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Gazing over the introductions of this week’s readings made me feel a sense of Deja-vu. My experiences from leadership programs at university and studying theory of leadership has framed my perspective on leadership in a particular way. Personally I think the topic has been over thought and developed as a way to make money. The way leadership has been branded in society makes it extremely lucrative for anyone selling leadership development in multiples industries. Therefore I feel like the topic has been developed a bit too much and as a result the topic becomes confusing. This is evident in the variation of theory presented in this week’s readings and furthermore in leadership literature.

For myself it is incredible difficult to give a concrete answer to what leadership is. I remember at the start of 1 leadership program 30 students struggled to write down in a few sentences what leadership meant to them. After 6 months of leadership development, the issue of defining leadership was still inherent.

Therefore I think leadership is something that is best "learnt on the job" instead of studying it. My experience in leadership roles has made me value being adaptable in working with different people and understanding how certain behaviour effects the vision of a team. I agreed with the importance of followers expressed by Kelley (1988). My interpretation is a leader also needs to know when to step down and follow others. It’s crucial for leaders to follow the expert who knows how to deal with certain aspects instead of the leader leading the team to failure. This will be particularly important when each team member has assigned roles and will be the expert in those areas. Therefore as CEO I will need to have trust in others expertise to motivate the team and make efficient decisions.

Coming to the end of the week I’m feeling happy about my team’s progress and achievements in MikeBikes. Having some success has made me feel more competitive, so it will be interesting to see how this develops in future rollovers. I will definitely be taking some ideas from this reflection into next week’s work.

 

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

2 Comments

  1. Hi Josh,

    An interesting perspective you have about leadership and the literature about it, one which I had not previously given any thought to. I like your take on how to be a good leader,  and agree with the points you have made. 

    However I'm left wondering if you have demonstrated that you have learnt anything this week in your journal? If you would now do something differently than you would have at the start of the week? It seems as though the readings have only strengthened the views you already had about leadership, and that your perceptions about the study of leadership have given you a closed mind while doing the readings - ultimately limiting the learning potential. You could have perhaps explored the issue of having trust in your team members as the CEO on a deeper level - relating this to the readings, and then bringing in your own perspective about what you disagree with in the readings - which will give your journal a point to focus on instead of briefly touching on a few ideas without going any further.

  2. Hi Josh, sorry for the late comment; I found myself without an internet connection until this morning. I find your take on leadership theory an interesting and critical point of view. I am similarly frustrated with the lack of a definition of leadership, and the somewhat circular reasoning academics often use to come to their definition. 

    In your third paragraph, you follow a Daudelin-like structure. However, I find your analysis to be somewhat disconnected from your 'problem'. That is, your discussion of leaders and followers doesn't really analyse your statement: 'I think leadership is something that is best "learnt on the job"'. I think this is a good 'problem' to dissect; however, you then branched off into a discussion of leaders and followers. This was also a good discussion, but like I said, it didn't really follow Daudelin's structure. Don't mistake me, it is still a good piece of writing; I am simply focusing on this because we are supposed comment on how well a learning journal follows Daudelin's structure.

    I also think you could have interwoven theory into your writing more. In doing this, you could have demonstrated your learning at the higher levels of Bloom's Taxonomy. For example, you could have illustrated your point about the topic of leadership being confusing by contrasting and evaluating two contrary statements on leadership. 

    Your writing style was clear and easy to follow, no material issues there. Overall, a quality journal.