Blog 5: Challenges of Leadership and Learning Organization

In previous blogs discuss what leadership styles motivate and manage changes while they envision the organisation’s objectives. Today’s blog reflects the natural relationship between Leadership and Learning organisation. It refers to the leadership qualities required to promote and encourage ideal learning, creativity, and another atmosphere. The Learning Organization, according to Peter Senge (1990), is dependent on mastery of five dimensions

He describes the organisation as a complex system. One must comprehend how such systems link to the organisation’s complexity to maintain a long-term emphasis. Individuals aspire to improve their vision and concentrate their efforts while continuing to learn. At the same time, mental models contribute to how we view the world and the difficulties that arise when new concepts and improvements are allowed. Using dialogue, dedication, and passion, creating a shared vision helps to pass on an image of the organisation’s future. Finally, when the team thinks together to accomplish shared goals, team learning improves teamwork.

Leaders in this aspect play an essential role in reshaping the learning organisation. They act more like a ship’s builder than a captain. They establish the policies, strategies, and processes that translate guiding ideas into business decisions, creating a collective vision of shared values and objective. Senge (1990) outlines these positions shed a lot of light on successful Knowledge Management and Organisational Learning criteria..

Organisational Learning is a method of gathering, sharing, and interpreting data to improve an organisation’s efficiency. First, it creates a competitive atmosphere in the workplace that encourages the organisation’s structure to improve over time (Slater and Naver 1995). Second, it promotes employee development and efficiency (Morales et al. 2008). Finally, it makes adjustments to effectively react to internal and external environmental changes while maintaining long-term viability and growth (Chen 2005).

Connecting Leadership and Learning in the public sector, for example, rethinks the intent of schools, the essence of education, and the leadership qualities that make schools natural learning environments (McGrath, 2015).  Another study conducts base on an NGOs’ suggests that an NGO’s ability to learn depends on its organisational culture and the development of an internal learning culture. Furthermore, it reveals that creating this learning culture derives primarily from the leadership attitude towards Learning (Hailey and James, 2002).

Reflection on Choudhary and et al. (2013) research shows that leadership style plays a vital role in an organisational learning process example; transformational leadership is better than servant leadership style. Philosophical reflection is drawn to the challenges at hand through transformational leadership. First, it enhances overall efficiency by promoting awareness and creativity (Senge, 1990; Hurley and Huit,1998). Second, it implements strategies by inspiring and influencing followers, encouraging them to perform well, and communicating with and listening to subordinates (Yukl, 2013). In addition, numerous longitudinal studies and statistical findings indicate that both transformational and servant leadership enhance organisational success by mediating organisational Learning (Morale and et al., 2008: McClellan, 2007).

In today’s diverse environment, an effective learning organisation may consider going beyond mere lip service. One of the critical learning and development program initiated by Kellerman Barbara in her book “Professionalising Leadership”, an organisation needs to change and involve in leadership development as it implies that a change more profound than either leadership training or leadership education (Kellerman, 2018).

The challenges of leadership lie in a set of processes at the heart of organisational Learning. The learning process outlines the fundamental steps, including gaining, translating, and applying information, before delving into the critical challenges managers face at each level (Garvin, 2000). For example, the seven crucial challenges with leadership today are failure to communicate, lack of accountability, fear of termination, lack of alignment, lack of clear vision, poor execution, and company culture by default (CEO Coaching International, 2021).


The recent Coronavirus has struck us with a massive shift in our daily lives. It speeds up the change globally. What we are doing now is not what we did a year ago. It needs change and continued learning to drive us to think and behave in facing the challenges, as quoted in Peter Senge’s study, which reiterates the importance of a learning organisation to keep pace with the ongoing changes. It also popularised the learning organisation as an environment where people constantly expand their capacity to achieve desirable outcomes. It promotes a variety of creative and diverse thought processes that allow for the expression of collective aspiration. Being a leader of managing a diverse team comprising different nationalities from ASEAN, I find that the new meta-skill that leaders must develop is learning. Creating a Learning Organisation culture is essential as we navigate ambiguity. It enables us to think and behave more agile, innovative, and resilient in facing the VUCA world.


