The Authentic Leadership Self-Assessment Questionnaire (ALQ) was used to assess my leadership strengths and weaknesses. The ALQ was chosen because it is based upon being true to oneself through your leadership roles. This is very important to me, as I have always stayed true to my morals and beliefs throughout my leadership roles. I believe that this is very important as it proves your integrity and facilitates trust as a leader to your staff.
Authenticity is defined as “a pattern of leader behavior that draws upon and promotes both positive psychological capacities and a positive ethical climate, to foster greater selfawareness, an internalized moral perspective, balanced processing of information, and relational transparency on the part of leaders working with followers, fostering positive self-development”
(Walumbwa, Avolio, Gardner, Wernsing, & Peterson, 2008, p. 94). An authentic leader is described as someone that relies heavily on their morals and ethical standards when making decisions that impact their organization. The questionnaire assesses a leader’s skill related to four dimensions of authentic leadership that are self-awareness, internalized moral perspective, balanced processing and relational transparency.
The first dimension is self-awareness. Self-awareness is being cognizant of how one’s own beliefs and morals impact their daily activities as a leader. Statements on the questionnaire evaluating this dimension are all termed according to how a person sees themselves as well as their strengths and weaknesses. Responses to statements range from one- strongly disagree to five- strongly agree. Scores are then added from statements representing each dimension. The high range is scores of 16-20 and the low range is for scores 15 and lower. The low range represents weak areas of authentic leadership. My score for self-awareness was high at 19. I am very aware of my strengths and weaknesses and try to make decisions regarding policies using my strengths. I do rely on my morals and beliefs when advocating for a policy change. I have
worked in the Intensive Care Unit for the past three years and regularly advocate for policy changes related to end of life issues.
The next dimension is internalized moral perspective. This dimension refers to a leader’s ability to self-regulate and make decisions based upon their morals and values rather than being persuaded by external factors. My score for this dimension was low at 15. I am not surprised by this score since this has been one of the areas needing improvement in my past leadership roles. I often try to please the majority rather than basing my decision on my own beliefs. However, I do not go with the majority opinion if it compromises patient safety or outcomes. I am comfortable with advocating for the less favorable policy decision if it means better outcomes for my patients.
The next dimension is relational transparency. Relational transparency refers to being a transparent leader with high accountability. A transparent leader shows their true self to their followers, which promotes a trusting relationship. My score for relational transparency was high at 18. I was always taught to be myself and to be proud of my opinion. I believe that my what you see is what you get mentality is one of my strengths. My followers know where I stand on policies and are never surprised by my actions. I think that being predictable is not a negative but rather an exhibit of consistency when it comes to my views on a particular policy.
The last dimension is balanced processing. This dimension refers to the ability of a leader to explore and consider all data and resources before making a decision. My score for this dimension was very low at 11. This is definitely a weak area in my leadership, as I tend to go with my gut feelings rather than weighing all the options. I do consider the opinion of others, however I do not always take time to due a thorough investigation, which would enable a more informed decision. This can be detrimental in the area of healthcare policy as making an
informed decision is crucial. Patient outcomes are at risk when developing new policies, which is why it is extremely important to do the research before establishing a new one.
The ALQ was examined using data obtained from Kenya, The People’s Republic of
China and the United States. Using data from three different areas of the world ensures generalizability of the questionnaire to diverse cultures. Validity of the questionnaire was determined to be .69. The internal consistency alphas for each dimension are as follows: selfawareness .79, relational transparency .72, internalized moral perspective .73 and balanced processing .76 (Walumbwa et al., 2008).
Avolio, B.J., Gardner, W.L., & Walumbwa, F.O. Authentic Leadership Questionnaire.
Leadership: Theory and Practice , 5th ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.
Retrieved from http://www.sagepub.com/northouse6e/study/materials/Questionnaires/03409_11lq.pdf
Walumbwa, F.O., Avolio, B.J., Gardner, W.L., Wernsing, T.S., & Peterson, S.J. (2008).
Authentic leadership: Development and validation of a theory-based measure. Journal of
Management, 34 (1), 89-126. doi: 10.1177/0149206307308913