Negative Leadership Behavior Essay

1156 words - 5 pages

For my example of a negative leadership behavior I have encountered, I am going to use an example from my current position, and will therefore mask certain details to protect all involved. However, I assure you the pertinent facts are here and are not embellished.
The experience: Unfortunately I cannot pinpoint just one example, as this has been an ongoing problem for me. In a nutshell, my direct supervisor, who has a reactive personality, has a tendency to view all situations with an attitude of “how does this make me look good or bad,” or “why should I have to deal with this.” A situation will arise, namely someone requesting funds from our office, and her response will be to fly off the handle when I ask her how I should respond. When I respond using her words, and the recipient gets upset, she then lets people know that she will “have a talk” with me and make sure I understand how inappropriate I have been. What she fails to mention to the other party, is that I responded exactly the way I was told to respond. This has happened on multiple occasions, and although I have looked her directly in the eye and quoted our discussions, had her agree that she handled the situation badly and promised to amend her behavior, it still keeps occurring.
The leadership behavior: First and foremost, a leader takes care of his/her team. Her behavior is in direct opposition to Maslow’s Meta needs of justice and esteem. (Clark) By recognizing there is a problem and acknowledging a need to amend her behavior, but not doing so, she shows contempt for my self-esteem and any feeling of justice I may have in regards to her respect for me vs. her need to be seen as perfect to the rest of the organization. I addition to the situation detailed above, I also get the (seemingly) obligatory statements of “I want you to feel comfortable making these decisions” and “ I think you have ambition; what can I do to help you achieve your goals.” It seems difficult for me to achieve my goals, or even feel secure in my current position, if I am made to look like a reactive idiot toward the rest of our community. This does nothing to build my confidence. It also is in violation of a majority of the “JJ did tie buckle” traits of a good leader. (Clark, Big Dog & Little Dog's Performance Juxtaposition), most specifically justice, judgment, dependability, tact, integrity, unselfishness, courage, and loyalty. You may note that I wrote “(seemingly) obligatory” above. This is because her statements don’t ring true in relation to her behavior. This makes me call into question an additional “JJ did tie buckle” trait: honesty.
Additionally, her use of legitimate and expert powers, without referent power, actually makes me call into question the reality of her reward power (helping me achieve my goals). I have to wonder what she is thinking when her message clearly does not set an example, or establish esprit de corps, but she speaks frequently of her leadership...

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