CEO Coaching International. 2021. Thank You CEO Mistakes eBook – CEO Coaching International. [online] Available at: <; [Accessed 25 April 2021].

Chen, G., 2005. Management Practices and Tools for Enhancing Organizational Learning Capability. SAM. Advanced Management Journal, Volume 70. Issue 1. Pg. 4-35

Choudhary, A., Akhtar, S., and Arshad Zaheer, A., 2013. Impact of Transformational and Servant Leadership on Organisational Performance: A Comparative Analysis. Journal of Business Ethics. Volume 116, Issue 2. Pg. 433- 440.

Garvin, A., 2000. Learning in Action: A Guide to Putting the Learning Organization to Work. Harvard: Harvard Business Review Press

Hailey, J., and James, R., 2002. Learning Leaders: The Key to Learning Organisations. Journal Development in Practice:  Volume 12. No. 3/4, Pg. 398-408

Hurley, F, and Huit, T., 1998. Innovation, market orientation, and Organisational Learning: An integration and empirical examination. Journal of Marketing, Volume 62, Pg. 42

Kellerman, B. 2018. Professionalising Leadership. New York: Oxford University Press.

McClellan, L., 2007. The Advisor as Servant: The theoretical and philosophical relevance of servant leadership to academic advising. NACADA Journal. Volume 27. Issue 2. Pg. 41-49

McGrath, F., 2015. Connecting Leadership and Learning, Principles for practice. Journal of Educational Leadership, Policy and Practice. Auckland: New Zealand Educational Administration and Leadership Society.

Morales, V., Montes, F., and Jover, A., 2008. The effects of transformational leadership on organisational performance through knowledge and innovation. British Journal of Management. Volume 79. Pg. 299-319

Senge, M., 1990. The fifth discipline: the art and practice of the learning organisation. New York: Random House.

Slater, F., and Naver, C., 1995. Market orientation and the learning organisation. Journal of Marketing, Volume 59. Issue 3. Pg. 63

Yukl, G., 2013. Leadership in Organization. 8th ed. New York: Pearson.

Blog 4 : Leadership and Change Management

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself” – Quoted by Leo Tolstoy, a famous Russian novelist.

The quote precepts a good starting point for any leader engaged in organisational change. The leadership development supporting organisational change study conducted by McKinsey (2012) finds that individuals neglect the effort and overlook the need to make fundamental changes in themselves. Organisations do not change, but people do. It is always easier said than done to transform the self-understanding into an organisation context (Smet and et al., 2012).

Many researchers define a leader as a person who sets attractive goals and attracts followers to pursue goals (Yuki, 2013). Commonly, a leader is also a trustable and respectable person. The trust opens up two-way communication and sharing their common goals. A leader consistently demonstrates specific traits and attributes. In contrast, the traits derived from the character elements are challenging to learn versus the attributes examples skills and hence easier to grasp. People usually bring such quality when they join a company. However, the study shows that the attributes required by leadership far exceed the traits (McKinsey-Quarterly, 1997).

In another McKinsey Research (2011) on Organisational Health Index, half of all efforts to transform organisational performance fail because senior managers do not act as role model for change or because people in the organisation defend the existing condition (Keller and Price, 2011). Therefore, effective leadership is vital in managing the changes taking place. In addition, response to the changes in technology and market trend has also forced organisations to rethink how to work, adapt and implement their business model.

Transformational and transitional leadership styles have different traits to show their unified personal characteristics. Such qualities reflect a range of individual differences and cultivate consistent leader effectiveness across diverse team and organisation positions (Zaccaro, 2007). In addition, those traits help the leader acquire the necessary skills to formulating the organisation’s vision and a practical plan for pursuing it and taking the steps required to implement the vision in reality (Kirkpatrick and Locke, 1991).

Comparing both leadership styles, transactional leaders commonly focus on motivating people through a system of rewards and punishments, emphasising short team goal and results, little involvement of others, directive and fast in time of implement things (MacKenzie, 2001). Transactional leadership does not always make headlines. However, it does accomplish goals; leaders like Bill Gates and Lou Holtz are proof.

