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Critical Reflection of Leadership Experience & Its Concept - Microsoft

University: University of Edinburgh

  • Unit No: 1
  • Level: Post Graduate/University
  • Pages: 12 / Words 2967
  • Paper Type: Assignment
  • Course Code: HR6002
  • Downloads: 345
Question :

Assessment Outline

This project requires you to do the following:

  1. Briefly review on your own experience of leadership and suggest areas for your own development, including an Action Plan (1500 words). Covering of learning outcome 4 and 6.
  2. Apply leadership theory and concepts in the analysis and evaluation of the leadership of Bill Gates in leading Microsoft Corporation (1500 words). Covering of learning outcomes 1,2,3,5

Part one

You are guided to focus on one or two specific experiences of leadership – whether where you were in a leadership role, or where you could observe ‘leadership’ in action even if you were not a ‘leader’. These experiences should be drawn from your work experience or from other experience (voluntary work, student experience in working in a group, sport, parenting, or other leisure activities). You are required to be an active participant in the experience. Critically analyse the situation and examine the leadership process with relevant theory and concepts drawn from the academic literature on leadership. Review on what the leadership experience taught you about your own leadership style and how you need to develop. Pay attention on skills or attributes that you think you need to develop while suggesting areas for your own development which are based on analysis of the experience. Locate this reflection among the concepts and theory discussed in class and/or through your reading for the module. As an appendix, attach a development plan to give concrete evidence of how you have sought to enhance your leadership.

Part two

Briefly analyse the leadership of Bill Gates, Co - founder of Microsoft. Examine the effectiveness of Gates’s leadership qualities from the perspectives of the leadership theories explored on the module. The essay will include the following theories; situational and contingency theory, trait and behavioural theories, distributed leadership, transformational and transactional leadership, ethical leadership and critical leadership perspectives.

Read on theories of leadership, styles of leadership and critical leadership, and use them briefly to Bill Gates in terms of his leadership within Microsoft, and how this has contributed to the overall success. Also involve a regard for the ethics of leadership. It is important to have an in-depth knowledge of the context of the leadership theories we are exploring on the module so that you can form your own argument in relation to how theories of leadership apply to his leadership.

Main aim(s) of the module:

  • To motivate critical reflection and evaluation of leadership in organisations.
  • To analyse how leadership can be performed, and with what consequences for those engaging in it and affected by it.
  • To allow students to reflect on their own preferences and values with regard to leadership.
  • To examine the complexities of leadership in a multi-cultural context.

Main topics of study:

  1. The nature of leadership: social psychological, historical, sociological, and political science perspectives.
  2. Leaders and leadership.
  3. Followers and leadership.
  4. Transactional, transformational, transforming and charismatic leadership.
  5. Post-heroic and distributed leadership.
  6. Leadership ‘success’ and ‘failure’.
  7. Cross-cultural leadership.
  8. Leadership and gender.
  9. Bullying and toxic leadership.
  10. Ethics and legitimacy in leadership.

Learning outcomes for the module

Students are required to analyse the following at the end of this module:


1. Determine a variety of theories of leadership.

2. Examine competing positions regarding the ethics of leadership.

Thinking skills

3. Briefly analyse case studies of organisational leadership.

4. Briefly recall on their own experience of leadership (whether as a formal leader or as a participant).

Subject-based practical skills

5. Discuss different styles of leadership and show an understanding of why/how different styles of leadership might be effective.

Skills for life and work (general skills)

6. Generate the ability to reflect on their own practice in working with others, and how this might be developed.

Answer :
Organization Selected : Microsoft


Leadership is the way of attracting people and getting work done from them effectively. Leaders are exist in all organisation who plays an important role within firm in order to attain goals. Employees always keep in touch of leaders as they understand the needs and wants of them and make efforts to satisfy them. Leaders is a person who is performing different types of roles as shaper, implementation, plant, coordinator, communicator and team worker where employees influences more and helps to increase the organisational productivity and profitability (van Vuuren, 2019). This is important for corporation to recruit a effective leader who is able to influence employees and make ready to accept the challenges and changes in order to work properly. In other words, this is a art of attracting and directing the people with loyalty and respectively that helps to accomplish the business goals. The present report is categorised in two parts, one is based on critical reflection on leadership experience and suggestions for the purpose of developing areas as well as business. And second task covers different types of leadership concept and theories which is used by corporation in order to become leading organisation by evaluating and analysing them. Moreover, second task is about Microsoft whose founder is Bill gates who has adopted leadership theories and concepts in own corporation and became successful.

