This assignment is initially discussing about the characteristic difference between “management” and “leadership”, how their skills are engaged in an organisation including with their roles and responsibilities. Then the discussions follows to the main objectives of this assignment, those are (i) Identifying and evaluating the personal and professional skills which are required for a successful manager and evaluating how he/she meets the organisational or personal goals; importantly covering the key managerial/leadership skills such as time management, running meetings, making presentations, stress management, etc. (ii) Providing a range of suitable practical methods for developing or improving those skills (iii) Identifying preferred learning style by using an effective personal audit in order to develop managerial/leadership skills (iv) Developing a workable development plan in order to develop or improve those skills to become an effective manager according to SMART and SWOT analysis (v) Reviewing/monitoring process and feedback what I have undertaken in order to achieve those skills and finally (vi) Concluding how/what I have learned from my analysis and how I can use this similar approach for future development.
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The Manager plays a vital role in order to achieve and improve the productivity and organizational objectives. He/She is responsible for managing, planning, distributing and monitoring the work of their employees, achieving the effective utilization of the organization resources and brings the employee’s objectives along with the organization objectives. Good managers are born and not made. Managers are autocratic in nature, they do the right things to avoid risk and they formulate the policies/ systems to consistent manner; also they are rigid with their subordinates (Hollingsworth, 1999). Managers mainly rely on strategy, structure and systems (Watson, 1983).
Leaders are those who involved in the process of setting a new direction or vision for their group to follow and motivating them by satisfying their basic need in order to achieve the common organization goal, it is the process of influencing the performance of the employee by respecting their freedom towards the group goals. Good leaders are made and not born. Leaders are democratic in nature, they do the things right and they won’t formulate the policy they use to predict with set examples; also they like risks and flexible with the other group members (Hollingsworth, 1999). Leaders mainly rely on style, staff, skills and shared goals (Watson, 1983).
2.0 Outcome 1 – Methods to improve Personal and Professional skills
This part of the assignment mainly identifies and evaluates the importance of personal and professional skills which are required for a successful manager and how he/she meets the organisational or personal goals; importantly covering the key managerial skills such as time management, running meetings, making presentations, stress management, etc. In addition, it provides a range of suitable practical methods for developing or improving those skills.
2.1 Skills for successful manager and its importance
The manager’s important role in any organization or workplace is that to manage the people/worker/subordinates in order to meet the organization objective or goal and also promote positive employee motivation and employee morale. The manger’s activities are very complex and varied because they have to coordinate with all the organization resource such as human resource, material resource, financial resource and informational resource in order to achieve the overall organization goal (Pride, Hughes and Kapoor, 2008, P187). The role of the manger is very crucial as they have to deal or handle various people. Therefore, the successful manager must have the personal and professional skills which are very essential and listed in page-**; and utilize them in a proper way, so that they can perform their duties and activities efficiently.
Personal skills are his/her own development skills in order to achieve his/her career goals in life and it can be continuously developed on day to day basis; For example, wants to become a manager. Professional skills are working environment skills in order to achieve organisation goals and it can be developed and utilized whenever the opportunity arises in the working environment; For example, becoming an effective manager. In practical, the effective manager must have and develop the both skills in order to achieve his/her goals as well as the organisation goals.
To be an effective manager at all level of organisation (i.e lower, medium and top level), they need to possess combination of all the skills listed above. Among these skills, the first four are the very important skills to become a successful manager. This part of assignment evaluates how these skills are important and providing a range of best suitable methods for developing or improving these skills, which enables me to meet both organisational and own goals and objectives.
