In reading the articles and publications that were provided within this unit, I see a lot if content and theory that makes sense. However, I don’t necessary agree that our current technological and societal ties are taken into account specifically. Then I think, do they need to be? Change is change and whether we are changing to use technological advancements or not, organizational readiness for change, is a large factor to consider (Weiner, 2009). I don’t agree that all concepts, tasks and so on need to be adapted because we have technology. What we need to look at is the original theory and adapt that process of integrating change due to the technology we are using. Kanter’s suggested skills for change leaders are just as relevant today as they were in 2000:
- “Tuning in to the environment.
- Challenging the prevailing organizational wisdom.
- Communicating a compelling aspiration.
- Building coalitions.
- Transferring ownership to a working team.
- Learning to preserve. (7) Making everyone a hero” (p. 34).
It isn’t about the theory that needs to be changed, if leaders use these skills and adapt these skills to what they are changing due to technology, I believe the leaders will still be successful.
Sheninger’s 7 Pillars of Digital Leadership can really be adapted to any type of service or business (Sheninger, 2019). The leadership style and qualities are not confined by technology, but how how to embrace technology into the process of leading.
My leadership style most commonly aligns with Khan and Sheninger. I believe in the process and theories they have outlined. The 7 pillars are attributes I strive to have as a leader (Sheninger, 2014). Khan’s two theories of adaptive leadership and transactional leadership, are a broader view of my leadership style (Khan, 2017). This view hasn’t changed since Unit 1.
Leadership doesn’t play just a role in managing change, it is the main role in managing change. A leadership style can influence how well others take change, are open to change, or execute the change. Leaders initiate a change based on the strategic objectives for the company (Al-Haddad and Kotnour, 2015, p. 234). Once the change has been initiated a process must be put in place that incorporates how to get to the strategic objectives. Setting goals and defining performance measures allows an organization to clearly define a desired outcome and evaluate the execution (Al-Haddad and Kotnour, 2015, p. 251).
When I think about being an online instructor, I think there are a few important aspects to ensure have been portrayed. Using an example from Sheninger, communication (Sheninger, 2014). Students don’t have that time in class to ask me questions as soon as they arise, they are delayed through email or s discussion forum post and then my delay in a response. It is imperative I work hard to stay on top of emails, discussions and questions in order to best help students move forward with their assignments and questions. Another example that is evident in being a university instructor is, evaluation. For a lot of students, my course is one of the first ones they have taken online at University. Setting an expectation on how they will be evaluated in an asynchronous learning environment, is imperative. Students need to understand what type of information they will receive and how to complete the course.
When it comes to leadership, these decade old theories and concepts remain relevant in today’s world. It’s the process of incorporating change and how to do that within today’s world where we are behind. Adapting to technological advancements and incorporating this into the process of change is where we as a whole struggle, whether we are leaders or users.
Weiner, B. J. (2009). A theory of organizational readiness for change. Implementation Science, 4.
Sheninger, E. (2014). Pillars of digital leadership. International Centre for Leadership in Education.
Khan, N. (2017). Adaptive or Transactional Leadership in Current Higher Education: A Brief Comparison. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 18(3).
Al-Haddad, S., & Kotnour, T. (2015). Integrating the organizational change literature: a model for successful change. Journal of Organizational Change Management, 28(2), 234-262.