Becoming an Effective Leader Essay
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My job title is Training Co-ordinator for an organisation called Lifeskills Centres, I assess in the following areas; business administration, customer service, management, delivering level 2 and 3 and also any supporting key skills needed. I am responsible for my caseload of learners; their progress, learning and achievement of the qualification. I must cater each programme to suit the needs of the individual learner, I do this by setting each new starter off on initial assessments so that I can see what level they are currently at which will help me decide which course is the most suitable and which approach will be the most beneficial for the learner.
I am also responsible for creating strong professional relationships with the learners new employers and maintaining relationships with existing employers this is for two reasons so they would recommend us to other employers so we gain a good reputation and so that they will want to use Lifeskills as a training provider for all of their staff and will not use a different organisation as it is a competitive market.
I also advertise vacancies for our employers who have had good experiences in the past with apprentices and would like to recruit a new one. I agree with the employer all of the details to go on to the advert and interview all of the candidates and trial period the suitable ones for a week before sending them to the employer themselves to interview and then make the final decision.
Within my role I use a number of different leadership styles in different situations and with different people in order to progress and achieve what needs to be achieved for example; I use the leadership style autocratic when I come to the end of the programme and I tell my learners what I want and what needs to be done and how it needs to be done, this is when the learners are short of time if they are leaving the organisation and don’t have much time to complete and it works the best when they want to achieve and are highly motivated. I have used the leadership style democratic when I had a group of learners in one particular placement where I was finding it hard to make them progress as they wouldn’t complete any work unless I was there with them and they had no motivation towards the qualification.
I discussed with the learners my concerns and asked how they thought we could move forward and they suggested one to one meetings, I informed the learners that this would be too time consuming and that I could afford to have a morning or afternoon out of the month for me to come in to the organisation and support them and motivate them to complete the knowledge questions, technical certificate and key skills side of the qualification. The learners confirmed that this was an effective method and I informed them that I will observe them twice a month but they do not have to complete any written tasks for me between observation as it will be done on the one morning / afternoon per month.
I used this leadership style so that they felt they were included and to help me gain more respect from them and I do not think that it came across as a weakness from myself I think it showed that I was honest and realised that there was something not right and then discussed and implemented a solution. Lastly the leadership style I use not very often but I do still use is delegative which is where I let the learners make their own decisions on how they can progress through their qualification. I usually use this style when a learner has progressed from a level 2 qualification with myself on to a level 3 so they know the way the programme works and we have a comfortable relationship I also allow some level 3 learners to reference their own work in to their files.
Application of emotional intelligence in shaping performance
I employ the two aspects of emotional intelligence when dealing with learners and colleagues at all times as I must first understand myself and my goals, intentions, responses and behaviour and understand others and their feelings to be able to manage my learners and their progress. I empathise with learners and use the understanding of their emotions to motivate them and inspire them to complete their work. I am aware of my own feelings and emotions and control these to make sure that I do not behave in a way that is unacceptable towards learners or colleagues, I may not have to say anything to communicate how I am feeling as it can be portrayed in my body language and facial expressions which is also something that I have to control.
Based on Goleman’s theory to be an effective leader I must be aware of my own feelings and emotions and manage these to make sure that my emotions do not show in my behaviour if they are unacceptable. I must motivate myself which I do by meeting appraisal and review targets and setting myself my own goals to achieve. I must also manage other peoples emotions I do this by building a relationship with my learners and getting to know what they like and what annoys them so I can recognise this and stop it from becoming an issue where possible, it also makes the learners feel valued and that I care about the way they feel.
It is also stated in Maslows Hieracy of needs that to work to your full ability and progress in your job and grow as a person you must have the following; Be in a healthy state, feel safe, feel like you belong somewhere and have some form of social life (friends, family, relationships) and have self esteem before you are able to grow personally. I must make sure that I show all learners that I care about each of them as an individual and that there progress and growth means a lot to me. I think an area that I personally have to work on is when I worry and panic about things for example we were mock inspected and I felt very anxious about it, I must make sure that this feeling does not come across to learners or employers and that the rest of my work doesn’t suffer from it.
I also try to understand and manage the employers I deal with emotional intelligence as I want to build a relationship with them and trust so I make sure that I empathise with them and try not to do anything possible which may annoy them for example if I can see that an employer is very busy instead of updating them after the appointment with their learner I will ask if they would like an update via email as I can see they are really busy and then they can decide how they would like the feedback.
Setting direction and gaining commitment
I communicate and set direction for my learners by visiting them fortnightly, observing them work, showing them what each observation will cover or link in with, giving them feedback on their performance and setting them targets for the next appointment. I provide ongoing support via email and over the telephone to learners when I am at work but not at an appointment with them and review their progress and set targets formally at their ten week reviews which gives them clear direction and motivation to meet the targets they agree by the next review. I provide support and tutorials to learners for the whole of the technical certificate and functional skills they complete and also offer training on the telephone, prioritising techniques and assertiveness skills as I have noticed that this is an area for development that employers ask for and the learners too.
I also motivate and gain commitment from learners and try and persuade new employers to take on new learners by using myself as a role model example, as I began my career by completing an administration level 2 apprenticeship and have completed enough qualifications and worked my way up to becoming a Training Co-ordinator. I communicate and set direction and motivate employers by keeping them up to date with the learner’s progress and exactly what I have been doing with the learner after each visit where possible and including them in the qualification by asking for witness statements and also asking them to participate in the learner’s reviews. With my colleagues I communicate direction in standardisation meetings where we share best practise on how to cover and assess certain units that we may find difficult or what we have found that works very well. I try to motivate my colleagues by being hardworking and genuinely enthusiastic about my learners achieving and my job.