Are Leaders – born or made?
The most argumentative and the most widely researched topic in the field of leadership is – if the leaders are born or made. As on today, the resultant phenomenon of the widely done research is neutral, with few of the researcher’s supporting the former assumption while few supporting the later one. The critical point in the discussion had been the genetical influence on an individual which makes him/her a leader.
Although, it is not deniable that few leaders the world has seen were born to rule, however, I would like to give my opinion in regards of the later i.e. Leaders are made.
The basic feature which defines a leader is – Intelligence. Every individual born is blessed with intelligence, it is just how one groom one’s intelligence level and put in to the best use which makes him/her a leader. Besides, intelligence there are many more characteristics which an individual needs to inculcate in oneself to become an inspirational leader.
These characteristics include strong will and determination towards achievement, influencing the people’s mind and actions, highly self motivated, possessing skills and talents and nourishing and nurturing them at regular time periods. All these features and many more added to them turns a simple individual into a leader. The leadership skills and talents could be either adopted or learnt by one whilst moving ahead at different spheres of life. A stabilized ongoing development of the intellectual growth and enhancement of various skills and talents at different levels of an individual development plays a pivotal role in the making of a great leader.
Today’s world has seen a large number of leaders in different spheres. As Shakespeare puts in “Some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them”. No single conclusion could be deprived on the formation of these leaders. It is essential for a person to realize and recognize the traits they possess at earlier later stages in life and later enhancement of these traits would result in utilizing them optimally throughout the life.
A consistent approach towards grooming ones skills and talents besides developing intellectual growth would be the most efficient source to become a great leader. Adopting different leadership traits while working would also prove to be beneficial. Experience would definitely get counted in as positive in leadership development.
Leadership is not only determined by the character and capacities of the leader, but definitely also by the followers: if there are no followers there is no leader. Empowerment, ownership and curiosity are the features which ones derived evolves leadership in every individual (Lance, 2004). All the features discussed so far could be easily adopted by any normal sound minded individual.
No hard and fast rules are required to adopt them and no genetical attributes are needed to acquire them – it is just an individual’s strong will and determination over becoming a leader which would turn him/her into a great leader. Thus, I conclude, stating although a large number of leaders are termed as born – leaders, yet there work and experience have made them leaders in actual sense.
à Adair, John. 1998: Leadership Skills. CIPD Publishing
à Covey, Stephen. R. 2004: The 8th Habit: From Effectiveness to Greatness.
Simon & Schuster Publishers
à Secretan, Lance. 2004: Inspire! What Great Leaders Do. John Wiley & Sons
à Zenger, John. H. 2002: The Extraordinary Leader: Turning Good Managers into
Great Leaders. McGraw –Hill Professional Publishers.