What Is Leadership?

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What Is Leadership?

There are many definitions of leadership. The Collins English dictionary defines leadership as “the leader(s) of a party or group.” Yet true leadership is much more than that. A leader can be the CEO of an organization, or a first year employee who leads his or her team to success behind the scenes. A leader might lead through official authority and power, yet just as often great leaders lead through inspiration, persuasion and personal connections.

So what is leadership? One great definition is:

Leadership is the art of leading others to deliberately create a result
that wouldn’t have happened otherwise.”

It’s not just the creation of results that makes good leadership. Good leaders are able to deliberately create challenging results by enlisting the help of others. They can single handedly turn failing companies into Fortune 500 organizations. They can change company cultures. They can change the society. They can bring about the change that we wish to see in the society. They are drivers of growth and excellence. A true leader does not create followers but creates leaders.

A Leader is someone who has his or her own Vision for a particular set of people, and is able to communicate that Vision through his or her own actions and through this makes those who they are leading adopt his or her Vision as their own and make them want to achieve that Vision for themselves.

Everybody possesses the element of leadership, a leader recognizes it, and uses in the best possible manner. He ensures his thoughts and his way of life is expressed to people around him and they acknowledge and react to it. This reaction is however what differentiates an ordinary leader from an ideal one.

Who Is An Ideal Leader?

An Ideal Leader is someone who has his or her own Vision for a particular set of people, and is able to communicate that Vision through his or her own actions and through this makes those, who they are leading adopt his or her Vision as their own and make them want to achieve that Vision for themselves.
An Ideal Leader should posses the following qualities :-

  • Clear Vision : A Clear vision of what he wants to achieve in life and how he wishes to do it. He then aligns everything to his vision and moves towards achievement of the same. This will help him guide his team towards the accomplishment of some objectives by showing them alternate courses of action and helping them evaluate and chose the one which helps everyone move towards the vision.
  • Motivation : The skill to motivate people around him and make them represent their best selves at all times. Motivation is about understanding the situation of oneself and of other people and ensuring that situations does not overpower judgment and circumstances do not affect action.
  • Communication Skills : A leader must possess good communication skills. Leadership is about expressing ones way of life and this expression needs a good medium to travel. Good communication skills do not mean that he should have fluency in all languages but have a body language and conversation style that make his conversations enriching and delighting.
  • Respect : A good leader should respect the human resource he has. A leader is generally judged by his followers,and these followers need to respect the leader by understanding his leadership style. However, this is not always the scenario and a leader needs to earn the respect which he can only do by the virtue of himself respecting everyone he works with.
  • Modesty : A good leader must be modest. Leadership recognition often is accompanied by an ego boost. An ideal leader needs to always be humble and not let superficial things overpower him and his capacity to take a decision.

In the words of John C Maxwell, “leadership is influence – nothing more, nothing less.” This moves beyond the position defining the leader, to looking at the ability of the leader to influence others – both those who would consider themselves followers, and those outside that circle. Indirectly, it also builds in leadership character, since without maintaining integrity and trustworthiness, the capability to influence will disappear.

Leadership to me is all of that and more. Leadership is about influencing, inspiring and motivating people. It is about bringing out the best in every person. It is all about inspiring, dreaming, learning, doing and becoming a better person than you are today.

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