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The business world is becoming more diverse due to the forces of globalization and international trade. Human immigration has also created new work environments characterized by individuals with diverse backgrounds. This new development has catalyzed superior leadership styles whereby managers are capable of meeting the needs of all followers and promoting performance. The current trend has led to the proliferation of initiatives and programs aimed at equipping individuals with appropriate competencies for functioning in different workplaces. This paper gives a detailed analysis of and benefits of experiential training in advancing diversity-conscious leadership.
Diversity Consciousness: Effective Leadership
The ultimate objective of leadership is to inspire, empower, engage, and guide followers in a desirable direction that ensures that the intended goals are realized in a timely manner. Unfortunately, many companies and departments have individuals who are diverse and capable of disorienting productivity without the right support (Box, Converso, & Osayamwen, 2015). Managers and team leaders who want to succeed in such environments should be aware of the concept of diversity consciousness.
This is a prerequisite skill that ensures that leaders recognize the fact that diversity is a reality in different units. Every beneficiary will be prepared to take advantage of such a situation, overcome emerging barriers, and offer adequate support to improve performance.
This skill is essential within the realm of leadership since it makes it possible for individuals to acknowledge the ideas and concepts different followers present. Such a manager will be aware of issues that can hinder performance, such as gender, ethnicity, age, race, or culture. A person who excels in this field will build superior teams in a proactive manner and provide adequate support (Polat, Arslan, & Ölçüm, 2017). With these aspects and abilities, any person in a leadership position will be ready to empower all followers and deliver positive results. A competent manager who has a high score in this field will prepare his or her team for the demands of the market.
Selected Experiential Training
Workplace diversity has become a crucial element in every business organization. Managers of different units and departments should appreciate this concept since it can guide employees to pursue the intended goals, relate positively with each other, mitigate emerging differences, and promote the idea of teamwork. In the recent past, theorists and experts in the field of management have designed evidence-based programs that create new opportunities for leaders to learn and develop appropriate competencies (Fransson, 2015). The selected example for this discussion is that of a cowboy who equips individuals in managerial positions with suitable abilities by encouraging and guiding them to tame horses.
Several attributes explain why such a model is appropriate and capable of delivering positive results. Firstly, this approach creates a scenario whereby every participant gets an opportunity to operate in a complex environment that is out of their comfort zones. Since horses are incapable of making judgments or pursuing selfish interests, the beneficiaries will be in a position to manage anger and remain resolute when dealing with them (Fransson, 2015). They will also appreciate the idea of diversity since they are dealing with creatures that cannot respond to their commands or expectations efficiently.
Targeted Skills for Participants
The proposed evidence-based program makes it easier for different individuals to acquire superior insights and approaches to overcoming most of the managerial challenges they might face. The first skill available to such participants is the ability to communicate effectively in a nonverbal manner (Polat et al., 2017). Since horses cannot talk, learners will understand the importance of paying attention to presented or depicted signals and making appropriate inferences.
The second potential skill such individuals acquire is the ability to develop positive or meaningful partnerships. Due to the immense power of a horse, the targeted beneficiaries will understand how to meet its needs. Consequently, every participant will be ready to establish better relationships with his or her followers. This means that the beneficiary will find it easier to accept and promote diverse perspectives in the workplace. The third skill is that of managing anger. Velten and Lashley (2018) indicate that horses are huge animals capable of intimidating human beings with their immense energy. Consequently, all beneficiaries will become more confident and be able to overcome the negative aspects of unhappiness.
The fourth skill is that of cleanliness. This outcome is possible since every manager will ensure that the surrounding environment remains safe and hygienic. Every participant will always be involved to guide his or her horse, reduce feelings of fear, and start paying more attention to minute details. The fifth potential competence is the ability to value and consider other perspectives (Box et al., 2015). This is true since horses are known to treat people as fellow animals, thereby increasing the chances of misunderstandings and conflicts.
Finally, all involved individuals will understand the importance of honesty and trust. This is true because the targeted participants will develop powerful competencies for managing and respecting their horses. This achievement means that they will be able to perform their activities diligently (Polat et al., 2017). Such individuals will go further to appreciate the idea of time management since every horse has to feed and drink at the right time.
Relevance of the Acquired Skills
As described earlier, the selected program is capable of supporting the acquisition and development of various competencies that are essential in many workplaces today. For instance, the participants will acquire adequate nonverbal communication skills that are critical for dealing with persons with diverse cultural backgrounds (Velten & Lashley, 2018). Leaders can learn how to listen attentively and address their challenges within the shortest time possible.
The identified initiative presents the best environment for learning how to respect others despite the fact they might be from minority groups. This achievement will ensure that the identified managers present the right concepts to their followers and encourage them to overcome their differences (Lawrence, 2015). Such leaders will also remain patient when solving emerging problems and empowering their employees.
The process of taking good care of a horse translates to maximum concentration, attention to detail, and the absence of modern technologies. Every participant who acquires the above skills will be ready to listen to others attentively and pay attention to every little concern that might arise in the workplace (Lawrence, 2015). With effective communication and the ability to read sign languages, such managers will eventually take their teams and organizations to the next level.
The ability to value other people’s ideas is an evidence-based approach for promoting diversity and delivering positive results. Those who develop this skill will consider the emerging opinions and experiences of all followers and remain insightful. They will also promote concepts of equality and collaboration (Velten & Lashley, 2018). Such professionals will address any form of misunderstanding using evidence-based strategies. Powerful practices will emerge that can promote interaction and ensure that the outlined objectives are realized in a timely manner, including respect, mutual trust, commitment, engagement, and creativity. Such abilities are, therefore, meaningful ingredients for driving organizational performance.
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Value of Experiential Training Programs
Diversity-conscious leadership is a new concept that is currently dictating the success or failure of different companies. Managers should, therefore, be aware of the changes experienced in the global business environment. Leaders who are unable to empower and guide their employees with diverse backgrounds will be at risk of experiencing numerous challenges, including increased mistrust, reduced collaboration, cultural differences, and negative attitudes (Box et al., 2015). The changing work dynamics have resulted in organizations with many people from different ethnicities, religions, regions, and countries.
Leaders should embrace the most appropriate experiential training programs in order to develop superior competencies that different theorists have ignored in the past. The above example explains how managers can acquire superior skills for engaging their followers, improving decision-making and solving problems abilities, promoting patience, and enhancing teamwork (Lawrence, 2015). Experts should continue to develop similar training programs to mentor more leaders and bring them closer to their personal and professional aims.
The above discussion has encouraged organizational managers to develop diverse skills and apply them in their respective companies. The presented example has explained how the rearing of a horse can guide supervisors to become competent and lead followers with diverse backgrounds efficiently. There is a need for stakeholders to support such experiential training programs because they equip learners with superior competencies for supporting their future goals and empowering their employees.
Box, J. B., Converso, J. A., & Osayamwen, E. (2015). Transforming leaders through cultural intelligence. Global Journal of Business Research, 9(2), 23-40.
Fransson, J. (2015). Leadership skills developed through horse experiences and their usefulness for business leaders. Web.
Lawrence, T. (2015). Global leadership communication: A strategic proposal. Creighton Journal of Interdisciplinary Leadership, 1(1), 51-59. Web.
Polat, S., Arslan, Y., & Ölçüm, D. (2017). Diversity leadership skills of school administrators: A scale development study. Issues in Educational Research, 27(3), 512-526.
Velten, L., & Lashley, C. (2018). The meaning of cultural diversity among staff as it pertains to employee motivation. Research in Hospitality Management, 7(2), 105-113. Web.