Leadership Essay Sample: Evaluating and Changing the Department's Culture

Published: 2019-08-16
Leadership Essay Sample: Evaluating and Changing the Department's Culture
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Leadership analysis Management Organizational behavior Organizational culture
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 1070 words
9 min read

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First and foremost, I will assess and evaluate the culture of the department for the past decade in order to determine the source of all the challenges and problems cropping up in the department. This will give me a glimpse of the issues as well as a deeper understanding of the culture and customs in the department. I will then hold a meeting with the two professors and share with them my vision for the department and have them give me their suggestions and comments (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). From there, I will shift the discussion on the factors that can make the department vibrant, based on case studies and facts from other leading university departments. This will help change the leadership perspective of the two senior professors and incline them towards being accommodative.

It is important to make all the members in the department feel appreciated and valued for their contribution I the time they have worked in the department. This implies that each of the 15 members will be given an equal chance to be heard when it matters and that their opinions will be acted upon. This will require a new shift in thinking from the old guard in the department, who have taken charge of most of the activities in the department for the past decade. While this may be a daunting challenge, I intend to make everybody understand that it is better to work as a team than to have few individuals making all the decisions.

Therefore, I will meet with the two leading professors and discuss with them the new direction that the department intends to take under my leadership. I will make them understand and appreciate the need to have a diverse workforce comprising of both the older and junior members as this will make the department stronger. Conversely, the two professors will continue to play a leading role in decision making due to their wealth of experience in managing the department as well as in teaching.

One important element related to the theme of power and politics is the sources of power in organizations. This enables one to comprehend the origins of different types of power and whether they are legitimate (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). The common sources of power are formal authority, ability to deal with uncertainty, control of boundaries; use of organizational structure, control of decision making processes, and knowledge and information that one has in a specific area or discipline that is relevant to an organization

Different organizations have different cultures that influence organizations processes, including change. There are also different levels of culture, which also affect organizational processes in different ways. Essentially, culture can be defined as a set of shared values, beliefs & assumptions held by individuals in an organisation, most of which are often taken for granted (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). Nevertheless, they play a very crucial role in influencing organizational processes. As such, culture affects different issues in an organization such as social interactions, individual behavior, and the way individuals perceive their workplace environment. Understanding the theme of culture in organizations is very essential in understanding how members of an organization can react to change, as well as determining whether they are suited for dealing with impending change.

Effective leadership requires the leader to build constructive relationships with their followers. Resilient and stable relationships enable the leader to play other roles of decision-making and strategic execution efficiently. Building quality relationships requires many skills in terms of social and emotional intelligence on the part of the leader (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). Personality or personality traits of the leader refers to his or her behavior.

Who Should Be Involved In Making Departmental Decisions?

Decision making processes should be inclusive. As such, the major decisions I the department, under my leadership, will be based on a teams approach. This will see everybody contribute to the discussions and deliberations before arriving at the final decision. While as the ultimate leader I will be responsible for the decisions made, I will ensure that the final decisions are arrived at after careful deliberations and consultations where necessary.

What are your constraints and opportunities?

Given the circumstances, I will face several constraints in trying to turn the situation around. One of the key constraints is on lack of support from senior members. The two leading professors have always had their way in the department and may not be willing to accept some of their powers and authorities being taken from them. There is likely to be some resistance to the new approach that I will bring in the department. Secondly, the other major constraint is inadequate resources such as the funds allocated to running the department. The department works on a limited budget, which may not be sufficient to fund the transition process taking place in the department (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). This is because of the many meetings and training sessions that are likely to take place to inform members and prepare them for the change.

On the other hand, there are some opportunities that I can harness to become successful in my bid to change the department. For example, with the unequivocal support from the dean, I have a solid foundation to go ahead with my strategic plan (Shriberg and Shriberg, 2011). Secondly, the junior members in the department are more likely to welcome my vision and leadership style as it will make them more appreciated in the department than before.

Develop A Short Term Plan To Deal With Your Immediate Problems

The short term plan will focus on changing making the members of the department understand the need for change. As such, this will involve some training ad educative meetings where I will pitch my vision to the members of the department and outline to them their specific roles in the department henceforth. As such, there will be several meetings and discussions, collecting views and listening to the members on their recommendations regarding the way forward.

Develop A Long Term Plan To Change The Culture Of The Department

The long term strategy, on the other hand, will manly revolve around implementing the changes required to make the department more vibrant. For instance, there will be changes like the reporting structures, setting up new committees, periodic evaluations, and implementing a team-based approach to making decisions.


Shriberg, A. and Shriberg, D. (2011). Practicing Leadership: Principles and Applications. Austalia: John Wiley & Sons.

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