Most people have heard the statement “great leaders are born, not made”.
When first analyzing this regard, one must know the definition of leadership. Leadership is “the process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task” (Schemers, 1 Essentially, anyone who has the ability to influence a group of people for a common goal is considered a leader. It is not realistic that a person has the natural ability of great leadership without having learned key knowledge along the way.These skills are learned through apprenticeship, allowing up with employees and gained knowledge throughout a person’s life. These factors play an important role in developing leadership skills. There are supporters of the account that great leaders are born, not made. In their argument, leaders have to be born intelligent but some, like Everett Lockhart, believe leaders have an “intangible characteristic that can’t be explained”. Additionally, advocates of this explain that the person may have been born into the right family or situation that propelled them to become a great leader.
All of these arguments should be analyzed and assessed with he opposite thinking. To challenge this reasoning, first with born intelligence, one must realize that intelligence can be learned. ]non Cloud of TIME Magazine quotes Enders Ericson, stating that a “society that provides opportunities for all” can produce a high number of intellects. However, Wally Block expresses that a leader does not have to be the smartest person in the room to be great. A manager, who is not educated about their business, can learn and study that material to improve.Thus, it is not necessary for a leader to be a highly intelligent person, from birth. In opposition to the intangible characteristic that “natural born” leaders seemingly inherit, Wally Block of Three Star Leadership, describes leadership an apprentice trade.
A person is capable of learning abilities and skills to make them a terrific leader through apprenticeship. Block proclaims apprenticing to an effective leader will allow a person to “watch, learn, and emulate” that leader’s mannerisms.. Since people can learn off of others, the idea of an intangible characteristic that is hereditary is improbable.An example of this is former Apple CEO, Steve Jobs. Biography Channel explained how Jobs dropped in on 18 months of creative classes at Reed College.
This is where Jobs found his inspiration. Jobs later went on to build Apple Computers, which made him billions. Anna Miller quotes Jobs exclaiming “You can’t just ask customers what they want and then give that to them. By the time you get it built, they’ll want something new.
” This ability to predict future needs of consumers cannot be inherited.Working with people and learning information about his consumers on a deeper level enabled Jobs to develop this capability. The last point, in which a great leader is born at the right time, should be looked at as well. If a Prince was born into royalty, they are not necessarily going to be a great leader, just because their parents might have been. The situation in which the Prince is born into, gives the prospect more tools and resources, such as coaching or apprenticing to a parent that can make them a fantastic leader. A person not born into royalty can also become a great leader, as well.It will be a lot tougher indeed, as the lack of resources or pressure may not be forced on the person to do so.
Leaders born at “the right time” or “right place” still have to learn leadership skills to help them take advantage of the situation the individual is in. There are many important skills a leader can learn. Following- up is proven to be a key aspect in improving and shaping great leaders, along with a variety of other factors. Marshall Goldsmith of Harvard Business Review and his partner, Howard Morgan, accomplished a study of 86 000 participants in eight major corporations.The results of the study concluded that follow-up, internal and external coaches and interaction with employees ere crucial factors in dramatically increasing the effectiveness of the leader. (Goldsmith and Marshall, 74-78). In essence, a person can learn to become a great leader through a variety of factors, such as connecting, following up with employees, while receiving feedback on every level of their leadership periodically. It is doubtful a person “born a great leaded’ will manage people in such a fashion based On pure instinct and no education.
Skills and processes to lead effectively need to be learned and practiced. Furthermore, a leaders growth is never done. In this sense, it is impossible for a person to be “born a great leader”. Learning leadership is a lifetime activity, according to Wally Block.
A person will always gain skills to improve their leadership abilities throughout the course of their lifetime because there is always opportunity to learn. Henry Ford is an example of a great leader who emphasized life-long learning. Anna Miller posted that Ford was quoted saying, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether twenty or eighty.Anyone who keeps learning is young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind nouns. ” Ford eventually became one of the most successful industrialists to date, according to Miller. There are leaders in society today that believe leadership is learned and not inherited.
The Stanford Graduate School of Business reported that Cooling Powell, former secretary of state and four-star general in the U. S. Military, explained how leaders need to get the right resources for their staff to do their job. Powell goes on to note that leaders learn from trial, error and experience.He rationalized that great leaders are made, not born and that hey must also reward or punish people in one’s employment when necessary. In conclusion, a great leader is one in which their skills are learned. This can happen via apprenticeship, where a person can emulate a successful role model or leader in business or through Marshall Goldsmith and Howard Mooring’s results on improving leaders.
Leaders need to be personable with people, follow-up with employees and be assessed every Step Of the way so they can make improvements in the future.In Steve Jobs case, he was working with consumers on such a deep level, he was able to anticipate true needs and build a company based on innovation. It is also important for these leaders to learn more about their business as a leaders growth is never done. Henry Ford is a prime example of this, quoting how important he believes learning is.
Finally, Colic Powell believes that leadership is a learned skill, and explained that a leader needs to supply the necessary resources for their staff to do the best job possible. One simply cannot be born with these leadership qualities, as leadership is a learned skill.