Normative Dimensions of Leadership University of Phoenix LDR/736 Architecture of Leadership ? Normative Dimensions of Leadership Normative dimensions of leadership theory looks at the big picture of the organization to work out challenges and find solutions to problems. According to Harvey (2001) The normative leadership model approach is a caring type of leadership where the leader has vision and implements ideas, arguing that a caring type of leadership is actually good for profits in a capitalistic society (Harvey, 2002).
Normative leaders are visionaries who inspire followers to contribute to the successful completion of strategic goals (Rigsby & Greco, 2003). This paper reviews the leadership style of DeBorah Thigpen, President of Thigpen and Associates, a small public relations and marketing communication consulting agency. The paper compares and contrast servant leadership and transformational leadership styles that are influential in the DeBorah’s leadership repertoire. Servant leadership Servant-Leadership serves as the dominant leadership practice for this learner.
According to the late author, Robert K. Greenleaf, who coined the term Servant-Leadership (McGraw Hill, 2001) believed “the servant-leader is a servant first” (p. 65). This philosophy is the practice of serving the organizations or people needs first, and aspires to be leaders. While working as an entrepreneur for 20 years, the learner, DeBorah Thigpen, had to work on both sides of business, follower and leader. She was a follower during her passive moments while listening carefully to the comments of the employees.
As a follower Ms. Thigpen became wiser to what operations needed to change within the organization. She would step back into the leadership role when she needed to lead, yet in all aspects of the business, she never truly surrendered the leadership position. Servant- Leaders are good listeners, empathetic and caring. While leading her company, Thigpen & Associates, she discovers she has a caring heart and would listen to sob stories, and help employees find solutions to life’s challenges. As
President of the organization, her listening skills made her popular among employees who often visited her office with problems looking for sound advice. The down side to this practice is that sometimes employees would take my caring attitude as a weakness. Ms. Thigpen’s goals at the end of day are to get the employee to commit to high standards in customer service and make a profit. By showing her caring side she discovered that the employee’s felt a personal connection with the company and worked to accomplish organization goals.
According to researchers, servant leaders have vision beyond themselves providing their loyalty to followers whose needs become the primary focus; thus, allowing them to flourish (Banutu-Gomez, 2004; Stone, Russell, & Patterson, 2004; Shriberg, Shriberg, & Lloyd, 2002; Whetstone, 2002). Servant leadership is capable of isolating and excluding personal preconceived notions in favor of granting followers freedoms to function in autonomous environments (Stone, Russell, & Patterson, 2004). Leadership
I do not believe you can be a great manager without being a good leader. Based on the definition of leadership that Nelson (2005) found in the United States Army’s Field Manual 22-100; it is defined as ” influencing people by providing purpose, direction and motivation while operating to accomplish the mission and improve the organization” (p. 93). By this definition, a manager has to be able to influence his or her subordinates to reach a common goal. Schneider (2003) points out that “management without proper leadership is treacherous” (p. 1). He continues to state that “one has to do with effectiveness, the other has to do with efficiency; one involves doing things right, the other with doing the right things” (Schneider, 2003 p. 11). In addition, I do not believe one can be a good leader without being a good manager. As a personal example, when I worked as a Chemist, before becoming an actual manager/supervisor, I had to manage the laboratory without having subordinates to help accomplish the goal of analyzing samples and producing results to the manufacturing department.
I had to still have a vision, a mission, and goals in order to bring about quick, accurate data for customers, both internally and externally. Without management of data, sample analysis, time, and safety, I can be the best leader, but still lack self-management, which could prove detrimental to my company’s profitability and productivity. Into the bargain, once I had employees reporting to me, I definitely had to learn how to manage personal problems, training, and performance appraisals, while maintaining my leadership skills. I had to adjust my style of leadership from being a task-oriented leader to more of a people-oriented one.
This was not easy for me, especially since I worked alone for two years and knowing how things ran in my department. I had to get use to what Futch (2004) stated from one of his many mentors “that you lead people and you manage things” (p. 280). This took some adjustment on my part. As stated in previous discussions, balance is essential. However, I have to agree with Schneider (2003) in his assessment of “too much management and too little leadership”. Colvard (2003) agrees with this assessment, “the public sector develops a lot of good managers, but very few leaders”.
Below are some key differences between leaders and managers (Colvard, 2003): Figure 1 Key differences between leaders and managers Key Differences between leaders and managers oA manager takes care of where you are; a leader takes you to a new place. oA manager deals with complexity; a leader deals with uncertainty. oA manager is concerned with finding the facts; a leader makes decisions. oA manager is concerned with doing things right; a leader is concerned with doing the right things. oA manager’s critical concern is efficiency; a leader focuses on effectiveness. A manager creates policies; a leader establishes principles. oA manager sees and hears what is going on; a leader hears when there is no sound and sees when there is no light. oA manager finds answers and solutions; a leader formulates the questions and identifies the problems. oA manager looks for similarities between current and previous problems; a leader looks for differences. oA manager thinks that a successful solution to a management problem can be used again; a leader wonders whether the problem in a new environment might require a different solution.
