Major Individual Essay
During this time of exploration I have exposed experiences that have had a significant impact on how I see myself. One incident related to a less than one-minute interaction forty years ago. As I was thinking about my life story and self-development trajectory I recalled an interstate holiday to Queensland when I was 10 years old. My parents, avid antique collectors, were looking for a grandfather clock and made an enquiry to a shopkeeper if he had any clocks to sell. The shopkeeper responded to my father’s query and proceeded to say he did have a beautiful Victorian grandfather clock and said “oh it’s over there just near your son” and he was pointing at me….This ...view middle of the document...
I can see now that I have let myself feel inferior most of my life and it has impacted on my self-confidence, connection with people and has stifled my ability to be the best person I can be.
What should I do to be a better leader of people and organisations? In a nutshell I need to cease being the arsonist lighting the confidence burning fires in my mind. I have started my plan and am working to stop lighting the fires but there is a great deal of mopping up to do.
Assessment: “Looking in the mirror”
Leadership has been defined by many however there is no one universally agreed definition. For the purpose of this work I have chosen to use Kotter’s (1990) view that leadership is different to management and leadership is about coping with change. The irony is why so many leaders are poor at coping with the one thing they can change, themselves.
Character and personality profiling
Understanding gaps and where to focus effort as well as setting goals and targets is an important part of developing a professional leadership development plan. To situate myself in the context of what I need to do to become a better leader of people and organisations I have conducted several character and personality profiling exercises.
The exercises conducted included the Myers Briggs personality type, the talent Octogram and a Johari Window (Quinn et al, 2011). I have also added the outcomes of a 360-degree emotional intelligence assessment and 360-degree managerial competency assessment that were conducted over the past 18 months.
The Myers-Brigg Type Inventory (MBTI) is a validated tool to assess preferences in relation to basic mental processes and orientation of energy. The psychological typing is based on the theory that people have a natural hierarchy of preference in the way they behave. Katherine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers identified sixteen possible behaviour types (Myers Briggs, 1998).
I was first introduced to Myers Briggs profiling in the mid 1990’s when I learnt my Myers Briggs personality type was “ENTP” defined as “extraverted intuition with introverted thinking”. ENTP’s are enthusiastic innovators with a preference to focus on the big picture where possibilities are vast, they like theories and abstraction, are curious and are comfortable with ambiguity. They see patterns and connections and are good at understanding how systems work as well as being assertive and questioning. Areas of neglect however can relate to not taking care of details and being excessively tough and demanding of others and disregarding the impact plans or ideas may have on them (Myers Briggs, 1998). Repeating the test, twenty years later my profile of ENTP remains the same.
I also undertook the Octogram personality test answering 302 questions to situate my style against Quinn’s competing values model (see figure 1). The results were dramatic with the highest score of nine in the strategist quadrant. This placed my talents strongly in the...