Business Behaviors and Relations is a course where selected topics pertaining to leadership, organizational change, and individual processes are surveyed through selected readings, cases, and class discussions. A students, our ability to conceptualize, integrate, and apply diverse approaches to leadership and change in organizations is emphasized. In this course we also develop and improve skills that are important for effective personal leadership, organizational leadership and strategic career management. Even with a course like this that gives us students exposure to teach us about ourselves, sometimes this information is not what we expected it to be, or how we portray ourselves. Through this assignment, I was able to take an in-depth look at myself and evaluate how I am as a leader and as a person in general.
This assignment was very rewarding and I now know how to maneuver in the future as a leader based on my findings. Feedback from group members In this course, we had the opportunity to meet new people, reconnect with classmates we have known previously, and collaborate to learn more about ourselves and about the people who we have class with. My group consisted of Gabe Omoniyi, Dominique Parks, Kacey Lusbourgh, Marielle Cameron and myself, Tierra Johnson. I enjoyed getting to know my group members throughout this course. Being in this group has shown me that I am a good leader. I was told that I am able to keep a really good balance of keeping an upbeat spirit within my group as well as always staying on track and getting the work done. Prior to this class, I had already known Marielle, Kacey, and Dominique and we have worked in numerous groups together since 2016. It is interesting to hear them speak on my growth as a teammate from them until now. One thing that my group members told me they liked is that I keep a level- head when I am in a team setting.
There are seldom times when I get overworked and feel over-stressed to the point where I do not feel as though I can effectively and efficiently complete tasks. In my opinion, when people are too stressed out or they feel overwhelmed, it stunts their ability to think clearly so they are unable to complete the assignment or task to the best of their abilities. I tried my hardest to relay that message to my group and I feel as though they appreciated my calm nature when it was time to handle business. Another piece of feedback that I received from my group members was that I did an equally good job of being a leader as well as a follower. I found myself in a few situations having the ability to become versatile and complete my parts efficiently. In my group, we had a lot of strong-minded women, myself included, and our male counterpart, Gabe.
In that sort of environment, it is easy to always want to take control and be the chief, but oftentimes it is equally important to be an Indian. When it came down to delegating tasks, I was told I do a good job of being vocal about which aspects of the assignment that I could excel at and make the greatest contribution which is something my team appreciated. Being in this group showed me that I really a good team player and I have the qualities and capabilities to really lead of team of people and be equally yoked at being a great leader and an outstanding follower.
In this class, I have had the opportunity to get to know more about my strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Some of my strengths include being a good team player, having great communication skills, following directions well, being stern, being an effective listener, and I have a high internal locus of control. When I was completing the locus of causality test, my results deemed that I was The Doer. A doer is a person who has the tendency to make internal and stable attributions for success and experience a sense of personal accomplishment when successes occur. A doer also tends to take personal responsibility for failure by attributing it to internal but unstable characteristics such as inadequate effort. After taking this assessment, I really agree that being a doer can be seen as a strength. When I am faced with daunting tasks, I always try to remain positive and have a can do attitude.
Even if a situation is not turning out how I may have liked it, I remain optimistic that something good can come out of it. To expound on me having an internal locus of control, I take pride in that. Oftentimes I see people always putting the blame on someone or something else when their desired outcomes is not met. While I am well aware that sometimes there are things out of our control that cannot change, I put most of the blame myself. I take a step back and analyze the entire situation as a time to self-reflect and see what I did, what I could have done better, and how I will change my behaviors for next time so that I may have a more desirable outcome. Being a person that has an internal locus of control of control, I am able to see what can be done and create more versatile ways to handle situations. For example, I remember vividly when we were in class and had to do the tower activity. I was a participant in the activity so I was able to help my team in any way they needed me to and I contributed to helping with ideas on how to most effectively win the challenge.
In the end, my team and I did not win although we were just a few seconds shy of the victory. Instead of putting the blame on all of my team members at the end, I sat and talked with my team about how we could have done things a little differently to get a different outcome. It was a self-made tower so there was not anything external that could have caused us to lose. With all of the strengths that I possess, I feel as though they make for a great leader. As I mentioned before, I personally feel as though to be an effective leader, one must know how to be a leader and a follower. Having those listening skills, communication skills but also being stern with an optimistic outlook can really create a strong team and work environment. I also have some weaknesses that I actively work on every day to improve. These include being too hard on myself when things don’t always go according to my plan, I can be too self-critical, I find myself expecting too much out of others, not properly delegating, and I take on too many tasks at one time.