In my opinion, we have to learn how to incorporate the above in order to be a well-rounded, managing leader. Leadership Statement of DeBorah Thigpen Reflecting on her personal leadership style and abilities since 1978, the year she graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor of Art in Journalism, I have grown to become a visionary, critical and creative thinker. I believe in exercising power appropriately and voicing a positive sense of direction to inspire others.
My definition of leadership is getting people to buy-into the leader’s vision to get the job done, and at the end of the day, clients and workers alike have reached their goals. Like Kouzes, I also view leadership as a dynamic relationship between those who aspire to lead and those who choose to follow (Kouzes 2003). In the course of taking Collaborative Case Studies, I have added to my leadership styles and approaches to assist me in getting followers to buy-in, participation and to achieve goals with less conflict. DeBorah’s goal is to work more as a transformational leader, to get change made and create a high performance work environment.
She will then be able to serve as what Bolman and Deal refer to as transformational leadership: “a visionary leader capable of transforming cultural patterns. ” (Bolman & Deal, 2003, p. 365). Upon completing LDR/736 Architecture of Leadership the last course in a series of coursework to earn a Doctorate of Management, DeBorah will employ the following leadership skills (Davila, 2006). 1)Search out challenging opportunities that grow, innovate, and improve the organization; 2) Take calculated risks and learn from the mistakes, 3)Serve as the visionary and envisions a successful organization 4. Enlist the support of other colleagues with common visions 5) Foster collaboration by promoting goals and building team trust 6)Strengthen employees through training, mentoring and sharing of the power 7)Lead by displaying a positive example 8) Plans small wins and promote progress and reward employees 9) Listen 10) Celebrate team accomplishments DeBorah will capitalize on lessons learned and continue her pursuit of excellence as a lifelong learner. To transform her leadership style, DeBorah incorporate directive, supportive, and or participative as need to reach organizational goals and create a productive work environment.
A productive work environment helps to create high levels of motivation, and high team performance resulting in ultimate job satisfaction (Lawler and Worley,2006). By using participative leadership over top down decision-making, participative leadership involves employees at many levels of the organization hierarchy for input into problem solving. The workforce should be encouraged to share with problem solving regarding customer service, human resources, product improvement and job safety (Zoglio, 2005). Emotional Intelligence
Interpersonal skills are an important aspect of leadership. Another lesson learned by DeBorah during her doctoral studies is the importance using Emotional Intelligence (EI). Emotional Intelligence describes a person’s capacity for recognizing and understanding their own feelings and those of others and using that understanding to nurture more effective, productive relationships. ” (Simms, 2003). Leaders who display interpersonal skills are more apt to display emotional intelligence. They are more understanding and empathic to the needs and concerns of their followers.
After reviewing numerous workplace scenarios in Collaborative Case Studies class, DeBorah has a heightened awareness of the need for EI. Martin Dodds (2004) describes four key characteristics of emotional intelligence. The first key characteristic of emotional intelligence is self-awareness. The leader must be aware of their strengths and areas of opportunities. Leaders must admit and recognize that they are not perfect and at times, they too must be willing to develop areas in which they may not be proficient. The second characteristic is self-regulation. A leader must be able to control their emotions.
Displaying what may seem to be negative emotions (anger, panic) may not be beneficial for the leader follower relationship. The followers rely on the leader to maintain their composure in stressful situations. The third characteristic of emotional intelligence is empathy. Leadership should recognize and reward the followers of their organizations. A leader is wise to realize that every follower is different. Each follower may require a different approach as his or her emotional levels may vary. The final key characteristic of emotional intelligence is social skills.
The leader should possess social skills and express a concern for their followers early on in the relationship, as first impressions are difficult to change. Leaders who develop their emotional intelligence are more likely to develop strong working and productive relationships with their followers. DeBorah’s approach to leadership spells R. E. S. P. E. C. T. Respect is what leaders give and in return expect respect from their collaborators. A good leader will encourage dialogue and transfer that knowledge to less senior personnel, and generate further interest and discussion along hierarchical structure.
Lunn (2006) also states that “leadership qualities require tacit and explicit knowledge learned through social interaction, observation, intuition and continual practice” (Lunn, 2006). Effective leaders are effective people who support an organization’s visions and goals. He or she is a visionary, facilitator and encourages ways to achieve specified goals. (Bryon, 2003) Leadership has the authority to empower, coach and direct individuals through paths of obstacles, and towards the goal of achievement. Figure 2 DeBorah’s acronyms of respect Because of her leadership practices, she is currently earning a doctorate in Management.
I have served as a follower and leader, to combine both skill sets in my leadership practices. A practice that has served me well as a leader and followers is to be an active listener. I have devised a personal and professional credo to keep me motivated on my quest of earning a doctorate, becoming an inspirational speaker, and creating of ingenious lifestyle complete with personal and professional fulfillment. Using the credo reminds me of goals and provides needed encouragement during times when I believe I am overwhelmed by the workload of school, career and family matters.
The credo is used as a personal mission statement and daily reminder of how DeBorah is presenting herself to the public. I am a visionary. I will serve my organizations’ needs. I will lead, and be accountable; I will build, not destroy. I am a force for good. Dare the odds. Be innovative. Stand up. Live up. From this point on, DeBorah expects to display the characteristics of a transformational leader. Transformational leaders are flexible in their style to get employees and followers to engage in reaching goals, and increasing performance to a higher level.
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