Leadership Assessments Paper
Leadership is defined as the ability of a person or organization to influence and guide other individuals, groups, teams, or organizations toward a specific task or goal. Leadership assessments are essential in evaluating individual management skills and identifying strengths and weaknesses. The focus of this paper is to present a personal leadership assessment based on three selected leadership theories and the strengths, weaknesses, and opportunity areas identified from the leadership assessments and their results.
Traits Approach Theory
The first selected leadership theory is the traits approach. The trait approach stipulates that leaders have certain traits that make them leaders. It exclusively focuses on the traits exhibited by the leader and not necessarily the type of leader required for a specific situation or particular circumstances.
The traits approach is supported by more than a century of research on some of the world’s greatest leaders and their traits, making them great leaders. According to Northouse (2022), the central leadership traits found consistent in most leadership research and case studies are integrity, sociability, self-confidence, intelligence, and determination.
My leadership traits assessment results depicted that I am, on average, a good leader based on the scores. The total score was 61, with the highest performing traits being self-confidence, perceptive, persistence, dependable, trustworthy, determined, and diligent. The results also had some poorly performing traits, including outgoing and friendly.
The interpretation of the results based on the scores includes that I perceive myself as a leader and that others perceive me as a leader equally enough. The results also reflect that I am a more person-centered leader since the high scores range on intrinsic traits. Being perceptive, self-confident, and articulate are the traits that stand out for me as a leader; hence, based on this approach, I am an average leader.
Major strengths in my leadership style based on the traits theory include being trustworthy, dependable, diligent, self-confident, perceptive, trustworthy, and determined. These strengths are essential in enhancing the effective delivery of my leadership tasks since they are intrinsically cultivated and maintained. My weaknesses include not being outgoing and friendly enough as a leader.
Research shows that a good leader should be friendly and outgoing to enhance the relationship with the followers (Eagly and Carli, 2018). The significant opportunity areas that I can work on to become a better leader are being self-assured, sensitive, empathic, and outgoing. The results score was a bit low regarding my self-perception as a leader; thus, working on these areas will improve my leadership outlook and abilities.
Behavioral Approach Theory
The second selected leadership theory is the behavioral approach theory. Decuypere and Schaufeli (2020) state that behavior is one factor that influences leadership and management. Thus, this approach is vital in leadership. The main focus of the behavioral approach is the leader’s behavior. It exclusively emphasizes how the leader acts and what they do, which makes them a leader (Northouse, 2022).
The behavioral leadership approach stipulates that leadership encompasses two general kinds of behavior: relationship and task. Relationship behaviors enhance how followers feel about themselves, each other, and situations. In contrast, task behaviors help the people being led to accomplish their goals. The behavioral approach provides a framework for assessing leadership through their interactions with tasks and relationships.
The results from the behavioral leadership approach assessment stipulated that I have various abilities in leadership based on how I act when relating to others and accomplishing tasks. The total score was 59, with high performance on setting standards, problem-solving, planning for action, having a clear perspective, and defining possibilities.
However, other behavioral characteristics performed poorly and hence the low score. The results interpretation shows that I am more task-oriented than relationship oriented. Some poorly performed characteristics include acting friendly, showing concern, and accepting members’ suggestions.
Based on this leadership assessment results, my significant strengths include the ability to set achievable standards, solve problems, plan for action, and define and delegate responsibilities. These characteristics make me an outstanding leader since team members can easily follow and achieve their tasks. Some of my weaknesses are acting friendly and taking suggestions from others.
However, I am working on these areas since I have learned that leadership involves a team; thus, the importance of friendliness and suggestions from others increases the acceptance of the leadership decisions affecting the members. Some of my opportunity areas are showing concern, fairness, effective communication, and the ability to tell followers what to do. These factors help members feel comfortable and have clear expectations, thus promoting high achievements.
Path-Goal Approach Theory
The third selected theory is the path-goal approach. The path-goal theory focuses on how leaders motivate their followers to achieve assigned tasks based on what motivates them. It also stipulates that the best leadership style is the one that best meets the followers’ motivational needs. According to Northouse (2022), followers’ goal attainment is enhanced by providing information or rewards in the working environment.
In their study, Auvinen et al. argue that leadership by follower motivation enhances outstanding achievements by defining goals, deciding on a clear path, dealing with barriers, and providing support to the followers. The theory emphasizes this concept by maintaining that leadership is directive, participative, achievement-oriented, and supportive.
My results from the path-goal approach leadership assessment depicted an exceptional leadership ability. The overall score was 97, the highest compared to the other assessments. The scores indicated that I am more inclined to the directive and achievement-oriented leadership styles since the characteristics with high scores were; informing followers, continuous improvement, high-level performance, rules, and setting challenging goals. However, I had low scores on doubts, hurting followers’ feelings, and giving vague explanations, showing that I strive to motivate followers and help them achieve their goals.
My strengths based on this approach include high-performance levels, receptive listening, and continual improvement. These strengths enhance my motivation to followers, thus translating to high performance in their tasks.
My weaknesses include hurting followers’ personal feelings and asking for suggestions. I believe there has to be a person in charge of the others, and how the followers feel I should lead does not necessarily matter. However, I am working on ensuring I am more friendly and accommodating. Other opportunities include helping followers overcome problems, acting without consultation, and listening.
Different leaders use different leadership approaches and perform better while using some approaches than others. The leadership assessments and results discussed above have helped me identify my leadership abilities, strengths, weaknesses, and opportunity areas based on the specific approaches. I am more inclined to achieve set goals; thus, I work better using the path-goal approach.
Auvinen, E., Huhtala, M., Kinnunen, U., Tsupari, H., & Feldt, T. (2020). Leader motivation as a building block for sustainable leader careers The relationship between leadership motivation profiles and leader and follower outcomes. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 120, 103428. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jvb.2020.103428
Decuypere, A., & Schaufeli, W. (2020). Leadership and work engagement: Exploring explanatory mechanisms. German Journal of Human Resource Management, 34(1), 69-95. https://doi.org/10.1177/2397002219892197
Eagly, A. H., & Carli, L. L. (2018). Women and the labyrinth of leadership. In Contemporary issues in leadership (pp. 147-162). Routledge. https://doi.org/10.4324/9780429494000-17/
Northouse, P.G. (2022). Leadership theory and practice (9th ed.). Sage Publishers.