Reflection piece on
As part of this critical reflection assignment, it is a requirement
that I reflect on my own experience as a Leader where I have demonstrated a
high level of emotional intelligence. It is also a requirement to use the
theory to demonstrate my learning’s.
I was a Human Resources Manager for a Mining organisation,
supervising four staff members at various locations within Queensland, my goal
was to oversee and ensure that all contract employees were processed in a
timely manner, for example, inducted, reference checked, accommodation booked
and cleared for medicals before entering a mining site, all data was required
to be updated in the company’s data base. Furthermore all letters of offers
were to be cited for my approval.
I found it difficult to manage one of my staff members’s who
was habitually taking time off or not turning up for work, this was proving to be
detrimental in the organisations ability to function, and furthermore her
absence was notably having an adverse impact amongst the other team’s members,
this was creating animosity, this in turn was placing a tremendous amount of
pressure on me.
I was able to exhibit
and maintain self awareness, (Goleman, 2009) by organising a team meeting to consult and
update the team on their accomplishments and reinforce the organisations goals.
During the team meeting,
members were encouraged to participate, be proactive and articulate a vision
for the organisation. Effective teamwork
is critical for success and teamwork starts with team players (Parker, 2011). The team were enthusiastic
as this involved them in decision making. They were informed during the team meeting that
I would be having a one on one informal catch up, which provided me with an
opportunity to discuss my concerns with the staff member’s absenteeism.
As the meeting concluded, I observed that the team were
motivated and empowered, this concept of Leadership connotation was amicable with Transformational
Leadership Theory (Burns, 2012), which in
turn lead on to positive outcomes associated with intrinsic motivation (Brown et al., 2015), furthermore this enabled the
team member to feel at ease and upfront when faced with the situation of
I chose to approach The
Transformational style of Leadership based on the discussion with the team
member after I was provided with a considerable amount of information together
with an explanation. In conclusion of our meeting, I drew her to the attention
that she was a valuable member of the team, furthermore I enabled to provide
her with an opportunity to enhance her performance and initiate a vision that
aligned with the organisations goals, by referring her to an agency to support
her, by doing so I wanted to create a positive change, furthermore enable to
create a culture of trust and respect. This created synergism amongst the team;
as a result of great performance, we reached our organisation’s goal, with
everyone being on board, harmony was created within the team.
Having empathy and social skills as a Leader is paramount,
by delegating more responsibility within the team, provided an opportunity of
ownership, growth and accountability.
I was a Recruitment Manager for a labour hire company,
overseeing four staff members. My goal was to develop and manage strategies,
lead the team and report on their performance. Oversee that all labour hire
employees paperwork was entered and updated in the database. Manage major
shutdowns, furthermore to monitor costs, as well as contribute to
organisational growth, by seeking out new opportunities.
I found it arduous in managing one of my employees who was
demonstrating unsatisfactory performance, for example, arriving late for work
on a regular basis, leaving early, making personal phone calls and not
following up on customer’s requests for labour hire therefore not filling in
orders or following my instructions. Even though she had just returned back to
work after maternity leave, I felt that was no excuse and seemed unfair that
the rest of the team was left to complete her work, I felt that everyone was
required to pull their weight to reach the organisations targets.
Due to increased work pressure, I found that I was becoming
irritated, frustrated and showing a dark side personality trait of scepticism, (Hogan, 2004), towards the staff member for example I was
constantly checking and questioning work that had not been completed, she was observed
demonstrating no motivation, ultimately this type of behaviour was interfering
with my ability to maintain the team’s performance within the organisation (Tilin), furthermore, I
felt she was enticing me and thereby attempting
to cause instability within the team (Kellerman, 2004).
I assessed the situation before deciding which leadership
behaviour would be the most effective to approach the team member; I came to
the conclusion that Directive Leadership style (House, 1971), in this instance would be best, I felt I needed
to set firm boundaries, clarify how the work that she did connected with the
other team members, remind the team member of the organisations targets that
were expected to be met quarterly, I explained that an organised a daily work
schedule would be maintained, in addition mandatory meetings once a week to monitor their performance.
The impact of this style of leadership was used on this
particular team member as there was a sense of urgency, the team were showing
signs of stress at the possibility of not meeting their targets; eventually the
team member left the organisation; however the team members expressed their relief
as we had an opportunity to employ another team member and meet the
organisations quarterly target.
