Today organizations are been faced by many leadership challenges that deteriorate the performance of the organization and nosedive their profit margins resulting to closing down of some businesses. Globalization has improved the financial background of many people thus developing a mature market that demands provision of sophisticated products. In the event business competition has increased resulting to an unpredictable market balance which is influenced by market forces like political, social and economic. Therefore, top executives of organizations should regularly nurture leadership skills in their employees to help their organizations strive in the ever changing business environment as (Gilber & Goldsmith, 2000). According to Miller et al., (2001), top executives should develop a passion that will enable them initiate the strategic implementation of leadership training programs into their organizational culture preparing them to effectively plan for future challenges.
Moreover, it is advisable to have employees that can readily fill in the gap of leaders in an organization to prevent paralysis of the functions of the organization if current leaders face situations which makes them incompetent to carry on with their duties. For instance the study conducted by Miller et al., (2001), depicts a high turnover of Chief Executive Officers as they shifted from one organization to another looking for greener pastures. Catastrophic events that kill many people including top executive officers also increase the importance of implementing leadership training programs (Hayes, 2007). US has also suffered from these events for instance the terrorist attack that hit the twin towers which also lead to the collapse of other buildings such as Oracle and AON insurances among others, the fire department also lost many employees (Miller et al., 2001). Furthermore, most top executives in US are baby boomers and thus have approached their retirement period and the generation Y portray limited possibility of increasing the availability of leaders in the employment market because of the delinquent behaviors they have adopted (Miller et al., 2001). Therefore, organizations need to create more opportunities for leadership training to improve their experiential learning model. This will help employees to develop strategic thinking that advocates rational decision making thus improving their competence and performance of the organization (Leskiw & Singh 2007).
Being the manager of Applebees Bar and Grill company my role is to formulate and implement strategic hiring plans that will result to the employment of the required quality and quantity of work force that stimulate the KSAOs (Knowledge, Skills, Ability and Other Characteristics) of the hiring strategies (Smith, 2008). I have also devised an appropriate company operation plan by incorporating leadership training programs into the culture and structure of the organization (Leskiw & Singh 2007). Furthermore, I monitor and regularly evaluate the performance of employees and the working environment to determine the effectiveness of the training staff. Eventually an environment where each employee is conscious and can make strategic decisions in regards to the growth of the business without supervision is created (Hayes, 2007). In my perspective leaders should be all round individuals and thus can fit in any department of an organization to successfully developing leadership skills in employees. According to Smith (2008), leadership skills can be nurtured and developed in other employees through the effectiveness of the current leader who should be conversant with the operations of an organization (that is the technicalities, stipulated policies and performance of the organization in the market) (Leskiw & Singh 2007). Smith (2008), also says that qualifications and ability to competently apply educational knowledge in the operations of an organization should balance with the social aspect of the leaders to enable them be sensitive, caring and understanding.
I have also implemented management training programs that enable employees to occasionally shift from one department to another and develop the necessary skills required to complete tasks assigned to that department. This promotes team work in the working environment thus decreasing instances of conflict development. Staff members also encourage each other as they share one objective; to accomplish the stipulated goals of the company (Waski, 2005). In case of absence of an employee his duties are attended too because the employees are capable of performing most of the duties in every department. My strategies compare with the recipe for effective leadership formulated by Smith (2008), because he also thinks that leaders should not only be good in their roles but should also be effective by spreading their knowledge and skills to the other workmates. According to him an effective leader is always mentally alert and can account for all his actions (Smith, 2008).
Smith (2008), explains that effective leaders should ease the communication in an organization up and down the hierarchy command by giving clear and precise instructions that will not conflict with other instructions that had been outlined earlier. A leader should be able to describe the problems that the organization is facing curbing its operations and growth by gathering facts from all sources without discriminating, to analyze them precisely thus develop the appropriate ability required to solve them (Smith, 2008). This should help him to prepare an accurate report that is easily understood by all members of the organization, as it will stipulates necessary steps to be implemented into the culture of the organizations to solve the problems (Smith, 2008). Therefore, appropriate mechanisms that will prepare the organization to face future challenges will be devised. He further explains that the vocabulary used by the leader in issuing instructions or in conversations with other staff members will depict his ability to communicate effectively (Smith, 2008). Therefore, the expertise displayed by the leaders is replicated in the leadership training programs incorporated into the structure of the organization (Smith, 2008).
As the manger, I encourage staff members to first detect issues that portray the need for leadership training in the company. This increases their passion and dedication in attending the training programs and efficiently incorporating the skills acquired into their daily routine (Hayes, 2007). This has helped them to be independent helping me to plan the organizations functions and culture appropriately. According to Leskiw & Singh (2007), successful organizations in Canada have formulated mechanism that enables them to access the needs of their organization. Leskiw & Singh (2007), further explain that through needs assessment those organizations are able to devise objectives that govern the running of leadership training programs and adoption of effective leadership skills that help to satisfy the needs of those organizations. Giber & Goldsmith (2000), says that accessing necessary needs of organizations helps strategic plans, organizational culture, structure and the functions of the human resource manger to be consistent thus allowing organizations to effectively incorporate leadership training programs into their structure. For instance the needs assessment strategy devised by Massachusetts-based Bose Corporation helped them to effectively utilize future opportunities to improve the performance of the Corporation because of the urgency created by the assessment process (Gilber & Goldsmith, 2000). This same concept was used by Winston Hodgins, the President and Chief Executive Officer of Manitoba Lotteries Corporation (MLC), in 2000 when he discovered the urgency of re-evaluating the management programs in the Corporation as they were not consistent and thus curbed the capability of the Corporation to overcome future challenges (Hayes, 2007).
