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MS in Human Resource Development




Effective leadership is one of the major factors that impacts the success of an organization. Mergers, acquisitions and corporate downsizings have created a more competitive work environment. As a result of the rapidly changing work environment, the need for effective leadership has increased. However, there s currently a leadership gap in the workplace whereby there are not enough competent successors waiting to fill the soon to be vacant leadership positions. Leadership is the ability to create an environment and motivate an individual or groups to have favorable results. In order to be an effective leader, one must have a certain set of competencies. Competencies are a cluster of related knowledge, attitudes and skills that are necessary to effectively perform a major part of one's job. The purpose of this exploratory study was to ask Human Resource professionals to identify the most important competencies necessary for effective leadership in the 21st century. Study results indicate that (a) the ability to have a vision, (b) communication and (c) interpersonal skills were identified by the respondents as key competencies. Over two-thirds of individuals that responded to this study indicate that they work for organizations that do not utilize formal leadership competency models or succession planning strategies. This preliminary study also shows that the definition of a competency varies and is frequently confused with individual qualities and characteristics as opposed to the holistic model most commonly accepted: knowledge, skills and abilities.

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