Leadership in Practice – Reflection Essay

Leadership in Practice – Reflection Essay

Length: 2,000 words (10% allowable either way, does not include title page, table of contents, appendix and references)

Specific requirements:

· Use a minimum of 15 references including chapter content, academic journals, papers, books sourced from the university library or other academic resources.

· UseAPA7th edition or Chicago Author-Date Use either Times New Roman (12 pt), Arial (11 pt), Calibri (11 pt)

· Set page margins to 2.54cm Double-space text including headings

· Include page number on every page


On completion of this assignment, students will be able to:

1. Develop an appreciation for the importance of leadership and its associated challenges

2. Critically evaluate key leadership themes and concepts and how they have been utilised by key industry leaders

3. Reflexively engage with the concepts of self-leadership and self-awareness

4. Demonstrate the ability to apply appropriate leadership approaches to contemporary organisations


Prepare a reflection essay (2,000 words) on your thoughts and understanding of leadership and the set practices that will be most productive for leaders operating in the global environment.


or this assignment, research and write a reflective essay that explains and expands on your understanding of leadership as an applied activity in a complex global environment marked by ‘wicked problems’. Your reflective essay should draw upon the set readings and chapter content and reflect on the question, “How have changing contexts challenged traditional leadership roles?”

The assignment will require you to:

Identify and explain some of the shortcomings in current leadership programs and practice Describe alternative approaches to current leadership programs and name the factors driving these changes Contemplate how a deeper appreciation of today’s leadership context and appropriate practices are important to assist an individual to develop their own and others’ leaderful capabilities.

While you are free to develop your own structure and essay format, the following outline provides a framework on how to approach the reflection assignment.

1. Shortcomings of Current Leadership Theory and Practice

a) The initial chapter readings lay out the shortcomings of current leadership theory and practice. The authors have identified key issues and altered environments that have been overlooked by the leadership industry. Evaluate several of the misunderstood and neglected aspects of contemporary leadership practice including private/public leadership development training programs, ‘old school’ MBA leadership courses, and consultancy bodies.

b) Describe your own personal experience with several of the shortfalls identified in the chapters and readings. You should describe your experience including your feelings, thoughts, and perceptions.

c) You should also connect your experiences to the leadership theories and frameworks discussed in your readings.

2. Aspects of Leadership Identity

a) Select several alternative leadership practices and compare the practices with the behavioural stereotypes discussed in the chapters and your readings.

b) Describe an experience you have had with one of the leadership practices and share your thoughts, feelings, and perspectives on its benefits and/or shortcomings.

c) Explain what you have learned from this experience and your new knowledge on leadership.

d) Detail what you will change or improve upon in the future and why. How might you develop or strengthen any new skills or characteristics?

e) You should link your ideas with any leadership theories and frameworks discussed in your readings.

3. Building Leadership Capabilities

a) Describe how you would craft your own approach to build leaderful capabilities in your own organisation.

b) Support your suggested approaches with the theories and models discussed in the chapters and readings.


The following suggested structure may be used to guide the organisation of your essay.

1. Cover or Title Page

2. Introduction Paragraph

a. Provide a brief overview of what you will discuss in your reflection essay.

3. Shortcomings of Current Leadership Theory and Practice

a) Evaluate several of the misunderstood and neglected aspects of contemporary leadership practice

b) Describe your own personal experience

4. Aspects of Leadership Identity

a) Alternative productive leadership practices description

b) Comparison between alternative practices with behavioural stereotypes

c) Describe personal experience

5. Building Leadership Capabilities

a. Approaches to build leadership capabilities

6. Conclusion

a. Restate the main point in your reflection analysis

7. References Page (list in alphabetical order)

8. Appendix, if needed


Upon review of your essay consider how you have demonstrated reflective thinking. Specifically:

· »  Have I identified and defined the academic concepts related to the reflective tasks using current academic literature?

· »  Have I demonstrated the ability to apply and integrate relevant salient findings, concepts or theories in my essay?

· »  Have I provided sufficient evidence and examples to support my reasoning?

· »  Have I made a connection between leadership practices and my own professional experience, knowledge and skills?

· »  Have I developed an argument and demonstrated understanding of differing points of view?

· »  Have I demonstrated understanding of the relevance of the chosen experiences to the overall concept of leadership identity and capabilities?

· »  Did I produce a quality essay? Consider the balance between academic and industry sources.

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