www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” G. Clarke wrote: We are, for the most part born the same. Carbon based organisms. Ten fingers. Ten toes. Excluding birth defects and trauma, we have the same faculties to exploit. So, I am a believer that it has to do in large part with environmental factors that affect the individual. M. Wierzgac wrote: Leaders are made. Leaders become leaders in 1 of 3 ways: 1 - a crisis or event pushes them into leadership 2 - their personality leads them into it 3 - they choose to be a leader. If they choose to become a leader, they also choose the depth of their training (some deep, some shallow).
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” G. Krstulovic wrote: They are born to be made. Let me clarify it this way – Leadership is a set of skills that can be learned by practice over time. This is true of literally any skill. However, you need some in-born talent or “pre-determination” to master the skill. There is a significant difference between “learning the skill” and mastering one. I love basketball, but no matter how hard I practice, I won’t be able to play it like Michael Jordan. I hope you see where I am coming from.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” O. Ballesta wrote: Leadership is a quality that can be improved by training and experience. In short, passion, communicational abilities, innovative mindset, abilities to negotiate, humility, courage, self-determination and empowerment are a mix of personality traits with learned skills that being most of them innate and inherent to the emotional profile and personality of an individual can be perfectly enhanced, expanded and improved by proper training, successive and diverse experience in the workplace, mentoring and behavioural coaching.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” S. Chapple wrote: The old 'nature' versus 'nurture' question! I am an advocate that leadership can be developed over time. It is essentially about understanding other people and, more importantly, understanding yourself. Of course, there will always be those individuals who have a natural talent for leadership far above the majority!
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” C. Sorab wrote: Ahhhh. The old "Nature vs. Nurture" debate. I think the question here is what makes a good leader? Seeing as we are all individuals we are all led by different things or styles of management, what works well for one person may not work well for another. Some like to be led by the nose and others prefer a gentle tap in the right direction. A good leader may be born with the ability to inspire others, but it takes a real leader to learn from others and improve himself. The ability to learn and adapt is paramount to effective leadership and the only part that nature plays in this is to give the individual the capacity to learn. Even the desire to better ones self is probably learnt through life. I think that as a leader, the day you stop learning is the day you cease to be an effective leader. So I vote that it is the "right" mix of nature and nurture that develops a great leader. I'm sure there are many great people born every day that have the potential to be fantastic leaders but who will never grow up in an environment that enables then to realise their potential.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” D. Prasad wrote: To me it's neither; they are self made with will and vision S. Hazra wrote: Everyone comes into this world by virtue of birth and so do the Leaders!! Leadership is a skill and like any other skill can be acquired over a period of time by practicing it. Some people are talented and are born with good leadership qualities. But like any other 'skill,' one has to hone it over a period of periods and has to remain dynamic. Not all of the leaders are born with the same, it is through your upbringing and training of your mind, perseverance, ability & aptitude to learn can only make a good leader. There are certain traits but as a Leadership has Application dimension, hence, simply knowing the traits will not make a good leader.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Chaplin wrote: Leadership is learned. As a certified facilitator of The Leadership Challenge by Jim Kouzes & Barry Posner, I cite their findings based on more than 25 years of research: "It's nonsense to assume that leadership is genetic. There's no hard evidence to support that assumption... The truth is that leadership is an observable set of skills and abilities...and any skill can be strengthened, honed, and enhanced if we have the motivation and desire, the practice and feedback, the role models and coaching, and the support and recognition." For more information, I highly recommend adding Jim & Barry's fourth edition of The Leadership Challenge to your leadership library. Live, learn, and lead!
