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Part I Strategic Management in Theory and Practice

Organizational Overview
The Saint John Sea Dogs are a junior hockey team located in Saint John, New Brunswick. They compete in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL), which is one of three leagues that make up the Canadian Hockey League (CHL). The CHL also includes the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) and the Western Hockey League (WHL). Players in the CHL are of high-school age and are being developed to play in the National Hockey League as well as the Canadian Interuniversity Sport League (CHL, 2018). A strategy of providing a value-added product sets the Sea Dogs apart by using a product differentiation strategy. Currently, the Sea Dogs are defending league champions, as last year they had a highly talented and mature roster. This year, by contrast, the Sea Dogs have seen these talented players leave to other organizations and higher leveled leagues and have now found themselves at the bottom of the league standings
Wheel of Competitive Strategy
The Wheel of Competitive Strategy is a powerful tool to thoroughly understand the resources and capabilities of the Sea Dogs. It is a device for articulating key aspects of a firm’s competitive strategy. The spokes of the wheel are key operating policies with which the Saint John Sea Dogs is seeking to achieve its goals; the spokes of the wheel must be connected with each other or the wheel will not roll. The spokes of the wheel for the Saint John Sea Dogs is as follows:
Product Line: The Sea Dogs organization offers two main products: tickets and corporate sponsorships. The product line also includes other things such as merchandise and concessions, but these do not impact the bottom line as significantly as the two main products.
Target Market: The team is currently in a difficult situation when it comes its target market. They are currently working on attracting millennials and young families to their games. This demographic has been challenging to reach due to the nature of their daily routines. However, they need to continue to meet the needs of their rigid, the baby-boomer generation. In order to measure this specific strategy, the team should occasionally provide surveys with the purchase of a ticket, specifically online, to give them demographic information of those attending the games.
Marketing: Awareness of the team needs to be garnered throughout the community in order to build loyalty, especially in the losing seasons. Through their marketing efforts, it is important to make these players relatable, and the experience top-notch. This step is crucial in attracting attendance at the game. This includes how they will display their new innovations to the community.

Sales: Currently the team is struggling to grow in ticket sales and corporate partnerships with a poor-performing season.

Labour: The management of the organization truly believes in surrounding themselves with experts in various fields in order to maximize the potential of the team. However, acquiring experts comes with a price.

Research and Development: While hockey teams are not necessarily developing a physical product, they are developing a powerful and successful team with the goal of winning the Memorial Cup. In this industry, research and development can be seen as the tactic to enhance team performance. As a result, scouting, drafting, and managing the team all fall under this heading. This area can also include the new analytics and advanced statistics (CORSI) that are used in order to provide metrics on these current or potential players and gauge their future success in the league.

Finance and Control: The Sea Dogs budget on a year to year basis, they evaluate what all their anticipated expenses are going to be and then set their revenue goals. Based on previous data, they can project sales of tickets of all categories, estimate the amount of merchandise that will be sold, and estimate how much money they will need in corporate sponsorship. Due to the private nature of the organization, we were unable to receive detailed financial information on the Saint John Sea Dogs.

Project Overview
Second Project: Radio Broadcasting Analysis

We were asked to analyze the audio broadcasting industry, specifically, as it relates to CHL teams.

Description of Focus: The work provided to the partner: this led to the assessment of the market research to understand potential opportunities for audio broadcasting to the Saint John community. Using the data from other hockey markets and combining that with best practices across the audio broadcasting industry, recommendations are provided. A thorough cost analysis and decision matrix model were constructed to provide the final recommendation to the Sea Dogs organization.

Question Being Answered: Is radio broadcasting still a substantial source of media for consumption of sports by fans? If so, what is the most cost-effective way to broadcast to this audience?

Method of Research Support and Analysis: The data collection process was completed by the Sea Dogs APEX student consulting team through traditional primary research methods. Through the research, it is possible to identify alternative revenue sources related to broadcasting that can help improve overall efficiencies. These alternatives are identified as (i) radio station events and outside broadcasts, (ii) broadcast syndication and sale of content, (iii) radio station websites, (iv) merchandising, (v) mobile phones, and (vi) social media platforms (Pillay, 2017).

