Introduction what really count.” (Dearstyne, 2014) So now

Introduction

A
manager can either be a valuable asset to an organization by providing
motivation, encouragement, and praise or be a toxic leader and become a
liability to the organization. A strong leader will have many good traits and
characteristics. They will bring out the best in the organizations employees by
inspiring, (not intimidation) to be their best. Strong characteristics include
but are certainly not limited to: Good listening skills, being approachable,
coaching skills, empathetic, and be able to correct and provide feedback in a
positive manner. Week traits may include: blaming employees for his/her own
failures, incompetence, micro management, emotional and manages through fear. So
in contrast “leaders are not necessarily flashy, charismatic, as a matter of
fact recent studies confirm that the more down-to-earth traits of

steadfastness, energy,
honesty, and integrity are what really count.” (Dearstyne, 2014)

So
now that you have a better idea of what strong and weak managers traits can look
like, ask yourself which traits you have and conduct a self-assessment.  Knowing one’s self, strengths and weaknesses
is step one of forming a strong management foundation.  Successful managers, leaders and supervisors
understand that only through complete honesty can a true assessment of their
skills, traits and motivations determine where emphasis is needed for
self-improvement, growth and professional development.

Therefore,
a honest self-assessment of ones good and bad traits is what must be done. Prior
to the assessment and identification of Jeff’s managerial traits, Lets cover
some background and work history on Mr. Jeffrey Myers. This information will
provide the reader with a better understanding of how Jeff’s work experience,
role models, leaders, and their different management methodologies shaped
Jeff’s ideas of management, traits both good, bad and of course how these
traits later evolved.

 

Personal
Situational Analysis

As
a young teen Jeff worked at odd jobs in his neighborhood to make some pocket
change. Jeff’s first work experience was working for his neighbors by helping
them to set out and bring in fruits and vegetables for their fruit stand. This
job only lasted one season. Jeff made fifty cents in the morning for setting up
the fruits and vegetables for the stand and another fifty cents for bringing
them in at night. He saved every cent and one day made the mistake of showing
his savings of one hundred dollars to the two sisters that ran the fruit stand
and was promptly fired at the end of the week. One could only speculate that
the sisters wanted to save the dollar a day in pay. What did Jeff learn?
Supervisors were not to be trusted.  This
was Jeff’s first work experience. There is no real need to go into the handful
of part time jobs that Jeff held as a teenager, so let’s jump straight into
Jeff’s first real work experience, The United States Army.

Jeff
enlisted in the United States Army on 18 October 1983 and after serving twenty
one years retired from the US Army on 19 Oct 2004. Durring that first year Jeff
was in for a significant emotional event when and a 180 degree flip of life. It
all began day one, when disembarking the military bus on Fort McClellan, Al.
From the first moment of arrival a US Army Drill Sergeant was in Jeffs face
yelling and screaming. Nothing could be done fast enough or well enough to
please this camaflouged wearing Tasmanian devil sporting a round brown stetson
smokey the bear hat, and so this continued for six long weeks. This was my
first taste of US Army management which was tucked away for later use.

After
graduating basic training and later advanced initial training it was time to
leave Fort McClellan and move on a permant change of station to Jeff’s first
duty station which was Graenwhore Germany serving as a Military Policeman (MP),
one of six MP’s in a Field Artillary Battery. It was in Germany the Jeff was
introduced to his Squad Leader and Platoon Sergeant. As it turned out, both
were perfect examples of what a good leader should avoid. The squad leader, a
first line supervisor was anacholic and didn’t seem to care much about
mentoring or teaching his young private (Jeff) much about the Army. The Platoon
Sergeant was strictly a hands off leader with the lower subordinates and seemed
to delegate everything down the chain of command to the Squad Leaders. After
surviving this first tour Jeff received orders for West Point, NY to serve as a
Military Policeman preforming law enforcement duties serving the Academy. It
was at West Point that Jeff met his first real mentor in the Army. SGT Glenn
was Jeffs first line supervisor and provided the necessary coaching and
mentorship that was instrumental in Jeff’s first promotion to a leadership
position. The rank of Sergeant was and still is a siginificant event in a Soldiers
career. Jeff was promoted several more times while serving in the Army and met
meny good and not so good leaders until finally retiring in 2004 as a Sergeant
First Class.

There
was certainly a learning curve in becoming a good military supervisor, which
came through experience, mentorship and professional military education,
however; in 2004 it was time to move on into the civilian world bringing twenty
one years of military experience  and
leadership skills.

Vision,
Core Values, Mission, Qualities, Target Market

Jeff
is currently a DA Civilian working for the department of the Army as a Training
Developer managing a team of three civilians, mostly all old retired military
guys like Jeff. Over the course of twenty one years in the US Army there was
plenty of time to learn regarding what worked best and what not to do when it
came to management and leadership. Jeff’s vision, core values, mission, and qualities
have changed since the days of active duty, for instance my management and
leadership style had to change a bit when entering the civilian workforce even
though the target market was still the United States Government it still
required a different management style.

Jeff’s
core values of patriotism and service or the qualities of selfless service,
accountability, focus and drive and adaptability didnt really change with the
transition from military to the civilian world because they still applied in
the new position as a department of the Army Civilian serving the Army. The one
quality that best served me in both careers is adaptability and knowing when it
is time to change is one of Jeff’s greatest strengths. It took some time
(years) but Jeff finally recognized that the younger generation of Soldiers
enlisting into the Army required a different management style that his
generation. They required a little softer touch and often times needed the
reason why they had to accomplish a specific task, not just because “I said
so!” This carried over into Jeff’s civilian career as a Deraprment of the Army
Civilian leading a team of three training developers, one Boomer, one Gen Xer
and a Melinnial.  They were all different
and all required a bit of a different touch but they all had one thing in
common as well. They were all prior military and that certainly helped because
we all had a commonality.

Conclusion

            Management and leadership styles
will change over the span of a career as long as one is willing to learn and
probably more importantly be willing to adapt and embrace change.

However one lesson that stands
out for me and has stuck with me is that people are different and are motivated
by different things and as a manager one must be willing accept this and relize
that there is no one cookie cutter management style for all employees. Whether
they are in the Army or are civilians expectations, perceptions and
generational /age differences in the working environment will dictate
management styles (Johnson & Johnson, 2010) but if truth be told sometimes
one still wants the misson to be accomplished without requiring an explanation
or unessary motivation, but that urge is generally pushed aside and actions are
taken based on what is best for the organization.

At
my age I do not expect to change careers again. I have served our country and
the United States Army since 1983 in one capacity or another and intend to
continue to do so until my final retirement.

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