MGMT 302 Big Rapids

Thoughts and reflections of undergraduate students from MGMT 302 – Ferris State University Big Rapids, Michigan

Posts From Students:

Cody Dingeldey –  Katelyn Reed – Hannah Mackey – Daniel Trudgeon – Rebekah Meeker –  Jared Zanstra

I Believe Leaders are the Heart and Soul
I believe that without a confident leader, a team will not be successful. I believe this because leadership by definition is a process in which an individual influences the progress of group members toward attainment of a goal. Without that leader being the driving force in the team, then it is likely that the team will not live up to its full potential. My vision of leadership is someone within the team being passionate about the success of the team. A leader is someone who can take a group of people with different ideals, learning styles, and backgrounds and make a successful and effective team.  I have learned much about how to become a good and effective leader. The only way that I am going to become an effective leader is to take what I have learned and apply it to real life situations. I am going to have to actually use the skills that I have learned about becoming a good leader and use them.
By learning how to become a better leader, I have found that you learn more about yourself. Learning how to become a better leader makes you ask questions about yourself that you never would have asked before, it makes you realize how you will really handle certain situations. Personally I have learned that I am the type of leader who uses more team coaching than anything. I am a good motivator and can accomplish much when I have a group of people who are as enthusiastic as I am about the topic that my team was assigned. Before I did not know that about myself, I was unsure of what kind of leader I was, and by learning, I better understood myself. I have never really speculated what kind of leader I was before recently learning what kind of leader I am. Looking back I see that I should have at least had some sort of idea about what kind of leader I was. It could have helped me out knowing how what leading style was the most effective for me to use.
In conclusion I believe that everyone should know their leadership style. If you know your leadership style, like me, you will learn more about yourself, which is invaluable information. An effective leader needs to lead their team with passion and confidence, that is how a leader will be
successful, and in turn, a team will be successful. I believe that leaders are the heart and soul of the team.
– – Cody Dingeldey, L’Anse, Michigan
As an upperclassman in the Business Administration program I have sat through countless classes where the word leader came up.Each time the professor would describe the characteristics of a good leader, but would only do so in terms of a business setting.  I have always felt that this was depriving people from understanding the true meaning of leadership.  I have worked with individuals whose actual job title consisted of the word leader and I never once saw the quality of a true leader in them.  The truth is, just because someone is in charge, or has authority does not make them a leader.  Leadership is not a business strategy and it certainly has nothing to do with how you perform at a job.  A leader is more than that.  As corny as it may sound, leadership is a way of life.  I don’t believe that leadership can be turned on and off like a faucet.  You cannot be a leader at your 9 to 5 if you’re not a leader in all other aspects of your life.  Leadership is more like a journey that encompasses high moral values and selflessness.  It is encouraging others to be the best that they can be.  It’s striving to maintain healthy relationships with everyone in your life.  A leader is someone who not only achieves success themselves, but wholeheartedly helps others to do the same.  A leader is someone who does not pass judgment but instead opens up and lends a helping hand.  
I have learned what it means to be a good leader not through my academic career, but instead through silently observing those around me.  I believe that being a leader is not something that a textbook teaches you to do.  Nor is it something that a professor can instill in you.  It’s a rare occurrence in the world, yet very noticeable when you come across it.  A true leader is someone who doesn’t hold any part of themselves back; a person that gives tenfold the amount they receive simply because they know it is the right thing to do.  It takes a lot to be a true leader.  You have to want to inspire people and live a life that others admire, not for the things you have, but for the character that you portray.
– – Katie Reed Goshen, Indiana

“I Believe in People” 

            I believe in people, every person is leader and part of leadership in some way. People are what make leadership possible, without people leadership would not exist. I believe certain people are made out for leadership more than others, but I also think any individual can exert leadership with the right state of mind and support. Some people may be more outgoing and more vocal in leadership roles than others, but that does not mean the quiet ones are not showing leadership. For example, in a group setting each person shows leadership by doing the things they are expected or by helping others in their group. In addition, leadership is shown by the members of a group following the head of the group because it takes leadership to listen and follow another person’s commands.  A person who is responsible and willing to help others is a leader. Therefore, everyone shows leadership in their own way, whether it is showing a child how to tie their show or being the CEO of a company.

 Leadership is not just being head of a group or running an organization, leadership is helping a person who is struggling or making sure everything falls together when necessary. Leadership can be the littlest gesture; my whole group displays leadership by helping each other when there is a topic or assignment someone does not understand. I believe leadership is shown in every individual at least once a day. Leadership can even be shown without helping someone else. Leadership could be an individual deciding to start eating healthier to better their life. That individual is taking the lead in their life and being in charge of something therefore showing leadership. I believe leadership is not always a something big, leadership can be small too. CEOs of huge companies show small and big ways of leadership. They show it in a small way just by saying “hello” to someone on the way to their office in the morning and in a big way by making a decision on whether the company should go international. Leadership comes in many shapes and size, just like people, that is why I believe that the every single person makes leadership possible.

