Why Seek Assessment

Improved Essays
Many believe leaders are born; but are they? In the article, Why Seek Assessment,
Challenge, and Support, by H. Browning and E. Van Velsor we are persuaded to believe otherwise. Browning and Van Velsor “believe there are three key elements that drive leadership development: assessment, challenge and support” (2000, p. 7). Utilizing the elements of leadership development in addition to understanding where one currently resides in the 3 developmental situations allows a leader to grow and enhance their leadership capabilities and in turn become better leaders (Browning & Van Velsor, 2000). The authors also emphasize an important point in how leadership skills are developed. Developing leadership capabilities is not a skill simply read and practiced
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Whether the assessed believe the feedback represents them or not, it is the perception one is portraying. The goal of the assessment(s) is to determine where leadership skills enhancement may be required.
BROWNING AND VAN VELSOR ARTICLE CRITIQUE 3
According to Browning and Van Velsor, the determined enhancements should be addressed as challenges; the second element in developing a leader (2000). These challenges
“create opportunities to question established ways of thinking and acting” (Browning & Van
Velsor, 2000, p. 7). To facilitate this development, leaders can be placed into situations and opportunities that will require a new way of thinking or acting, thus challenging the leader to expand the leader’s skills (Browning & Van Velsor, 2000).
The third element, support, is also crucial in developing leadership skills (Browning &
Van Velsor, 2000). As challenges are presented and adaptations are made to meet these challenges (successfully); self confidence is enhanced and strengths reassured (Browning & Van
Velsor, 2000). Additionally, a support structure should also be implemented to ensure the
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In the article, Browning & Van Velsor (2000) also provides a useful graph on page 8 detailing 3 different developmental situations. These 3 developmental situations are; under challenged, over challenged and developmental balance (Browning & Van Velsor, 2000). These developmental situations can be leveraged to understand if the leader’s current situations facilitate leadership development. According to Browning and Van Velsor (2000), the under challenged developmental situation is where the leaders skills are nearly matched for the required demands and there is little room for leadership skill growth. In the over challenged developmental situation the leader’s skills are nowhere near those demanded by the situation and high stress is created (Browning & Van Velsor, 2000). The third and final developmental situation is developmental balance; where the leader’s skills are both able to meet the situational
BROWNING AND VAN VELSOR ARTICLE CRITIQUE 4 leadership demands as well as expand to meet new demands as they arise (Browning & Van
Velsor, 2000). Utilizing both the elements of leadership and the developmental situations in a leader’s professional development will enable a more robust discussion in both personal

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