the plan with my supervisor, he made following recommendations for change

According to him there is also a need to improve assertiveness as most of my peers think I am soft due to an overly compassionate nature.

He also felt that to be an able leader I need to evolve conflict management skills. He also suggested actions like reading further material on conflict management and attending classes in order to improve these skills.

Based on these recommendations I made the following additions to my professional development plan 

Objectives

Actions

Time period

Improvement in conflict management skills and assertiveness

Improvement in confidence over decisions taken

· Learning to be polite but firm through self-practice and reading articles on polite but firm behaviour

· Reading abbot crisis situation which leaders have handled and evaluating how I would have handled it against the way the leader handled it

· Reading on confidence building and attending two seminars on confidence enhancing skills

6 months

Table 5: Source: Made by Author based on (Campbell, 2018)

Therefore, by inculcating these changes I can improve my development plan and aim to be a better leader.

Conclusion

A professional development plan can help to understand the needs for improvement in order to attain leadership abilities. Through this plan I have been able to create a vision for becoming a successful leader. Through this plan I have also been able to assess my own strengths and weaknesses. Leadership objectives formulation has also been made possible through this plan. Various actions required for enhancement of leaderships abilities have also been formulated. Therefore, this plan has helped me to put my needs in perspective and take actions for improvement in order to become an able leader.

References

Aspin, D. N. (2012). Second International Handbook of Lifelong Learning:. Hamburg: Springer Science & Business Media.

Boonstra, J. (2012). Cultural Change and Leadership in Organizations: A Practical Guide to Successful Organizational Change. New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons.

Campbell, A. (2018). Global Leadership Initiatives for Conflict Resolution and Peacebuilding. Hershey: IGI Globa.

Collin, & Hammond. (2013). Self-directed Learning: Critical Practice. New York: Routledge.

Daft, R. (2014). The Leadership Experience. New York: Cengage Learning.

Lussier, R. (2009). Leadership: Theory, Application, & Skill Development. New York: Cengage Learning.

Mayo, A. J. (2009). Entrepreneurs, Managers, and Leaders: What the Airline Industry Can Teach Us About Leadership. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.

Miner, J. B. (2015). Organizational Behavior: Essential theories of motivation and leadership. New York: M.E. Sharpe.

Palestini, R. (2009). From Leadership Theory to Practice: A Game Plan for Success as a Leader. Plymouth: R&L Education.

Schein, E. H. (2010). Organizational Culture and Leadership. Melbourne: John Wiley & Sons.

Swanwick, T. (2011). ABC of Clinical Leadership. Melbourne: John Wiley & Sons.

Zhang, X., & Bartol, K. (2010). Linking empowering leadership and employee creativity: The influence of psychological empowerment, intrinsic motivation, and creative process engagemen. Academy of management journal, 53(1), 107-128.

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