Concrete Experience and Reflective Observation
My professional experience consists of 13 years working as a leader for the Bridgestone Aiken plant in the flagship department. I currently manage 191 employees and five supervisors, focusing on operations, personnel, and customer satisfaction. As a qualified leader, I have substantial skills and knowledge to develop and implement standard practices, process control plans, and working standards. Both task and maintenance roles are clearly explained to my employees to exactly know what they are expected to perform.
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I understand that the team structure is the basis for effective and timely goal achievement. In this connection, I use the challenging stressors that help me to stimulate people to overcome them and accomplish the stated objectives. For example, to assist them in difficult situations, I try to offer Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-Based, and Time-Sensitive (SMART) goals to each of them, paying attention to diversity issues (Colquitt, Lepine, Wesson, & Gellatly, 2015). The character traits, cultural peculiarities, skills, and competencies are considered while identifying SMART goals. In terms of power, I influence my team members by means of my competence, authority/experience, and reward, which give great results in combination.
Theories and Principles/Abstract Conceptualization
The ability of a leader to properly manage people and guide them on achieving both individual and collective goals identifies the success of a department or company. The application of various theories is critical to comprehend situations and address them using the most suitable methods. The leader’s power and diversity promotion directly impact the group productivity and cohesion since all the employees value fairness and transparency.
The leadership power theory implies five types of power, each of which pursues specific objectives in organizations. The personal power includes referent and expert types, where the first uses the skills and expertise of leaders, and the second means the desire of the team members to be associated with them (Bansal, Phatak, & Sharma, 2015). The organizational power types are a coercive, reward, and legitimate, the meaning of which can be understood by the very definition.
Group cohesion and productivity are another theory that points to integrating the team members through various means. Only connected people who work in cooperation can effectively perform their role and maintenance tasks (Jones, George, Barrett, & Honig, 2016). Among the benefits of making a group cohesive there are organizational behavior improvements, such as lower turnover rates, better job satisfaction, and consistency with the company’s expected outcomes.
The equity theory refers to the fact that employees tend to create their so-called mental ledger of benefits they receive from leaders. This theory is closely associated with diversity and inputs the group members consider while performing their jobs. More precisely, the leader should compare the inputs the organization may offer the expected benefits of employees and try to match them accordingly.
Since employees have different views and perceptions, and various situations require setting specific goals, the leadership should ensure that roles and tasks are clear to employees. Power can be used to ascertain and implement goal achievement in the organization. The attention to diversity is advantageous for leaders to understand their teams better and create group cohesion.
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Testing and Application/Active Experimentation
The first theory of leadership power reflects my experience as a leader in both long- and short-term periods. Depending on a certain stage of the development of group participation, I applied different styles. For example, at the very beginning of working with my group, it was impossible to apply expert and referent types of leadership as I was not sufficiently experienced. However, after relationships with the team were built, I changed my power to impact the employees more successfully through the mentioned approaches.
The theory about group cohesion as a way to make people feel associated with each other allowed me to increase their job satisfaction and productivity. In addition, the sense of identity that I promoted was useful to design a greater commitment to the department’s goals. As for the third theory, the application of the equity principles proved to be important to listen to the employees’ expectations and needs at the workplace. In particular, all the group participation dimensions are related to this theory since they strive to contribute to positive group behaviors (Jones et al., 2016). Subsequently, the mentioned theory was useful to provide the values employees wanted and, at the same time, ensure goal commitment, restoring the balance between them.
Bansal, A., Phatak, Y., & Sharma, R. K. (2015). Quality management practices for global excellence. New Delhi, India: Allied Publishers.
Colquitt, J., Lepine, J. A., Wesson, M. J., & Gellatly, I. R. (2015). Organizational behavior: Improving performance and commitment in the workplace (4th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill.
Jones, G. R., George, J. M., Barrett, M., & Honig, B. (2016). Contemporary management (4th ed.). Sydney, Australia: McGraw-Hill.