Purpose: interview a leader to determine
The purpose of this project is to learn leadership qualities of a leadership mentor and apply those qualities to leadership theory to determine leadership effectiveness.
You are also completing this project to help you develop the skills of mentorship, interviewing, critical thinking, and writing a report. Writing is critical because in business it is important to convey information clearly and concisely and to develop a personal brand. Developing a personal brand is important because it is the ongoing process of establishing an image or impression in the minds of others especially those in positions above you. Having a strong personal brand can lead to opportunities that include promotions.
Skills: Interviewing, Writing, Critical Thinking, Developing a Personal Brand, Self-Analysis, Writing a Report.
Outcomes Met With This Project:
• use leadership theories, assessment tools, and an understanding of the role of ethics, values, and attitudes to evaluate and enhance personal leadership skills
• evaluate the culture and structure of an organization to recommend and implement improvements that support its vision, success, and sustainability
• assess the interactions between the external environment and the organization to foster responsible and effective leadership and organizational practices
You have spent the last seven weeks learning the highlights of current leadership theory. You should now have a sense of what good leadership looks like. All of this knowledge is meaningless unless we are able to see it in action, recognize it, and model it.
You will interview a leader to determine the following:
• The Leader’s general view of leadership (leader’s role, leadership style, leadership theory, etc.).
• The Leader’s approach to strategic thinking.
• The Leader’s view of organizational culture.
Step 1: Set up the Leadership Mentor Interview.
You will identify and schedule the Interview date no later than the end of Week Four. See the document Leadership Mentor Interview and Guidelines for guidance on how to identify a leader and to set up the interview. You will post information about the Interview in week 4 learning activity.
Step 2. Prepare for the Leadership Mentor Interview.
The document, Leadership Mentor Interview and Guidelines outlines how to prep for the Interview and a list of Interview Questions. You will choose a minimum of 20 questions under the following topics:
• Minimum of 5 questions about General Leadership adapted from the article:
o 23 Extraordinary Questions to Ask a Mentor
• Minimum of 3 questions about Culture (Questions about Culture (to get a good sense of culture, you will want to ask a MINIMUM of these three questions) from this list:
How would you describe the culture of this organization?
How do you help new employees understand the culture of your organization?
Is there anything about the culture that you would change?
Has the culture changed since you’ve been in this leadership role?
Does the structure of your organization match the culture?
How do your employees expect you to act?
Are employees ever surprised by how you act?
Compare how you act during times of crisis compared to how you act normally.
What qualities do you look for in someone you promote?
What kinds of rewards or incentives do you give, and what are these rewards for?
What makes your organization unique, as compared to others similar to you?
What do you look for in new employees?
How diverse is your organization?
What happens here when people make mistakes?
Has your organization defined its core values? If so, how are they communicated?
• Minimum of 3 questions about Strategic Thinking (Strategy and strategic thinking (to get a good sense of strategic thinking, you will want to ask a MINIMUM of these three questions)from this list:
What are your plans for the next 3-5 years?
Who are your biggest competitors?
Who is involved in creation of the strategy at this organization?
Describe your strategic planning process.
What is the mission and vision of this organization?
How are the mission or vision communicated throughout the organization?
How do you ensure your employees are “on board” with the mission and vision?
Would you define your day-to-day activities as “future-based” or based in the “here and now”?
How would you describe your tolerance for risk on a scale of 1 to 10?
How much have you learned in this leadership role?
How much would you like to learn in this leadership role?
Does your organization have a competitive advantage? If yes, would you say it is sustainable?
Note that some questions may not be applicable for your chosen Mentor. As a result, you will want to choose “extra” questions from this list and have them handy in case you need them.
Step 3. Attend the Leadership Mentor Interview.
The Interview can occur any time prior to Week Seven. It is recommended you complete this prior to Week 7, to allow you time in Week 7 to complete the report. You will want to take lots of notes during your interview, or record it and take notes later. You will be expected to demonstrate you asked the required number and type of questions by providing notes to the interview in the Appendix of this report.
Step 4. Write the Report.
Create a Word or Rich Text Format (RTF) report should be no more than five pages double-spaced. Those five pages do not include a required Title Page, Reference Page and Appendix. You will use the following format.
• Provide a brief summary of the Mentor you interviewed including: Name, Job Title, Organization, time with organization, and time in current role. You may also briefly describe other parts of the Mentor’s work and leadership history.
The Leader’s General View of Leadership.
In this section provide a description of the following, using both examples from the interview and course materials as support:
• The leader’s view of the role of a leader.
• The leader’s view about leading change.
• The leader’s view about the best way to lead.
• The leader’s view about cultivating other leadership talent.
If you feel you have enough information garnered from the interview, also determine:
• What you feel is this person’s predominant leadership style (provide evidence of why you made this determination. What you feel is this person’s prevalent leadership theory (provide evidence of why you made this determination).
The Leader’s View of Organizational Culture.
Use both examples from the interview and course materials as support.
The Leader’s Approach to Strategic Thinking.
