Why Supporting Others Is a Good Leadership StyleEssay

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¶ … Career Center

The resources available in the Career Center are numerous. There are links in the Job Center, for example, to various hiring pages that can be used to help students apply to the different available jobs in the market. These links are categorized under the departments by which students identify their field -- from Agriculture, Animals and Livestock to Transportation. This is a valuable source for identifying opportunities in the real world.

Career videos are another helpful resource that give helpful tips on how to market oneself and make the most of the gifts and talents that students have as individuals. For instance, Bennie Covington gives a talk on how to build a brand -- and a brand can be something you produce or it can be your own self (based on your own achievements and the way you present yourself -- like LeBron James does, or even Donald Trump -- both have branded themselves to the public). Other videos discuss important topics like organizational culture, networking and how to interview. So there are many helpful tips here.

Other resources include guides on how to find a job, get a job, and keep a job. There are guides for military transitioning back to civilian life, coaching tips and coaching profiles. In short, there are a lot of options in the Career Center to help a student get on his way.

The Person I am Supporting

The person I am supporting is my friend Carl S., who has already had some development and success in his advancement through his life, education and career -- but he still wants to grow and develop even more after all this time and for this reason I want to help him reach the next level that he desires to obtain. He is in management and has bounced around between jobs attempting to find his niche and the place where he feels happiest, most comfortable, and most productive. He is a creative person with a lot of energy and a strong desire to lead -- so in jobs where there are other natural leaders there is a tendency for Carl to come into conflict. Thus he has at times attempted to work as an independent contractor, which is an experience he has also learned from. He has a lot of knowledge about himself that he likes to share and reflect upon and he is always searching for ways to grow as a person, as a leader, and as a worker, and so we felt that it would be a good idea to see if I could apply what I have learned from this course to Carl and note its effect.

Using the Portals

Carl completed the Value of Education portal and the Handling Stress portal as well as the Value Rating Worksheet and the Skill Set Worksheet. Both of these worksheets plus the two portals regarding education and handling stress were very helpful for Carl. Though he has been in his career for many years, he immediately recognized that these were both extremely helpful tools. The reason he saw this was that he recognizes how important it is to stop and reflect on oneself and where one wants to be, where one is, and how to cover the distance. Thus, he was very happy to engage in the Value of Education portal and Stress portal as he saw how these tools could apply in his own life.

His projected career path is for him to eventually be his own boss again, leading his own team as they design instruments for companies around the world. Carl is very innovative and wants to be involved in the global market and use his gifts to make an impact on the entire planet. It is an ambitious goal so it requires an ambitious development plan.

This plan consists mainly in building on values that Carl has for himself and the talents and strengths that he possesses. It also consists of recognizing his weaknesses and overcoming them through continual education and challenging himself to view obstacles as opportunities. This is something he has done before in the past, especially when working for bosses that he did not agree with or particularly get along with. It was a challenge for him to adapt to this environment and handle the stress in a way that would be positive rather than negative.

As the Stress portal showed Carl, it is important to reduce stress and to recognize it in one's life. Carl had some difficulty doing this in the past and he would become frustrated when he could not figure out what was wrong. It was because he was not identifying the sources of stress. After he did, he began to develop a plan for himself that would help him to manage the stress. This plan actually took him away from the stress and could be seen as a failure to adapt to his environment in this point of his career. Instead of staying at his job, he decided to go elsewhere and start off on his own. He realized however that he had not learned to manage stress -- instead he had simply fled it only to found that the same issues were still impacting him. So the Stress portal helped him to see that this was the case and he confirmed for me that he now understood his own situation a little more clearly -- that instead of committing to a situation and learning to relax, he broke his commitment and tried another way.

However, at the same time, he felt that he was also being committed to himself and his own core values. After taking the Value Assessment Worksheet, he saw that what he valued was being around interesting people (which was one reason he decided to leave his one job and go for another -- it was not totally because of stress). He valued freedom from pressure/stress, independence, involvement in decision-making, mental challenge, power and influence, quality of product, recognition, and variety and change in work. All of these values, he assessed, helped him to better understand his own move. He also saw that these could help in developing a better plan for himself to meet the goals of his predicted career trajectory.

As for the Skill Set Worksheet, Carl had a lot of skills that he felt he was advanced or expert at -- from accepting responsibility to administering to analyzing, creating, deciding, designing, inventing, leading, organizing, and verbal communication. Some that he felt he needed work on were writing, adapting, comforting, balancing, asking questions, listening, and renewing. He felt that these skills, once developed, would help him on his way towards being head of his own company.

After utilizing these tools, Carl reflected on his own experiences and discussed what it means to him to be a leader and how his life so far has shaped his outlook. As he noted, being a leader is something that does not come overnight but requires foresight, "vision," and the ability to harness inspiration. As Kotter (2009) states, "leadership defines what the future looks like," and for this reason it is essential that leaders possess the necessary skills and values that are need to make the future possible for one's chose path. For Carl, leadership means to draw "meaning in negative and positive events" (Bennis, Thomas, 2002) and to help one grow even more as a result of applying oneself to both types of environments. With this ability to accept the good with the bad, so to speak, one can help to "influence" those around him -- and this is what Carl is attempting to work on at this point in his career. Leadersihp, for him, is based on a strategy of helping others to achieve their goals so that he might more effectively achieve his own (Robbins, Judge, 2013).

In Carl's experience self-awareness and emotional intelligence (EI) are great tools for growth. He pointed out that the Leadership Steps Assessment (Clawson, et al., 2000) is one way to help identify strengths and weaknesses for a better sense of what one might need to work on in order to grow as one desires. Carl also recognized that on top of these tools, relationships that he has made as well as people he admires are helpful in developing as a leader. Thus, he pointed out a few names that were inspirations to him over the years and why he looked to them as examples of leadership. These people were Bill Clinton, who rose out of Arkansas to be President, Nelson Mandela who overcame obstacles in Africa to lead his people, and Barack Obama who challenged the establishment he inherited in an attempt to make the world a better place. (These were Carl's views).

Carl observed that in his own life he had encountered individual leaders who had impacted him on a direct level. Growing up, his father was a great role model and taught him to stand up for… [END OF PREVIEW]

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