Final Reflections

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(1)

As a person, to be a leader I believe that it is less about the individual characteristics (dominance, assertiveness, intellect etc.) and more about how they can manage each individuals' best attributes in a way that coincides and suits the tasks and personalities of those around them. Indeed, there are many skills that suits what one could consider important for a good leader but it is the understanding of the situation itself and the honesty about one's own limitations, the strengths and weaknesses of those around them that is important. This level of perceptiveness and application to the core goals at hand is what in my opinion is synonymous with good leaders. Honesty and having a true contextual understanding of the tasks and the people involved, holding true nuanced knowledge of all the different variables associated even when it means admitting certain shortcomings about what you initially thought about yourself or others, and adapting your actions to suit this ever-changing narrative I believe is incredibly important for leadership; never accepting that your view of the truth is the whole truth whilst remaining constantly curious and invested to better curate this picture of what is going on essentially leaves a leader prepared to face any task that may arise in front of them.

 

(2)

Often times in my life I have lacked organisational and time management skills, this has been a core issue for me which I have slowly started to improve. The fact that I was able to implement project and time management skills effectively during this project helped me learn a lot about myself and how my lacking in time and project management is down to motivation.

 I was capable of organising my life and tasks during the month researching and travelling around Europe whilst researching alongside my fellow scholars. I associate my ability during this trip to use these skills (which I’d struggle to use before) with the anxiety of not wanting to let down those around me. The accountability that I had to take when involved with a group task made me relate it back to my own life and university work. In university group projects I find the sense of responsibility makes me take charge of the project so as to not let down the others and it is the externally motivated social connotations with my work that seems to be the driving force.

I often lack the stress of having to complete my own work and leave everything I do for the last minute because of my fear of not completing things to the standard I’d like; this allows me to justify any work not being “good enough” because I left myself such little time to do the work in the first place. In turn I have seen myself leaving revision for exams to the week or days before, writing essays 12 hours before the deadline etc. But during my time at Laidlaw, the looming responsibility of my own part in a group project and the repercussions of missed deadlines affecting others as well meant I was forced to manage my tasks and time more effectively.

The awareness of the fact that I am able to be organised when I feel my actions affect others indicates to me that I am entirely externally motivated do not hold much intrinsic motivation in my actions when acting for myself; I have become complacent with the idea not meeting my own standards and use procrastination as an excuse for it. However, I could overcome this when failing meant I affected other people. In turn I feel that the determination to complete something comes from having a deeper purpose behind your work that you are motivated towards or scared to fail. By not wanting to fail my projects, I instil this sense of anxiety associated with not completing tasks on time which I often times lack. Whilst the purpose behind my project management and determination to complete the project was externally motivated by other people at Laidlaw, I have found now that in order to have the tenacity to complete any personal task I have to find what motivates me; the purpose behind the project first, and the determination follows. Put simply, my reflection of my time at Laidlaw has told me that the anxiety of failure which motivates better project and time management is predicated on the sense of purpose - central to project at hand.

(3)

Conducting research for Laidlaw has provided me with a new insight into how research takes place. My studies at university often involves the careful analysis and critique of research. Laidlaw gave me a chance to gain new insight into the complexities behind how research is conducted. Having often considered furthering my education beyond a bachelors degree, I have gained a newfound insight into how political research is conducted which is helping steer the direction in life I’m planning on taking at the end of my degree.

The skills and workshops in Laidlaw have provided effective means of being a better leader and manager in the future however which I most value is how I consider the intricacies of what is at hand. Essentially, leadership and what it entails is a far more nuanced concept than I ever thought it was, going beyond the surface of what it takes and diving into the different types of skills associated and how to develop them was incredibly useful on the one hand, but what I value most is the approach towards the subject. I have become curious about knowing the detail and nuance behind large scale projects, what works, what doesn’t work and why this is the case. It has inspired me to want to work towards my own projects or being a part of managing systems of people. Whilst I view education at this point in time as a way to procrastinate my working life before I find out what I want to do, the programme has motivated me more towards leadership, entrepreneurial and management type roles as opposed to my initial aspirations of working in the city I first joined LSE.

 

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Go to the profile of Princess Agina
about 2 months ago

Grappling with personal challenges like time management, and turning them into strengths by recognizing the impact of your actions on others, is truly inspiring. Your honest introspection and the way you've linked it to your leadership and research experiences is a reminder that leadership is a continuous learning process--deeply personal yet universally impactful. Thanks for sharing your journey and the lessons learned along the way, Alexi!

Go to the profile of Andrea Olivo
about 2 months ago

Inspirational stuff Alexi! Keep up the great work. 

Go to the profile of Dávid Erbszt
about 2 months ago

Inspiring thoughts and reflections. I am confident that you will shine bright like a star in your life journey. Don’t let anyone dim your brightness. Warm regards, Dávid