Over the past one year, the concept and skills that I have been able to learn is that of leadership. Leadership is an important aspect of life because in every situation in life, there is a form of leadership, although minor in some case that is observed. It is often experienced in homes, schools, businesses, organizations, and even governments among other areas in life. Although as an individual I have never been involved in any form of leadership, I believe that leadership plays a very important role in the existences of human beings in the world since through leadership, people are able to know what to do, at what time, how to do it, and what results to achieve in the long run.
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It was my belief that leadership is meant for the male gender and the females were not suitable for any leadership positions, be it political leadership, at homes, schools or any other place in life. There has been stereotyping in the society that women cannot hold leadership positions except for men (Steinberg, 2008). However, one Sadhana Smiles, who is a chief executive officer of Harcourts Victoria, a real estate group, disapproves this notion that men are the only people who can take top leadership positions. She however, says that a lot of women are rarely considered for roles in leadership since men prefer to deal with their fellow men and are more comfortable in transacting business with other men more than with women.
At first, I knew that there is no difference in leadership. For me, anybody who gave commands and issued instructions was a leader. I was wrong. During the year, I read about different types of leadership styles and did my research through observation in several organizations, one being our school as well as my church. I discovered that the frequently applied leadership styles in many organizations across the globe include transformational leadership and the transactional form of leadership (Kippenberger, 2002). Under the transformational leadership I learned that the leaders get an opportunity to give inspiration to the employees, so that the employees can perform beyond their normal duties.
I also learned that leaders are people who are capable of performing the functions of showing direction, aligning, influencing, motivating and inspiring of the people they lead. On the other hand manager is simply someone who is capable of planning, budgeting, organizing and allocating resources and can control and resolve problems easily. In addition, leadership can be explained by use of many theories such as the traits theory, behavioural theory, and the contingency or situational theory which include theories such as the path-goal theory (Lussier, & Achua, 2010).
Therefore, with the considerations of the above aspects and example on leadership, I realised that leadership is a very important at all levels in an organisation, and within the society. In addition, I realised that in leadership, what can work in one context may not be applicable in another. Culture is also another issue that I got to understand plays a great role in application of the theories of leadership. It is therefore, recommendable that women should be given equal chances in leadership as men without any form of discrimination, something that I really support since women can perform just like men or even better.
Kippenberger, T. (2002). Leadership Styles. Chichester: Capstone Pub.
Lussier, R. N., & Achua, C. F. (2010). Leadership: Theory, application, skill development. Australia: SouthWestern/Cengage Learning.
Steinberg, B. S. (2008). Women in power: The personalities and leadership styles of Indira Gandhi, Golda Meir, and Margaret Thatcher. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s University Press.