Leadership Development Plan

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Leadership Development Plan

Introduction

Leadership Development Plan (LDP) is a tool used by the individuals to carry out their self-assessment exercise and identify the areas which need to be enhanced and improved (Northouse, 123). It is a vital instrument for effective career development because it acts as a guiding tool for getting engaged in activities which will assist a person in thriving in the career. Moreover, it provides guidance on availing the opportunities and handling the challenges for creating a satisfied and thriving career (Bennis and Joan, 24; Yukl, 36).

Self-assessment

Almost all the organizations throughout the world are looking for competent pool of employees as it is believed to be the source of competitive advantage for them (Hickman, 71). In addition to the job specific skills, it is imperative to develop the managerial and leadership skills. Due to globalization and heightened competition, all prospective employees are required to develop effective capabilities of managerial and leader levels.

Since self-assessment is the first phase of the LDP, it is crucial that the right tools are used for assessing the personality and behavior patterns. With the help of these techniques, individuals can make sure that they identify their strengths and weaknesses and carry out necessary initiatives for capitalizing on the requirements of the corporate world.

Myers Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI)

One of the most effective framework developed for evaluating the competencies of an individual is MBTI which was developed by Isabel Meyers and Katherine Briggs. The main idea behind this inventory model is that everyone needs to appreciate the individual differences and look for developmental opportunities so that the skills are further polished and refined. Considering the matrix developed by the experts, there are four sets of preferences of individuals which are as follows:

  1. Extroversion (E) – Introversion (I): Energy Flow also known as ‘Favorite world’ is the attitude developed for undertaking the desired activities.
  2. Sensing (S) – Intuitive (N): Perceiving Function or process used for information purposes.
  3. Thinking (T) – Feeling (F): Judging process or function employed for making strategic decisions.
  4. Judging (J) – Perceiving (P): Outer world perception or structure is developed for creating an attitude for interacting with others.

According to the developers, there are sixteen classes in which people’s personalities can fall. I believe that I belong to the class ‘ESFJ’ which means that I have high extroversion, sensing, feeling and judging capabilities. I believe that this reading is true to a great extent as I am friendly and outgoing person. I can easily express my feelings and make sure that people around me have a good time to cherish. Moreover, I make decisions on the basis of feelings which means that the decisions are already made either by my traditions, culture or engrained perceptions.

Moreover, I have the ability of leading people as I am aware of the techniques of inducing others to motivate towards achieving the desired objectives. In various life situations, I get a bit hard with myself. There is a gap between my own perceived performance and my ideal behavior and due to this discrepancy I struggle against the feeling of guilt and depression. Sometimes, I get overwhelmed with these feelings and I end up in moments of emotional pain.

I try to motivate myself by showing the brighter side of various aspects of my life such as my kind, unselfish and charitable nature. I am always ready to help people out and that is why I enjoy the feeling of being dominant on others. Since I am a judging person, my feeling aptitude forms my dominant aspect which is my personality’s extraverted side and on its basis most of my decisions and judgments are made. Furthermore, my perceptive side is enhanced through the knowledge acquired about the world from my sensory abilities which is my auxiliary process. Thus, sensing is my introvert side which rules my unconscious mind.

Also, I have belief that I have two temperaments i.e. experiencers and conceptualizers. As an experience, I try to accept the challenging aspects of life and try to respond to them in an optimistic way. Likewise, I have conceptualizing temperament because I am keen about learning new things, acquiring unique and competent knowledge and set the highest standards. Since I am looking forward to challenging situations, I have the ability of guiding others and keeping them motivated towards solving a dilemma encountered.

For instance, in one of our major projects, one out of four group members had to go for an emergency leave. Being the leader, I took the matters in my hand and told everyone that the report will be completed on time by setting realistic targets and inspired my group members to raise their morale so that the project deadline was effectively met.