In contrast, transformational leaders work with teams as a vital resource to grow, long-term strategy with visionary, open-minded, adaptable and innovative, proactive, lead with humility, inspire and engage team along the path and executing the change in tandem with committed members of a group focus (Odumeru and Ogbonna, 2013). Those leaders are usually newsworthy; think Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk.

To achieve the ultimate strategic and a desired standard change vision, a study from Harvard Business Review (2009) finds companies require to look internal and external in the organisational change process through marginalised individual learning and transformation. Instead, leaders link strategic and system intervention with self-revelation and self-development, which provides a better way to embrace the organisation’s vision and achieve its business goals (Grashow and et al., 2009).

Change is inevitably in the current World. Thus, learning to accept change is a crucial factor for thriving in the modern workplace. This sense of adaptability means seeing change as an ongoing opportunity, not as a threat or liability and how to overcome it (Kegan and Lahey, 2009). For example, when the Covid-19 pandemic strikes in Singapore, leaders or policymakers set a rule for people planning to go out, wear masks, practise social distancing, limit a large group of people gathering to reduce the infection rate. Such change action makes people feel uneasy and unhappy initially, given the external environmental change. The transactional leader style adopts strict rule to motivate people for achieving the target. In contrast, transformational action encourages people by delivering a clear message about the outcome if we do not do it right.

In reflection on leadership and change management, every kind of leader motivates, challenges and develops employees differently. The style can inspire different outcomes. In the book “Winning from Within”, Erica Fox provides a compelling way to look at things differently from inside out to develop awareness at a broader and deeper level (Fox, 2013). Both leadership styles exhibit varying traits and characteristic. I would not confine to a single leadership style while adopting a mixture of each type to suit the business’ needs and work with employees of different cultures and belief (Walumbwa and et al., 2007). In my recent role of managing a diverse team, a leader needs to be transformational and tactical, strategic when envisioning the organisation’s change and goals target.


Avolio, B., 2010, Full Range Leadership Development, SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks. Available from: ProQuest E-book Central.

Fox, E., 2013. Winning from Within: A Breakthrough Method for Leading, Living, and Lasting Change. New York: Harper Business

Grashow, A., Heifetz, R., and Linsky, M., 2009. The practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactic for Changing Your organisation and World. Boston MA: Harvard Business Review Publishing

Kegan, R., and Lahey, L., 2009. Immunity to Change: How to overcome it and Unlock the potential in yourself and your organisation. Boston: Harvard Business Review publishing.

Keller, S., and Price, C., 2011. Organisational health: The ultimate competitive advantage. New York: The McKinsey Quarterly.

MacKenzie, B., Podsakoff, M., and Rich, A., 2001. Transformational and Transactional Leadership and Salesperson Performance. Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science. Volume 29 (2): page. 115–134. 

McKinsey-Quarterly, 1997. Developing Leadership in Business. The McKinsey Quarterly Number 4. New York

Odumeru, J., & Ogbonna, I., 2013. Transformational vs transactional leadership theories: Evidence in literature, International Review Of Management And Business Research, Volume 2(2), pg. 355-361.

Smet, A., Lavoie, J., and Hioe, E., 2012. Developing Better Change Leaders. Mckinsey Quarterly. View on:

Walumbwa, F., Lawler, J., and  Avolio, B.,  2007.  Applied Psychology.  An International Review. Volume 56 (2): page. 212–230

Yukl, G., 2013. Leadership In Organisations., 8th Edition Cambridge, MA: Harvard Business Press.

Zaccaro, S. J. (2007). “Trait-based perspectives of leadership”. American Psychologist. Volume 62 (1): page: 6–16. 

Blog 3: Leaders and Motivation and Its Affirmation

No one should consider educated to lead without understanding that leadership is relational (Kellerman, 2018)

The meaning of leadership is contextual and a complex phenomenon. It defines in many ways. One needs to understand such complexity concerning leadership (Clarke, 2018). This blog review focuses on transformational leadership and its motivation values because of its popular leadership style used in all organisations and across many industries. The concept of transformational leadership theory was first introduced in early 1985 by Bernard Bass (Bass and Bass, 2008).  It expanded into a full range of theory in 1999, where leadership type distinguishes into three leadership behaviour types: Transformational, Transactional, and Laissez-faire leadership (Avolio, 2010). At different stages in an organisation, it may need a different kind of leadership.