Deliverables: The deliverables for the second project included additional guidance, recommendations as well as an implementation plan.

Additional Guidance: Retain Present Radio Announcer ; Assign More Responsibility. Incorporate the use of the following tools: Podcast, Benefits of Mobile Application Development.

Recommendation: The preferred recommendation the hybrid model. (The hybrid is a combination of contract broadcasting responsibilities to the third party and in-house online broadcasting.) This option will allow the organization to maintain its current listening base, while providing the Sea Dogs with the opportunity to reach a new demographic. This also allows the team to transition out of radio at a time that is appropriate for the organization, while simultaneously having the next steps in place to ensure a smooth transition.

Implementation Plan: Implementation plan for set up process, game time needs for home games, and future needs was devised and presented to client.

Third Project: Digital Media Strategy for a CHL Executive

We were asked to provide significant research to create a digital footprint that is a good strategic fit for a sports executive, beneficial to both short- and long-term goals.

Description of Focus: To grow one’s power and wealth naturally, social media presence becomes a key success factor in determining the level of following and influence owned by an individual. This project will seek to suggest a social media and digital profile for Trevor Georgie, CHL President and General Manager of the Saint John Sea Dogs. For a sports executive to excel in the modern world, there is great value in an influential online profile. Therefore, this report will outline specific direction on the best practices of the current environment, as well as physical content changes with regard to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Linked In, Wikipedia, Google+, and other online platforms. The purpose is to provide significant research to create a digital footprint that is a good strategic fit for a sports executive, beneficial to short-term and long-term goals.

Question Being Answered: Attain/create a digital footprint benefitting a sports/hockey executive?

Method of Research Support and Analysis

Industry Overview: Research has demonstrated that social media relating to sports should cater toward service-dominant logic to cultivate meaningful relationships between your brand and the consumer (Filo, Lock & Karg, 2015). Successful change management should be done through social media to communicate the desired change that show vision, and develop a communication channel for feedback (Eisenberg, Johnson & Pieterson, 2015). The goal of these efforts is to create long-lasting stakeholder relationships to foster engagement with fans, achieved through behind-the-scenes material, constant conversation, and incentivized promotions (Thompson, Martin, Gee & Eagleman, 2014). Furthermore, this cannot be done the same across all platforms, but must be tailored uniquely to each experience. Management should focus on an adaptive strategy that avoids a one-size-fits-all mentality (Thompson et al.) There is a direct correlation between the lack of engagement on social media and the team’s average attendance ratings.
Evaluation of Resources: The following were evaluated on a metric system devised by group consensus: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Website, Linked In, Wikipedia, and Snapchat.
• Massive Reach
• Massive Engagement
• Diversity of Tools
• Reliability
• Negativity
• Crowded Access to Information
• Reach
• Communication
• Engagement
• Reliability
• Ambiguous Demographics
• Built-In Resources
• Casual Nature
• Accessibility
• Legitimacy

Deliverables: Deliverables included a final recommendation and an implementation plan.

Recommendation: We recommended organic growth be pursued through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Overall, these venues prove to have opportunities for engagement combined with wide reach. This allows for a broad personal brand to be fostered with one’s community by incentivizing engagement through promotions and humour. Offering a behind the scenes look at what a career as an executive looks like will entice followers to build one’s popularity. Community initiatives are strong contenders to prove loyalty and commitment to one’s followers at virtually no costs.

Implementation Plan: The short-term implementation plan entailed the following steps:
• Creation of a regular posting schedule
• Applying for twitter verification
• Deleting unnecessary content
• Incentivize engagement
• Live tweeting of events
• Scheduling a twitter town hall Q&A
• Community-based initiatives

The long-term plan included the following steps:
• Applying Twitter Q & A skills onto Reddit
• Purchasing setting up landing page on TrevorGeorgie.com
• Hiring of a social media manager

