Leadership Reflection

[Photograph of Leadership]. (n.d.). https://sixandahalfconsulting.com/blog/we-need-a-better-word-for-leadership/

As for my most admired approach of a leader, it is the reflective leadership that I admire most. With reference to the group rating on Characteristics of Admired Leaders ratings, the tops 3 qualities featuring a good leader in initial rating (competent, Dependable, supportive), from my understanding, all align with the attributes described in reflective leadership. According to Castelli, (2016), a reflective leader can be of paramount value in optimizing the operation and performance of an institute, if he or she possess the needed expertise and knowledge in his or her professional realms. Apart from that, the principle on which the reflective leadership theory is based is another key point that wins my heart, namely the consciousness of behaviors, situations and outcomes that aim to streamline organizational performance (Castelli, 2016).

When it come to the most appropriate leadership approach in the digital environment, I would say both reflective and adaptive leadership seem to be equally effective in leading change. From my perspective, I believe that in the digitalized age, the success of an organization is subjective not only to its intrinsic factors within the organization, but also depends on extrinsic variables in the external environment, whether these be competency of leaders, the goals of a company, or the up-to-minute trends in the market. Based on this, the discussion can than move on to handle questions as to how a qualified leader overcome impediments embedded in both domains – this is where the characteristics of reflective and adaptive leadership have roles to play.

While features of reflective leadership such as self-awareness, raising the self-esteem and confidence levels of followers aim to streamline the performance of the organization, adaptive leadership works to align the goals of an educational institution with the whitewater digital environment that involves various determinants that may impacts leaders (e.g. cultural, societal factors) (Glover et al., 2002).

As for the difference between my leadership ranking results with the findings of other leadership researchers, the feature of Broad Minded is ranked the top 1 on my list, whereas other members in my team give priority to Competency or Dependable. The very reason why I venerate broad mindedness over the other characteristics is also identical to the value of open communication indicated by reflective leadership. From my personal working experiences, it is difficult to expect a leader to be versatile in all aspects, he can always seek for support from followers with different expertise when needed, providing he or she has an open mind to accept different suggestions. Also, the broad mindedness also means the willingness to embrace renovation and accept innovative ideas, which is also the key attribute described in adaptive leadership (Khan, 2017).


Finally, for the missing from leadership literature in reference to the digital environment, I will look forward to see more discussion on how to dealing with cultural diversity within an organization, as the Internet has connected leaders with a wider range of followers across the globe, thus leading to more undesired consequences during work.



Castelli, P. A. (2016). Reflective leadership review: a framework for improving organisational performance. In Journal of Management Development (Vol. 35, Issue 2). https://doi.org/10.1108/JMD-08-2015-0112

Glover, J., Rainwater, K., Jones, G., & Friedman, H. (2002). Adaptive leadership (part two): Four principles for being adaptive LK  – https://royalroads.on.worldcat.org/oclc/5399994983. Organization Development Journal TA  – TT  –, 20(4), 18–38.

Khan, N. (2017). Adaptive or transactional leadership in current higher education: A brief comparison. International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 18(3). https://doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v18i3.3294

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Eric Yu is a dynamic English Second Language Instructor in the areas of distant learning. He holds a Bachelor degree from the Shanghai International Studies University and is currently studying in the MS degree from Royal Roads University in Victoria, BC, Canada. Since moving to Canada in 2011, he acclimated himself to the local anculture, and quickly built a cross nation online learning practice, getting involved in IELTS teaching and other online training projects between China and Canada. Eric Yu currently lives in Shanghai, China and work as the team leader of online after-school education in Global Eduation of Puxin Limited. He loves music and is fascinated to search for rare CDs and LPs of rock and jazz musicians in 1960s. Eric Yu has performed well in a diverse range of team environments, from every corner of the world. He lives in Shanghai, China but travels around the world frequently both for work and leisure.

2 thoughts on “Leadership Reflection”

  1. Hi Eric,
    I appreciated your perspective on broad-mindedness as a leader attribute because it was lower down on my list, and our team didn’t spend much time discussing it. Now that I think about it, organizations cannot depend on one person. It takes the thinking and collaboration of many members for an organization to innovate and move forward. If a leader is too narrow-focused, it would be difficult to appreciate other perspectives and gain insight from members.

    1. Dear Wendy,

      Sorry for the late reply, I have some problem in reply blog. Actually other members of my team do not give priority to this quality, whereas they give more credits to competence. The reason as to why I venerate open mindedness over other qualities is due to my personal experienece – some leaders tend to be overbearing and therefore sometiems miss some constructive suggestions, which mihgt have been helpful.

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