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Organizational Government & Leadership

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Question:

Discuss about the Organizational Government & Leadership.
 
 

Answer:

Introduction

This self-reflection is based on the topic of ‘Power & Influence’. I have always believed that one of the key traits of leaders is that they exhibit power. I feel that leaders should exhibit power in a positive manner. Personally, I am a big fan of power exhibited by servant leaders. I believe no matter what culture you are attached to, being a servant leader is a mind state.  It’s one’s philosophical beliefs based on their ideology as leader. As a leader you must be know how to be effective, otherwise your role as a leader will be compromised at some point. The three diagnostic tools that I would like to focus as a part of self-reflection can be discussed as:

Analysis: Quinn Management Questionnaire

The Quinn test has 40 questions that help individuals to assess their personal leadership traits. I took the test and the screenshot of the result can be shown as:

The above diagram shows that I have scored best on the dimension of innovation. My top three traits are Innovator (at 71%), Mentor (at 69%) and Coordinator (at 69%). I have always believed that power can be of useful when leaders now the way to service others. Service demonstrates our ability to forget selfishness and be able to help others.  Service is a principle of behavior that impacts our interactions with other people and is standard concept of life. An example of how servant leadership crosses religious and cultural ties is to compare a religious organization and a business one.  Think about the leader of a church, this person wants what is best for the supports, strives to serve them and help them succeed.  They also provide leadership through this process as they grow people through the learning process.  The same holds true for a Servant leader in a business.

The link to my full results: https://www.ifbd.be/en/quinn_test/results

 

ESCI (Emotional Intelligence Situational Leadership)

Leading With Emotional Intelligence utilizes the EQ-i 2.0 self-assessment to give participants an in-depth understanding of the influence that emotions have on actions and behaviors. This aspect of leadership is linked with the emotions or heart of leaders. With this questionnaire I have learned that I have decent control over my emotions. A leader can subscribe to the ideology of being a leader, but they don't necessarily have to be emotional.  In my opinion I believe that if your heart leads to serve people it can be based on your value system, rather than your religion.  Some people believe in being kind and helping others because it's the right thing to do, however they may not necessarily be religious. Servant leadership can easily cross cultural lines, however it's definitely not written in stone.  I happen to have a strong religious foundation, so I understand what it means to be a servant, however that doesn't necessarily mean that I will subscribe to being a servant leader. 

Alpha assessment tool

The Alpha Assessment is an awareness tool that enables people to rate their “Alpha-ness” power and influence style and to learn to clearly recognize themselves in one of four distinct alpha types. These four types are strategist, visionary, executor and commander. The result of this tool suggest that I am a strategist and I wish to develop the strategies for organization, business unit or team. As a part of strategies the key things or traits that I can see in myself are persuasion, listening, awareness, and acceptance.  These are particularly important in my opinion, because in order to be an effective leader, you must be a good listener.  You must also learn to accept people’s differences, rather than being judgmental.  Being aware of the needs of your subordinates is also important, because it allows you to provide them with things that they need in order to strengthen their skills (Lapointe & Vandenberghe, 2015).

Evidence from past 12 months

  1. I remember that as a part of a group project in college I was asked to develop the strategy for completion of group project. I lead from the front and developed the strategy. The first step for me was to divide the work and develop the Gant chart with the responsibilities assigned to each of the team member.
  2. There was a time when our group was struggling to come up with a business idea. Actually, there was an external competition where people were asked to present a situation and solution. The group members had different ideas; but somehow we were not able to agree on one single idea. Finally, I came up with the idea of bots to be used in mobile advertisements. It was selected as one of the most innovative idea. Therefore, it proves that my survey result (that I am an innovator) is correct.
 

Literature Review

Lankshear & Kerr (2013) discussed the concept of power for servant leaders. Servant leadership is described as an attitude with values and beliefs that influence the lives of other individuals, as well as, foster and create strong organizational environments that in the end by sharing knowledge and strengths it produces a domino effect of a caring world (Greenleaf, 2016). There are twelve principles of servant leadership, which are the following “listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion, conceptualization, foresight, stewardship, growth, building community, calling and nurturing the spirit”. The first five main beliefs (“listening, empathy, healing, awareness, persuasion) of servant leadership cross religious and cultural lines because regardless of an individual’s religion or cultural background, these are all social skills to possess as a leader. Servant leaders pay more attention on service to their subordinates/followers, along with ethical behavior (Parris & Peachey, 2013). These types of leaders are committed toward the growth and welfare of people (Choudhary, Akhtar, & Zaheer, 2013). As a servant leader, he or she understands the incredible responsibility tasked to do everything in his or her power to nurture the personal and professional growth of the individuals they are serving. Stoll expressed “effective leaders are, first and foremost, good teachers”. I think this mentality couldn’t be more accurate and it cross all religious and cultural lines.