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Main Body

Critical reflection on experience of leadership with suggestions for improving areas

I have worked with a business firm as a leader where I get experienced a lot and also recognise from my weakness in order to accomplish organisational goals and objectives. As a leader I understood the goal of company where I was working and make strategies so, task can be perform effectively. For completing task I delegated task in different employees according to their skills and capabilities which helped to work effectively. I explained clearly roles and responsibilities of workers so no conflicts was arisen while working (Laureani and Antony, 2018). To compete the task and achieve business goals it is important that employees are satisfied or not and how they can be satisfy more. My aim was to make happy employees and get work done effectively so, goals can be achieve in specified time period. To complete the assigned project I organise a meeting and seminar where I shared my knowledge and get new one which helped me to increase the capabilities and work properly. While working I noticed that employees are not accepting challenging task and new method of technology where I played an important role. As I listened their problem carefully and get a solution of their problem. I appointed a trainer for workers who provide training to them which helped to accept the challenges and complete the task in efficient manner. Training and development programmes are the best method which I had adopted to accept the changes in organisation and get prepare to employees which helps to work efficiently. I felt that my listening and writing skills are excellent as I listed problems of each employee and provide them better solution which processes to acquire changes as well a new innovation in their organisation. I did not missed single point of information which was related from project and goal of organisation that gave me confidence as I am working good. My communication way and negotiation skills is also good as I was able to communicate and negotiation by applying effective human behaviour (Bush, 2018). As per my role as a leader I had to manage all organisation and employees from top management to employees and customers physically which helped me to complete the work. In leader role, I listen problems, asked questions at right tome and came across with creditability and confidence which is important part of business and required to success in complex areas. Trough out this way, I identified many problems with some challenges that limited the completing goals. Some attributes I analysed in my self such as positivity, potentiality, effectiveness, confidence and shaper and team work in which I and my team member complete the task (Bush, Abdul Hamid and Kaparou, 2018).

Under leadership role, democratic leadership theory and concepts where I held effective responsibility and accountability for their work. I divided roles and responsibilities of employees who were were working with me that helps to complete the target and goals in effective time and helped to accomplish the organisational goals. With responsibility I have given authority also to employees which make them happy and loyal for their work that helped to complete the project on time (Lotfi and et. al., 2018). As a leader of organisation my responsibility was to teach the workers and monitor the performance, operation of attendance and recording through e-attendance reader that had make sure all systems and work are runs smoothly and user friendly. With the help of this I sorted many problems like getting accurate report of stock on weekly basis, incremental in employees efficiency and discrepancy of workers which helped to controlled the operations. While performing leadership role I faced different hurdles as some employees who were working with traditional method not able to accept changes or challenges in their work due to which our work not completing. In that situation, I felt very nervous and then I adopted transactional leadership in which I emphasised on visionary leadership that helped me to get proper assistance and support from employees which helped to reach near by goal (Mather, Cummings and Gale, 2018). I monitored employees performance by providing training to them which helped to increase the organisational productivity. By monitoring employees performance I get information about employee's performance and give them rewards accordingly which make happy to employees. In addition, this leadership model helped mine to update knowledge and skills by maintaining effective relationship with employees. My motivational skills is also good in which I motivated each employees by providing solution which helped me to complete the project in effective time and period. As I was good in leadership, management, communication, motivation and building relation with employees, I successfully developed my knowledge and working areas which helped me to attain the organisational goal and objectives (O'Brien, 2019).

