Alumni Perspectives on Evolving Leadership Style

by Michael Joyce published Dec 13, 2019 12:20 PM, last modified Feb 07, 2020 01:40 PM
by Paul Obidinski, J.D.

Regardless of industry or precise career path, leadership styles may evolve as more knowledge is gained! We recently asked some MPS Program Alumni a series of questions on how their leadership styles have changed since graduating from the MPS Program. Here are some of our Alumni Perspectives:

Do you feel as if your own leadership style has changed since you were a student in the MPS program and, if so, how?

Mark Sandy
Mark Sandy
Class of 2019

“My own leadership style has changed since being a student in the MPS program. Before enrolling in the program, I did not think of myself as being in a leadership role of any sort; as a junior member of a headquarters staff in the Air Force, I am one of the lowest ranking members of the staff and did not hold a direct leadership role. Through the MPS program, I learned that you do not need to be in a direct leadership role to lead. Someone can be a leader no matter what formal position they hold, and even through being a good, effective follower, you can influence how leadership takes place within your organization.”

 

Karen Stough
Karen Stough
Class of 2019

 

“Absolutely. I am more aware of others’ perception of me and how I need to be consistently aware of that perception. I am aware of my strengths and weaknesses and work diligently to be the best leader I can be. The MPS program offered many resources which I still use today.”

Dawn Baksh, Class of 2018
Dawn Baksh
Class of 2018

“When I reflect on my individual leadership I do not think it has changed much in style but has grown exponentially. I have always been an adaptable person and, therefore, an adaptable leader. Now knowing so many different styles of leadership, I am better able to transition between the different styles of leadership to fit what is needed for the situation. I do not believe there is a one style or kind of leader. That doesn’t promote growth or development for a person.

 I have always been a leader at my company but, honestly, was lacking some of the confidence to really step up and do more. During my time in the program, I was using what I learned in real time to navigate changes at my work place and I think that gave me more confidence in stepping up and taking on the leadership role more prominently. I built up the confidence and found that all this time I really did know a lot about leadership but now I was building the right kind of confidence to showcase it.

 I love helping people, it is a passion. I also love watching others around me grow and improve their roles  - so that made it really satisfying to see myself become an example to look to and a mentor for others. One of most rewarding outcomes has been showing others how much of a leader they are too and how well we all work when we work together. In short, my leadership style hasn’t changed but how I present it to others has.”

 

If you have any questions for our Alumni on their perspectives, please feel free to contact Paul Obidinski, Professor of Practice, at peo104@psu.edu and we will reach out to our alumni to have any follow-up questions addressed.