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This week I decided to re-centre my journals. I decided that I didn’t really know Daudelin’s (who is a lady I now know) work well enough and I had a loose interpretation of what she was really trying to say. So, I reread her piece and I realised just how central her analysis is to what we create in this paper. I found I could relate to her thoughts on group reflection as well as individual reflection as my group went through many of these steps when deciphering which strategy we would implement and endeavor to achieve (Daudelin, 1996).

 

In Kelley’s (1988) interpretation of leaders and followers we had no differing opinions. I agree entirely with his point that “in searching so zealously for better leaders we tend to lose sight of the people these leaders will lead” and “how well their leaders lead, but partly also on the basis of how well their followers follow”. I think this sheds light on an essence that is easily forgotten in day-to-day business; that managers can’t manage that well without great teams. So, they have the opportunity to make or break, so to speak, their teams. “Bosses are not necessarily good leaders; subordinates are not necessarily effective followers.” Successful leaders shouldn’t assume their followers have no common sense or experience, but many poor managers seem to. Inversely, a follower should not assume their leader will be a poor leader and in turn become a poor follower.

 

I believe that leaders and followers can be one or the other under different circumstances. In some teams, the dynamic may seem an appropriate one to exist as a follower and adopt that role by allowing a more dominant figure to delegate and exert authority. However, in another team assuming a role of leadership may be what you think is most appropriate for the dynamic of that team. So I think, we are not one of, but have the potential to be both a leader and or a follower depending on the circumstances.

 

Motivation is driven by achievement (social motives), affiliation and power as outlined by David McClelland (Sprier, Fontaine & Malloy, 2006). I agree with this and I think that everyone does have these qualities in them, whether they aggressively exhibit them or not. The six styles of leadership are accurate in my opinion, however I think that leaders can have one of these as their initial personality or goal leadership style, but may end up failing to meet the criteria and becoming a negative version. For example, affiliative leaders who desire to have harmony and sound relationships may be seen to only be creating these for increases in productivity. They may then have created bad relationships unknowingly that are based on deceptiveness.

 

Overall, I think there are quite obviously some very poor leaders, and some leaders regarded as the best by their teams. I think personally, a lot of this is in the inherent nature of the leader themself and boils down to their qualities and attributes. Leading and being truthful to themselves will mean they are a consistent leader.


References

Daudelin, M. W. (1996). Learning from experience through reflection. Organizational Dynamics, 24(3), 36-48

Kelley, R. E. (1988). In praise of followers.Harvard Business Review, 66(6), 142—148

Spreier, S. W., Fontaine, M. H., & Malloy, R. L. (2006). Leadership run amok. Harvard Business Review, 84(6), 72--82

 

4 Comments

  1. Please fee free to correct anything I write below as I am also trying to improve my feedback skills as I progress and any feedback from you about what I wrote would be awesome.

    From what I have read, you have incorporated a few ideas in to your journal - i.e. stages of reflection, your interpretation of leadership and followership and the six styles of leadership too. However, I do recommend that you pin-point a specific topic and elaborate on it further for some in-depth writing (something I also need to work on). 

    The introduction was very interesting to me as you have clearly satisfied the criteria for these journals which is to continually reflect upon the knowledge you are acquiring. I like how you write honestly about your "loose interpretation" of Daudelin's readings. Perhaps, to strengthen your understanding of 'reflection' you could go through each stage, describe what it means to you and then provide linked examples. This shows that you are actively engaging in this "Reflection" process.

    It is nice that you have added how you feel about Kelley's writing ("no differing opinions") but I can't help but notice the very frequent use of direct quotes from the text. To achieve greater clarity and to boost understanding (if needed), you could paraphrase Kelley's words. This could possibly bring about new ideas and opinions.

    Highlight of the writing, in my opinion, was the third paragraph. You write about what "you believe" and about what "you think". Words that prompt 'refection'. For future writing, you could expand on this more because expanding your personal thoughts and complementing it with theory is better than expanding on theory and complementing with a little bit of personal experience (it pays to check this with Peter - because this is purely an opinion).

    Some questions I may ask include: How does this matter to your future as a professional in the workplace? (Specific examples). Do you think knowing this information and theory is actually relevant to your learning? You say the six styles of leadership are accurate in your opinion - what is so "Accurate" about them? Is it accurate in both writing and practice?

    I hope this helps. I really enjoy the points you write about and would love to see them developed. I hope your understanding of Daudelin improves as I think it is a very helpful tool. Overall, you had a clear structure and logical explanations. Thank you for the read and all the best for the rest!

    1. Thanks for the constructive feedback! (smile)

  2. The above reviewer touched on many points that I agree with, so follow this advice.  

    One differing point that I have is that incorporating a few ideas (to me) is not a weakness but may be a strength: provided that you can integrate your understandings to show how all of these thoughts come together. This would help you to reach Bloom's higher levels of learning if you could blend your points more instead of having three stand alone points. I think the most successful way to do this is to join the points by having a story of your personal group experience running through. I couldn't help but feel that this entry was more a list of quick points that you took for each reading and then followed by your own opinion of the authors assumptions. The most interesting and effective journals combine understandings drawn from the readings and use real experiences provided by the course teams to show that they can really apply what they have read. It sounded like you were about to do this at the end of the first paragraph: as though you were about to say how your team went about coming up with a strategy- I would have like to hear about that process.  

    1. Thanks for the helpful feedback! (smile)