Analysis and Synthesis
Strategic management involves the formulation and implementation of the major goals and initiatives taken by an organization’s top management on behalf of owners, based on consideration of resources and an assessment of the internal and external environments in which the organization operates.
Corporate strategy involves answering a key question which I was inculcated with by Dr. Gerry Kerr, from a portfolio perspective: “What business should we be in?” Also instilled in me by Dr. Kerr was that business strategy involves answering the question: “How shall we compete in this business?”
In major junior ice hockey, strategic management plays a vital part in the organization for growth. With respect to the Saint John Sea Dogs, the ownership team has empowered President Trevor Georgie and his management team the ability to manage and operate with extreme freedom in order to achieve their organizational goals. Thus, Trevor is in a position to be engaged as an enterprising manager and has in fact done so. An example of this is seen in his partnership with Deloitte in the launch of the Discovery Zone. The technologies showcased in the Discovery Zone included robotics, internet of things – networks and sensors, artificial intelligence-cognitive, VR/AR- training/ experience and collaborative platforms. These are the innovations that are allowing the Saint John Sea Dogs to continue to be competitive in the market, especially in attracting new fans and viewers to the facility, in addition to retaining the current loyal fans of the Saint John Sea Dogs who come to watch a hockey game. The Discovery Zone is an example of Trevor taking the initiative in this age of disruption and preparing the Saint John Sea Dogs for growth. The term “enterprising manger” as coined by Edith Penrose in her work titled The Theory of the Growth Firm, is the main component to a firm’s growth, without which its growth would be precluded. Thus, enterprising managers are essential for continued growth. The capacity of the existing management sets the limit to the rate of growth of the firm. The manager is responsible for gathering and coordinating all resources of the firm to attain growth, and this process is critical for organizational growth.
Another example of Trevor functioning as an enterprising manager is seen in the opening of the Alpine Ice Bar. According to Georgie, the ice-level bar is the first of its kind in the Canadian Hockey League. This innovation helped to increase both ticket and beer sales with the social atmosphere.
Additionally, the Saint John Sea Dogs, as indicated in discussion with Trevor, need to at least take into consideration, the implementation of strategic management theories, especially if their goals are to continue to play successfully in competitive ice hockey.
The continuous changing external factors, such as the market environment needs to be tracked and monitored on a continuous basis, while adjusting as necessary to keep on track for its overall goal of winning the championship. The overall strategic plan is a very significant function executed by top management and is significant when top management accepts when are changes are necessary in addition to internal factors. For example, there may be the possibility to restructure players and staff of the Saint John Sea Dogs – strategic human resources management, in aspirations of recruiting a superior working group.
As Trevor and his top management are propelling the Saint John Sea Dogs towards the ultimate goal of winning the championship, maximizing value of hockey operations will only ever be one element of the solution. Many other elements, playing an integral role, also influence attainment of the overall goal. These elements include team management, culture coaching, and work ethic to name a few. While all these elements are vital for the success of the Saint John Sea Dogs, there is a single, overall element that tie them all together which is the Saint Dog Sea Dogs strategy. In the most basic sense, the Saint John Sea Dogs strategy represents how it intends to win, and what distinctive competitive advantage it can acquire and sustain in the long run against other teams. The strategy of the Saint John Sea Dogs is close to its identity, indicative of what the team wants to be and how it wants to win. Unfortunately, the exact identity and other related details were not disclosed to me. In the past, it was to adopt and develop a regional identity, whether this is still current, I am not able to comment on.
An aspect of decentralization as described by Peter Drucker, is illustrated through the division hockey operations, administration, and scouting staff. Peter Drucker suggests a separation from planning and doing in Management as Social Function and Liberal Art (2001) in order to do less and achieve more. The purpose is to allow top management to focus on direction and decision-making, and the “doing” to operating management’s, each with its own set of goals and objectives, as well as sphere of action and autonomy. This could be termed as “reprivatisation”. Whereas the General Manager or President of Hockey Operations (Trevor Georgie) concentrates on winning games and championships, the CEO (Scott McCain) must balance that goal with the other medium to long term goals established by the board or ownership group. This is achieved by designing and implementing an effective business strategy, which takes into account all functional areas of management.
Hockey Operations represent the majority of a franchise’s expenses and have the most substantial long-term impact on revenues and team equity. Consequently, hockey operations have the largest impact on the bottom line of a franchise, both directly (in the form of salaries, for example) or indirectly (in the form of competitive advantage, for example). Thus, it is imperative that every hockey executive have some understanding of hockey operations in addition to the trends affecting them.
While junior hockey is changing frequently, and after coming in last in the league this past year, Trevor has indicated there will be a laser focus on player development, development plans, and ensuring players will be surrounded by the right people. Trevor’s message to us of the importance of not giving up during adversity confirms one of the tenets I learned through the course reading of Built to Last (1994) where Collins and Porras state that adversity can present an opportunity and visionary companies display a remarkable resiliency to bounce back from adversity and shine over the long term., which is what Trevor intends to do with his strong team building phase. The Saint John Sea Dogs will have two first rounds of picks of drafts this upcoming year, and informed fans of its plans to focus heavily on development and building of the skills of its young players. This is an illustration of ingenuity of administration to build, adjust and apply its personnel and facilities, as Chandler deems necessary in Strategy and Structure (1993) when he states that the rate of growth and effectiveness in the use of enterprise resources rested on the ability and ingenuity of administration to build, adjust, and apply its personnel and facilities.
