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While I have learnt many leadership strategies in this course that will undoubtedly have an impact on my future role as a leader, I nevertheless would like to dwell on a few that I feel are most important to me. To start with, one of the most important leadership strategies that I have learnt in this course is setting the example. A leader should show others that he/she is fully committed to the aspirations and values that they espouse. This is the only way to earn a following. One cannot preach water and take wine. In other words, a good leader ought to also practice the shared values. More importantly, I have learnt that if I want to succeed as a leader, I need to teach others how to model the shared values (Pink, 2011). This can be achieved by facilitating relationships and creating an environment that cultivates trust. This is important, seeing as working together or collaborating requires a high level of trust. More than ever, the social media has empowered customers and employees so that building relationships has now become a key component in fostering collaboration. By trusting others, you also teach them that they can trust you. It also gives you the chance to share information and knowledge with them, and in the process, share the values that you espouse.
Another important lesson that I have learnt on leadership strategies is that in order to strengthen others as a leader, I need to develop individual confidence and competence first. In addition, I also need to enhance self-determination. One of the most efficient ways of bringing about the desired change in an organization is by increasing the belief of others to trust in their own ability. Leaders can do this by helping others to develop their existing talents and acquiring new skills.
I have also learned that credibility is the cornerstone of true leadership. As such, as a leader, I need to be honest with others, aspiring, and competent and myself. Followers should be able to believe in their leaders and if I lack in honestly and competency, it would be hard to get others to trust me. More importantly, I should be forward-looking, as a leader (Kouzes & Pozner, 2012). These strategies largely addressed the attributes of an effective leader. They are important attributes because not only do they depict leadership as a form of servant hood, but also that one cannot make it alone in leadership. You will need the input of others to pull through.
I hope to apply the knowledge gained in this course to endure tough times in my capacity as a leader. The lessons learnt through this course have given me the motivation to step up to the challenges facing me. In this case, I hope to make use of the leadership skills learnt to solve not just the existing challenges, but the anticipated ones too. This is because a leader should be forward-looking, and anticipating future challenges is a key aspect of forward-looking, it also indicates that one is focused to the task. Moreover, I plan to use the knowledge learnt in this course to explore the uncharted water in my profession. As a leader, I believe that success, or realizing the dream of an organization should be a team effort, as opposed to the actions of one individual (Rosenbach, Taylor & Youndt, 2012). For this reason, I plan to facilitate relationships between employees and myself to get the job done. In addition, I hope to build trust on my team as a way of increasing the team’s confidence and competence. However, it is not given that such a strategy will always work because trust has to be earned. For example, I might be too trusting on employees to the extent that I fail to check everything they do, only to later realize that things are not going according to plan.
However, I believe what I have learnt in this course might work for me when the team shares into my inspired vision. In addition, I expect that by developing competence and self-determination, this could act as a source of strength for others. The lessons learnt in this course might also work for me when I take time to acknowledge and celebrate significant accomplishments by the team because this will give them the motivation to work even harder. This is because such an action appeals to the team’s positive energy and inspiration, thereby enhancing their comprehension of commitment to the team’s values and vision (Rosenbach et al., 2012). To overcome potential difficulties, I shall rely on brainstorming sessions with members of my team. In addition, I will also facilitate others deal with their own challenges and in the process hope to foster a sense of community and togetherness. My hope is that such a gesture will appeal to team members to enhance their contribution during brainstorming sessions. In addition, sharing information and knowledge would be useful as it helps one to discover how others have dealt with similar challenges.
To continue learning about contemporary leadership issues and strategies, I Plan on reading widely on books and other publications on the subject. I also intend to attend seminars, workshops and lectures on contemporary leadership issues and strategies. Another strategy would be to observe the leadership styles of leaders in church, community, and other places of work to develop my skills as an effective leader in the future; I envision executing the following plan of action:
- Taking the initiative to lead whenever I get the opportunity
- Taking responsibility that is, setting goals/priorities for my own objectives
- Developing and practicing a “can do” attitude (Koestenbaum, 2002).
- Accomplishing more than I am expected to that is, going that extra mile
- Demonstrating enthusiasm in whatever I do
- Anticipating and owning problems, in addition to acting fast to solve themselves embracing innovative practices
- Increasing my capability by learning new skills
Koestenbaum, P. (2002). Leadership: The inner side of greatness: A philosophy for leaders.
San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Kouzes, J., & Pozner, B. (2012). The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things
Happen In Organizations. Fifth Edition. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Pink, D. (2011). Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates You. New York: Riverhead
Rosenbach, W.E., Taylor, R.L., & Youndt, M.A. (2012). Contemporary Issues in Leadership.
Seventh Edition. Boulder, CO: Westview Press
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