II. study of leadership is a topic of

II. My leadership styleEffective leadership is the key to success in any organizational system.  The study of leadership is a topic of interest and relevance that transcends disciplines, with effective leaders at the helm of shaping the political, corporate and educational landscapes (to name a few). It is widespread belief that effective educational leaders are able to inspire school reform and improve student outcomes. Defining ones leadership style and vision, analyzing those leadership traits and how they subsequently translate into effective leadership practices will be discussed in this essay.  My leadership style complements my vision and is based on the premise that I do not consider myself a “leader” but a facilitator.  I believe in empowering others to reach their full potential. Motivate others through the development of their own leadership capacity. Educational leaders may possess a number of leadership qualities that essentially characterize their leadership style. Although no single test can definitively determine an individual’s leadership style, one survey was designed specifically for that purpose. According to Jeffrey Glanz, a self-assessment can be used to determine an educators Natural Leadership Quality (N.L.Q.) (2004, pp.191-196). Glanz’s book Finding Your Leadership Style: A Guide for Educators, was inspired and were adaptations of the work of  British educational philosopher William Hare’s “virtues,” or characteristics of a good teacher (1993), and the  Natural Life Energy theory – the belief that people are born with innate attributes – developed by alternative medicine author Gary Null (1996). According to Glanz (2004), the results of the fifty-six (56)-statement self-assessment allows educators to categorize their leadership style into one of seven N.L.Q. types: Dynamic Aggressives, Dynamic Assertives, Dynamic Supportives, Adaptive Aggressives, Adaptive Assertives, Adaptive Supportives, and Creative Assertives.  With a score of  six out of eight, the results of my self-assessment suggest my N.L.Q. type (or leadership style) is a Dynamic Assertive, with four other types sharing the next highest score of five out of eight (see Table 1).Although I can identify with some of the primary characteristics of a Dynamic Assertive (i.e., change agents, risk takers, idealistic and introspective), there are characteristics from the other N.L.Q. types that resonate with me as well. Some of my other (self-proclaimed) strengths include warm-heartedness, easy-going (Dynamic Supportives) and driven (Creative Assertives). Online personality tests, such as the Jung Typology Test, are often easily accessible and useful in understanding one’s perceptions and proclivities. The Jung Typology Test is another self-assessment based on Carl Jung’s theory of psychological types (ref) and utilizes The Myer-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI Basics, ) to bring awareness to an individuals strengths and preferences. Upon completing the Jung  Typology Test, my results indicate that I share characteristics of two of the sixteen types – ENTJ and ENFJ (see Figure 1). In general, an ENTJ type is characterized as having a natural tendency to seek leadership, is strategic, procedural and goal-oriented, whereas an ENFJ type is sociable, empathetic, and aims to inspire and motivate others (Myer-Briggs website).  I believe these results are more attune to my own strengths leadership style and are aligned with my leadership vision. Give examplesBoth the NLQ and Jung Personality Tests have given me insight on my own personality traits, decision-making style and have great implications on how to improve as a leader. By biggest takeaways from these results are: recognizing how my leadership style and preferences are similar to or different from others; appreciating this diversity by seeking different perspectives on issues, and; developing on my less preferred options.  For these experiences, I am certain that self-reflection will help me improve as a leader in education.  

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