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 Leaders can be made

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AuthorMessage
TianHua
Staff Sergeant
Staff Sergeant


Number of posts : 456
Age : 24

PostSubject: Leaders can be made   10th January 2009, 10:35

When the subject turns to leadership, someone inevitably asks, "Isn't leadership something you either have or you don't? Aren't leaders born that way? Can people really become better leaders? These questions are as hardy as cockroaches - they just won't die.

In fact, leadership characteristics can be developed. You can be a better leader. It is true that some leadership characteristics show up very early in life, but it is also true that people often can't predict who will become the superstar leaders. Some people come into the world endowed with self-confidence and a keen intellect. That is clearly an advantage. But nearly all people are made better leaders from specific developmental activities. Leaders are a lot more "made" than they are "born".

One of the best evidences that leaders can be created starting with "regular" people is the remarkable track record of the U.S. Marines. Marine recruits often come from troubled or abusive homes. They are frequently casual users of drugs or alcohol or have minor convictions. They often have not attended college. All of the usual predictors of success are generally absent in this group of individuals. Yet many Marine recruits are transformed into effective leaders after a two- to three-year period and go on to display remarkable leadership skills as their careers continue.

Leadership experts James Kouzes and Barry Posner wrote, "We would be intellectually dishonest if we did not say that some individuals clearly have a higher probability of succeeding at leadership than others. But this does not mean that ordinary managers cannot become extraordinary leaders." Leadership potential can be developed. With effort and practice, you can move beyond the skills you're born with to be an excellent leader.

Our goal in writing The Handbook for Leaders was to demystify the concept of leadership - to clarify what it takes to be an extraordinary leader. To do this, we examined what real people say about real leaders. We looked at evaluations of 20,000 leaders who had been assessed by 200,000 bosses, colleagues, and employees. We compared the top 10% of these leaders with the bottom 10% to see what leadership characteristics made the difference. This book shares some of our insights from our more detailed book, The Extraordinary Leader.

To build your leadership skills:

Believe that ordinary managers can become extraordinary: Your mindset can make the difference.

Commit to learning the concepts in this book: The more you know about what makes a leader extraordinary, the better your chances of being phenomenal.

Try out the skills: Incorporate these ideas into action. Make yourself a better leader.
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