To take leadership role in group activities, there some situation occurred that was required to fill the gap between new responsibilities and possibilities which is required to complete the task. Due to gap the productivity and profitability of organisation was reducing that might impact on business organisation. For dealing with situation I opted strategic leadership style which helped me deliver valuable products and services by making strategic planning. By solving all problems and situations I get many opportunity to show my talent and capabilities which direct me what need to do in order to accomplish the organisational goals and objectives. This strategy made me more logical and practical which helped to increase confidence level and trust between employees (Kgatle, 2018). Under this, many issues has occurred as all burden of project came on me that result all responsibility needed to handled by me. At that time I confused more that what action I should take to complete task and attain business goals. Then I created atmosphere of autonomy where me and employees worked well for completing the target and increase empower between employees. While performing leadership responsibility I felt that I m weak in decision making, handling data, proper utilization of resources, strategic skills which need to improve. I did not attended any seminars and development programme due to which completion of activities may be late but my collaborative skills grown my team skills and capabilities which helped to completed the goals (Paraschiv, 2018).

Therefore, I my experience as a leader in working place helped me to gain knowledge and experience which aid to attain the goals. While working and motivating employees towards organisational goals I analysed that I need to improve or focus my decision making skills, data recording skills, proper utilisation of resources and strategic skills which are important to perform role and responsibilities in order to attain the company goals and objectives (Rosenstiel, 2019). Communication is the way which helped me lot to share knowledge and ideas for accepting new innovation and increase the organisational productivity. I got success with the help and support of my team and employees to whom I provided training and get work done effectively. So, this experience of leadership has impacted positively on my business organisation which understand the problem and complete the goals effectively.

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Areas for my own development

As per experience as a leader in working group, I analysed that there are few areas that needs development for working in better way and accomplishing organisational goals. For developing area under leadership roles there is required some attributes and skills that are leadership, decision making, communication, management, problem solving, transparency and motivating skills which is important to to increase knowledge and develop business effectively. I also understand that I need to prepare professional development plan which will help to get improvement and increase organisational performance by completing task (Spurgeon, 2018). I also share knowledge with employees which helps to create and develop business effectively. To improve my skills I stated to make strategic planning which helps to make decision, recording data, handling problems and retain customers which helped to maintain the higher profits.

Use of leadership concepts as well as theory in analysis and evaluation of leadership.

Leadership is an activity which is used by business organisation in order to motivate employees and complete the work. The main purpose of adopting effective leadership style is to set the standard by understanding problems and make efforts to complete the goals. Every business corporation is adopting different types of leadership theory which helps to maintain the profits effectively (Ahl, 2018). To understand about Bill Gates has been selected Who is Co founder of Microsoft organisation where leaders or such person is possessing leadership qualities. Bill Gates is an American business magnate, investor, software developer and philanthropist who has invented Microsoft by using effective leadership style, theory and skills. This helps to make them independent and successful in their business and make them successful. There are different types of leadership theories such as trait, behavioural, situational and contingency theory (Kappelman and et. al., 2019). Trait theory states that leaders are born not made. People have innovate and unique quality that make them good leader. This involves proper communication, integrity, empathy and decision making skills that helps to work effectively. In behavioural theory, people think about how a leader behave. This helps to state that what is the behaviour and reaction of leader in order to accept challenges or changes in their organisation. In this theory, leaders behave good by accepting all changes and challenges which helps to improve the productivity and profitability. Herein, leaders can trained which helps to develop effectively. Contingency theory of leadership states the effectiveness of leaders that tell how their leadership style matches with situation. In this leader find out the contingent situation and perform business activities as well. Moreover, situational leadership theory is used by person to manage and adjust their leadership style in order to develop the followers level by influencing others. This helps to deal with critical situation and make efforts to sort the problem. From the above Trait theory is adopted by Bill Gates as they establish their own business by making decision. Such person has decision making, power, authority, communication skills, empathy and integrity which helps to make effective business decision and increase the organisational productivity and profitability (Kailasapathy and Jayakody, 2018). This theory is effective theory which helps to make right business decision by evaluating all opportunities and threats which make successful business. If leaders possessing this qualities then it can focus on business goals and objectives by facing all competition and challenges.