More importantly, Penrose links the growth of a firm to its internal resources, and the productive services available to firm from its internal resource capabilities. An application of the line of thought is exhibited by Trevor Georgie upon his intent to build up the skills of his young players, to allow them to fail initially, but fail quickly so they may learn and benefit from their experience to develop into and become more seasoned players that become winners. Penrose highlights human resources as a key component. The firm’s human resources provide both an incentive to expand and a limit to the rate of growth. She holds management responsible for ensuring that firms put its available resources to best use. Management experience affects the productive services that all the firm’s other resources are capable of rendering. Naturally, management of the Saint John Sea Dogs should possess the understanding that a well articulated strategy will directly influence all elements of running the team. The strategy of the Saint John Sea Dogs should be guiding its day to day (even year to year) priorities, how it invests its time, energy, and resources, and be the constant link joining everything from the coach selection for the Sea Dogs to its player evaluation and how practice time is expended. Determining a strategy precedes implementing the strategy effectively. Thus, the strategy selected is all encompassing influencing impacting coach selection, practice time usage, game planning, the decision of investing or not investing in analytics, (sports analytics is still a domain in its early development, with new techniques of cutting, slicing, and interpreting data progressing daily), and other operational aspects.
As previously mentioned, strategy exemplifies how the Saint John Sea Dogs propose to win, and how they will create and sustain systemic gain relative to the rest of teams in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. For example, if the Sea Dogs team were going to employ a heavy, defensive shut-down style they would select different players, coaches, and systems than if they were going to utilize a fast, offensive run ;gun approach (Clinton, 2017).
· As Ansoff indicates in Corporate Strategy (1965), strategy is dependent on organizational structure and orientation of the management. Once a particular strategy is determined, many different aspects of decision making change, such as the particular criteria to evaluate players, and how well those players fit into the needs of the team. The strategy chosen is a vital element directing the decisions pertaining to the structure of a team’s roster, as well as the particular properties of players they are giving precedence to and ranking first. It is important to note that the value of a players is in part centred on his natural capability, but to a greater extent how well the player matches and participates to the strategy, identity, and systems of his team. All hockey operational decisions should work with regard to goal of creating the on-ice identity of the Saint John Sea Dogs.
In Tzu’s The Art of War translation (2001) and Clausewitz’s On War translation (1976), both authors consider strategy in regard to organizing a coherent, consecutive, inter-related chain of engagements leading towards an ultimate, pre-set goal. Trevor’s current mindset confirmed this course reading. Trevor indicated junior hockey is cyclical, with a 5-year cycle to win a championship. Unfortunately, as of this past year they were in last place in the league this last year was considered a tear down year, with key players being moved for other assets, along with two rounds of first pick for drafts in the upcoming year. So overall, he is starting off with a young team that will not be expected to win right away but will be subjected to specific development plans so better seasoned players will be created and wins obtained. Trevor is actually aware that the team might not initially win, and he is in accordance with Tzu’s concept of knowing when one can and cannot do battle, hence; commencing with player development and team building. Trevor is thus utilizing his credibility to manage the change efforts, with developing employees who can implement the vision. Eventually a sustainable competitive advantage will be attained through a combination of the Saint John Sea Dogs’ internal strengths and resources. In John Kotter’s Leading Change: Why Transformation Efforts Fail, Kotter discusses leadership actions required to complete a successful organizational transformation. A broad application of organizational change efforts can be seen in Trevor’s efforts whereby Trevor is planning for short term wins (winning games next season) while consolidating improvements. Adapting strategy that has been proven successful in the past to a new battle or war situation is how strategy evolves. Business strategy, like military strategy has had to evolve and progress in response to the changing environment as well (Clemons and Santamaria, 2012).
A famous quote attributed to hockey great Wayne Gretzky says, “Skate to where the puck is going, not to where it is” (Rosenfeld, 2000). This quote captures the essence of strategic planning. Strategic planning is especially important with respect to the production of live hockey games. The greater part of a hockey franchise’s revenues results from home games, and this is unique to the particular sport of hockey. It is most imperative that games day operations and long-term revenue potential of each game be fully capitalized upon, so a profit sanctuary may be created. According to Stalk and Lachenauer in Hardball: Five Killer Strategies for Trouncing the Competition (2004) profit sanctuaries are parts of a business where a company makes most of its money, where it can quietly accumulate wealth, like a bear storing up fat for winter. I found most of my direct organizational learning confirmed the basic tenants of strategic management as they were learned. Even the case studies selected for the course had application for my direct organizational learning. For example, in the Lenovo: Being on Top in a Declining Industry, Lenovo was struggling to maintain its financial position and growth in a shrinking PC Market, thus a subsequent issue being how to protect profits from encroachment. As the Saint John Sea Dogs are operating from a net loss financial position, the options that were created for Lenovo – potential strategic alliances/partnerships apply to the Saint John Sea Dogs, as can be seen in their alliance with Deloitte in partnership of the Discovery Zone (which Trevor could advertise on his social media platforms) to grow and enrich profits of the Saint John Sea Dogs .

