Looking potential of the future was contagious.

Looking at Gardner’s “Tasks of Leadership”, D’Arcy clearly
met the task of motivating. Gardner (2005) states that “effective leaders tap the motives that
serve the purposes of collective action in pursuit of significant shared goals”
(p. 3). The task of motivating is seen within a leader using a combination of hopefulness
with a sense of levelheadedness and practicality when it comes to trying to obtain
a goal (Gardner, 2005). While working with D’Arcy, she constantly came into
work every day with a sense of optimism about what we could do that day. She
made lists, helped employees, went above and beyond her own tasks, interacted
positively and productively with clients, and most importantly she showed consistency
in her behaviours and actions. She also took accountability when things went
wrong, and faced these problems with solutions, ideas, and yet again, that
amazing positive attitude. I remember one week she gathered everyone in a
conference room, and individually congratulated us on our accomplishments
throughout the month. She also outlined what our goals would be going forward
in the next month. She gave examples how to reach these goals, and her constant
outlook on the potential of the future was contagious. I believe her greatest strength
that encapsulates this task of leadership, was her ability to make people see disappointment
and failure as an opportunity for growth, resolution, and change (Gardner,
2005). A very applicable theory linked to leadership relating to D’Arcy’s task
of motivating is the complexity theory. The complexity theory states the
importance of looking at persons and groups as multifaceted, complex, always
changing and adapting things, which leads to unpredictability and the need for
collaboration for guidance (Grossman & Valiga, 2013). We see this
relevance as D’Arcy would really take changing outcomes and a variety of
different personalities to motivate the members of the HSF.

D’Arcy met many
of Grossman and Valiga’s “Elements of Leadership”, but one of her strongest met
elements was the one of vision. Grossman explains that “the ability to see a
new world, or a different world, and mobilize others to help make it a reality
is one of the hallmarks of leadership” (p. 9). The reason D’Arcy was so good at
motivating was her ability to paint a picture as a vision of the potential of
the HSF. Many of her visions were not overly large and unattainable, but many
small realistic visions that make up a larger goal. An example was her visions
of how we could fundraise ten percent more on our annual Big Bike fundraiser
just by enrolling one extra group to participate. Her vision was supplemented
by her enthusiasm and own example of making five extra calls each day. D’Arcy
was able to communicate her visions by her natural charism, but as I just
mentioned, also though her ability to lead through example as well. She also
explained how her smaller visions could grow into a larger vision. Such as having
an extra fundraising group leading to a ten percent increase in the event’s fundraising
amount, which could lead the ability to have more stroke advertisements, which
essential may catch more eyes, and even save one extra life a day. D’Arcy, who
had personal stroke stories in her life, was able to share her vision for our
HSF center’s goal, and spent every opportunity talking and inspiring our group.

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Leaders with vision are zealous and make sure they are heard, even if they are
not a main authority figure—just like D’Arcy (Grossman & Valiga, 2013). Another
theory that links with D’Arcy’s visionary element of leadership is the theory
of appreciative inquiry. The theory of appreciative inquiry, via Havens, Wood,
and Leeman (2006) explains “a philosophy and methodology for promoting positive
organizational change though creating meaningful dialogue, inspiring hope, and
inviting action” (p. 464). I believe this can only begin when there is a strong
visionary. The visionary can promote change and idea by first appreciating what
is happening, envisioning what could be, regulating what will be, and then generating
what is (Grossman & Valiga, 2013). D’Arcy’s visions with each step was
communicated with her own passion for the cause.


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