Students will select a leader and write an analytical paper about the leader’s practices. If possible, select a leader you work with directly within an leadership practices using one of the theories covered in this course. If you are unable to select someone you work with directly, you may choose a well-known leader such as Bill Gates or Meg Whitman. However, unless you can collect information about this individual directly, finding specific leadership practice information needed for the paper (see paper chapters 3 & 4 description below) may be difficult.
The paper has six chapters and should be 8-10 double-spaced pages (excluding the title and reference pages). Chapters 1 and 2 may contain the listed components with some flexibility. Chapters 3-5 must contain all the listed components. Chapters 3 and 4 must have subtitles (as noted below), but other chapters may or may not have subtitles.
Chapter 1: Introduction.
This chapter provides background information about the leader and his/her organization.
Describe the background of the chosen leader (education, experience, position/role, and other characteristics), the organization in which the leader operates (industry, brief history, vision/mission/goals/values of the organization, organizational structure, function within society, etc.), and some characteristics of the followers, if relevant. Please reference Chapter 3, subsection 5 instructions below for further details on how to present the organization goals.
Chapter 2: Leadership practices.
This chapter describes the leader’s leadership practices. How does this individual operate and behave.
Describe the actions the leader takes to lead his/her followers. This description can include components such as: Behavior, actions, decisions, plans, efforts, activities, provision of monetary incentives, communication patterns, open door policy, social gatherings, clear directions, etc. Optionally, you may describe the leader’s practices in some of the following areas. Provide examples to support the rationale for your determination:
Is the leader more leadership/inspiration oriented or more management oriented?
Is the leader relationship or task oriented?
To what extent is the leader goal-oriented in the process of performance evaluation?
Is the leader’s approach controlling, delegating, or a balance of both in day to day operations?
Does the leader use rewards and punishment and to what extent and manner?
What is the leader’s communication style (aggressive, passive, passive-aggressive)? What is the frequency of the communication and the method
Chapter 3: Analysis of Leadership Practices:
Leadership Style and Organizational Goal Achievement. This chapter analyzes the leadership style of the chosen leader and makes recommendations for improvement. When writing this chapter, use information from the textbook and cite it with specific page numbers. Subsections 1 and 2 need to be written based on the textbook chapters.
Subsection 1. Six Leadership Theories Summary. Describe the central ideas of the following leadership theories: Trait, Skills, or Behavioral; Situational, Path-Goal, Leader-Member Exchange and one of the following: Transformational, Servant, Authentic, Adaptive, or Team Leadership. This section should be written in no more than six paragraphs.
Subsection 2. Leadership Analysis Theory. Select one of the theories you discussed in Subsection 1 (excluding Situational Leadership) to analyze your leader. Explain your reasoning for selecting that specific theory and elaborate on the theory as needed to supplement the overview provided in Subsection 1.
Subsection 3. Leadership Styles or Characteristics. Provide all the leadership styles or characteristics associated with the theory you selected in Subsection 2. For example, the Trait Theory identifies five traits: Intelligence, Self-confidence, determination, integrity, and sociability.
Subsection 4. Select one leadership style or characteristic(s) from your selected theory that most closely matches the leadership practices for your selected leader. Explain your selection. In this section you are determining the leadership style or characteristic(s) of the leader you are analyzing. To determine the style or characteristic(s), you may use the leadership instrument that is included at the end of the chapter for the theory you are using to analyze the leader. You can ask the leader or followers to complete the leadership instrument. Alternatively, you can rely on your research and observations about the leader, the leader’s self-description, followers’ descriptions of the leader, and any new media descriptions, if available.
Subsection 5. Leadership Style/Characteristic(s) and Organizational Goals. Assess the compatibility and/or incompatibility between the leader’s leadership style/practices characteristic(s) and the organizational goals reflected in Chapter 1. The organizational goals should reflect the level of authority of the leader. For example, if the leader is the CEO then the goals should be at the organizational level; if the leader is a department Director, the goals would be at the department level, etc. In this section you will identify the strengths and weaknesses of the leader’s style/characteristics as pertain to achieving goals.
Subsection 6. Offer recommendations regarding the leader’s style/characteristic(s) and how those should continue to be emphasized or should be modified to better achieve organizational goals and meet the needs of followers and society at large. You will need to explain your recommendations and these should tie to the findings in of your paper. For example, if the current style/characteristic(s) are ideal, explain why; if some should be maintained and others changed, provide the rationale for each of your recommendations; if all need to be modified, explain why. In all instances, explain how these changes in the leader’s style/characteristics would improve performance.
Chapter 4: Analysis of Leadership Delegation and Development Practices:
Delegation and Development Levels. This chapter analyzes the leader’s delegation practice and makes recommendations for improvements, if needed.
Subsection 1. Necessary Conditions for Effective Delegation. Using the situational leadership approach (Chapter 5 of the textbook), identify appropriate conditions necessary for effective delegation focusing on the development levels of the followers (competence and commitment). Identify the overall development level of the followers (D1-D4) in the area of responsibility of the leader and relate that to the corresponding leadership style that would be most effective.
Subsection 2. Delegation Practice of the Leader. Describe the extent to which the leader delegates to followers. Does the leader delegate tasks and responsibilities to the followers frequently or infrequently? Provide specific examples to support the level of delegation. Is the level of delegation appropriate for the development level of the followers as identified in subsection 1?
Subsection 3. Recommendations. Make a set of thoughtful recommendations for how the leader could improve his/her delegation practice to better match the development level of the followers. These recommendations should be based on the findings in subsections 1 & 2. Provide specific examples.
Chapter 5: Lessons Learned.
This chapter discusses personal lessons learned from this analysis. Discuss the personal lessons learned by conducting this analysis. Use specifics from the findings of the paper. Explain how you can apply these lessons to your current or future career. If the leader is someone you work with, indicate how this analysis impacted your view of this individual. For example, you now have a better understanding for why this leader acts in a certain manner, or you realize why the department is or is not effective with this leadership, or with this enhanced understanding you will change how you interact with that individual, etc. This section should be written in the personal form such ad: “I learned this……I will focus on….”
Chapter 6: Conclusion.
Provide a brief summary of the entire paper (Chapters 1-5). Based on the review of this analysis, indicate which style or characteristic (depending on the theory you used) you plan to practice or emphasize in the future.
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