Transformational leaders inspire and motivate employees to find better ways to achieve their goals (Northouse, 2016). It is also a management style that can motivate employees to take up positions as leaders and perform beyond expectations. It is a purpose-driven leadership in today’s hypercomplex world (Cashman, 2017).  It does not assign tasks from scratch but teaches people how to think, not just follow other people’s instructions. It mobilises people to complete their work, increasing the team’s happiness, morale, and motivation through excellent rapport (Bass, 1999). Its strengths include solving problems by discovering experiences and avoiding using old models like narcissistic style that may be inappropriate. They want to know where must be changed within the job scope to maximise the team’s capabilities by transforming using emotion, ethics, values and motivation toward the objectives (Denhardt and et al., 2016). Such leadership style is prevalent in past decades and also applies well in today’s world.

To draw an example of a 20th-century liberator, Mahatma Gandhi came from a rank of follower who fought for India’s independence from British colonial (Kellerman, 2018). He demonstrates the values of intellectual motivation through inspiration and its attributes and idealised influence (Bass and Riggio, 2006). His followers and people, in general, respect him because of his ethics and morals. He works with his people in high dignity, justice, and fairness, leading to destiny fill with love, compassion, respect, and positive action. Such leadership creates respect and treat his people as individuals (Avolio, 2010)

In comparing the 21st-century example, Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, builds up the world’s largest e-commerce company. He transforms his employees with good trust and loyalty within an organisation and its customers. He provokes new creativity and innovative value in responding to emerging shifts that make today’s Amazon one of the world’s largest organisations employing more than 1 million employees (Amazon, 2021). His idealised influence component brings him a charismatic leader besides being transformative (Avolio and Yamarino, 2013). He inspires the people by empowering followers to awaken their sense of agency to respond to radical changes in times of crisis, such as how Amazon’s leadership responds to the recent pandemic in America (Ladkin, 2006). He profounds and extraordinary influences his followers to be more creative at work in response to the current pandemic that upended many peoples’ lives (House and Baetz, 1979). Both examples demonstrate such a leadership style effectively motivates his followers to achieve a different hierarchy of needs, as explained in Abraham Maslow’s theory of motivation that covers its three essentials: basic, psychological, and self-fulfilment needs (Maslow, 1970).

In the face of ever-accelerating, unrelenting change, an ability to meet unexpected challenges with confidence, a leader with transformative characters is more profound than the other leadership styles. Both scenarios reflect in our work of managing a project team. It shows more benefits of adopting a transformational leadership style for pursuing a goal. It proves that such a leadership style works well to create better team engagement and collaboration. The macro-environment changes in today digital era are sweeping global trends faster than ever. The technology reminds us that we preferably need a collaborative and engaging team to adapt to the changes to stay practical and sound. However, this does not mean that it should always be the default choice of adopting the transformational style. It believes a pivotal change from a more weighted transformative style to a situational or transactional style to make sound judgement and intuition handle each situation uniquely, mainly since the world is increasingly volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous (VUCA).

Further reflection on the fact, especially the demographic change in this 21st century from a successful boomer generation approach might not be practical to the deal with the Millennials and Gen-Z. Such experience affirms our belief in the saying no one-size-fits-all leadership style in any aspect. While we believe the only way to adopt change and regulate one’s thinking in the acquisition and decision making is right, fair and just (Traüffer, 2008).


Amazon, 2021. Facts. [online] Available at: <; [Accessed 10 April 2021].

Avolio, B. and Yammarino, F., 2013. Reflections, Closing thoughts, and future directions in Transformational and Charismatic Leadership: The Road Ahead. 10th Edition. Bingley: Emerald Group Publishing Limited. Pg.449-470.

Avolio, B., 2010. Full Range Leadership Development, SAGE Publications, Thousand Oaks. Available from: ProQuest E-book Central.

Bass, B., 1999. Two decades of Research and Development in transformational leadership. European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology, 8(1), 9-32.