2.1a Evaluation and Methods to develop – Time management
Time management skill is one of the valuable assets for manager, and it helps how the valuable time is effectively utilized/ managed in order to meet the goals. As time costs money, it is lost and not recoverable if the time is wasted. Therefore successful manager must find every opportunity to save time in order to improve productivity/profit by analysing workload and understanding subordinate’s capability, controlling time wasting activities, etc. The key elements to the effective time saving/managing skills are listed below:
Define the goals to meet the deadline
Budget the man-hour or cost
Plan and schedule the workload
Provide marginal budget for unforeseen workload or changes
Prioritize and organise accordingly
Distribute the workload to subordinates
Review and track the planned task
Use and maintain time management log for daily or weekly
Control the wastage time and use effectively
Guide/encourage the subordinate to improve production
Above listed elements of time management skill can be achieved by set of workable practical methods such as procedures, policies, spreadsheets, checklists, etc. For example, Gantt chart for planning and scheduling, time log sheet for consumed budget hour and to estimate balance hour respective to task, Weekly progress report for reviewing/tracking the planned task, etc.
As I want to become a manager, I need to develop or improve time management skill. Though majority of this skill and key elements can be developed while working as manager, I have developed lots of key elements of time managing skill while studying this course, in order to achieve the course outcome. For example, time log sheet enabled me to maintain and review how I am spending daily hours (see appendix-**), Gantt chart for assignment work (see appendix-**), etc.
2.1b Running meeting
Organising meeting skill is one of the vital skills for the manager, and it helps to get collective decision-making, better focused discussion, to improve the productivity, to motivate the employee, etc to build an effective organisation. Importantly it is a best place to communicate the management/project objectives to team-worker or other discipline employee, to reward the performer, etc (Pocket, 2006, P47-69). The key elements for the effective running meeting skills are listed below:
Defining the purpose of meetings
Prepare agenda (meeting time, place, chairperson, attendees)
Circulate agenda and Invite the participants in advance
Welcome the participants with refreshments
Clear and focused discussion by using visual aids
Encourage group discussion
Take notes for agreed outcomes/ actions/ responsibilities
Review past meeting outcomes
Control and avoid repeated discussion
Encourage feedback/idea and questionnaire session
Prepare minutes of meeting and circulate
Therefore above mentioned components of meeting running skill can be achieved by set of workable practical methods such as procedures, agenda, minutes of meeting, forum, meeting templates, spreadsheets, etc.
Though the key elements of this skill can be developed when the opportunity arises probably while working as manager, I have developed lots of key elements of running meeting skill while studying Strategic management course in order to achieve the group task as a chair person for SILVER SPOON group. For example, agenda sheet enabled me to invite participants and define the meeting perspective, venue and time (see appendix-**) and Minutes of meeting enabled to confirm the action plan to group member (see appendix-**), etc.
2.1c Making presentation
Presentation skill is one of the important skills for a successful manager in many aspects of their work, and to communicate efficiently in a group of audience. The most important factors to consider in presentations are audience attitudes, actions, needs and responsibilities throughout the presentation. This enables the audience or subordinates in many ways such as time saving or effort, make money, help to take advantage of opportunities, make them more popular and famous, and increase their curiosity and enjoyment (Suzy, 2008, P6-10). The great presentation is a process and combination of the following key elements:
Think and research on the topic before presentation
Organize the content with introduction, body and conclusion
Attract the audience by eye contact, posture, movement, gesture, etc
Interact the audience to think, not only listen
Deliver the presentation with confidence
Use visual aids effectively
Overcome presentation nerves and avoid vague language
Effective communication skill by oral/written/drawing
Keep it short and simple (KISS)
Capability of answering the audience questions
Therefore above mentioned key elements of presentation can be achieved by set of workable practical methods such as Power-point slides, handouts, seminars, etc. As manager gives presentation in various groups meeting with subordinates/supervisor/ clients, using techniques should be graspable/ understandable by audience.
Actually these above mentioned key elements can be developed while working or when the opportunity arises. Though I have gained bit of presentation skill in Strategic management course when presenting SIVLER SPOON group task, I must need to develop this skill, where I have lot of scopes to improve.