Summary and Plan for Action
Strengths of Relationship Between the Formal Classroom Work in Strategic Management and Direct Experiences with My APEX Partner
• Finished Apex products motivational as well as assignments in both current and past strategic management courses (i.e., strategic audit), group case assignments, delivers the feel of winning as a group/team, group has a greater balance of more sills and perspectives for experience/projects with Apex partner and for group case assignments;
• True interdependence was entailed in the formal classroom, as well as relations with Trevor, the whole experience built-in quality of going somewhere when evaluating cases in class able to apply this to brainstorming sessions with Trevor Georgie;
• Being able to strongly participate by class by preparing by doing additional research outside the formal classroom work (as were often encouraged by Dr. Kerr to research authors) translated into being able to strongly participate with Apex partner as well (taking the initiative to learn about key individuals and their history and remaining up to date on relevant undertakings of the Saint John Sea Dogs team);
• Study of particular cases had real life application (Lenovo, for example);
• Gained practical experience to help Apex Partner with requested projected, able to ascertain new personal strengths and skills;
• The way we approached cases differently in class at times (i.e, Whitbread PLC – team approach in class for analyzing Strategic Fitness Plan) or individually for other cases – The Chinese Fireworks Industry, increased my degree of appreciation for different approaches with projects for my Apex Partner;
• The method in which we covered cases in class was absolutely phenomenal and something I will remember as I go forward. This is because emphasis was not on final product but also on the process – I learnt so much. Similarly, I learnt a lot from the process of our second and third projects as well;
• Being encouraged to read up on biographies of the authors for the selected course readings, encouraged me to read up on Trevor, fostering a better connection;
• Feedback from employers on the quality and relevance of program curriculum; and,
• Detailed feedback obtained from Dr. Kerr on midterm case assignment and group assignments helped me immensely to see where my strengths and weakness were, and I believe this greatly impacted by contribution to work being requested of Apex Corporate Partner.