Use both examples from the interview and course materials as support.
Provide a summary of your general leadership lessons that you learned from this mentor as a result of this interview. Use course materials for support.
Provide references to match your in-text citations, written in APA format.
Include your Interview Notes to demonstrate that your minimum 11 Interview questions were asked (i.e. 5 about general leadership, 3 about culture, and 3 about strategic thinking). There is no required format for this section.
Step 5. Submit the completed Report in the Assignment Folder.
Submitting the project to the Assignment Folder is considered the student’s final product and therefore ready for grading by the instructor. It is incumbent upon the student to verify the assignment is the correct submission. No exceptions will be considered by the instructor.
Other Required Elements:
• Read the grading rubric for the project. Use the grading rubric while completing the project to ensure all requirements are met that will lead to the highest possible grade.
• Contractions are not used in business writing, so do not use them.
• Paraphrasing is allowed for providing examples from the Interview. Use direct quotation marks if you are providing a direct quote from the interviewee. You do not need to cite or reference this leader for the purposes of this report.
• Direct quotes are NOT allowed if they are quotation from course materials. This means you do not use more than four consecutive words from a source document, but put a passage from a source document into your own words and attribute the passage to the source document, using in-text citations in APA format.
• In-text citations should be included in ALL SECTIONS of the report, and should demonstrate application of the course material. Note that a reference within a reference list cannot exist without an associated in-text citation and vice versa.
• You may only use the course material from the classroom. You may not use books or any resource from the Internet.
• Provide the page or paragraph number, where applicable.
General Leadership Questions (to get a good sense of general leadership for this leader such as his/her leadership style, his/her views on leading change and innovation, etc, you will want to ask a MINIMUM of five questions from this article):
23 Extraordinary Questions to Ask your Mentor
Rubric Name: Individual Deliverable #2 – 20%
Provides name, job title, organization, time with organization, time in current role, and mentor’s work and leadership history.
Describe the leader’s general view of leadership
Describes the leader’s view of: the role of a leader, leading change, the best way to lead, and cultivating leadership talent, all supported by course materials. Also identifies predominant leadership style and theory, supported by course materials.
Describe the Leader’s View of Culture
Thoroughly describes the leader’s view of culture, using examples from the interview and course materials for support.
Describe the Leader’s Approach to Strategic Thinking
Thoroughly describes the leader’s approach to strategic thinking, using examples from the interview and course materials for support.
Conclusion: Describes leadership lessons learned from the Mentor
Thoroughly describes leadership lessons learned, using examples from the interview and course materials for support.
Strictly adheres to standard usage rules of written English using paragraphs and sentence rather than bullets, including but not limited to capitalization, punctuation, run-on sentences, missing or extra words, stylistic errors, spelling and grammatical errors. No contractions or jargon used. Zero to two errors noted.
APA Style (6th ed.)
1 – 2 APA style or usage errors; Proper citation of source material is used; Reference titles follow APA with only the first word, the first word after a colon and proper nouns capitalized.
List of course material pick references from
Dancing Man Video
Barbara Kellerman on Followership
Followership is Underrated and Misunderstood
The Tango; the leader and follower dance
Building and Sustaining Relationships
The Leadership Relationship, Part I – Understanding Trust
Building Trust in the Workplace and Team
The Allure of Toxic Leaders: Why Followers Rarely Escape Their Clutches
What is Authentic Leadership?
Good Leaders are Authentic Leaders
Your Emotional Bank Account
The Emotional Bank Account
Strategy Structure and Culture Aligning Organizational Systems
Aligning Strategy, Culture and Leadership
The 5 Types of Organizational Structures: Part 4, Flatarchies
Mistakes to avoid in designing an organizational structure
Organizational Culture as Driver of Competitive Advantage
Why Flat Organizations Don’t Create Leaders What to Do About It
Creativity and Innovation: The Leadership Dynamics
Interview with CEO Sam Allen John Deer Corporation on competitive advantage
The Culture or the Leader which comes first?
Principles of Management Chapter 8-5 Creating and Maintaining Organizational Culture
How Implicit Personality Affects Leadership
Personality and How It Relates to Leadership
Emotional Intelligence and Leadership
What is emotional intelligence?
Interview of Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence Social Intelligence and Leadership
Personality and Leadership 9.5min
Personality and creating your Leadership style
Critical Leadership Skills: Key Traits That Can Make or Break Today’s Leaders
Moral Intelligence for Successful Leadership
Why Leaders Lose Their Way
Why You Need Cultural Intelligence and How to Develop it
Are Leaders Born or Made?
8 Common Leadership Styles
Situational Leadership Strengths and Weaknesses
The Impact of Leadership Style on Employee Commitment
Leadership Style, Emotional Intelligence, and Organizational Effectiveness
The Effective Organization: Five Questions to Translate Leadership into Strong Manageme
Leadership: Do traits matter?
Critical Skills: Leadership – In the Library search under Comstock (author) and Critical Skills: Leadership (title).
10 Traits of Great Business Leaders
Leaders at all Levels