2.1d Stress management
Stress is one of the person’s reactions of the body and mind to change. It is very important for everyone to manage and control the stress, to become healthier and happier. Effected stress produces physiological, psychological, stress related issues on him/her. Manager has high chances of developing stress due to various demands such as task demands, Role demands, Interpersonal demands and Organisational structure. Though it can not be fully avoidable, but it can be manageable by using effective stress management skill (Robbins and Decenzo, 2008, P206). Overstress resulting to decrease the productivity, decrease profit, leading to mistake, etc. Therefore, it is mandatory for manager to have stress management skill in order to avoid stress related problems; that is control or manage the stress by using time management, running meeting, making presentation skills. The stress management skill is the combination of following key elements (Cartwright and Cooper, 1997, P416):
Recognise, anticipate, monitor and regulate stressors
Redesign the task or work environment
Establish flexible work schedules
Encourage participative management
Include employees in career development
Build a good and supportive team
Establish fair employment policies
Find alternative routes/solutions
Actually this is the follow-up skill of Time management, Running meeting and Making presentation. So, the above mentioned key elements of stress management skill can be achieved by using same set of workable practical methods, which used in others.
Actually these above mentioned key elements can be developed while working as manager. So I am looking chance for developing this skill. I also feel that, with remarkable development of other managerial/leadership key skills, I can easily develop the stress management skill.
Outcome 2 – Personal skills audit
3.1 Preferred learning style
As I want to become a more effective manager, I need to learn several skills which are listed in page-**. This part of assignment examines my learning style by undertaking personal skill audit, which helped me to identify my current possessing skills, knowledge, abilities, values and preferred learning style along with my strengths and weaknesses in order to achieve my effective manager goal. Appendix-** illustrates the Learning style questionnaire (LSQ) with my answer, and its result proves shows that my preferred learning style is PRAGMATIST.
3.2 Strengths and weaknesses
As I am PRAGMATIST, my learning style strengths and weaknesses are listed below:
Tries to put own ideas, theories and techniques into workplace
Innovative and experimental
Analyse and evaluate with various options
Set targets, and tries to achieve them
Works well independently
Acts without caution end up with negative outcome
Task oriented rather than people oriented
Undervalues personal feelings
Is impatient and needs full control
Likes to work independently
Referenced from Week-1 hand outs and (Honey and Mumford, 1992)
3.3 How it affects my skills development
As I audited and analysed my strengths and weaknesses of my learning style, below discussion reveals that how it will affect and how to overcome in order develop the four key skills for an effective manager. For example,
As I am pragmatist, my planning/target may fail due to without taking any caution or overriding the task to others or effectively not using the source, which clearly affect my performance. However as strength I set/try to achieve the target with ideas, techniques and options, so I try to plan the task with right person/man-hour. Also assigning right task to right person and monitoring frequently enables to track and avoid last minute problems.
As I am pragmatist, giving more importance to the task rather than people or their feelings, may results to generate huge stress due to poor quality/inefficient project outcome. However as strength I take opportunity to experiment and evaluate with various options, so I try to encourage/educate the subordinates in order to meet the task. Further more, frequently reviewing the task progress and rewarding person enables to avoid workplace stress.
Outcome 3 – Personal development plan
4.1 SMART analysis
Objectives and goals are widely used in planning and design. It is a composite statement of the end target, to be attained within the specified time and schedule. SMART is one of the key methods to create an effective objective or goal. So, the SMART objectives are:
Specific : Objectives should be well defined and clearly state that what is to be achieved
Measurable : Objectives needs to be quantifiable in order to measure or monitor the goal process and confirm whether it is in favourable condition. Performance could be quantitative and qualitative measure that allows us to make changes if anything goes wrong during the process and stay on track to meet the targets
Achievable : Objective is within the capability and ability to reach the most desirable target. Also it must be realistic and appropriate for the business or activity
Relevant : Objective should be specific and must relate to the short or long term business target
Time defined : The end result should be accomplished with in the targeted deadline
(Mike, 2008, P**)
4.2 SWOT analysis
SWOT analysis is one of the powerful tools to analyse the personal strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This process enables to improve the strength, overcome/minimise the weakness/gaps as well as taking the greatest opportunities that are available. Appendix-** explores my SWOT analysis for my personal development and it is in Edexcel level 7 format.
4.3 Personal development plan (PDP)
Planning is a logical component of the management process. PDP is an ongoing process throughout our life, which helps to manage/develop any individual skills through the process of self learning, reflection and structure on how to achieve their target/goal.
