All entries for May 2009

May 29, 2009

Leadership = Vision

Kotter in his many publications states that creating a vision, getting people to accept it and implement it through appropriate strategies and annual goals is at the heart of leadership. Kotter also states that each team leader and his/her team within an organisation must have a personalised vision that is in line with the overall vision of the organisation.

Applying this to the LE PMA, I am considering using the vision that we created during the lectures for the CEO. Guiding the CEO to coming up with relevant guiding values from the overall vision and using it to facilitate teamwork between his MDs.

CEO greatest challenge as a leader is to generate teamwork and communication between his MDs. I beleive that this will be used as an effective example of teamwork that should be created and sustained between the different departments throughout and at all levels of the organisation.

The second step is to generate 'a second level' vision for the MD (my choise is financial director) that will be in line with the main vision but will be more specific to finance department and its personnel. For example - 

Provide quick and reliable assistance to our colleagues in matter of finance and cost management.

So just like the CEO, FD use this vision to motivate and engage her managers to take necessary action.

The idea is that CEO with the MDs act as an example of effective team and as such inspire the rest of the organisation to follow suit.  


May 26, 2009

PMA Approaches

I just started to read up about leadership for the PMA. Since there are several ways in which this PMA can be tackled, I was considering listing some of them:

  1. What happend during the coaching  session with the MD and the CEO
  2. What is happening as the coaching is occuring?
  3. What are you planning to do when you meet them?

Basically, write before, during or after the event. Any other suggestions?


May 03, 2009

Optimum number of team members

Writing about web page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meredith_Belbin

Meredith Belbin stated that an effective team must have at least one of the following:

1. Plant

2. Resource Investigator

3. Co-ordinator

4. Shaper

5. Monitor-Evaluator

6. Team-worker

7. Implementer

8. Completer-finisher

9. Specialist


Linking this with what Malcolm Gladwell wrote in his book - 'The Tipping Point' - it raises an interesting question what is the optimu number for people in an effective team and what a leader must do when the team exceeds that number. Malcolm Gladwell wrote an individual can only have continuous, regular and meaningful contact with maximum of 12 people. An individual rarely can exceed that  number because everyone is limited by time and energy.

In our in-class discussions we assumed that the team we are talking about are about the same size as the one we had for all the modules that we attended i.e. between 4 and 7 team members. In teams of this size, it is easy for a leader to keep contact with everyone and address each team-member's problem(s) as they arise.

However, what happens if we as leader(s) must manage a team of 50, 100 or even 347 people. How do we keep at least the majority of them motivated and working hard towards the set goals. I beleive that in order to achieve this a leader must develop sub-leaders or lietenants who can supervise the sub-sets of teams. The leader will lead his lietenants who then will lead their team-members. 

This is the structure that most organisations adopt. Although it does enable the leader to manage a large sized team, it does create an additional problem of how to ensure that the message does not get diluted or skewed as it travels down from the leader to the lowest team-member.


I beleive that there are 2 things that leaders must to do to mitigate this:

1. Have a clear, short vision that easily be converted into strategy and specific operational goals.

2. Ensure that there is a clear communication channels that allow open feedback.


To summarise, an effective team must not be above 12 people and if there are more than 12 people in a team they should be broken down into sub-teams according to specific goals and/or tasks.


May 2009

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