– – Hannah Mackey, Kaleva, Michigan


What I Believe Leaders Are

I believe that leadership is not just about being a ruler over a group of people to get a job done. Being a leader is much more than that. It’s about making the best possible results happen with the people who are under your leadership. Leadership is dynamic in the sense that not all situations require the same amount of direction from the leader. Leaders should not be rulers over the group. They are simply someone who sets the direction for the group to go in.

                Becoming a good leader is not as simple as one might think. Learning that everyone has different personality traits requires some flexibility on the person designated to be the leader. To me, being a good leader requires patience as well as the ability to work with every personality well. Leaders are different than managers. As a leader you don’t want to run the group with an iron fist. Take the opinions of the group members seriously. Their input can create new ideas and bonds between the members of the group, and could ultimately aid in the project being worked on. Leaders need to influence their group to strive for the best instead of manage the work they do.

                As a leader you don’t want to be someone you aren’t. Others can tell when you are trying to change your personality or tactics just to try to influence people. I could only run the group the ways I know how. It would be confusing not only to me, but to everyone else in the group if the leader doesn’t seem completely sure on their actions. Stay true to your personality and don’t conform just because the majority isn’t the same as you. Team leaders need to stay true to their beliefs, yet be open to the possibility of change. My mind is very open to change and I listen to everyone’s opinions whether I agree with them or not. I learn about myself through other members in the group when sharing ideas. Learning who you are throughout group work helps you understand what it takes to become a leader.

                I’m pretty sure my leadership style hasn’t changed too much. I’ve always known that it a special type of person to be an effective leader. To me, staying open minded toward all ideas, being responsive to all group members, influencing everyone to do their best, and still doing your part of the work makes a great leader.

– – Daniel Trudgeon, Bessemer, Michigan


I Believe Bonding is Key

                I think that everyone has the ability to become a great leader if they are just aware of the people around them. For some people it is not as simple to notice how someone is feeling by just taking a glance at them and that is when you need to put in the most effort. This means making sure that as a leader you make sure that everyone on your team has a good healthy, open, and honest relationship with one another. The main thing that I have taken away from Professor Armstrong’s class is that working with a team is only hard if you make it hard and at the beginning of the process, if you take time to create things, like a team charter, and lay down “the law” of that particular team and you have many social gatherings that do not involve work, then your team as a whole will be more stable, reliable, and creative. Tension is what gets in the way of team members reaching their full potential and as a leader I need to encourage group cohesion. I feel like as a leader that is your biggest job.

                I learned that being a leader doesn’t mean that you always are the only one that can make a decision. That trusting your team members to do their jobs is important because you cannot do everything yourself, that is why you formed the team to begin with.  The main thing that I will take with me to become a good leader in the future is that to have a good team, you need to keep spirits up and everyone happy! I realized that just because you are creative and you have something that you are good at does not mean that your team will be successful. You need to have members that get along and mesh well in order to do a good job and that all starts at the forming stage of a group. You need a solid foundation to grow and build from, kind of like a marriage.

                I am being more myself because through this experience I have seen that everyone thinks and works differently and paying attention to the people that might not be the same as you is a good place to “find yourself”. By being a member of a team you learn what kind of person you are and learn how to be honest, trusting, understanding, and patient. All of these things are what shapes you to be a good leader and I believe that it also shapes you into become a well-rounded individual.

                In some ways I will change my leadership styles and in other ways no. I’ve always been understanding, honest, and I think a pretty good mixture of controlling yet lenient. But I have picked up good things, like making a team charter, making sure that you meet up and have a relaxed time with one another rather than just always work, work, work. The things that I have gained from this class are tremendous and I feel like my leadership as I get more and more experience will only get better too.

– – Rebecah Meeker, Ludington 


I Believe in Leadership

                My vision of leadership is someone who is a selfless leader. Someone who is not focused on themselves and does not put their own needs first. A leader makes decisions based on what is best for the whole. Leaders are slow to speak and quick to listen. They must be proactive instead of reactive, and not run away from problems but run to problems. A leader keeps his word and sticks to his guns. They make decisions on what needs to be done and do not base them off of their emotions. Leaders are not focused on themselves; they look to build others up. Leaders are ethical and have solid morals that do not change or bend. A leader makes the right decision, not just the easiest one, and is willing to go the extra mile. A leader must be good at communicating; they must be responsible and have respect for other people so in turn they receive respect. A leader must have integrity in every choice. A leader has to set an example and live up to that example, for they cannot demand things from others that they themselves would not do. A leader has to be reliable and you have to be able to count on them. They must be good listeners. They must be resourceful and consistent.

                In order for me to become a leader I need to apply this to my life. It is easy to learn about what it takes to become a leader. It is easy to read about past leaders that were a great influence and learn from their mistakes and wisdom. The hard part is to apply it. Not just talk about it but actually take those principles and apply them to my life. Leaders must be excellent problem solvers.

– – Jared Zandstra Highland, Indiana




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