As another followup to the lecture we heard by John C. Maxwell as well as the discussion in class today, here are my answers to the questions regarding the seven challenges of leadership.
Challenge 1: Tension
How do you deal best with tension in a stressful situation?
If I face tension in a public situation, I often like to give myself a bit of space and just draw/doodle to let my thoughts out. However if I am alone, I like to play the violin or the piano to let my stress out through music. After I have released some of my stress, most of the time I like to go back to the situation and take a look at it through a different perspective if possible.
Challenge 2: Frustration
What should you do when you find yourself following a leader who is ineffective? How do you continue to add value?
First of all, if you are following an ineffective leader, you should consider keeping a strong relationship regardless of his or her leadership abilities. This may allow you to have more influence and trust later on. Then you should identify the leader’s strengths instead of dwelling on only their weaknesses for I’m sure that once you’ve thought this through, you’ll realize that they have some great strengths as well. Next you should commit to contribute to whatever your leader’s strengths may be and once all three previous steps have been achieved, then you should work together with the leader to combat his or her weaknesses. This can be done by providing resources, personal accounts, networking and more. Hopefully the leader will be less ineffective by then and hopefully you will also feel less frustrated. You can also continue to add value to your leader by maintaining a good working relationship and by working to combat any further problems or weaknesses together.
Challenge 3: Multi-hat
List the different “hats” that you are currently required to wear.
Currently, I wear many hats dubbed: the student hat, the daughter hat, the concertmaster hat, the eager violin pupil hat, the teach me pottery hat, and the I may not take it seriously but I love fencing hat. All these hats fulfill different roles that can’t be filled by any other hat. Also, with each different hat, I may be required to adopt different formalities and manners by remaining flexible at all times. Even though I may try to be flexible, luckily my personality doesn’t fluctuate as I change hats.
Challenge 4: Ego
Do you tend to focus more energy on production or promotion?
I like to focus more energy on production because I honestly believe that with good outcomes from emphasized production comes promotion, especially to those who don’t avidly seek it. By spending more of my energy on production I am able to be a greater part of my team and build lasting, healthy relationships, and if that allows me to get a promotion then it is simply a double benefit for me.
Challenge 5: Fulfillment
List some of the advantages and disadvantages of being out front.
Some of the advantages of being out front is that you get most of the glory from any success made by your organization or team. For example, you get much more credit for a novel if you are the author rather than the assistant. On the hand, there are also many disadvantages to being out front. The leader equally takes as much blame and negativity for the team as much the team’s successes and within a career you are bound to come across as many falls as you are successes. It is a big responsibility to take on the negative aspect as well, so being out front may not be the best course of action for everyone as it is a double-edged sword.
Challenge 6: Vision
What would you rather do: see your own vision put into action and come to fruition, or help others fulfill theirs?
I would rather see my own vision in action and come to fruition, because I enjoy the feeling of completion as I’m sure many others do as well. It’s also really interesting to see one your goals play out and hopefully succeed. I understand that many also enjoy this feeling of completion, so I commend all those who are able to “Champion the Vision,” as John Maxwell would say.
Challenge 7: Influence
How do you consistently let the people on your team know that you care about them?
In the perspective of my quad, although we have no given leader I still like to show that I care for the members of my quad (especially the nines!). I offer encouragement during work blocks and I also help answer any individual questions if I am available and needed. Also when one of our members presents something to the class we all support him or her!