In order to become a successful manager, I must have to plan and define the effective objective by using SMART analysis in order to accomplish the target within the scheduled time. Also I have to assess/examine my strengths and weakness by SWOT analysis in order to develop 4 managerial key skills listed in Outcome 1. From outcome-2, I established my learning style is PRAGMATIST using personal skills audit with my learning strengths and weaknesses.
As I have analysed myself thoroughly, my PDP for achieving 4 effective managerial key skills are explored in the appendix-**. In that exploring process, my PDP mainly intended to help the following:
Improve my personal and professional managerial skill
Identify and develop my transferable skill
Focus my thinking and plan forward and set realistic targets
Articulate my personal goal and objective
Evaluate progress towards the achievement
This assignment work helped me to understand the personal/professional skills for an effective manager and its importance, analyse suitable workable methods for developing these skills, identifying my learning skills with learning strengths and weaknesses, developing a personal development plan by SMART and SWOT analysis, Monitoring and feedback undertaken, etc. Especially, I gained thorough understanding of 4 Key skills in addition to other skills for an effective manager. From this overall task, I have developed a skill that how to set the target, analysing pros and cons, prepare a planning/route and schedule (viable and time), budgeting, analysing strength and weakness, monitoring and reflecting, scope for efficiency/improvisation, and finally meet the target. By using this PDP and methods, it could be very grateful to succeed in my academic career and also it helps me to efficiently utilize these skills in my future employment in order to make a successful and imaginative organisation.
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Professional development is very important for every professional, irrespective of their employment. It plays a vital role in order to step up their career ladder. For every business and organization, this advanced professional development program boost up their employee’s personal and professional managerial/leadership skills and knowledge in order to achieve their business objective and improve the productivity. If the managements are lack in those skills and knowledge then they won’t be resisting in the Industrial market. The objectives of this assignment are mainly focused on how to improve the managerial/leadership skills including time management, running meetings, making presentation and stress management and these are very important skills for managers/leaders. This assignment works on to identify and evaluate the strategy or method for developing the personal and professional managerial /leadership skills as listed above. Also this covers the learning strategies and styles which will be very useful for me to build my positive skills and to overcome my weaknesses in order to improve my skills and knowledge. By using this development plan and method, it could be very grateful to succeed at my university and also it helps me to utilize these skills in my future employment in order to make an effective and imaginative organization. foster
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Appendix – 1
Appendix – 2
Bibliography using Harvard Referencing System
Personal / Professional skills
Why it is necessary
It is cost effective and non recoverable
Helps to plan, prioritize, organise, schedule and budget the work
It is vital to get the solution from group or to improve the productivity or to motivate the employee
Helps to discuss/convey the message among the group such as work plan, progress, new awards, etc
To convey key points or improve delivery style
Effective visual aid
To analyse and reduce stress developed in job/ life
To improve or control physical/emotional situation
Self-awareness and self-management
To communicate clearly and correctly by written or oral or sketch, etc
Map out the ideas/objective thinking in a proper way
Problem solving and Decision making
To provide/decide best or lesson learnt solution, when the problem arises in workplace or subordinate
To conduct appraisals and guide subordinates for their career development
Maintain a performance record of subordinate for easy access and feedback
Recognise and encourage the top performers
Team development &Motivation
To motivate/encourage the team towards project/organisation goal by monitoring progress
To listen/observe what is happening in the group
Thoroughly understanding the situation and problem
Well as I begin I would like to remember you one point that no one can withstand in the market of an organization when the people lack certain skills and knowledge. In order to ensure for proper skills and knowledge a proper idea about the development of their skills are briefed in this report. Keeping in mind, the four skills developed in this report were time management, stress management, running meeting, and group discussion. Not only the skills but also the learning styles were discussed. What are the techniques and objectives to meet the desired characteristics? How to improve the management skills for the effective leadership? The main concept of learning is mentioned clearly in this report which may be useful in the future requirements for an organization to be effective and imaginative.
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