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J.M. Koenig wrote: I was born. J.M. Koenig later wrote: I'm curious about something. How do coaches and trainers actually make money. I'm mean in real life. Money to pay bills etc. Do people actually pay you money to tell them how to live and is that money enough to survive on? I just find the whole profession puzzling and it seems that almost everyone on this site is either a coach or a recruiter.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” K. LaVine wrote: In order to answer this question an even more basic one must be asked first (I believe); What is a Leader? By my definition a true leader is one who encourages and ALLOWS those they lead to be the best they can be and in doing so facilitates advancement in a positive direction. By this definition leaders may be found in all areas of our lives (not just in the board rooms of high powered companies, in the military, or in the political arena). We are all capable of leading (Born) to the degree that we are willing to learn (Made) to bring people together and allow each individuals strengths to contribute to a common goal.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J.S. Webster wrote: I think that anyone can learn leadership skills, but the ability to inspire is what separates a person with 'leadership training' and a person who is a 'leader.' B. Sanders wrote: There are those who are born and those who are taken out by there own troops.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” G. Bernier wrote: That question is right up there with the nature or nurture debate over personality. As some the answers that have posted indicate there has been a great deal of research on the subject, books have been written, and many people make a lot of money selling 'leadership training'. Personally (and I've been around quite a while) I believe leadership is like athletic ability. Nearly anyone can learn the skills necessary to play a sport reasonably well. Depending on how much effort and time they are willing to devote to learning the tools of the trade will directly affect their level of expertise. However, regardless of effort there will always be very few Michael Jordan's or Tiger Woods'. The mechanics of leadership can be effectively learned. The vision and passion that makes really great leaders comes from somewhere else. (I don't believe the somewhere else is totally genetic - it has to do with personality and that is a complex combination of factors.)
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Bowker wrote: Many tend to agree that true leadership qualities are threaded into our DNA and it just takes proper training/events for those qualities to come out. After spending 11 years in the Navy, I have seen many good and many bad leaders. I, myself never thought I could be a leader early in my career until I was “thrown” into a leadership role. Looking back on it, I feel that I always had those qualities in me, but never knew they were there until I had no choice but to either lead or give up. Now, I can also say that I have seen other individuals faced with the same challenge fail. I, for one, do believe that there are leaders and then there are followers. For any society, military, or organization to thrive, it must have both. All the training, education, books, and classes cannot turn a follower into a leader. You may make the follower more educated in leadership methodologies, but that person will never be able to put use it to the full potential. Henry Kissinger said, “If you do not know where you are going, every road will get you nowhere." A leader knows where they are going and it is hard wired into their thinking. A follower only knows how to get somewhere by reading a map or following someone else.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” S.M. Diamond wrote: Perhaps you should specify if you want a serious answer, or a humorous one - both can apply - equally . . . :-) I. Babelli wrote: Leaders are made, by someone who gives them a chance. Almost every leader has had a person who entrusted him/her with an opportunity that was bigger than his/her ability/skill set/knowledge/etc at the time of the opportunity, so s/he took it upon him/her-self to learn and advance and become a leader. I cannot, for the life of me, come up with an example to counter the above argument except in the jungle (or similar sittings) where the dominant male fights his way up to leadership.
R. Evans wrote: Both. I absolutely believe that leadership can be taught/learned. This case has been made in many ways, including various research over the years. This has been addressed by people who have answered your question in one of the three postings. I also absolutely believe that some people are "born leaders." My father, a career military man, used to say this: "If you think there's no such thing as a born leader, leave a group of kids on a playground and come back in 20 minutes. Without fail, when you come back, there will be one kid leading that group. In many cases, it won't be the most popular kid and it often won't be the kid you expected. Furthermore, it frequently isn't the kid that wanted to lead the group. It will be the kid that has 'that something' that enables him/her to say, 'let's do (whatever)' and the others will follow. Interestingly, that same kid will quite likely become a leader throughout his/her life." I am certain that some people, particularly those who cite traditional research will disagree with this scenario. The most likely argument is that "leading" kids on a playground is not really leadership. I submit that one key aspect of leadership is evoking in others the desire to follow. After all, without followers, leaders are just people out for a walk. I believe one reason that many people argue against born leaders is that it would seem to doom others to being permanent followers. Many people insist that it must be one or the other, born leaders vs. developed leaders, and since there are clearly many developed leaders, then there can be no such thing as born leaders. In my opinion, accepting both pathways to leadership is more logical, and less narrow minded. It is also easily observable. Leadership is often attributable to charisma, something that cannot be taught. Yes, there are leaders who are not charismatic. But there are leaders -- very successful leaders -- who derive much of their leadership success from charisma alone. I believe the most dynamic and effective leaders are those who posses the natural instincts for leadership and then work to develop leadership skills through refinement and training.