ADAPTIVE LEADERSHIP BOOK REVIEW AND REFLECTION Case Solution

However, based on my personal experience and my own career path that I have covered so far I have seen that all those managers that come up and promote based on the organizational ranks and the organizational hierarchy on the basis of their technical knowledge, experience and strength develop a response pattern that can actually work well.

The authors in this book state that such default response patterns cannot work well in all the adaptive challenges or situations however, my experience tells me that it can actually work if the challenge is clear to the managers. The complexity of the challenge is another element that describes that whether a solution would resolve and overcome the challenge or not. The complexity of the challenge has an overall impact on the whole system of human elements and interrelated processes within the organization.

In my view, deciding on the correct frame of reference for leadership and supervision is highly important for organizational effectiveness and not only adapting to new elements. The leaders of an organization need to conceptualize around four different frames of reference that are symbolic, political, human resource and structural. Regarding the structural frame, the leader’s team needs to have this element for effective operations within the team and effective supervision. All the team members will have to learn the rules, procedures, practice and performance, guidelines and also how the individual’s decisions are made within the organizations. It is also recommended that there should be no corner cuts within the supervision of the leaders when the core competencies of the team leaders are being developed no matter how mundane and boring it might be.

The highest controversy for the leaders is generated by the human resource frame within the supervision process. This frame always provokes the concept of the organization and it extends it to become a family that has all the emotions, feelings, limitations, skills and the needs. Supervisors within this frame are recommended not to become human resource biased. The leader needs to instill support, compassion and empowerment as the key variables that need to be lived and encouraged as the key tenets within the team because simply adapting to implement a change or solve a problem can fail most of the time.

Leaders need to encourage their team members also to adapt to the symbolic frame of reference as this is one of the most essential themes to nurture. The rituals of storytelling should be conducted by the leaders so that legends could be passed on to others. The power of the culture should not be underestimated by the leaders of the organization but the resonating impacts of being deflating or inspirational to the organizations need to be underestimated by the supervisors.

The symbolic frame of reference can act as the glue that keeps all the members attached to the culture of the organization and the beliefs, attitudes and behavior of each of the team members. This only would promote the opportunity for shared valued and effective communication among all the team members. Overall, the idea of building the multi framing supervision style would help in building the capacity within the team because ultimately a leader needs the support of his team in adaptive management of the change.

By emphasizing on the adaptive model of leadership the authors in this book have created a mental model of leadership but again in my view, this is not the only successful model of leadership. If we define a mental model of leadership then Mental models can be defined as the representations of the reality, which are used by the individuals to understand specific phenomena. They also represent the generalizations, which influence the way of how we tend to understand this world and take action. My former organization also had its own mental model of leadership, which was characterized by rigidity, hierarchy and mechanics.

We have always learned that the world in which we live in is predictable, linear and stable. Managers of most of the organizations and my former organization have always believed that fixed structures and highly formal leadership styles provide order and clarity. However, the main issue with such mental models of leadership is that they only work within the finite contexts of the organizations for which they have been designed. Those leadership styles, which are rigid, strict, and do not take any input from their employees does not work in all the situations.

When new conditions arise and unusual situations such as global financial crisis or the highly complex challenges are faced by the organizations then such mental models do not work at all. This type of leadership mental model fails easily because they fail to adapt to the complex and the rapidly changing external environment. This is because they lead their employees in a fixed manner and the power of decision-making is lost…………………..

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