Although I mentioned that being a doer was positive, there are also negative connotations to it such as feeling as though I can overcome all obstacles by just working harder, and becoming fixated on certain things that require just more than myself. I tend to try to overwork myself and try to complete tasks without the assistance of others. Like many people, when I deem that something needs to be done, I prefer to have it done in a certain way or manner and when others are unable to complete the task exactly like how I wanted it to be done, I get a little aggravated. On campus I am, and have been heavily involved in a few on campus organizations where I acquired leadership positions. Being a student in the MBA program while also simultaneously being on the executive board of three organizations was not an easy feat. I became bombarded with obligations and I can admit that I did not do my best at delegating roles and tasks as effectively as I should have to help me maneuver better.
There are some opportunities that I have noticed on how to become a better person and leader. To become a better leader, I have immersed myself in physical activity. I work out every weekday morning at 7:00am and I have found that the physical exercise helps boost start my day and I have become more productive. Also, I find enjoyment in reading articles about various current event topics to stay abreast on what is going on in the world. Have more of an understanding of worldly issues can help you become a better leader since you have had the opportunity to research other methods and ways of doing things. Although it is a requirement through the School of Business and Industry, all of the summer internships that I have done served as huge opportunities for me to learn how to not only be a part of a team, but lead a small team.
Because of this experience, I am able to confidently enter into the workforce because I have learned skills that are transferrable to many aspects of life. Another opportunity is to become well-versed in technology and hone in on those skills. This world that we live in is constantly changing and becoming more and more technologically advanced. So while I am in my younger years, I believe it is pertinent to learn more about technology and learn those skills so that I can further set myself a part from other leaders in the world. Though there are many, but I feel like of the major threats to be being a leader is how my colleagues view me. While I may be under the impression that I am open and welcoming, others may not view me in that light and it could stunt my growth on how I want to move forward as a leader. My colleagues can also be a threat because they may feel the need to always compete with me so I must always stay on my toes and not let my guard down so I don’t get looked over for new opportunities to lead and serve. Action Plan For the past two summer, I have worked as a pharmaceutical sales representative with Eli Lilly and Company. This line of work is not the traditional 9am-5pm, go into an office and sit at your desk type of job.
It is extremely unorthodox seeing as though there is no office that I had to report to each day, my manager did not even live in the same city as me, and there were technically no set hours of when I had to work. Being in this profession, it has taught me to be very independent, autonomous, and disciplined since there was no one there to hold my hand and walk with me every step of the way. This is actually my ideal work environment and I am pleased to announce that I have accepted a full-time offer with such an amazing company. Being a pharmaceutical sales representative, you are basically your own business owner. You are given a list of over 50 customers in various cities who are encompassed of doctors, nurses, nurse practitioners, etc. and from there you must create your own routing to see who you can see when, based on their availabilities. From there, I am tasked to do essentially a needs evaluation of each customer and figure out how I can better service that customer and that office so in turn I am servicing their patients. Doing work like this, it is imperative that I have good communication skills, and being an active listener, being a doer, and motivating my team when necessary. I keep my eyes on the prize which is the patient who can benefit from the medication I am offering my customers.
Being that I am so young and I have counterparts that are oftentimes 20+ years my senior, it is refreshing to hear feedback from my customers when they tell me how much of a leader I am and how I am on the right track to really be a name to be reckoned with in my field. This course has taught me a lot of new things about myself, and also reaffirmed things that I already knew. I will ensure that I am highlighting my strengths in and outside of the workplace and classroom, as well as improve upon my weaknesses such as trying to be superwoman and thinking I can do everything without the assistance of others. Also, I am ensuring that I have a plan and am setting both short-term and long-term goals. In this class, my group members and I presented on the Path-Goal Theory. The Path-Goal Theory is a theory based on specifying a leader’s style or behavior that best fits the employee and work environment. I will always keep this theory in mind because it is crucial to not only having an effective team but being an effective leader to have the ability to pinpoint the needs of others.
As we know, not everyone responds the same way to a person’s leadership style. So coming into an environment where you must be versatile and meet your team where they all individually need to be met shows great effort. For example, since I have decided on a profession, I have two teams that I am working with which are my list of customers as well as my other teammates in my geographic location. I have to find the balance between both so that I can see how to be a better teammate to my geographic team. I will do this by taking what I learn in the field with my doctors and etc. and bring it back as both a learning experience and a teaching tool just in case they are running into the same sort of issues. On the other hand, I will realize that no two customers are exactly the same. They all require different things of me and I must be prepared to help them in any capacity in which they need assistance. This style of work really excites me and I am confident that with the skills and lessons that I have learned in this course, I am more prepared now than ever to be a stronger leader and better person overall.
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