For a successful business organisation transformational and transactional leadership is needed which helps leaders to complete their task effectively. In transactional leadership, leaders ensure that routine or daily work is done reliably and goals are closely to the organisation. In transformational leadership leaders of business organisation look after completing work and initiatives that helps to add value of organisation as well as leaders. Transactional leader is require to handle all details that come together to build a effective and strong reputation in market place which helps to keep employees productive (Murray and Gill, 2018). Transformational leadership is crucial to the strategic development of small business which helps to attain rapid success. Distributed leadership is consider as conceptual approach which is used to understand how leadership work take place between people and complexity of organisation. This helps to give advantages of creativity, increasing initiative and spontaneity by taking risk and rewards. Ethical leadership refers as leadership theory that is directed by respect for ethical beliefs and values in order to give rights and dignity. This helps to work in ethical manner where leaders are having trust, honesty, charisma, fairness and consideration in order to accomplish the business objectives (Teoman and Ulengin, 2018). This helps to increase the productivity of organisation as leaders build effective relationship between all employees and management. From the above, Transformational and ethical leadership is adopted by Bill Gates who is the co founder of Microsoft. Under Transformational leadership, leaders and employees achieve objectives through higher ideals and moral values which motivates his followers and encourage them to work effectively. This promotes creativity and innovative ideas by solving the problems which increases productivity and profitability. Ethical leaders is also followed by respective leader in which it shows respect for all members of the team by listening them attentively and contribute in organisation value by compassionate, being generous and talented that helps to complete the objectives.

You may also like to read - Analyse & Evaluate The Leadership Theory & Concept of Alibaba Group

Bill Gates is a greatest leader who is performing ethical leadership as they possess of different qualities such as Justice, honesty, respect others, human kind, community and spirit in organisation, decision making, encouraging initiatives and value awareness which helps to complete the target and attain business goals. Belbin typology is also used by such leader in which they perform different roles plant, shaper, coordinator, communicator, implement, supportive, motivator and team worker that helped to become a successful entrepreneur. During business activities many problems while opened their Microsoft as when MITS found by Bill Gates, people stopped to buying due to which financial problems was occurred in front of them which became a challenge for such leaders to overcome this and become successful. Another challenge was that his parents was not happy when he said that he wanted to drop out their college education for starting a company (Wurzel, Liefferink and Di Lullo, 2019). That moment was very sadness as he has to go against his parents. And after one year he started his own company but have failed. Then he gave a BASIC which to get success in their business. Bill Gates is possess of various qualities which helped to deal with typical situation and problems in order to run a business successfully. Such person is following directive, participative, achievement and supportive leadership style which helped to focus on hurdles and get effective solution. Directive and supportive leadership style states that such person has supported his employees and show direction which helped to perform the business activities effectively. Moreover, various limitation of leadership theory that it requires consistency, costs to implement ideas, comprehensive support and effective use of available resources and skills which can limits the business activities that has impacted on business negatively. From the discussion, it has analysed that Bill Gates is greatest leader who has adopted Transformational and ethical leadership theory in their business which helped to deal with critical situation and start business in proper way.

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From the above report it can be concluded that leadership theory is important for business organisation as it influences employees to work properly and accomplish the corporation goals. A leader is a person who have knowledge about employees and be able to satisfy them so, profits can be ascertained effectively. The main purpose of leader is to understand the goal and get involves employees to complete target. Transactional and transformational leadership theory are different which is used by leaders to become a successful businessman. This is playing an important role in business as it motivates people and providing guidance for complete task in effective time period. Distributed leadership is a theory in which leaders take places between people and complexities which helps to solve the problems in order to attain business goals.


  • Laureani, A. and Antony, J., 2018. Leadership–a critical success factor for the effective implementation of Lean Six Sigma. Total Quality Management & Business Excellence. 29(5-6). pp.502-523.
  • Bush, T., 2018. Leadership and context: Why one-size does not fit all.
  • Bush, T., Abdul Hamid, S., Ng, A. and Kaparou, M., 2018. School leadership theories and the Malaysia education blueprint: Findings from a systematic literature review. International Journal of Educational Management. 32(7). pp.1245-1265.
  • Lotfi, Z., and et. al., 2018. Relationship between ethical leadership and organisational commitment of nurses with perception of patient safety culture. Journal of nursing management. 26(6). pp.726-734.
  • Mather, C. A., Cummings, E. A. and Gale, F., 2018. Advancing mobile learning in Australian healthcare environments: nursing profession organisation perspectives and leadership challenges. BMC nursing. 17(1). p.44.
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