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How to be an effective leader

2018-12-07 来源: 51due教员组 类别: Paper范文

下面为大家整理一篇优秀的paper代写范文- How to be an effective leader,供大家参考学习,这篇论文讨论了如何成为一个有效的领导者。领导责任中最重要和最困难的是领导变革。虽然特质理论并没有提出如何成为一个领导者,但是变革管理模型提供了更多关于有效领导的实用见解。在当今充满活力的商业世界中,成功的领导者非常需要识别、管理和发起变革的能力。

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Executive Summary

Leadership are often referred as a kind of skill in the business world which can be learned through theories and models as well as experiences, while others hold that leadership is some trait that is born within leaders that cannot be learned through practicing. The branding and positioning of the well-known Harvard Business School claims to “educate leaders who make a difference in the world.” The University of Michigan’s Ross School even has a better vision statement, developing “leaders who make a positive difference in the world” (McDonald, 2015). It’s not hard to see that highly ranked business schools stand that leadership can be taught and practiced. So, does theories of leadership provide practical advice on how to be an effective leader? This statement will be further analyzed through analysis of multiple leadership theories and models including the Trait Theory, Change Management Model, Servant Leadership Theory, the Dynamic Organization Model, and Strategic Management Model.

The Trait Theory

The most researched area of leadership is the traits approach, and personality traits are considered to be especially relevant to successful leadership (Yukl, 2001). Within the past years, people’s view on leadership has changed dramatically. The trait theory, one of the first sets of leadership theories, suggests that personality and social factors separate leaders from non-leaders and influence leader effectiveness (Colbert et al, 2012). The traits that considered form leadership include energy, ambition, self-confidence, honesty and integrity. This trait theory was dominated the initial decades of researches and studies of leadership. However, as no clear evidence can show the cause and effect relationship between traits and leadership, limitations exist to this theory, and the trait theory provides no practical advice on how to be an effective leader.

Change Management Model

One of the most important and difficult leadership responsibilities is leading change (Yukl, 2001). While the trait theory does not suggest how to become a leader, the change management model provides more practical insights on effective leadership. Under the dynamic business world nowadays, ability to identify, manage, and initiate changes are greatly needed for successful leaders. Leading change can help an organization identify the issues they need to address as well as the steps they can take on to improve performance (Hayes, 2014). According to Hayes, leaders can learn to be more effective if they are able to step back and analyze the situation happened in the past. The experience in situation analysis, where they pay attention to what are the specific conditions and how others make a change and how their decisions impact the long-term outcome help leaders improve their effective leadership performance. To be more specific, more detailed steps suggesting the ways to practically improve leadership effectiveness start from recognizing the need for change and starting the change process, to formulating vision according to a preferred future state, to setting plans and implementing plans, to sustaining the changes, and finally leading and managing the people issues and constantly learning through changing.

To ensure a successful change implemented, communication is key for leaders to take into consideration throughout the process. Failure of leaders to leverage communication in change management model could result in bad timing of implementation of change and quality of collective learning. As a result, a lean communication network provides practical advice for leaders to manage changes more effectively. The four features constitute an effective communication network include directionality, role, content, and channel. First, effective communication for change management requires leaders to formulate an upward communication stream, which means that leaders should be able to gather the information from every lower department within an organization in order to develop a practical change program. Second, the organizational structure plays an important role in forming a successful communication network. People communicate specific things to different people in the organization, and as a leader, being able to form a organizational structure that enable you to hear from multiple channels help you become a more effective leader. Third, determining and balancing the importance of the content from all kinds of sources is another advice for leaders to consider and practice. Lastly, it is also important to select the most appropriate set of channels where you can receive information that fit your purpose.

As a practical example, Galaxy, a German manufacturing company, implemented a change program which launches a large scale of change of its manufacturing facilities from Germany to China. This new change will lead to a loss of 12,000 jobs. The reason that the company decide on this change is that they analyzed and found that that the savings of operation costs would outweigh the added cost of moving. However, though it is an effective strategy which is beneficial for the growth of the company, communication to internal stakeholders should also be place great consideration on. Before the closure of the plants, the leaders should formulate a communication plan to acknowledge the change plan and the reason behind the change, as well as listen to points of appeal from all channels within the organization and provide compensation and benefits accordingly and inform the internal stakeholders the final decisions made.

Servant Leadership Theory

With more attention paid to corporate social responsibility and ethical behavior, servant leadership acts in contradiction to traditional management exercising power from the “top of the pyramid”, and brings in more accountability and consideration for the needs and well-being of others. The short-term and personal bonus oriented benefits as well as the asymmetric distribution of power have given away to a more long-term focus with consideration of corporate social responsibility and a leadership which followers seek leaders to embrace them as whole individuals (Dierendonck et al, 2010).

The Servant Leadership theory provides practical advice on how to be an effective leader in the more ethical and socially responsible society. Findings from the research shows that the source of a servant leader’s influential power is not based on their personality, competency, or hierarchical position, but arise from spiritual dimension. Leaders under servant leadership principles consider themselves as “steward”, and consider their followers as people who have been entrusted to them with the potential to fulfill their better selves. Following servant leadership, there will be more followers who respond to the leaders since they have proven themselves trustworthy as servants. Instead of being at the top of the pyramid and teach others, if leaders are able to step into the shoes of employees in the organization, to sacrifice their own interests while seeking to empower employees, the transformational effect takes place and effectiveness can be measured by the overall development of both leaders and followers in an organization (Dierendonck et al, 2010). 

