MLP781 Anna is the associate director of a nonprofit agency that provides assistance to children and families: Managing Leadership Performance Assignment: ASB, Malaysia


Asia School of Business (ASB)

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MLP781 Managing Leadership Performance Assignment

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QUESTION: Read the case carefully and answer the questions accordingly.


Anna is the associate director of a nonprofit agency that provides assistance to children and families. She is the head of a department that focuses on evaluating the skill-building programs the agency provides to families. She reports directly to the agency leadership. As a whole, the agency has been cautious in hiring this year because of increased competition for federal grant funding. However, they have also suffered high staff turnover. Two directors, three key research staff, and one staff person from the finance department have left.

Anna has a demanding schedule that requires frequent travel; however, she supervises two managers who in turn are responsible for five staff members each. Both managers have been appointed within the last six months.

Manager 1: Lisa has a specific background in research. She manages staff who provide research support to another department that delivers behavioral health services to youth. Lisa supports her staff and is very organized; however, she often takes a very black and white view of issues. Upper level leadership values Lisa’s latest research on the therapeutic division’s services. Lisa’s is very motivated and driven and expects the same from her staff.

Manager 2: Maria has a strong background in social science research and evaluation. She manages staff that work on different projects within the agency. She is known as a problem solver and is extremely supportive of her staff. Maria is very organized and has a wealth of experience in evaluation of family services. She is very capable and can sometimes take on too much. The managers are sensing that staff are becoming overworked as everyone takes on increased responsibilities due to high staff turnover.

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Staff has also mentioned that Anna’s “glass half- empty” conversation style leaves them feeling dejected. In addition, Anna has not shared budgets with her managers, so they are having difficulty appropriately allocating work to staff. Anna said she has not received sufficient information from the finance department to complete the budgets. The finance department said they have sent her all the information they have available.

As staff becomes distressed, the managers are becoming frustrated. They feel like they are unable to advocate for their staff or solve problems without key information like the departmental budget.

Answer all the below questions: 

  1. (a) How would Anna improve both management and leadership skills in her current role as associated director?             (15 marks)

Anna as an Associate Director being the highest ranking in the NGO has two direct reports Lisa and Maria. Both Lisa and Maria are very capable in their own area. Lisa is extremely organised and believes what she sees, she also has high expectations from her staff. Maria on the other hand has good problem solving skill and she is a multitasker. She is also a very task-oriented person but sometimes can be over-committed resulted in staff burned out by overwhelming task.

Anna has to overcome challenges in delivering the right and complete message to her team on a timely manner. Her communication skill needs to be improved. She needs to communicate with her team on a regular basis such as weekly meetings in order to provide sufficient support to them.

Anna has to improve her leadership style by delegating responsibility to her managers. This can be accomplished by granting them access to the necessary budget and information on the project they are working on. It will result in a win-win situation for everyone involved.

Building relationships and trust with her managers is also essential for Anna. Trust is the fundamental element of all relationships. In the scenario presented, both Lisa and Maria lack of sufficient trust and confidence in their superior, resulting in their dissatisfaction.


(b) Propose a combination of the two skills that you think would work best in this setting of the above.                                                                         (10 marks)

1) Stakeholder management skill

Engaging with stakeholder is very important ensure the success of any project, initiative and organisation. In the scenario provided, Anna stakeholders are the Agency Leadership team, her team, the children and families.

Anna must present a business case to the Agency Leadership team to address the need for additional resources or to seek out alternatives in light of the high attrition rate. She must also be able to motivate and assist her managers, as they are her left and right hand in achieving the objective. It is essential to understand their challenges and expectations in order to provide and gain support them so that they can deliver results in their respective area.

2) Organising and planning skill

Due to her frequent travel, she must plan her regular meetings in advance so she is able to meet with her team to discuss project updates. This is an excellent opportunity for her to engage with her team to coach, provide feedback, and delegate tasks in order to increase project transparency and productivity. By doing so, she will be able to make up some time to ensure she doesn’t overlook any important emails or information, such as the Finance Department’s budget.

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(a) Based on the case scenario above, if you were selected as the leader for the organisation what would you plan to improvise the leadership skills in the above organisation?                                                                       (15 marks)

  • Enhance the transparency and communication within the team. I will have open communication with both of my managers and their team by building an open communication culture. Acknowledge their concerns such as lack of budget information or overwhelming work, and work together with them to find solutions.
  • Find of the root cause of attrition by conducting exit interviews with those who left the company. It is crucial to understand why and what doesn’t work for them. Use the feedback to recognize patterns and implement changes that will reduce employee turnover. Strategies such as additional benefits and career development for the individual can be added tools for staff retention.
  • Re-evaluate the resource capacity and workload distribution. Find out how much work everyone on staff is taking on, and then divide it out fairly. During periods of heavy staff turnover, it may be necessary to hire temporary staff or hire internship student(s) to maintain productivity.
  • Set up regular short meetings to talk about issues as they arise. Foster a system where employees can share feedback on recent activities and decisions. By doing this, we will be able to detect potential issues or problems and work together to mitigate it.

(b) Do a simple analysis to compare between a task orientated leadership and people-orientated leadership. In the case above how was Maria projected herself?



Leadership is the accomplishment of a goal through the direction of human assistants. The man who successfully marshals his human collaborators to achieve particular ends is a leader. A great leader is one who can do so day after day, and year after year, in a wide variety of circumstances.

You are required to read a minimum of 5 journals that are related to “Transformational leadership” and “digital leadership”. Critically analyse which leadership style will suit the current trend and why do you think so?

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