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Iyer wrote: I presume you are asking in the context of a business organisation. Some take to leadership naturally, by learning and observing. Others can learn / or be taught this skill, if they wish to! In either case, the will to lead must come from within.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com R. Betts wrote: The short answer is yes. There are certain traits that have to be organic to you nature. In other words, some things you just can't fake. "Soft skills" can be explained, but not engrained. The "Hard skills" can be learned until conscious competence is achieved. Until the become second nature, if you will. But the ability to share your vision for your company in a way that is not only understood completely, but generates the sort of rabid support you find a English football matches isn't learnable. It takes more than a polished PowerPoint deck and some pithy words on a bunch of 3x5 cards. You must be able show your passion without looking like you are a straight jacket a way from the funny farm. You have to be able to generate a rare sort of commitment and loyalty. Your employees have to be ready to take it to the wall for you, because they know that you'll do the same for them. You have to hurt when they hurt and laugh when they laugh. You have to be ready to admit you are wrong and not rub it in when you are right. You have to know how to build and grow meaningful relationships. Even if you don't have a title or corner office, a leader, a truly great leader, will shine with the blinding intensity of a supernova. It's not nature vs. nurture, but nature and nurture. Combine them and it's magic.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” O. Lawrence wrote: The truly gifted leaders are born with certain supporting traits like patience, perseverance, creative thoughtfulness and ability to change. They have the required traits more than the ordinary or average. They become honed through adversity which everyone encounters and rather than simply surviving, they are thriving. Most leaders are born without those qualities and are simply trained to behave as leaders and receive respect from the leadership appointed status. One can easily spot them since they are the gatekeepers surrounded by mediocrity who prevent the talent to rise.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com T. Modeste wrote: The problem with great leaders is that they are too few and far between. So waiting around or searching for a great leader can soon run afoul of the law of diminishing returns. Because, in the meantime, we’ve got an organization to run and simply cannot afford to wait around until the next great leader deigns to walk through the door. Besides, we probably couldn’t afford him/her and he/she would probably have better things in mind than fooling around with our organization. Luckily for us, in our everyday work, we can get along very well without great leadership. And we'd be highly inefficient if we waited around for a great leader every time we needed to fill a leadership slot. Therefore, what we do is that we take the people we have and work with them to make them into the kind of leaders we need to get the job done. Experience shows that as a rule, such leaders do a good enough job at the level needed. In fact, some of them even turn out to be superb leaders.
Not everyone can be a Leader. I would rather say Leaders are synonymous to "Great Communicators who have an aggressive attitude to win". Whether you motivate people, lead a team, or possess great negotiation skills, you should be a good communicator first.
A leader should command and vision for their team, or organisation, and most importantly, the people in his team. They give a strategic direction to the people of his team and set goals with an objective to achieve with optimum utilization of resources. The best part about the leaders are they are able to motivate their team and they take the team along with them. They just don't lead a team but also teach them how to lead and make them responsible.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” K. Rao wrote: I think i depends on your perspective - Leadership as a science or as an art.. Leadership is like, say... Painting. You can go to a painting school and learn the techniques; though one in a million is da Vinci or Michelangelo. One in a million is a Jack Welch or a Lee Iacocca! In my opinion, leadership is an inherent birth trait that, at most, can be influenced by training in situations faced, but not created by them.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com L.J. Anderson wrote: This is a complex subject and there is no simple answer. Different cultural styles demand different leadership styles and what goes down well in one culture fails in another. One of the problems with attempting to teach leadership is that it can only be really learnt by doing it, partly because there are no universally applicable rules, so you have to get out there and get your hands dirty to develop the instincts you need to do the job properly. This also means that there is no way to develop leaders fast, which is why HR people prefer to recruit experienced leaders rather than train their own. In essence the leadership debate is a spin off from the 'nature vs. nurture' debate. As far as i can see, to train leaders effectively, you have to put them in real leadership situations for your organisations, let them get on with it while watching them like a hawk and making sure that they are pointing in the right direction. This takes up the time of the apprentice leader and the person coaching him/her. Most business don't have the time and they don't want to take the risk of having him run the show unsupervised, so they stick with experienced hires. Hope this adds something to the debate.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” N. Vassudhev wrote: That leaders are born is Maya believed to be true by Politicians. It's the circumstances that affect the individual, upbringing, education and the developed attitude that makes a Leader. C. Braverman wrote: Leaders have found their place. Whether it is a physical place or an idea, they bring their passion and motivation to that place. Many have just not found their passion yet.