Philosophy of Leadership

As a student of the Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management at the University of Houston, I am required to take a class called “Leadership in the Hospitality Industry” most often truncated to plain “Leadership” among the student ranks.  As you can imagine, the class is centered around being a leader and not just a manager during your professional career.  The last paper we were assigned to write was on the topic of our leadership philosophy.  I decided to share this with any who are interested.

Philosophy of Leadership

Introduction:  My personal leadership philosophy is to be an
inspiring figurehead within my organization. 
I want to do this through communication, empathy and motivation.

Summary:  During my experiences
on the job, one of the biggest problems I have witnessed is communication.  Most issues in the workplace are due to a
lack of proper communication.  Being able
to plan and develop effective goals is a necessary ability any leader should
have, but communication is where that information gets passed down for
execution.  It has been said that
“communicators take something complicated and make it simple.”  Through communication, I will strive to be
clear and concise while focusing on those that I am addressing.  I need to be sincere in what I say as well.  It is not enough that my employees simply understand
what I am saying.  They must also believe
it.  Along with communication, I need to
be able to practice empathy.  Empathy is
the ability to identify with the feelings, thoughts and attitudes of
others.  One important point that I must
remember is that empathy is not the same as sympathy.  Sympathy implies agreeing or sharing with
someone’s feelings.  Empathy is
understanding those feelings, not necessarily agreeing with them.  I believe empathy is the key to critical
thinking.  The ability to see and
understand perspectives other than my own will ensure that I avoid falling
victim to selfish endeavors or narrow-minded decisions.  In order to effectively lead a diverse
workforce with people from all walks of life, I must be aware of the
differences we have culturally, socially and even religiously.  My priorities may not be the same as their
priorities and I must take that into account when communicating with my
employees while pushing to motivate their progress.  Motivation is the glue that I want to bind my
leadership goals.  My philosophy is that
motivation is achieved through making my employees want to do their jobs.  Just as we are told that our feelings and
actions are all our own products, so is motivation.  I cannot directly motivate my employees but
through programs like 360° feedback I can show my sincerity and commitment to
their success.  By learning what their
needs and concerns are and developing plans that take their feedback into
consideration, I hope to make my employees feel invested in their work and
appreciated.  This type of environment helps
foster self-motivation and in turn improves employee performance and

Conclusion: From
my experiences, using clear communication, empathy and motivation are the best
ways to effectively lead my employees and business forward on the path to
reaching our goals and success.

Paper written Fall 2012 by Christopher Garza for HRMA 4353 University of Houston

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