“The Trainer’s Handbook of Leadership Development” by Karen Lawson, Ph.D., CSP, is a “must have” for busy professionals who are charged with developing leadership competencies and characteristics. This activity-based book presents a practical, easy-to-use leadership development tool kit easily adaptable for both group and individual application. It includes thought-provoking activities designed to create real behavior change. Several of the activities can be used for self-study as part of a structured leadership development program. The book also provides resources and methods for addressing “difficult-to-teach” leadership traits such as empathy, agility, authenticity, resilience, and trustworthiness, just to name a few.
The following excerpted activity, “Fair or Equal?” addresses the leadership characteristic of fairness.
Fair or Equal?
Description: In this case study, participants will examine the difference between treating people fairly and treating people equally. They also will discuss how employees may perceive a leader’s behavior.
Time Required: 45-60 minutes
Materials and Preparation: Case Study: Fair or Equal case study (1 per participant)
Instead of using this as a case study, you can introduce the scenario and ask the participants to role play in trios, with each group member assuming the role of Dana, Payton, or the manager.
Case Study: Fair or Equal?
You are the manager of a 10-person department. Like most other departments in the organization, your group is feeling the pressure of doing more with fewer people. Your group members range in age from late 20s to early 40s, and most of them have been in the department less than two years. Some have only been there a few months. Two of your employees, Dana and Payton, both senior members of the department, are working on a special project with a tight deadline. As senior members, they informally supervise the less experienced team members.
Payton is a single parent of two small children and has made special arrangements with you to come in every day an hour early so he can take Friday off (child care available on Fridays). Payton is conscientious and makes sure his work is complete before leaving each day.
Dana is also a hard-working employee who puts in long hours and sometimes voluntarily works weekends (without being paid overtime) so the project stays on schedule. Dana approaches you on Monday and asks to take Friday off in order to chaperone her child’s school field trip. You mention that it is very important that either Dana or Payton is at work on Friday due to the critical nature of the project and the lack of experienced team members. Dana reacts by saying, “I don’t understand why I can’t take just one Friday off, especially when Payton gets every Friday off. I put in a lot of extra hours, including weekends, and don’t complain. This is very important to me. I think it’s only fair that I be able to take off on a Friday every once in a while.”
“The Trainer’s Handbook of Leadership Development” by Karen Lawson, Ph.D., CSP.Dr. Lawson is an international consultant, speaker, and author. As founder and president of Lawson Consulting Group, Inc., she has built a successful consulting firm specializing in organization and management development, as well as executive coaching. She is also currently a professor at Arcadia University in its International MBA program. To purchase the book, visit http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/WileyTitle/productCd-047088603X,descCd-buy.html.