In the essay I intend to describe a great leader I admire for his leadership qualities and achievements and analyze my own leadership style. Great leaders are able to accomplish tremendous goals through their guidance and examples. Through their leadership qualities great leaders are able to influence their groups and subordinates in order to ensure goals are met. Effective leaders are able to adapt to difficult situations and improve the situation to allow for a successful outcome.
The leader I admire is Martin Luther King Jr. Dr. King is considered a transformational leader because he motivated his followers through specific ideals and morals to accomplish tasks. Additionally, his transformational leadership style was effective to empower his followers who also believed in the vision. Dr. King was a very inspirational individual and was able to share his vision of equality with his followers through shared beliefs and ideas. His vision for equality was so powerful and such a created a strong case for the change he risked his life every day. Unfortunately, Mr. King lost his life in relation to his movement for change and is a true example of a transformational leader who paid the ultimate price for his beliefs and inspiring his followers.
Martin Luther King Jr.’s transformational leadership style influenced his followers through his inspirational vision, speeches, and actions. I admire Martin Luther King Jr. because he was truly a leader who inspired his followers and believed deeply in the cause. As a transformational leader, Dr. King has the following qualities and characteristics: charismatic role model, provided & believed in a meaningful cause, set high standards, high intellectual & educational characteristics, and compassion (Pachamama Alliance, 2015). The famous speech, “I have a Dream, is a memorable and famous speech known world-wide. This speech shows his charisma and inspiring power to lead people and believe in his vision. Martin Luther King is a role model for future leaders and is a great example of a transformational leader.
I identify my leadership style as transformational. I feel I am a transformational leader because when I have a vision for the work to be done or the goals to accomplish; I try to motivate and inspire my subordinates or group members through the value inherit in the vision. I try to motivate the group through inspirational practices of believing in the end goal and the process for accomplishing the goal. Also as a transformational leader I convey my feelings about the tasks or project to my group so the group members can see how invested I am in ensuring success. I believe that by sharing my feelings it will show the other persons involved a part of my personality which they can trust and follow because they know how I feel about the desired outcome.
I’ve worked with my mentor to identify my leadership characteristics. The leadership characteristics we’ve identified for me include the following: role model (set an example), intellectual, transformational, personable, and inspirational. Working with my mentor on this exercise was very enlightening for me and helped me to learn more about myself as a leader. My mentor and I discussed leadership practices, styles, and examples of great leaders. During this discussion I answered several questions about how I would handle particular leadership scenarios which is how we developed the list of leadership characteristics. My mentor also feels that I have a transformational leadership style.
By learning more about my leadership style and the leadership style of Martin Luther King Jr. I found there are several areas I can work on improving. The first area I need to work on improving is patience. While I am very personable and convey my feelings, I can sometimes lack enough patience when working with subordinates and fellow group members. Working with my mentor we found I can have the tendency to make assumptions about my subordinates skill set or knowledge level and then become impatient when they are not performing to the level I was expecting. Another area we discussed I can improve is making more timely decisions. Recently I learned in my DISC assessment that I am the Cautious type and am very guarded and slow to act. It’s not that I’m not capable of making decisions quickly I just prefer to analyze and investigate the facts before making decisions. While my Cautious type is good in some situations, it can lead to delays in others. I learned I need to identify the decision making facts more quickly and focus on those.
To become a more effective leader I plan to continue learning more about leadership styles and learn more about my own leadership skills. Working with my mentor was very helpful because I learned a lot about my strengths and weaknesses related to my daily work. Also I learned about areas of improvement and why it is important to continue developing my leadership skills. Learning about Martin Luther King’s leadership style was very inspirational because of the leadership skills he possessed and his ability to inspire others. Dr. King was also a transformational leader and has many skills I would like to develop in my own leadership style by learning more about leadership.
Continuing to develop my leadership skills is important and by working with my mentor and learning about examples of great leaders will identify opportunities for improving my effectiveness as a leader. I have learned more about my own leadership style and my strengths and weaknesses. To improve my effectiveness I plan to work on being more patient with my subordinates and group members, and work on making decisions in a timelier manner. Learning about leadership effectiveness is very informational and will help me in the long run to become a more effective leader.
- Goldsmith, M. (2009). How to Increase Your Leadership Effectiveness – Businessweek. Retrieved from http://www.businessweek.com/managing/content/nov2009/ca20091110_945940.htm
- Pachamama Alliance. (2015). Transformational Leadership | Pachamama Alliance. Retrieved from http://www.pachamama.org/transformational-leadership