As a person, I am a strict follower of rules and regulations and make sure that all legalists are adequately implemented. However, I have difficulty in managing time because I lack the expertise of efficient planning and organization. Although I have clarity about the work which has to be done but due to my laid back attitude I tend to miss the deadlines. I have realized that I have excellent interpersonal skills but I lack effective verbal skills. I need to develop self-confidence in my personality so that I can clearly communicate my points and get my work done in highly professional and spectacular manner.

On the other hand, I possess extraordinary writing skills which has provided me ample opportunities for writing in scholarly journals. Even my ideas are appreciated by my teachers and colleagues when they are explained in written reports. Thus, I have to enhance my oral communication so that I can deliver inspiring speeches for my team members and subordinates in the future. As my judgments are based on subjective facts, I have to work on analyzing the situations from both perspectives i.e. sensing and thinking so that objective aspects are considered simultaneously.

Self-leadership

According to Schoemaker, Steve and Samantha, a strategic leader is one who possesses six chief skills i.e. anticipates future challenges and opportunities, challenges the issue form a wide array of options, interprets the information from various sources, aligns the interests of various stakeholders, makes decision on realistic grounds and learns from environment and experiences (134).

In the article, the authors have given a questionnaire to carry out the self-assessment initiative. My analysis shows that I already possess three skills i.e. challenge, align and learn. As I have mentioned in my MBIT test that I accept the dilemmas in positive way and look at them as learning opportunities, it is evident that I have the ability of evaluating the problems from various angles and look for a wide range of practical solutions. Furthermore, these challenges enhance my knowledge which adds value to my learning base. Since I have the aptitude of leading teams, I believe that I can align the interests of each stakeholder in proficient manner.

However, I need to work on other three requirements of becoming a strategic leader i.e. anticipate, decide and interpret. Since I make most of the decisions on the basis of my own judgments and senses as depicted from MBIT model, I have to acquire the expertise of evaluating the matter from 360 degree so that no aspect is overlooked. Likewise, I have to change my interpretation behavior so that I can make final decisions in strategic way.

Conflict Management Style

Whenever any conflict or argument arises, I try to resolve them in transparent and negotiated manner so that everyone remains satisfied and contended. It is better that conflicts are dealt rather than ignored so that the problems are resolved on preliminary stages. Besides, solving the issues by conversation is the best solution because fighting or violating the policies will be harmful for both people and organizations. However, I need to develop good conflict resolution such as negotiation skills so that I can convince people to solve the matter at hand.

External Feedback

In the Appendix I, I have attached my Skillscope assessment sheet and I have found it to be my true representative of my personality. Surprisingly, I have found a lot of similarity in the self-assessment analysis and skillscope assessment. The key strengths and weaknesses identified by both evaluations are as follows:

Strengths

  • Excellent problem identification skills
  • Profound written communication skills
  • Take decisions proactively and follow up the actions
  • Ability of suggesting innovative ideas
  • Proficient team working, motivating and organizational skills
  • Effective conflict confrontation ability
  • Able of understanding other people’s feelings
  • Can provide guidance to people and motivates them to give their best efforts
  • Competence of inspiring others along with effective delegation
  • Admirable listening skills, open to criticism and collaborate effectively
  • Ambitious, high level of energy and goal directed
  • Accept complete responsibility
  • Ability of handling the stresses with optimistic viewpoint and high level of integrity and effective work-life balance
  • Effective job done with wide scope and a good general manager with superior financial and presentation analytical skills
  • Capitalize on strengths and well-aware of personal expertise and competencies

Weaknesses

  • Lack proper data interpretation competence
  • Unable to clearly communicate ideas during meetings and discussion
  • Decisions are based on judgments and not on real facts
  • Afraid of taking risks on own or initiating something innovative
  • Inefficient management of time and inability to effectively get the work done before the deadline
  • Need of developing negotiating skills for clarifying the points
  • Relationships with supervisor, peers and others is weak
  • Lack ability of attracting people and cannot induce them to undertake challenging tasks
  • Incompetent ability of persuading others and low connection with people
  • Absence of participative style of management and scarcity of meeting expertise
  • Need to develop good initiative taking skills
  • Inability to manage time
  • Unable to control emotions during stressful periods and doesn’t try to hide the mistakes as it is considered an opportunity for learning
  • Dearth of professional expertise and not willing to acquire new job related knowledge
  • Weaknesses have to be self-managed

