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1.  Collaboration in a business environment is a best practice that leverages the collective knowledge of the team assembled. Peer evaluation and support, provided in the spirit of continuous improvement and organizational success, result in higher quality deliverables than generally possible by the efforts of an individual. Please describe the process you plan to use to conduct research, identify findings, and develop the Comprehensive Project due in Unit 5 and present a preliminary outline indicating how you intend to organize the project deliverable.

It is important to identify key components of a research article to ensure they are incorporated.  Most articles begin with an abstract paragraph, which briefly summarizes the whole article.  Therefore, the following is the preliminary outline indicating how the article would be organized: (SUNY Brockport, n.d.)

I.   What is the article about?

a.  Starting with an abstract paragraph, briefly summarizing entire article.

b.  Introduction will follow, introducing the topic and discussing the information and knowledge on the subject.

II.  What do we already know about this topic and what is left to discover?

a.  Literature review is required.  This is done by reviewing existing research and theory on the topic.  This portion can be included in the introduction or under its own separate subtitle.  A discussion on previous, questions that remain, and this information is then related to existing/current literature.  A clear discussion will include the hypotheses stated at the beginning of the project.

III.  How did the author do the research?

a.  Methods and data used to conduct the study will be discussed.

IV.  How did the author find and how did they find it?

a.  Analysis and results is an important section to be devoted to discussing the kind of analysis that was conducted on the data and what the results are.

V.  What does it all mean and why is it important?

a.  Discussion and conclusion is the end of the article.  A discussion of the results means how the study contribute to existing knowledge.  The research questions are answered and it will be made clear at this point whether or not the hypotheses were supported or not  The conclusion is the final section and it will place the research in a larger context, explaining the important of the research while discussing the future of the topic.

2.  Please review the process and outlines of other students, providing an objective assessment and constructive feedback that will help strengthen the effectiveness of their efforts and the quality of the finished product.

Will show under separate feed, as responding to other students posts over the course of the week.

3.  What is the role of relationship development and management in effective leadership, and how are these concepts used in improving leadership effectiveness?

People are always at the center of all leadership efforts.  This is a startling concept to a lot of people in leadership positions, because they view themselves as the focus of everything rather than the people they are leading.  However, leaders cannot lead unless they understand the people they are leading.  A perception of leadership is that the function of a leader is to lead and guide those who will follow with same values and principles.  No doubt, an effective leader is one who has the ability to build relationships and create communities (Schaefer, 2015). 

According to the Director of Client Services at the University Wisconsin, recipient of the EDUCAUSE Award, which recognizes members for their role as community leaders, Beth Schaefer, leadership is defined as “ inspiring people and planning for the future with the motivating factors of relationship building and community service” (Schaefer, 2015).

While it is easy to lead ourselves, it is more difficult to lead others.  Integrity, honest, and the ability to be supportive creates a more successful environment while make leaders more effective in their organizations.  Employees want to know that leaders are deserving of our trust.  Personally, I will never forget my boss, who was the Executive Director of the organization, stating to me, “I don’t trust you.”  I was so startled at that statement and I was totally unprepared for the culture of distrust.  I had never worked in such toxic environment before and I realized it came directly from the leader of the organization.  I had barely worked for a year for the organization at that point and struggle to understand define what she meant by “trusting” me.  I believed I had been hired to do a job not necessarily formulate a level of personal loyalty to the leader.  I viewed the relationship as a business relationship, one that should be cultivated, developed and optimized on a professional level.  However, I realized later, she did not “trust” me personally. To date, I am still confused about that.  In all of the research I have done about leadership, effective leaders seek to build people, invest in people, and build a supportive culture.  Therefore, I concluded that this particular individual used leadership as an authoritative, power that she frequently abused or used to her personal advantage.  As a result, I did not believe she was deserving of my trust either personally or professionally.  It is about having trust in a leader’s knowledge of who and what they are leading, trust in why the have chosen to lead, and trust in their ability to accomplish the vision and goals that been set forward.  However, relationships that she fostered with community leaders and the Board which had oversight of the organization, trumped any relationship she developed or did not develop with staff.  She skillfully, politically sought to ensure she had amicable relationships with decision-makers (even if it meant being untruthful or under false representation).  Therefore, employees literally had no recourse in combating her management style.  Employees either “dummy down” or leave the company (Schaefer, 2015).

Leaders should grow themselves and the people around them by identifying where relationship building can be maintained and where it can be strengthened.  Connection with others is one of the most effective ways one can lead.  I admit, I can do better in relationship building because I am more task oriented.  I am more concerned about “getting the job done”, that I sometimes forget to build the relationship with the individual.  However, I am often concerned about building professional relationships the “right way”, because some people began to manipulate leaders when they feel they know them personally.  How do you find that balance as a manager or leader of a community?  I am yet seeking to hone my skills in this area.  This is the other side of leadership, taking a chance, going along with other even when you are not sure of the outcome.  It means having the courage to support their decisions while opening an opportunity for them to trust your leadership.  Communication is an important tool in the process as well, it is a powerful strategy when working to accomplish a goal.  Ensuring that you and your expectations are understood will benefit everyone.  This will help you focus on teamwork and the prioritization of goals (Schaefer, 2015).

In order to produce leaders who can adequately deal with organizational challenges, leadership development must be comprehensive and systematically integrated into the organizational culture (Amagoh, 2009).

4.  When and why should participation be used to improve leadership effectiveness?

The criteria for use of participation:

  • When the task is complex and quality is important
  • ·  When follower commitment is needed
  • ·  Where there is time
  • ·  When the leader and follower are ready
  • ·  When the leader and followers can easily interact

The benefits of participation include:

  • ·  Development of followers
  • ·  Better decision on complex tasks
  • ·  Increase in follower motivation and commitment
  • ·  Opportunity to empower followers

It is important to delegate pleasant and unpleasant tasks, clarify goals and expectations, authority and responsibility should be delegated, provide support, monitor and provide feedback and delegate to different followers.

The above stated guidelines for delegating are crucial to the success of participation.  I have experienced leaders delegating tasks, however, not providing support nor delegating the power and authority.  This lack of  “good delegation”, is disastrous.

Participative management can build trust and foster integrity, open communication, rewarding cooperation, competence and hard work, mutual respect and support, and fairness and equity,

Participative management is best utilized when diverse knowledge and skills are required within a group, or with an individual when efficiency is desired. It all depends on the type of task or problem.  When acceptance is important, group may have valued members whose credibility is important to the decision.  When a “best member” can be identified or when individuals cannot collaborate, you may consider completing the task or selecting the best individual for the job at hand.  Groups can actually become or transition by dropping old behaviors midstream their collaboration and adopt more effective and new behaviors.

References

Amagoh, F.  (2009). "Leadership development and leadership effectiveness",  Management Decision, Vol. 47 Issue: 6, pp.989-999,  https://doi.org/10.1108/00251740910966695 .

Schaefer, B.  (2015).  On Becoming a Leader:  Building Relationships and Creating Communities.  Retrieved from https://er.educause.edu/articles/2015/10/on-becoming-a-leader-building-relationships-and-creating-communities , on April 9, 2018.

Southern Illinois University. (n.d.).  Influence and Managerial Effectiveness: Participative Management and Leading Teams.MBA533.  Retrieved from www.siue.edu/~marlove/MBA533/Powerpoint533/Participative.ppt , on April 10, 2018.

SUNY Brockport (n.d.).  Department of Sociology:  Healey Library at the University of Massachusetts.  Boston, MA.  Retrieved from https://www.brockport.edu/academics/sociology/journal.html on April, 9, 2018.

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