Bass, B., and Bass, R., 2008.  The Bass handbook of leadership: Theory, Research, and managerial applications. 4th Edition. New York: Free Press

Bass, B., and Riggio, R., 2006. Transformational Leadership. New York: Psychology Press.

Cashman, K., 2017. Leadership from the inside out – Becoming a Leader for Life. 3rd Edition. Oakland CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers.

Clarke, N., 2018. Relational Leadership: Theory, Practice and Development. London: Routledge.

Denhardt, R., Denhardt, J., and Aristigueta, M., 2016. Managing human behaviour in public and non-profit organisations. 4th Edition. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications.

House, R., and Baetz, M., 1979.  Leadership: Some empirical generalisations and new research directions. Research in organisational behaviour. Volume 1, pp. 399-401. Greenwich, CT: JAI Press

Kellerman, B., 2018. Professionalising leadership. 1st Edition. Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press. Pg.117.

Ladkin, D., 2006.  The Enchantment of the Charismatic Leader: Charisma Reconsidered as Aesthetic Encounter. Leadership. Volume 2 (2): page:165-179.

Maslow, A., 1970. Motivation and personality. New York: Harper & Row

Northouse, P., 2016. Leadership Theory and Practise. 4th Edition. London: SAGE Publication

Traüffer, H., 2008. Towards an understanding of discernment: A 21st – Century model of decision making. Doctoral Dissertation. Regent University Virginia Beach. VA: ProQuest LLC

Blog 2: Managing diverse teams in a changing world and the role of leaders !

If the world is changing, leadership needs to change. Indeed, in the current 21st century, the world is in a fast-changing mode. The challenge of what it means to lead in this complex and changing landscape remains. Any organization must adapt to the changes, especially when working with a diverse team to operate effectively. Before looking out there, one needs to start engaging and managing it meaningfully with other experience differences. As the quote famous poet- Audrey Lorde, “It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept and celebrate those differences” (Lorde and Hall, 2004). Today’s workforce is a multifaceted environment with people coming from all walks of life. Many leaders believe diversity and inclusivity is a positive element while it still contains disparity within them. It starts to identify through the lenses. The way people view these prejudices affects their view of other things, such as religion, political beliefs, education, socioeconomic background, social culture, and different age groups

A famous quote from G. Hofstede said, National Culture cannot be changed, but we should understand and respect it”.  Just draw a real-life example of using its six dimensions of National Culture on a China company investing in ASEAN (Hofstede, 2011)

It outlines some of the ASEAN’s cultural diversity against the host country of China, where the leader asks to lead a team within the ASEAN region. The culture dimension reflects that there are differences given some ASEAN countries have similarity in dominant ethnicity group.

Those differences in masculinity, long-term orientation and Indulgence are the areas where being a leader needs a complete understanding of the individual and the meaning of difference, managing it effectively by using the differences of each dimension to be different together (Hofstede-Insights, 2020). 

The lack of collaboration, engagement, poor communication, lack of teamwork, and embrace hierarchy lead to failure to manage the business in the diverse and changing environment (Hofstede, 2011). Adapting to the changing climate drives positive collaboration between employees with greater responsibility and responsiveness in meeting the objective of the organization (Heinrich and Betts, 2003).  Leading to such change requires having a proper company resource and cost to facilitate the transition. The scholarly study suggests that synergy around people, systems and technology helps manage different aspects of change (Burke and et al., 2012). The roles of team leaders are essential to make it works primarily based on an integrative approach example of using psychology humour approaches (Martin and Ford, 2018). It needs to understand how to manage the first impression, aligning expectation, recognizing stressfully, managing feedback-seeking, building relationships, and perhaps using structured leadership development methods (Manderscheid and Ardichvili, 2008). In this scenario, operating activities in Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia versus China will have different cultures; therefore, leaders must work collaboratively to pursue the common goals. Proper management practices help minimize conflict resolution in complicated situations (Burke and et al., 2000).