Summary

After careful analysis of the personal attributes and getting feedback from external sources, I have realized that following are the five main areas for leadership development:

  1. Oral communication skills – It will assist me in carrying out effective meetings and communicating my viewpoints with clarity and proficiency.
  2. Anticipating challenges – I have to learn the skills for assessing the external environment so that new opportunities can be identified and availed.
  3. Interpreting information by employing various tools – Information has to be analyzed with integrity and objectivity so that decisions are made appropriately.
  4. Interpersonal relationship development – It is imperative to develop cordial relations with everyone in the surrounding so that the desired objectives are successfully attained.
  5. Organizing and time management – In order to develop a flourishing career, it is crucial to organize the things and manage time efficiently so that productivity level is enhanced.

Action Plan

Developmental Objective

Developmental Activities

Resources / Support

Time Line

Potential Obstacles

Evidence of progress

To develop competent oral communication skills for persuading everyone in the team to attain goals effectively

  • Attending seminars and workshops on verbal communication
  • Getting enrolled in online verbal communication program
  • Computer/ laptop
  • Industry expert
  • Books on enhancing oral communication

March 2014-May 2014

Cost and time duration

Feedback from teacher and colleagues

To anticipate challenges of the professional world

  • Seek help from teacher about valuable sources of information
  • Get training from colleagues who have expertise in this field
  • Experienced mentor
  • Supportive colleague

May 2014-July 2014

Refusal from teacher and colleague to provide required assistance.

Carry out self-assessment and monitor the ability of identifying challenges beforehand.

To make decisions by efficiently gathering and interpreting information

  • Take a course for excelling in extraordinary interpreting capabilities
  • Avail the development program offered by a well-known industry expert
  • Access to sources for understanding the techniques used in data interpretation
  • Reference from some strong contact for seeking assistance from professional

March 2014-May 2014

Time constraint, cancellation of the program and unavailability of the professional

Get feedback from the industry expert and colleagues

To create cordial interpersonal relationships for achieving group targets

  • Avail the mentoring service of a teacher
  • Develop self-confidence by attending a workshop on communication skills
  • Teacher’s time
  • Access to resources for enhancing communication competencies

May 2014-June 2014

Teacher’s unwilling attitude and lack of willpower to develop confidence

Monitor the progress by seeking feedback from colleagues and doing self-assessment

To acquire time management and organization skills for performing work with accuracy

  • Attend seminars to gain insight about these aspects
  • Make changes in personal lifestyles
  • Tutorials and sample plans for managing time
  • Layout of tentative work schedules to synchronize things

April 2014-May 2014

Inability to manage time efficiently

Doing self-assessment and evaluating the progression of time management activities

Conclusion

In order to be assured that all mandatory leadership competencies are engrained in the personality, I have identified the areas of improvement and I have developed LDP to carry out the required tasks. I will employ my best efforts to polish my competencies and make sure that I am competent and make productive contribution in the organization.

Works Cited

Bennis, Warren and Joan Goldsmith. Learning to lead: A workbook on becoming a leader. 4th ed. USA: Basic Books, 2010. Print.

Hickman, Gill R. Leading organizations: Perspectives for a new era. London: SAGE Publications Ltd. 2009. Print.

Northouse, Peter G. Leadership: Theory and Practice. 6th ed. London: SAGE Publications Ltd., 2012. Print.

Schoemaker, Paul J.H., Steve Krupp and Samantha Howland. “Strategic Leadership: The Essential Skills.” Harvard Business Review January-February (2013): 131-134. Print.

Yukl, Gary A. Leadership in Organizations. 8th ed. USA: Prentice Hall, 2012. Print.

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