Essay Sample on Leading a Team of Social Workers to Help War Victims

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  963 Words
Date:  2023-03-12


I was once a project leader in a non-governmental organization. For about three months, we participated in activities such as offering relief aid to the less fortunate as well as offering care and comfort to children and women who had been affected by war crimes. During this period, we moved around several refugee camps in a group of 10 social workers. I nonetheless utilized my leadership skills to ensure that the duties we were to perform were done to the best of our abilities. The nine followers I worked with had different traits and strengths, as well as weaknesses. I managed to apply several theories to leadership to get the people the care and comfort they needed. To effectively do this, I worked closely with team members, ensuring that they got the attention, support, and respect they deserved. Although I had weaknesses in my leadership, I applied the leader-member exchange theory and servant-leadership theory, which helped me lead the team to achieve its objectives.

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Applying the Leader-Member Exchange Theory

The leader-member exchange theory calls for a relationship between the leader and the followers. In this approach to leadership, the leader makes suggestions for the followers, who then have a democratic power to accept or reject the suggestions. The leaders thus constantly seek opinions from all the members in order to perform tasks effectively. The exchange between the leader and the member should be done in a dyadic manner (Bauer & Erdogan, 2015). The leader thus needs to have a special bond with each of the followers by listening to them and exchanging ideas and opinions on how to help them perform their responsibilities better. One good way to practice this approach is by calling different individuals for one on one meeting. In these meetings, the conversation should be from the point of mutual respect.

Out of the nine followers, seven were in the in-group, while two were in the out-group. I went through the stranger, acquaintance, and mature partnership phases of leadership making as I had not been tasked with a leadership role before. It thus took me time to get past the stranger phase, where I had to learn to understand each of my followers. In this phase, conversations were mostly formal. Our relationships were based on pre-defined organizational roles. I also needed to go through the acquaintance phase, where my followers got to know me. Our conversations changed from formal to informal. We would thus engage in personal matters and extra-formal conversations about issues that affected the group. The third phase came about in our second month of interaction. During this time, our exchanges became high-quality. We would discuss both formal and informal matters interchangeably.

Applying the Servant Leadership Model

The servant leadership model advocates for the leader to take any necessary opportunity to offer service to the followers. Servant leadership implies that the leader will perform the same tasks he or she expects of the followers in a bid to show them how best to perform the tasks. While taking this approach, the leader should ensure that they do not show off their abilities or skills (Noland & Richards, 2015). Leaders should put their goals and needs behind the needs of their followers. They should be very humble to perform such an act. As such, the leadership is able to make followers feel that they are respected and considered as well. Servant leadership is also important where there are divisions and differences in a group setting. A leader who takes up the mantle of servant leadership can assist followers in putting their differences aside and focussing on the task ahead.

I showcased servant leadership by standing in for one of my followers when they were unavailable. Instead of postponing the activity, I drove the project van to the nearby town and purchased these utilities. I then went back to the refugee camp and distributed the sanitary towels as well as the drinking water to the women who were waiting on these essentials. I was, however, at times unable to demonstrate servant leadership. On one occasion, I was unable to participate in an activity one of my followers had organized because I could not approve of it. I felt that the role he had assigned me was not fit for a leader, which was wrong. The activity was done in my absence as a result.


As a leader, my major strengths are that I consider my followers as equals. I often delegate tasks and will always show respect to subordinates. My major weaknesses are that I am not always a good team player. I often perform very passionate tasks that my followers may object to. Unfortunately, I am not very democratic about most of my decisions. Based on my strengths, I believe that I would excel in situations where the task does not require specialization. I am great at organizing tasks where each member can utilize their different skills to perform the same task. I would thus struggle to lead a group of diverse professionals with differing backgrounds. I believe that I should work on my listening skills. I need always to consider the suggestions from my followers. I also have an attitude issue that I should resolve. I plan on taking leadership classes and also reading motivational books on leadership to achieve this.


Bauer, T. N., & Erdogan, B. (2015). Leader-member exchange (LMX) theory: An introduction and overview. Oxford handbook of leader-member exchange, 3-9. Retrieved from

Noland, A., & Richards, K. (2015). Servant teaching: An exploration of teacher servant leadership on student outcomes. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 15(6), 16-38. Retrieved from

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Essay Sample on Leading a Team of Social Workers to Help War Victims. (2023, Mar 12). Retrieved from

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