Complementary to the case, a positive aspect of diversity can help improve business performance, although it is likely to face challenges. In the study by Zaccaro, the business will evolve through a strong collaboration of teamwork, training, and construction group process (Zaccaro and et al., 2001). It also proves that solid teamwork is generally a source of strength to the organization that operates globally.  In addressing the masculine aspect, most of the ASEAN countries have a lower score than China. Hofstede’s study concludes that understanding the distribution of power from the culture dimension perspective helps avoid conflict within the organization (Hofstede-insight, 2020). It is critically important to prevent any negative part of diversity in the workplace, such as in the Indulgence aspect where satisfaction level is different from one country to another. Such an aspect could lead to increased staff turnover or talent retention if mishandled (Heinrich and Betts, 2003).  The challenge in today environment is for a leader to rethink the approach to this diversity. It needs consistently adjust and adapt to the changing climate—the ability to innovate beyond mere product and service through managing its diversity carefully. Harnessing diversity is beneficial to any organization as it leads to better resilience (Werner and Smith, 2001), enhances innovation and enables authentic community (Schultz and et al., 2011).

In the REFLECTION of this topic, the role of a leader is essential. A leader develops a transition process to ensure the diverse workforces apply collaborative efforts. Being a leader of managing a workplace of tomorrow is likely to be unlike anything we can imagine both in term of diversity and inclusion; they must lead by example to inspire, motivate, coach, and mentor to create better teamwork. A leader makes time to share and listen to each other story. It opens up empathy that drives better engagement and treats each other with respect and skill. It creates a better thinking process. Ultimately, the result is to collectively embark as a team that thrive in tomorrow’s world (Brett and et al., 2006).


Brett, J., Behfar, K., and Kern, M., 2006. Managing multicultural teams. Harvard business review, 2006-11, Vol. 84 (11). P.84-156

Burke, W., Trahant, J., and Koonce, R., 2000. Business Climate Shifts: Profiles of Change Makers. Routledge.

Heinrich, C. and Betts, B., 2003. Adapt or Die: Transforming Your Supply Chain into an Adaptive Business Network. London: John Wiley & Sons.

Hofstede, G., 2011. Dimensionalising Cultures: The Hofstede Model in Context. Online Readings in Psychology and Culture, Unit 2. Retrieved from

Hofstede-Insights, 2020. Home – Hofstede Insights Organisational Culture Consulting. [online] Available at: < comparison >  

Lorde, A. and Hall, J., 2004. Conversations with Audre Lorde. Jackson (Miss.): University Press of Mississippi.

Manderscheid, V. and Ardichvili, A., 2008. “A conceptual model for a leadership transition,” Performance Improvement Quarterly, 20 (3/4):113-129.

Martin, R. and Ford, T., 2018. The psychology of humour- An Integrative Approach. 2nd ed. Cambridge: Academic Press.

Schultz, H., Gordon, J. and Bowlby, S., 2011. Onward: How Starbucks Fought For Its Life without Losing Its Soul. 1st ed. Minneapolis: John Wiley & Sons.

Werner, E. and Smith, R., 2001. Journeys from childhood to midlife. Risk, Resilience, and Recovery. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press.

Zaccaro, J., Rittman, L., and Marks, A., 2001. “Team Leadership,” The Leadership Quarterly, 12: 451-483.

Blog 1: Where are our Ethical Leaders? Ethical Leadership

My impression of an ethical leader refers to a person who has a high value in moral, action with ethics, a transparent sincerity in leadership and a comprehensive philosophy on non-violence. Mr. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, who won independence for India from the British empire without firing a bullet in the 20th century, shows us a great ethical leader (Easwaran, 2011).  He fills up with positive thoughts with love, compassion, respect, integrity, positive emotion, and humility. These are the critical values of an ethical leader. The reflection from Gandhi’s story, one can define the Ethical Leadership relates to the respect of ethic of matters including honesty, the right and dignity of others, justice and fairness as well as the philosophy of non-violence that leads to destiny fills with love, compassion, respect and positive action. That makes a great leader (Yukl, 2013).

The effect of ethical leadership is truly reflecting not just on the individual, team but also an essential aspect in any business organisation. Such results include the values of inspiring individual to work in a positive work environment that leads to improved productivity and improve overall morale that one can get along with one another. It articulates a set of ethical rules in creating a positive work culture. It lives up to the company’s values rather than politics and personality. Such ethics of authenticity responsible provides the practice of moral leadership (Starratt, 2004).

