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Timothy Yorkey

October 1, 2014

9:00am - 12:00pm

University Center

Rose Room

3 Course Hours



This course is about creating the environment for success.  Leadership is not only about having followers who support the needs of the leader and the organization.  Leadership is about being a role model and recognizing that employees are people.  


Leadership Starts With Me

Leadership is about creating a safe environment for the employees.  When employees feel that they have voice or the ability to speak out, employees feel like an integral part of the organization.  Some organizations lack voice and other important facets to help employees feel important and valued.  When changing an organization, it takes approximately three years to complete.  


Role Model

As a leader, you are constantly being watched and critiqued on every decision you make, every disciplinary action, and every regulation you follow.  How people perceive you is how they will create opinions about you as a leader.  This reflects back on the first FISH! course. First impressions are critical because judgments and opinions are formed through first impressions.  Positive opinions are created through positive first impressions and vice versa.  As a role model, you also have to do as you say in order to gain respect from employees.  For instance, if you walk into the office with a negative attitude, your employees and coworkers will not be motivated to perform at a high level.


How to NOT be a Good Leader

If FISH! is not implemented properly, a good leader can quickly become a bad one.  The following steps are how to unsuccessfully utilize the FISH! tools and become a bad leader:


  • Play! but do not create interpersonal relationships
  • Tell people how to play
  • Force people to play
  • Yelling at people for voicing objections
  • Trying a new technique but never implementing it 


Herzberg's Top 10 Motivators

We were provided with a list of the top 10 motivators for employees and asked to rate them from 1 (most important) to 10 (least important).  For the most part, the entire class did not correctly guess the correct rating for all ten motivators.  We all assumed that salary and job security would be ranked in the top 3; however, voice and feeling valued were among the top motivators.  A possible explanation for the discrepancy is generational differences.  The newer generation looks at jobs as being developmental.  My generation works for organizations until something better becomes available, then we pursue that opportunity.  If organizations and leaders want to retain their top employees, they need to make people feel included by paying them the attention they deserve and take the time to hear them out when they are coming to you about a personal issue. 


How to be a Good Leader


  • Just Listen
    • Try not to automatically solve the problem.  Sometimes, people just need someone to vent their problems to.


  • Being Human
    • Bring your humanity to work, meaning that a good leader will do well to remember that we are all human.  Sometimes people make mistakes and it is better to treat mistakes as learning opportunities.


  • Lead with Love
    •  Know the people working for you.  Take the time to build relationships with your employees to decrease stress and increase trust and performance.
  •  Play
    • Create a playful environment for your employees to facilitate active learning.


Changing organizations is difficult, as it takes three years.  However, new employees present a unique opportunity.  New employees can act as a catalyst for helping to implement change for an improved organizational climate.  Another item to be attended to is the size of your "playing field."  How big is the department you are attempting to change? In order to effectively implement change, a leader must implement the following:

  • Set parameters so that implementation of a new technique is not "biting off more than you can chew."
  • Empower your employees to increase their self-efficacy, trust, and performance level.
  • Create a conducive environment for growth and creativity to facilitate employee development.


What Guides You? 

Leadership comes in many different styles.  For instance, servant leadership suggests that leaders should be responsible to their followers.  A servant leader shows empathy to employees, listens to their concerns, and actively attempts to create an enjoyable environment.  This style of leadership liberates employees and makes them feel as if they are a part of something bigger within the organization.  When leaders liberate their employees, leaders open the door for a level of trust that is to be envied.  Employees now have the freedom to make mistakes because they no longer feel immediate coercive action.  Instead, leaders look at mistakes as an educational opportunity.  Trust and teamwork are very important constructs for a servant leader.


The Small Things

As the title suggests, the small things are the most important constructs for retaining good employees.  Recognition and gratitude payed to employees significantly changes the performance level of the employees.  Rewarding employees with small symbols of appreciation can be great tools to illustrate gratitude.  Simply valuing your employees can also increase their motivation, self-efficacy, and performance level.  When employees feel special and appreciated, they feel included in the group.


Who Are You Being?

As a leader, the choices you make determine the type of leader you are going to be.  Being a good leader creates meaning in your life because you follow through with the commitments made and enhance the organization.  Also, reflection on the positive emotions experienced throughout the day will permeate through the office and spread throughout the organization.  You have the ability to consciously choose what kind of leader you will become.


Coach It

When participating in servant leadership, you have to release the reins.  If you give employees the freedom to coach others, you cannot become aggressive when their coaching techniques collide with yours.  Also, be cautious to not micro-manage.  Give your employees brief instructions and allow them to try it.  Sometimes, you may have to demonstrate what you want multiple times in order for the employee to grasp the concept.  In order for employees to know their performance level, feedback is essential  for correcting mistakes and increasing self-efficacy.  Leaders must be able to identify the types of learners they will be coaching in order to adjust their coaching style to meet the learner's needs.  There are four different types of people to coach:

  1. The avid beginner (the proverbial open book and eager to please learner),
  2. The disillusioned beginner (the learner perceives that he does not need coaching because of few failures),
  3. The reluctant learner (the learner who does not see the benefit of new techniques), and
  4. The expert (the proverbial "know-it-all"). 


Final Thoughts

This course was extremely enlightening.  Leadership is important for organizational success and retaining high performing employees.  The information I learned through this course will be very beneficial throughout my professional career.  I learned more about leading and coaching styles and feel that I am properly prepared to improve my performance as a leadership figure or coaching figure.


Notes, Handouts, and Certificates

LeaderFISH Handout.pdf

LeaderFISH 10:01:14.pdf

LeaderFISH Certificate.pdf









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