Dinh & Lord (2014) discussed the relationship between the power exhibited by the leaders and ethical behavior of leaders. Authors argued that leadership, with board oversight, establishes the ethical values that will guide their organization. Authors further noted that given the recent spate of high profile corporate ethical failures, stakeholders have demanded a greater emphasis be placed on ethical behaviors, which are adopted and internalized by the organization’s employees at all levels when they are consistently communicated and modeled. As Daft (2015) observed, organizations have taken a variety of steps to ensure that their employees, from executive management to rank-and-file employees, follow ethical business practices.  Many organizations have established departments to ensure ethical standards are being met.  And many have established “C” level executive positions that report directly to the Board. This also adds to the discussion of unethical behavior and the responsibility of board of directors of any organization. Daft (2015) states that if at any time the leadership within any organization acts in was that are unethical, the board must act as a governing body that takes corrective action to improve the behavior of that leader or remove that individual.  The reason being is that the board of directors must always see to serve the needs of all stakeholders, both internal and external.  In other words, when leaders are unethical they can potentially cause harm to the needs and wants of those stakeholders.  This in turn may cause the demise of the organization over periods of time. Those actions place more risk on organizational trust with key constituents. Interestingly, while reading about this topic I came across a study warning about board’s failure to act prospectively regarding ethical issues among board members, officers, and directors.  Apparently a major inhibitor to boards reacting proactively to member misconduct centers upon an underlying current of fear of legal action from shareholders should proactive actions result in the loss of short-term profits (Rose, 2007).  It is very interesting that the fear of lost profits and potential resulting legal action may control a board’s willingness to take action prospectively to correct the conduct of an unethical director or officer.

 


Knutsen & Brock (2014) discussed the role and linkage of power with empowerment. Authors agree that religion and culture play a significant role in the servant leadership, but individual virtues like humility, trust, altruism, service and empowerment are very important for the servant leadership. Example; empowerment grants individuals the permission to utilize their talents, skills and resources, and experience to make decisions to complete their workloads in a timely manner.

Ross, Matteson & Exposito (2014) conducted an empirical study contributing to literature on consumers’ perception of ethical issues as it affects organizational strategy. The researchers described misleading practices on advertising as a perceived unethical business practice by consumers (Ross, Matteson & Exposito, 2014).  The researchers concluded consumers are likely to evaluate an organization based on the honesty of the organization’s business practices (Ross, Matteson & Exposito, 2014). As part of the organization’s strategy, Ross, Matteson & Exposito (2014) advised organizations to declare the organizations’ ethical practices and to be transparent with consumers on ethical issues.

Dion (2012) connected the power exhibited by leaders to the ambidextrous approach as shown by organizations or leaders.  According to Dunlap et al. (2016), the utilization of supplier information allows an organization operating under an ambidextrous structure to better cultivate and leverage relationships and information.  Dunlap et al. (2016) studied the performance and innovation levels of ambidextrous automotive manufacturers located in Brazil.  Dunlap et al. (2016) found firms that incorporated input from external suppliers experienced positive performance and innovation levels.  I could see how the utilization of supplier information would aid an organization in output and creativity.  When I was younger I worked for a national retail chain that regularly questioned suppliers about market changes and competitor observations.  That practice makes very much sense to me in light of our material this week.

O'Reilly & Thushman (2013) discussed the criticality of aligning the vision with the power. The benefit that O’Reilly and Tushman (2013) reference from their seminal work on the approach is that it bears out that an organization who uses this approach is able to “explore and exploit” (p.324) the resources from prior work. Having the ability to look forward, while reaching back to grab tools, enables the business to work more efficiently. Experience has taught this writer that the more proven tools you have at your disposal to do the job right, the easier and more efficient you can be completing the task. Comparatively you can think of trying to change a tire with only a screwdriver available. The screwdriver would not accomplish the direct task of changing the tire, but if the operator used that screwdriver to break open a locked door on a service station to acquire the proper tools, the job would be done. Though the tire is changed, many unnecessary problems arise from using the wrong tool for the job.

