Participative Leadership Term Paper

Pages: 6 (1939 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: College Sophomore  ·  Topic: Leadership

Participative Leadership - Personal Development Plan

Summer vacations are a great opportunity for a student to work in various domains and organizations in order to get an idea of various styles of leadership. I took this opportunity to study managerial styles during two summer holydays and went through two opposite experiences. The first time I worked within a cable providing organization as a sales agent. My supervisor was a rather permissive manager and he was more of a friend than a leader. He always encouraged me and praised my good job - even though it had not always been that good. He was always a good listener who made time for his subordinates, he motivated and encouraged them. In all, he made me feel like a valuable part of the organization, feeling which motivated me to increase my performances. On the following summer, I worked as a manager's assistant, doing mostly secretary work. The manager I was working for was rather autocratic, he had high expectations and he praised my work next to never. The pleasant environment was barely perceivable and a continuous felling of stress had installed in the office. The reason why I find these two experiences worth to mention is given by the impact they have had on me. During the first experience, I learned that a friendly leader is necessary for the morale of the employees, whereas a more demanding leader is necessary for a constant improvement of one's skills. Furthermore, it is extremely important for a future manager to work closely with various personalities in order to best understand them and adapt to their requirements or general way of being. These experiences, alongside with a wide variety of other life and business experiences, the interactions with numerous people and situations, all combined with the unique characteristics of each individual will eventually form the manager and will dictate the leadership style he will implement.

The past experiences have offered me an insight into the type of manager I would like to be: friendly with the staff as to create a pleasant work environment, but not too permissive; respected by the personnel, but not feared or autocratic. But one can't simply wake up being the leader they desire; years of practice are required, during which the future leader will learn from his personal experiences as well as from the experiences of others. The manager has to de self-taught and he must be able to develop and improve his skills in order to evolve into the leader he desires to be in the end.

Up until now, I have been focused on being a friendly and rather permissive leader, mostly because I want my subordinates to feel safe and at ease around me. In the beginnings, when the employees did not actually know what to expect, they did their jobs at satisfactory levels. (as a result, the importance of making a clear and firm first impression arises) in time however, some of them began to procrastinate more than the allowed time and the quality of their overall job decreased. And now, my subalterns fail to see me as a leader, but regard me as more of a friend. I have often thought of changing my approach for the company's benefit, but I was always afraid that the staff would be disappointed in me. I must however learn that my duty as a manager is not to be the employees' friend, but to be their leader, the liaison between employees and corporate board and the liaison between employees and customer. I am there to serve a professional and business purpose rather than a social one. I must learn how to get the respect of the staff without imposing fear. Here is a list of skills I must improve in order to become the best manager I can be:

Motivational skills - I must learn how to motivate my employees through persuading them and also through offering them incentives

Personal image - I need to improve the image I created so far as to become a respected manager, rather than the friend

Persuasive skills - I have to be able to convince my subordinates to do their best on the job and I must also be able to convince them to follow me and my actions; up until now, I have almost been afraid to insist when met with reticence for I did not want to become 'the bad guy', or the autocratic leader I anyway disagree with Objectiveness - I must learn how to get detached and analyze different matters from a neutral stand point; in other words, I must eliminate the emotional from my leading style

Delegation - up until now, whenever an employee failed to do his job, I would finish it for him, which often imposed on me and my initial tasks; from now on however, I must learn how to delegate - for instance, I could have a better skilled employee supervise the work of the newly hired and then report to me

In achieving the above desiderates, I must be extremely careful not to get to the other side and become the type of manager I do not want to be. In other words, I must not lose my human side and I must not impose fear, but I have to gain their trust and respect. And I will achieve all objectives based on my personal strengths:

have extensive knowledge on how to develop and implement managerial skills also have extensive knowledge on how the individual acts and I can use it to better relate to my subordinates have extensive theoretical knowledge on the management of the human resource and I can use this to develop and implement strategies for the management of my team have people skills in the meaning that I can socially interact with them on a deep level; I am a good listener, I can understand and try to resolve their problems have extensive technological knowledge relating to the industry in which we operate and I can easily help the staff get a better understanding of their tasks and also helping them resolve the tasks whenever they encounter difficulties (I will no longer do their job)

To better understand how and why there is a need for change in my leadership style, I will present several situations in which I poorly implemented the managerial functions, examples as to how I will handle it in the future, and an improvement schedule. The main cause for all mistakes was the desire to be accepted by the group, keep the staff happy and become their friend.

Skills to Improve Strategies for Improvement Measurement of Progress Time Table for Assessing Progress Motivation - Convince employees it is in their best interest to perfect their skills and increase their performances

Offer them incentives - Positive responses from team members superior quality and timely delivery of the tasks completed 2-month intervals Personal Image - Create a clear image of a strict but fair leader

Enforce it through similar actions - the way in which I am perceived by the staff

To what extent they trust and respect me 2-month intervals Persuasion - Do not ask the employees how they feel about the strategy, but implement it as a given - Improvements in the product design, quality and operational efficiency 2-month intervals Objectiveness - Request for more sides of one story

Do not become impressed by tantrums - Increased levels of trust

More sincere employees 2-month intervals Delegation - Equal distribution of extra work among employees

Evaluating how the delegated work is being performed - Superior results

Increased levels of trust and responsibility

Less work for the leader 2-month intervals

Motivation member of my team was unable to complete his given task within the specified amount of time and when I asked him about it, he said he did not like the task. In the attempt to not force my employees do something they didn't like, I simply took the task from him and gave it to somebody else. For the future, I will encourage employees in similar situations to further analyze the task, for learning more about it would be in their best interest and would help them evolve as professionals. I will also offer incentives, such as an extra 2 hours free during that week, if he successfully completed the project in time or the chance to choose the next project to work on based on personal preferences.

Personal image

From the time of my arrival within the company, I created a friendly image of myself, exemplified by a wide series of situations, such as the time when an employee apologised for being two hours late and I told him there is no need for apology. From now on I will implement stricter rules about being late and unexcused tardiness longer than half an hour will be penalised.

Persuasion once designed a new system for a product we were working on, a system which was… [END OF PREVIEW]

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