Weaknesses of relationship between the formal classroom work in strategic management and direct experiences with my APEX partner
• Some negative experiences did not necessarily link to the relationship between the formal classroom work and experiences with Apex Partner, but rather direct experiences with Apex partner (lack of communication at times with Trevor or lack of specific direction);
• I would say normally nothing in teaching is completely black or white when applying teachings to the corporate world, however, the way the cases were picked and scrutinized as well as the course readings, I would not be able to claim this as a weakness;
• Given the nature of the projects (i.e., group work), some students felt that the activity was a formality and/or may have recognized that the task could have been done more effectively as an independent exercise. However, students were able to share their outcomes with others, resulting in pride in their accomplishments and reinforcing the ethic that learning is a constructive process; and,
• The level of clarity and direction provided in the strategic management course was proactive, clear, and precise, however, (more often than not) the level of clarity and direction provided by the corporate partner was reactive, hazy and vague.

Action List

The following are areas I would have researched to be a better partner to my client:
• More research on athlete management
• More research on spend analysis
• Media exposure
• On-site recognition
• Pre / post event publicity
• Corporate hospitality
• Logo usage rights
• Licensing rights
• Merchandising rights
• Research on sales function and apply effective sales strategies to Game Day operations.
• More research on game day operations (as well as Game Day management and marketing)
• More research on human resources (as well as volunteers) to enrich Game day operations
• More research on cross promotions particular to the geographic location of the Saint John Sea dogs
• More research on how to maximize communications tools and other social media tools not covered in our project
• More research on the salary and other related costs of social media manager
• More research on collaborative strategies in accordance with media outlets
• More research on potential local alliances/partnerships i.e, radio stations at local colleges and universities
• More research on outsourcing of certain areas/roles (besides radio announcer) and the efficiency of doing so
• More research on the use of injuries reserve and waivers as it relates to the roster of a CHL team
• Some fun facts/trivia of each player for the Saint John Sea Dogs
• Traditional and new techniques and tools (i.e., information technologies and recent developments in behavioral psychology) for scouting talent, negotiating player and coach contracts, and trading players effectively (if possible)
• Role of analytics to improve player and coach performance

Part II Strategic Management and Personal Leadership Development

Brief Overview
My intentions as I envisioned them for leadership development at the time: I do believe it is imperative that I both understand and identify how the different quadrants in the Competing Values Framework (CVF) pertain to me both at the individual and team level. I strongly believe this understanding will aid me in my striving to become an authentic and impactful leader. I was able to confirm for myself that I am indeed a collaborator, as my dominant colour was yellow.
Through the Gallup exercise, I believe my strategic nature can be leveraged for authentic and impactful leadership. I am able to clearly picture outcomes of certain choices at times due to my strategic way of thinking and I feel this is most definitely an asset as in conversations with my peers, I can assess some do not possess this ability to think forward as some peers are consumed with short-term goals or get caught up in the fine deals instead of the big picture. In addition, being a forward thinker that I am, I am also able to create links between events, ideas, things that my fellow peers do not have the ability to form as clearly. By building on my strong asset of being a strategic thinker, I believe I am able to illustrate authentic leadership.
I believe the consistency character that I strongly possess can be leveraged as well for both authentic and impactful leadership. I am a very organized and clean person, and like myself and my things to be both presentable and respectable. As a result of this, I am able to keep my team on track and focused, which I believe helps us to be more successful, thereby demonstrating impactful leadership. Furthermore, I currently leverage this strength by drawing timelines and deadlines on the board in our Apex rooms. I also like to include, illustrate, and display other details that are important. I believe by doing this I leverage my strength for the good of the team and to improve my team overall in achieving success. In addition, I believe in and like to follow the rules, cooperate with my peers in a positive consistent style as well as all dealing with situations is the same style as well. I try to treat everyone in the same manner and not play favourites. I aim as a result to be orderly and fair, and count on process and systems to reach objectives and deal with changes.
Another strength of mine is that I am a maximizer which also aids me in leading with both authenticity and with more of an impact. I am able to focus on the positive, focus on my good qualities and spend little energy on mistakes and my imperfections. I find people are drawn to me for these reasons, and I can leverage this to be as well to be a more authentic and impactful leader.
I am very grateful for the opportunity to have been exposed to tests such as the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and the Big 5 to be able to recognize myself with more clarity and understanding. As Socrates has been famously quoted, “An unexamined life is not worth living”.
The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is one of the personality tests available to permit one to acknowledge how he/she may genuinely operate or experience and sense in a given set of circumstances. There is a total of different 16 types, with each type being distinctive. Although I was assessed as ENFP, I strongly believe I am INFP. By utilizing the Big Five personality test, I was better able to obtain knowledge with respect to myself and was also better able to understand what the structure of my personality is.

