To be honest, this assignment has had me overthrowing about what type of leader I am, which Is why I had to take two tests, and both resulted In evidencing, according to my attitudes and thoughts, a participative leadership style; it is a description with which I completely agree. When I come to think about it, most of the times I accept input from my team members when I am designated as team-leader, since I am convinced that all the group members have to get involved in the decision making ND problem solving processes, with the leader’s guidance.
I recognize my strengths and weaknesses; I have expertise In some areas, and not so much In certain other subjects, which Is why I favor group members’ participation when dealing with most of the topics. Though I like to hear what others have to say, and believe that when group members feel involved and are allowed to participate they feel more identified with a cause, I tend to keep the right to have the final say or decision whenever I am leading a meeting or project, yet considering their points of view. Empowered team embers are more likely to lead to a successful goal or project.
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Participative leadership tends to be successful when dealing with people who have expertise In areas related to the specific goal we are pursuing, and once they understand their role in the group, they interior it and act driven by this specific role. In these cases, my role as leader is almost reduced to a guidance task, which allows me to learn from other team members. By encouraging participation from people who have certain degree of knowledge or expertise, they will feel comfortable and positive regarding heir leader, and will be able to perform successfully even when the leader Is not present.
On the contrary, my leadership style might fail when group members lack knowledge on certain topics related to the goals we are seeking in a determined exercise or project. There are some cases In which an experienced leader needs to impart knowledge to Its team members and make decisions based on his/her own experience, and count with other group members to pursue a predefined goal, yet their opinion is not required nor desired. I was raised as an only child, which means I ever had people to “dominate” or lead at home.
I developed my style at school, where we were taught to work in teams, and for each activity, depending on the subject (math, science, sports, music, art), there would be a different leader based on each children’s abilities and skills. Because of this situation In which each time someone different was leading the group, I gained respect for what others thought and knew, and gained interest in learning from more experienced people in subjects in which I did not have a strong know-how. I also enjoyed when others expressed heir gratitude for something they learned from me.
I used to lead basketball teams during Physical Education classes, since I belonged to the school’s team for this sport. I liked to involve less experienced players more frequently than more-skilled players, so they could develop new ablest. On the contrary, when we were In Art class, I manual skills and needed to be guided constantly. Basically, my leadership style has been influenced by my parents, who have always permitted me to raise questions when I do not understand or agree with something, allowing me to participate in mom decisions that have been made at our household.
Moreover, teachers at school also played an important role, by allowing people with different skills to form diverse teams, always being counseled or lead by the most experienced one of us in each subject. As I grew up, my colleagues at work, as well as the four bosses I have had, have allowed me to explore new areas of knowledge and have invited me to participate in different committees where a more Senior professional leads the meeting, and every participant can raise their voice.
Throughout the years, I have evolved to learn that a leader who has no support team, cannot lead any initiative, since we all have to recognize that even though we might have stronger skills or knowledge than other group members, we need from them to succeed. I used to conceive leaders as “know-it-alls” and I used to believe that they had to have the final word, taking little into account what other members had to say. However, as I have lived more experiences, I now recognize that a leader needs a team who believes in him, to help him to stay focused and lift him from the floor when he thinks he is bout to fall.
I have also evolved to become a more balanced person, by understanding that a professional goal has to be accompanied by a personal goal, and viscera. For instance, my professional goal is to reach a point in my career, where I have saved enough money to build my own business that will allow me not only to gain an income, but also to have spare time to share with my family. As a participative leader I still have a long path to travel, and hopefully I will complement this style with other ones, according to the different situations I will face in life.