I believe that my Leadership styles played a crucial role in
both examples in the team’s development in meeting their goals which I had demonstrated
through solving problems that arose, delegating and creating harmony together
forming a positive relationship between leader and followers.
These examples also identified and areas where I required
further personal development, for example on reflection, I could have managed
the team member in example two by being more understanding and empathetic for
example she had come back from maternity leave and was not coping emotionally.
Leadership and Motivation
In this part of my assignment I am required to reflect my leadership
style in motivation, identify a strategy where I demonstrated motivation as a
Leader to staff that was successful.
There is an old 12th Century English proverb, you can
lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink – the horse will only drink water if it is
thirsty – this is the case when you are dealing with human behaviour, unless
staff are motivated in some way to reach targets or goals, they will simply not
do it. I believe that to motivate or be motivated is a skill that can be
learnt, for any organisation to reach its targets or goals.
I am currently employed as an Advisor in a non for profit
organisation; my goal is to target
early intervention by assisting parents who are at risk of long-term welfare
dependency, identify their education and employment related career pathways and
to participate in activities that help them achieve them. Connect parents to
local community services that are able to address their barriers to employment;
furthermore I am required to interpret The Parents Next Deed and Guidelines, monitor
service delivery and performance reporting on Key Performance Indicators as
well as drafting management and Departmental reports as required.
We were in the process of applying for another
round of funding for the Parents Next Tender, as I was collating data to
present to the Regional Manager, it came to my attention the team had not met
one of the stipulated KPI’S in the Deed, namely using the Work STAR system, this
was a tool to measure outcomes for our participants, which involves
participants to complete a survey with their case manager face to face, which
once completed, required to be updated in the Departments portal. I observed
the data and ascertained we were far behind in comparison to the all other
providers nationally, this was a serious concern furthermore it was going to
prove to be a challenge for the team to attempt to achieve. We were already
overwhelmed with appointments, meetings and other events, how could we possibly
see any more participants, how were we going to accomplish this goal due to time
constraints? As a leader I felt that to
succeed in achieving this goal, attitude was everything (Meyer, 2003).
By utilizing my Transformational Leadership
style I called a team meeting to address this task, in an attempt to develop a
strategy to motivate, inspire and encourage (Bass, 1985) my staff
to complete the STAR’s quickly and efficiently furthermore to obtain the
desired outcome to achieve this goal.
At the meeting, I outlined what the situation
was to the team, organised the steps required to accomplish this in a timely
manner specifically to be, being mindful not to impact or contribute further
undue stress on the team members.
By adopting the goal setting theory, (Locke & Latham,
2013) firstly I
needed to obtain the team’s acceptance, acknowledge and to participate, collaboratively
we all needed to be involved to focus on how we were going to achieve this. For
example, we identified that 180 Work STAR’S where required to ensure our KPI
was accumulated, by doing this I informed the team that the best way to manage
this as we were time poor was to firstly divide the stars equally, even though
my work load was heavier, as a leader I needed to set an example, the second was
to contact the participants by phoning them instead of setting up an
appointment for them to come in and see their case manager. My strategy behind
this was that by approaching the goal in this way meant it would be achievable,
furthermore based on past data, there
was evidence of participants not turning up for their appointments, we could not risk this, invariably participants
normally answered their phones when we contacted them to arrange further
appointments or activities.
This seemed the logical thing to do;
it was not an ideal situation, nevertheless by adopting this strategy, would
mean we would meet the KPI’s required by the department within the
timeframe. This meant that we needed to
juggle our appointments to fit these telephone conversations in with our daily
calendar. I acknowledged that it was going to take an incredible amount of
effort for everyone and I would provide them with feedback on a daily basis on
To ensure the team remained motivated throughout
(Bandura, 1986), this task, I advised that on completion and
in recognition of all their hard work, we would all go out and celebrate at the
Then impact using the goal setting theory
strategy for motivating staff was effective in this instance for example, by identifying
the need, the team were provided with a clear achievable goal they could easily
attain, the task was broken up in chunks over a period of a week, to make it
work they showed commitment from the start in realising the importance it was
to meet our KPI’s.
My learning experience from this was
in order to motivate teams, goals should be SMART (specific, measurable, aggressive
and attainable and time bound). Feedback is paramount, as the team were able to
track their positive changes that they were making daily. Practicing by keeping
communication open and transparent, I believe that goal setting is a skill that
can be learnt over time.