The element of business always goes with performance, mentoring, and compensation. Ethical leadership plays a vital role in an organisation that cultivates a healthy and well-being company. It articulates mutual respect that leads to a positive mindset of individual and team. It motivates individual to work, engage and contribute to meeting the organisation goals ultimately.  It reflects me when I read Amazonian narratives about Amazon’s leadership principle. As young as 21 years old, Amazon turns out to be the largest e-commerce company globally (Amazon, 2021).  Making it top of the world ranking is very much because of its ethical leadership that drives work engagement and employee’s creativity. Its affective commitment mediates both aspects. It creates two way of communication that reinforces the commitment of employees toward the objectives. The C.E.O. of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, claims as a visionary marketer and an ethical leader who practices what he preaches base on Amazon’s leadership principles. The employees judge the leader behaviour toward them.

One of the principles says: Big things start small.  The giant oak starts from an acorn. It reflects that anyone wants to grow the tree. It takes time. It fosters a good passion and ferocity that embeds in the Amazonians. Jeff’s practices on new idea creativity through an unconventional approach let their employees prepare five-page narratives about the ideas and distribute them to the team members before the presentation (Stone, 2021).  Its unique approach is to let the person think through their ideas instead of glossing over theories that flatten out any sense of relative importance and ignore the interconnectedness of ideas.  It readdresses how effective the leadership that fosters employee creativity as it becomes a vital organisation’s goals.

Another good reflection derives from an ethical leader who demonstrates supportive behaviour. It leads to drive into a healthy environment through proper feedback, trustworthiness and care, and showing its social, emotional resources.  Many people lost their job and family during the spike of the pandemic in the U.S. Such social issue has trigger how a company with ethical leadership to support them.  The learning from Amazon’s support and philanthropy activities and its ethical leadership has again entrusted how a company performs and responds. It is not just taking care of their employee, the partners, but also the whole community. The reflection of this approach is genuinely demonstrating a company with ethical leadership will be remembered by the community.

My Reflection: The ethical leader cases described above are essential for whether a big or small organisation and individually. It is not just ethics and morale counts. The practice requires to be honest, trustworthy, respect among key stakeholder groups. An ethical leader helps to endorse the genuine concept of ethics, including how it helps make the right moral decision.  Ethics needs are essential for building a sustainable business model for any business scenario: a good reputation and loyalty derived from the trust that makes strong brand values that everyone knows it (Witzel, 2019). Contrary, ethical leaders don’t create bad public relations for a company.


Amazon. 2021. Facts. [online] Available at: <; [Accessed 1 April 2021].

Easwaran, E., 2011. Gandhi, the man. 4th Edn. Strawberry Hills, N.S.W.: Nilgiri Press.

Starratt, R., 2004. Ethical leadership. 1st ed. San Francisco, Calif.: Jossey-Bass.

Stone, B., 2021. Amazon Unbound: Jeff Bezos and the Invention of a Global Empire. 1st ed. New York: Simon & Schuster.

Witzel, M., 2019. The Ethical Leader – Why doing the right thing can be the key to competitive advantage. 1st ed. London: Bloomsbury Business. Yukl, G., 2013. Leadership in Organization. 8th ed. New York: Pearson

Hidden Self

Personal experiences and aspirations around leadership enabling them to develop originality in their leadership capabilities is to break his or their hidden self egoism. That’s true. My reflection on this model of the study derives from Johari Window’s model of learning reminded me in my past corporate job that I have many reporting staffs. At once when I accepted the hidden of myself that being disclosed by the team, it helped to build strong trust with the others. A hidden self, sometimes it is unknown to you but might not want others to know. Open it up, it drives us to be a strong leader when we lead the team toward common objectives. Individuals can build trust between themselves by disclosing information to others and learning about others from the information in turn to disclose about themselves. With the help of feedback from others, I became aware of some of my positive and negative traits as perceived by others and overcome some of the personal issues that may be inhibiting my personal or group dynamics within the team. It made me stronger as a leader to lead a successful team. As a leader, we should openly accept the hidden self.

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