 

Conclusion/ Action Plan

Based on the above three questionnaire, I have learned that I have the leadership capabilities of innovation and strategist. At the personal level, I like the leadership style of servant leader. Given a chance, I would like to exhibit the power through servant leadership model. One of the examples for the way power is exhibited through servant leadership is Nelson Mandella. I agree that in today’s society servant leadership can be hard to find.  If organizations do not implement a servant leadership culture or don't have servant leaders its just not see or demonstrated.  In most educational organizations you do see servant leadership. I am sure that I would continue to work on my leadership journey. I have always believed that leadership is not a destination in itself but a journey. It is important to take the learning throughout the journey. With these questionnaire and several other tools, I am sure that I would be able to emerge as a better individual, personally and professionally.

I have always believed that leadership is not a destination in itself but a journey. It is important to take the learning throughout the journey. It is important for me to have an action plan in place. I have a six-month action plan in place that would help me to work upon my weaknesses. My plan is divided into four phases. The timelines and various phases of my action plan can be discussed as:

Phase

Objective

Timeline

Assessment Phase

In this phase, the objective would be to assess my current position in the journey and based on that position decide the targeted position. It is important that serious contemplating should be done in this phase. The initial research suggests that I need to learn patients while exhibiting power as part of my leadership. I would also like to develop my skills in the area of change management

3 weeks

Framework Development Phase

This is the phase in which a framework is developed that I can use as a platform to improve my leadership skills. I would like to develop a flexible framework where change management is easy.

3 weeks

Actual Implementation

Once the assessment is done and framework is developed, the next step for me would be to work towards the improvement of my personal skills and traits. I would personally keep a track f my improvement by developing a journal

20 weeks

Continuous Improvement

This would be the phase where I would focus on continuous improvement of my leadership skills. In this phase I would like to learn from the various examples. I would like to benchmark my leadership attributes and traits against the great leaders of contemporary organizations like Larry Page, Jeff Bezos, etc.

8 weeks

The above assessments have been a good learning for me. I have also learned a lot from the literature review. For me, it is critical that I should review my leadership skills and traits at regular time interval.

 

References

Daft, R. L. (2015). Organization theory and design (12th ed.) Mason, OH: South-Western, Cengage Learning.

Dinh, J. E., Lord, R. G., Gardner, W. L., Meuser, J. D., Liden, R. C., & Hu, J. (2014). Leadership theory and research in the new millennium: Current theoretical trends and changing perspectives. The Leadership Quarterly, 25(1), 36-62.

Dion, M., 2012. Are ethical theories relevant for ethical leadership?.Leadership & Organization Development Journal, 33(1), pp.4-24.

Dunlap, D., Parente, R., Geleilate, J., & Marion, T. J. (2016). Organizing for innovation ambidexterity in emerging markets: Taking advantage of supplier involvement and foreignness. Journal of Leadership & Organizational Studies, 23(2), 175-190.

Lapointe & Vandenberghe, C. (2015). Examination of the Relationships Between Servant Leadership, Organizational Commitment, and Voice and Antisocial Behaviors.

Lankshear, S., Kerr, M. S., Laschinger, H. K. S., & Wong, C. A. (2013). Professional practice leadership roles: the role of organizational power and personal influence in creating a professional practice environment for nurses. Health care management review, 38(4), 349-360.

Choudhary, A., Akhtar, S., & Zaheer, A. (2013). Impact of Transformational and Servant Leadership on Organizational Performance: A Comparative Analysis. Journal Of Business Ethics, 116(2), 433-440. doi:10.1007/s10551-012-1470-8

Greenleaf, R.K. (2016). What is servant leadership?. Retrieved from https://www.greenleaf.org/what-is-servant-leadership/

Knutsen, W., & Brock, K. (2014). Introductory essay: From a closed system to an open system: A parallel critical review of the intellectual trajectories of publicness and nonprofitness. Voluntas: International Journal Of Voluntary & Nonprofit Organizations, 25(5), 1113-1131

Parris, D., & Peachey, J. (2013). A Systematic Literature Review of Servant Leadership Theory in Organizational Contexts. Journal Of Business Ethics, 113(3), 377-393.

O'Reilly, C. I., & Tushman, M. L. (2013). Organizational ambidexterity: Past, present, and future. The Academy Of Management Perspectives, 27(4), 324-338.

Rose, J. M. (2007). Corporate directors and social responsibility: Ethics versus shareholder value. Journal of Business Ethics, 73(3), 319-331.

Ross, D. B., Matteson, R., & Exposito, J. (2014). Servant leadership to toxic leadership: Power of influence over power of control.

Stoll, S. K. (2014). John R. Wooden, Stephen R. Covey and Servant Leadership. International Journal Of Sports Science & Coaching, 9(1), 61-64.

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