Update in Leadership Development

Developing and supporting the capability of managers and their employees is pivotal to safeguard the continuing success of the organisation in meeting its business objectives. Managers are envisaged to professionally develop and dynamically monitor the progress of the capability of their units.
One of the general management capabilities I have been refining this past year was setting the right vision to provide to my Apex group, the Saint John Sea Dogs direction for each module as well as inspiration. I would leave inspirational quotes on the whiteboard in our Apex office. I also worked on leading the self-exhibiting leadership stature (McCauley, 2006) by not talking poorly about group members behind their back when questioned about my fellow group members in casual conversation by my classmates. Also, part of exhibiting leadership stature was not discussing group conflicts outside the group, thus representing the Saint John Sea Dogs and the Odette MBA Program in a positive light. By managing my self in this manner, I feel like I exhibited good judgement and enforcement of high standards. Additionally, planning for the group is something I was able to demonstrate as well as decision making decisions particularly in the quantitative methods course.
Additionally, I worked on encouraging good relationships and understanding and respecting team dynamics. When taking lead on various projects through the modules, I worked on selecting and developing the right people, thus delegating effectively. I also worked on motivating both my group members and peers. I do have to put in a greater effort with managing discipline and dealing with conflict. I plan to take a conflict resolution course in the near future. However, throughout later in the year, I feel I was better able to demonstrate problem solving skills within our group conflicts.
Part of my general management capabilities as part of my corporate work team involved me making a dedicated effort with providing ongoing direction and support as well as taking lead on various projects, such as group assignments in various course through the modules of the MBA program. Additionally, I observed performance as well as progress of projects (monitoring performance against objectives), thus ensuring our group expectations and group standards were being met. Beside keeping the group on track, I worked on my communication delivering feedback in a courteous and respectful manner.
An experience that greatly impacted me both personally and professionally was the community champion exercise. A community champion is a person who contains extraordinary interest in the embracing, implementation and success of ideas, organizations, and programs in their community. The community champion selected for the Saint John Sea Dogs was the Windsor police Chief Al Frederick, who exhibits this interest in a genuine manner. He is someone I will strive to be like as I progress through my career as a leader. He displays a strong history and commitment to the Windsor-Essex County community in a variety of ways. Chief Frederick was appointed acting chief in 2011 when the Windsor force was gripped with dispute following the abrupt retirement of Chief Gary Smith during allegations of brutality and other misconduct by his officers. Frederick became the permanent chief the following year. He exhibits honour in service and humility in community service.
Instrumental values are beliefs about the type of behaviour appropriate for reaching certain goals. Terminal values are beliefs about the kind of goals or outcomes that are worth trying to pursue (Daft & Lane, 2005).
One terminal values held by Chief Al Frederick that were most dear to him was Family/National Security, which entails taking care of loved ones and the community at large. Another terminal value of the Chief Frederick’s was Sense of Accomplishment, which involves a lasting contribution and impact on community. The instrumental values held dear by Chief Al Frederick were the following values: being helpful (working for the welfare and caring for others) and honest (sincere and truthful).
One of the reasons why I have included the community champion experience in this report is simply because the experience of meeting with Chief Al Frederick was deeply profound for me, and he is someone I will strive to emulate going forward in own career. In my experience thus far, this was the first encounter with someone so accomplished yet so humble and personable, and by applying some of his insights to my life will assist me in going from good to great in my own life.

Overview of My Values as a Manager

Values are essential beliefs that an individual deems to be important that have a bearing on attitudes, perceptions, and behaviour (Daft ; Lane, 2005). Understanding one’s values sheds light on what is of great magnitude, what is necessary for effective leadership. Additionally, leaders can recognize and understand value differences for greater efficiency.
My values as a manger include credibility, integrity, vision, sensitivity, ethics, and courage. I strive to be a positive role model and ensure my peers/staff understand, behave, and treat others in a manner that upholds guidelines and ethics of the organization I am representing.

