Reflect on all the learning activities/experiences of the subject, including yours and others response(s) to the topics/questions/issues around assessment one and two, and address the following questions:
1. Discuss the impact and implication of those topics/questions/issues to an industry that you are familiar with OR plan to be working in.
Discuss the impact and implication of the learning activities/experiences of the subject to an industry that you are familiar with OR plan to be working in.
Demonstrates critical and thoughtful application of the implications of the subject learnings and new approaches to leadership at the industry level, both now and the future.
Leadership is the lynchpin upon which the entire organization functions. Effective leadership can make or break an organization. This is precisely why leadership plays a significant role in the growth and development of an organization. Through this course, I have been able to understand the role, responsibilities and styles of leadership relevant today.
The growth of internet and the advent of technology has made everything ‘online’. I wish to make a successful career in the Ecommerce industry. The industry at large has a lot to offer and possesses immense potential for growth. My learnings from this course have not only helped me in gaining a deeper insight about the scope of leadership but has also helped in understanding the role of leadership within the Ecommerce industry.
Cross cultural leadership
The advent of globalization has given rise to a large number of diverse organizations across the globe. Ecommerce industry dwells on its high reach of customers. The Ecommerce behemoth Amazon Inc. targets customers from different parts of the world. In order to do that, it is important to have a diverse group of people working around the globe. Through this course I learnt that when people from different cultures come together to work, they can face several issues. Hofstede offers three dimensions which are power distance, uncertainty avoidance and individualism vs. collectivism (Bakir et. al., 2015). Our society tends towards individualism. This is predominantly because of our bringing up. As a leader, I need to keep these tendencies in mind so as to bring about effective coordination within the team.
Change is an inevitable part of every organization. There are several ways in which leaders deal with change (Cashman, 2017). Through this course, I was able to identify that there are different kinds of change and they need to be dealt with in different ways. The Ecommerce industry has witnessed several planned changes as well as certain revolutionary changes. The growth of the industry in the retail segment that has been witnessed during the last four years is exemplary. For a successful change to occur, leaders must step out of their comfort zones and induce enthusiasm engaged learning. During the beginning of the Ecommerce revolution, several people demonstrated extreme resistance to this change. However, gradually people accepted the new developments. As a leader, it is essential to identify this resistance and work towards addressing it in an effective manner.
Three levels of leadership
One interesting topic that I learnt about leadership through this course is the different levels of leadership. The first level simply talks about the leadership by the virtue of one’s position. The second level of leadership attempts to influence the way people think. Lastly, the third level recognizes the importance of thoughts and values of followers. It refers to a deep engagement and passion. The biggest leader in the Ecommerce retail industry is Amazon Inc.’s Jeff Bezos. Currently, Bezos has adopted the second level of leadership wherein he possess the power to influence the thoughts of others. The growth of the Ecommerce industry is a disruptive innovation that has changed the way people shop for products (King & Baatartogtokh, 2015). This change is people’s lifestyle has been brought about by Jeff Bezos’s vision of Ecommerce retail.
Transformational and transactional leadership
As a part of the strategic leadership section, I learnt about transformational and transactional leadership. Leadership exists at all levels in the organization. However, most people consider the CEO or the top management of the organization to be the organization’s leadership. Strategic leadership keeps into account the strategic leadership demonstrated by the middle level management. I learnt that the leadership role played by middle level management has a significant influence on organizational performance. On the other hand, some researchers also depict that the presence of middle management leads to persistence upward communication resulting in poor performance (Hamstra et. al., 2014).
In the Ecommerce industry as well, there are visionaries and top management employees who transform an organization and work towards setting goals for the business. On the other hand, there are middle level managers, warehouse managers, store managers and other employees who are involved in every day transactions. These are transactional leaders and play a significant role in ensuring the sustainability of the industry.
Distributed leadership is a new concept of leadership that I learnt through this course. Until now the relationship between the leader and followers was considered to be a twofold relationship. This unit introduced a new form of relationship that is established through distributed leadership. This reflects upon the presence of leaders at all levels (Choi & Schnurr, 2014). It is almost like a web of leaders who are interdependent and their dynamic social interactions influence the growth of the organization.
This strategy could also be applied to the Ecommerce industry. Instead of having a solid hierarchy among employees where information flows from top to bottom, the industry at large could adopt a flat structure which promotes a web of leaders who work together in effective collaboration to assist the growth of the organization. This would lead to improved performance, enhanced creativity and increased levels of job satisfaction.
Leadership is one of the most important pillars upon which an organization rests. Through this course, I have been able to understand the concept and the idea of leadership in greater detail. I am keen to work in the Ecommerce industry. This course helped me understand the role of leadership within the Ecommerce industry as well as its significance in organizations. Leadership is a broad perspective. This course has helped me understanding the growth of leadership as witnessed by organizations today. The learnings from this course have helped me widen my horizon in terms of my view on leadership. This will also assist me in my future leadership endeavours.
Bakir, A., Blodgett, J. G., Vitell, S. J., & Rose, G. M. (2015). A preliminary investigation of the reliability and validity of Hofstede’s cross cultural dimensions. In Proceedings of the 2000 Academy of Marketing Science (AMS) Annual Conference (pp. 226-232). Springer, Cham.
Cashman, K. (2017). Leadership from the inside out: Becoming a leader for life. Berrett-Koehler Publishers. United States.
Choi, S., & Schnurr, S. (2014). Exploring distributed leadership: Solving disagreements and negotiating consensus in a ‘leaderless’ team. Discourse Studies, 16(1), 3-24.
Hamstra, M. R., Van, N. W., Wisse, B., & Sassenberg, K. (2014). Transformational and transactional leadership and followers’ achievement goals. Journal of Business and Psychology, 29(3), 413-425.
King, A. A., & Baatartogtokh, B. (2015). How useful is the theory of disruptive innovation?. MIT Sloan Management Review, 57(1), 77.
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