Leadership and the development of Local Government Engineering Managers

Davis, Wesley (2018) Leadership and the development of Local Government Engineering Managers. [USQ Project]


The aim of this research project was as follows: • Conduct a literature review on the theory of leadership and the primary attributes of successful leaders; • Conduct a questionnaire of engineers in management positions to determine what they believe to be the critical requirements an engineer must possess to be a good leader; • Undertake an analysis of the findings; • Undertake MBTI personality tests with a comparative analysis of findings; • research on a suitable validated leadership instrument to apply along with the MBTI test; and • Make recommendations for the application of the leadership theory for local government engineers based on the typical personality profile on an engineer.

Summary of the Findings from the literature review The main results and findings from the literature review are as follows: • Engineering leadership is different to engineering management. • Engineering leadership can be taught. • Engineers lack some of the soft skills to make good local government engineering leaders and are often overlooked for leadership roles. • Developing Leadership skills is a requirement of all local government engineers.

Summary of the results from the interview and questionnaire: • Engineers believe technical skills are still important but soft skills form the basis of good leadership. • Local government engineers are predominately Introverted and will respond better to tailored non-group work training methods. • Local government engineers believe they are generally competent leaders but areas for further leadership training is required. • Local government engineers have limited understanding of the role a coach or mentor can play in their career and leadership training.

Recommendations for local government engineers: • Local government engineers should focus on 5 main areas of leadership - These are communication training, self-management training, business acumen training, leadership and soft skills training and coaching and mentoring. • Local government engineers will respond better to executive leadership coaching rather than large group leadership training usually offered by local governments.

The recommendations for the development of local government engineers is divided up into levels based on their current engineering position. whilst leadership development should be undertaken by engineers from all levels it focuses on specific non-technical leadership skills and traits required at each engineering level within the organisation. By breaking the training down for specific position levels within local government the engineer can develop a holistic engineering leadership skillset and the leadership skills and traits which are more desirable at each level within the local government organisation can be focused on.

Executive leadership coaching is particularly beneficial for local government engineers as is moves away from the one size fits all leadership training and focuses on the individual. Leadership coaching will improve the engineer’s leadership capabilities as it challenges the engineer to focus on new behaviours and skills in a one on one setting that will help build their leadership potential.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Goh, Steven
Qualification: Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Civil)
Date Deposited: 30 Aug 2022 03:28
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2023 01:28
Uncontrolled Keywords: Management, leadership, engineers, local government, leader behaviours, leadership, leadership development program, leadership practice, leadership theory, Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, MBTI
URI: https://sear.unisq.edu.au/id/eprint/40686

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