Overview of My Values as a Person

Values are one’s assessment of what is significant in life. One method of contemplating values is in terms of instrumental and terminal values. As previously mentioned, instrumental values are beliefs about the kind of behaviour appropriate for attaining certain goals. Terminal values are beliefs about the variety of goals or outcomes that are worth trying to work at and attain.
Instrumental and terminal values are both necessary in reaching goals and having a successful life. My terminal values include equality, exciting life, self-respect, sense of accomplishment, and wisdom.
The terminal values most significant to me rest upon a personal aspect, despite the fact equality is deemed a social terminal value by Rokeach. I believe one of the most important values in my life has been equality, especially amongst family and friends. An exciting life contributes to one’s happiness and enhances one’s positive attitude. A positive attitude at work is very important (Baloh, 2017). I believe the three remaining attributes are related: self-respect, sense of accomplishment, and wisdom; as it is necessary for one to possess self respect as well as a sense of accomplishment to develop wisdom.
In accordance with Rokeach, instrumental values are separated into two sets, one being morality and the other competence. My five instrumental values encompassed the following: self-control, forgiveness, responsibility, cleanliness, and ambition.
In my opinion, self-control is like self-discipline, and is most important in acquiring success. Furthermore, both forgiveness and self control are indispensable as well to acquiring success. I weigh equally the significance of both responsibility and cleanliness in my life. I believe the two to be related, and both contribute to one’s level of happiness. Lastly, success cannot be acquired without ambition. Thus, ambition is of utmost necessity to attain the fulfillment of goals as well as success.

Future Development Leadership Plan

It is my belief that any great leader should be able to ascertain areas which require special attention in order to obtain improvement in an area of development that may be deficient. I believe this exercise of a future development leadership plan will permit me to work to better myself, so I may be more effective in leading.
Upon reflection for a future development leadership plan for myself, I came to the determination that some of the areas where I can improve upon are growing my administrative skills, improving my technical competence, refining my interpersonal skills, and building relationships and cultivating my self confidence.
I used to believe it was an asset and advantageous for myself to laser like focus on assignments and less on socialization, but when it came to group assignments, this however, proved to be a disadvantage to me. I found it to be extremely problematic to solicit the trust of some of the members of my Apex Group though this did turn around as I made more of an effort half way through to foster relationships outside of academia.
I also struggled with high levels of anxiety this past year, part of which arose from feeling inferior to my peers, as I had been out of school for a decade and had to readjust to an academic environment. I believe this to be one of the main contributing to factors to why I focused heavily on assignments as opposed to developing my interpersonal skills with my Apex group members. Thus, by improving my technical competence and confidence going forward, I hope to create a discernable improvement in my interpersonal skills as well as building relationships.
Some of the actionable items on my agenda for the year include joining the local toastmasters group (when I arrive at my next geographic destination), seek out and secure a mentor, and enroll in a conflict resolution course.
My personal timeline for these actions and level of development is one year. I am excited to be working with a mandate partner that I believe will help cultivate my plan for leadership development. I will be creating in more detail a plan for the particular areas of improvement for myself that I have identified. Each goal will have a specific timeline for development but will not exceed one year. I am aware that some of my areas for improvement are interconnected; however, I want to ensure I am diligent in my effort for each goal. I am aware my skills will not immediately dramatically improve, but I am willing to commit and put in the time and effort. It is my desire to commence with the area of improvement that I perceive to be the most challenging to over come, which is in the area of building relationships. The mandate will prove to be a good start, but my hope with my employment post MBA, I will be able to start building relationships beyond the task at hand. This in turn will allow to work on the refinement of my interpersonal skills. Improvements in my technical competence, however, is an area that I consider to be improved on a continuing basis. Overall, I believe by putting in this effort and time albeit slowly I will inherently be able to improve my self confidence as well. It is my hope by completing the MBA program at the Odette School of Business and formulating a plan personal to me that I will be able to fully execute my duties as a leader successfully in my future endeavours. I know I still have much to learn but I will do my utmost to make improvements in the area within my self-imposed timeline as well before being placed in charge of team.

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