Servant leaders should also have a clear vision of who they want their followers to become. They should choose their path of leadership accordingly to their vision, and their vision and action would thus guide their followers in a way that they could develop themselves into future servant leaders. Instead of lead them in a compulsory way, servant leaders should try to accept their followers as who they are and try to lead them towards better leaders to achieve the greater good. Thus, servant leaders actually serve others in a way they can empower them to see the vision of the greater good with the attempt to model ideal behaviors. 

An example that provides more practical insights on how to be an effective leader following servant leadership can be best illustrated with the Marriott organization. Marriott is the model company in the hospitality industry in terms of empowering employees and exercising servant leadership. “Take care of your employees and they’ll take care of the guests” is the philosophy of Marriott core values. According to Tony Hewes, the senior human resources executive of Marriott, the Marriott's "Spirit to Serve" is more than a simple corporate slogan. In fact, it's the innovative vision with servant leadership that imbues the entire Marriott culture and that's driven the company's global success.

The Dynamic Organization Model

The Dynamic Organization Model provides leaders with a holistic view of an organization, a context for understanding the importance of a customer-centric strategy, and the foundation for communicating that strategy to associates, while creating pride and a shared value purpose in their work. Adopting the Dynamic Organization Model will enable leaders to gain pride in its brand using culture as a strategy, with strong focus on ethical aspect and support within the organization. Leaders or executives under the Dynamic Organization Model become united as servant leaders following servant leadership, and they seek to serve customers well while supporting and caring for internal stakeholders. The idea of Servant Leadership brings in a form of ethical leadership which focuses on the humanistic care of the followers, with a motivation of achieving workplace well-being for others instead of satisfying self-interest. The ideas should be incorporated in the moral values frameworks of senior executives through new training, guiding them towards achieving shared commitment to the company vision (Lakatos et al, 2017). As a result, the Dynamic Organization Model, along with the foundation of the main idea from servant leadership theory, provides leaders with practical advice on managing organization with focus on customer and followers, and thus enable them to manage organization effectively while caring for stakeholders and the society at the same time. Recognizing ethical and sustainability aspects in management are key defining competitive advantage that brings leaders into a higher level.

Strategic Management Model

Strategic management model helps identify and achieve company objectives. Incorporate a strategic management model utilizing a four-step process of environmental analysis, strategy formulation, strategy implementation and strategy evaluation (David, 2011). Take the Blue Ocean Strategy as an example, in order for a company to successfully implement the Blue Ocean Strategy, the leaders should go through the process from evaluating the market environment, to the strategy formulation, and then to implement and constantly evaluate the result of the strategy. The Cirque du Soleil is a great example which demonstrates the strategic management model with their blue ocean strategy. Before they start their business in the “red ocean” of the saturated circus industry, they conducted environmental analysis regarding the traditional circus industry, and thus they were able to know their advantage as compared with the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, which were the global champions of the traditional circus industry. With comparison to the current market, Cirque du Soleil was able to notice that the traditional circus industry which targets main customer as children and uses major stars has already been shrinking, and people are demanding more diverse entertainment formats, Cirque du Soleil sees an open untapped market. The Blue Ocean Strategy was then created, which is an uncontested market space that made the competition irrelevant from the saturated and declining circus industry. Implementing the strategy and launching into the market are later steps for the company, and the launch proves to be a huge success. As a result, being able to go through the Strategic management model with the four-step process provides practical advice for leaders not only to identify opportunities in the market but also to manage companies with potential strategies more effectively.

Conclusion

Although personality and traits might influence leader effectiveness, theories of leadership indeed provide practical advice on how to be an effective leader. The Change Management Model provides practical advice for leaders to identify and manage changes in the dynamic market; the Servant Leadership Theory inspires leaders to empower stakeholders and manage people in a way that they would like to develop them into future servant leaders; the Dynamic Organization Model backs up the Servant Leadership Theory and provides leaders advice on managing organizations with consideration into ethical aspect as well as corporate social responsibility, which increase leadership effectiveness in the modern society; and the Strategic Management Model helps leaders identify and achieve company objectives, and successfully implement strategies to improve their business. Merging leadership theories and models and learning about practical examples of these theories enable leaders to broaden their perspectives in leading people and managing people. Being able to extract practical knowledge from leadership theories help leaders to become more successful and effective in their leadership career.

Reference

Colbert, A.E., Judge, T.A., Choi, D. and Wang, G., 2012. Assessing the trait theory of leadership using self and observer ratings of personality: The mediating role of contributions to group success. The Leadership Quarterly, 23(4), pp.670-685.

Hayes, J., 2014. The theory and practice of change management. Palgrave Macmillan.

Van Dierendonck, D. and Patterson, K. eds., 2010. Servant leadership: Developments in theory and research. Springer.

David, F.R., 2011. Strategic management: Concepts and cases. Peaeson/Prentice Hall.

Lakatos, J., Davidson, B., & Sanney, K. 2017. Calling Wells Fargo’s CEO: Drive Widespread Cultural Change via Implementation of the Dynamic Organizational Model and Permeation of Servant Leadership throughout the Financial Institution.

Yukl, G.A., 2002. Leadership in organizations.

McDonald, D. 2015. Can You Learn to Lead? Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/12/education/edlife/12edl-12leadership.html?mcubz=2

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