Leskiw & Singh (2007), emphasizes on the importance of selecting an appropriate group of employees that will attend the leadership training programs. This maximizes the benefits attained from training employees, improves the potential and integrity of the employees and accomplishes future objectives of an organization (Leskiw & Singh 2007). They further explain that the selected group will effectively train the other employees as they perform their duties because they understand them better and thus will capitalize on their strong key characteristics to nurture leadership skills in them. This is a principle that I highly need to incorporate in my management strategies as it will help me decrease the overall expenses incurred by Applebees Bar and Grill Company because of reduction in training costs. The overhead expenses that are incurred by the Human Resource Department are greatly contributed by the training costs. This will further help the company to acquire required technology that was hard to incorporate into the department because of the strained utilization of money allocated to Human Resources Department. Furthermore, I will be able to effectively devise the same strategies used in the Dimensions in Leadership Programs (DIL) of MLC (Hayes, 2007).
In Applebees Bar and Grill company honesty and integrity virtues are greatly emphasized encouraging all the staff members to emanate them. This creates a trustworthy working environment where obedience-loyalty principles are highly stimulated. Thus effective management communication ensues (Gilber & Goldsmith, 2000). This helps me to effectively monitor and evaluate the leadership training module and thus select qualified and dedicated staff members that ensures every employee receives the training program with ease and fully understands leadership principles in regards to their competence (Gilber & Goldsmith, 2002). Hence the effectiveness of the training programs as every employee in Applebees Bar and Grill Company is satisfied and encouraged by the opportunity of advancing their careers. According to Smith (2008), these virtues helps leaders to be courageous and ready to undertake risks as they will have devised risk management mechanisms. Among the principles of Applebees Bar and Grill Company corporate social responsibility is highly encouraged as the development of our company greatly depends on the perception of the company that customers have. Therefore we utilize every opportunity that we have to train our employees to adopt leadership skills that perpetuate corporate social responsibility (Smith, 2008).
Effective leaders should stimulate a keen interest towards their society, environment and fellow workmates. A profound relationship between them and the subordinate employees is developed because they depict interest into the employee’s welfare thus developing a good employment relationship which encourages employee engagement (Perez & Riggio, 2003). In the event leaders will be able to make rational conclusions on decision making and therefore be sympathetic when employees need help and tactfully reprimand wrongful acts of employees helping them to understand their mistakes and willingly change (Smith, 2008). According to Perez & Riggio (2003), emotional attachment depicts the social relationship that ensues between people. Therefore if a leader tends to be moody, arrogant and always demanding the relationship that will ensue between the leader and his subordinate employees will be anti social thus affecting the work output the staff members. Perez and Riggio (2003), recommends regular leadership training programs to be incorporated and well planned for in the organizational culture. This will help to tame the psychological behavior of staff members in an organization enhancing development of required interpersonal skills (Perez & Riggio, 2003).
According to Wasti (2005), organizations contain different categories of employees therefore relying on evaluation collected from one category can be misleading as they do not always depict the traits of others. Therefore Wasti (2005), proposes a commitment evaluation model that defines the position of every employee in regards to job satisfaction, empowerment, motivation, supervision, clarity in role played and occurrence of conflicts in an organization. This is the same model used by MLC to detect the effectiveness of DIL and how it relates to the performance of the Corporation (Hayes, 2007). I also undertake the effort of evaluating the commitment displayed by staff members towards leadership training by studying the behavior and attitude of staff members working in the customer care department. However, I do not effectively cater for the behavior and attitude of all employees in the company because my evaluation only covers the customer care department (Wasti, 2005).
While conducting this research, I noticed a limitation of the practice portrayed by the literature used. Information that was related to big corporations was relayed but small industries which in my perspective require a workforce that stimulates leadership skills, because the quantity of employees is lesser and thus perform varied operations of the business. Also, only few organizations have implemented the proposed commitment evaluation model therefore limiting available information that can be used to guide other companies to follow suit. Most of the organizations that have implemented the commitment evaluation model are from the same industry (that is marketing organizations) further increasing the demand for the information by the different industrial sectors (Wasti, 2005). Although the information I have gathered through this study is limited I will utilize it maximally to enable maximum satisfaction to be gained from the implemented leadership training programs. I will also outsource from other Human Resource Managers on the strategies they have adopted and collaborate with them to improve provision of leadership training programs in our companies thus indirectly benefiting others people conducting a similar research because more information will be availed.
From the conducted research it is evident that leadership training improves the functions of an organization as every employee is independent and thus can make rational decision helping the organization to effectively manage its problems and manage risks. Team work which bridges the gaps depicted in the hierarchy chain of command by improving the working environment can also be achieved through implementation of leadership training programs in an organization. Moreover, employees become motivated and thus increase their devotion in accomplishing the objectives and goals of an organization because they get opportunities of advancing their careers. Furthermore, these training programs help organizations to effectively curb future challenges that can deteriorate the growth of an organization.
Gilber, D. & Goldsmith, M., (2000). Best Practices in Leadership Development Handbook. San Fransisco, CA: Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer.
Hayes, J., (2007). “Evaluating a Leadership Development Program”. Organization Development Journal, 25(4), 89.
Leskiw, S. & Singh, P., (2007). Leadership Development: Learning from Best Practices. Toronto, Canada: School of Administrative Studies, York University.
Miller, L., Caldwell, K. & Lawson, L. C., (2001). “The Leadership Investment: How the World’s Best Organizations gain Strategic Advantage through Leadership Development”. HR Magazine, 46(2), 152-153.
Perez, J. E. & Riggio, R. E., (2003). Nonverbal Skills and Psychopathology. NY: Oxford University Press.
Wasti, S. A., (2005). “Commitment Profiles: Combination of Organizational Commitment Forms and Job Outcomes”. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 67(1), 290-308).