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Knill wrote: Both! Recollect if you will your elementary school years. Most of us will recall groups of both extroverts and introverts. What does it look like if leadership training was applied to both extrovert and introvert groups at the early age of 7? Imagine that same group of youngsters learning…contextual listening, neutral language, effective and timely messaging, acknowledging, asking vs. telling, discovery questioning, balanced emotional & social intelligence, effective delegation, motivation techniques, accountability metrics, etc. More than likely the extrovert group would excel faster and if sustained may become better leaders than the introvert group. However, 20 to 30 years later individuals from both groups, if leadership training was sustained, may rise to become excellent leaders. So, are leaders born, or made? Regardless of group, the best leaders are those that allow themselves to change-transform, empower, measure, coach and grow.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com R.T. Greene wrote: Leadership is neither learned not born into us. It is entirely contingent. That is, the person or group that does what another group needs now in order to thrive/survive, becomes "leader" regardless of who has positional power. That is what makes monkey hierarchies in business so funny--all those pompous little male egos looking managerial daily while an entirely different set of people flicker in and out as actual leaders daily--two parallel universes, and the pompous little monkey one often gets uppity and snuffs out the flickering contingent leadership when it gets in the way of their tiny strutting little egos. Fools who "try to be leader-ly" all the time just blind themselves from spotting what leading is actually now needed somewhere by their strenuous efforts to apply to future situations a handbag of tools they got away with using in some past cases. A sort of Harvard Business School child's play at leading, not the real thing.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” D. Burns wrote: Born and Made...but most importantly, leaders need to give birth to themselves at some point in their journey. Parents give you life, but you have to make a decision to give meaning and life to your life.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Hurst wrote: I wish we could once and for all put this question to bed and move on to the real work of developing leaders. If leaders are simply born that way then what is the point of leadership development. The answer perhaps creates controversy because the answer is simply both. Clearly there are those who have certain abilities that allow them to more easily assume leadership roles while others of us work to develop the necessary skills. The reality is that each person is unique in their skills and abilities as is each leader. One may be charismatic while another is empathetic, one may have clear vision another remarkable communication skill. We all have a different mix of skills and abilities that allow us the opportunity to lead. The question is do we discover within ourselves the passion to want to lead others to achieve a worthy goal and then learn how to do it. When you get to how do I learn to lead better, I think you find the "right" question.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Liu wrote: I think most of them are born with it. I am sorry if I had offended some people. I have seen people who have really good professional skills and great insights, however, they just lack of some charisma. Some other people are not that great in the insights, not even professional skills. I found it weird why people would even follow them with those disastrous thoughts. I certainly wish that latter type is not leading the company, otherwise it would be a definite mistake. Having said that, I believe some part of the leadership can be trained and polished in the later days through PROPER (please note, it should be proper, not what you think it is proper that counts) process and methods. But I haven't seen any of the so called "training program" having anything interesting and out of the box that could help train a leader. Please feel free to enlighten me if I had been blind sighted.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” K. Kelley wrote: I'm studying leadership right now for my master's thesis as it relates to the Myers-Briggs. What is so fascinating is that there are many, many theories on leadership styles and nothing has been quantified. However, our personal styles, such as with the Myers-Briggs, have been studied and quantified for many years now. I think that there are so many different forms of leadership. One could take the form of learned behavior, such as with servant leadership, and another could be inherited, as with transactional leadership. There is no denying, however, that an individual cannot possibly be a leader without followers. Perhaps we should seek to quantify leadership rather than qualify.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?”
Lockhart wrote: I believe that Leaders are born of the situations that they are thrust in. Those that step up and do the things that are necessary to be done because it is the right thing to do. They do this, not because they have to, but because no one else can or will. I am not talking about in an everyday situation, I am talking about when adversity comes and people who should be leading you are off hiding some where under a desk.
'Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.' -Shakespeare”
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” T. Cunniff wrote: In my experience, the answer is both and -- more often than should be for anyone's good -- neither. Some "leaders" in business are more like Chauncey Gardener than George Washington. They arrive at their position through corporate happenstance rather than through exceptional merit. Some Chauncey's recognize their luck and work hard to fill their gaps with leadership training and surrounding themselves with first-rate talent. The lesser Chauncey's risk making themselves (and their employers and investors) miserable. I believe no matter how good a leader you are, you can always become better.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” M. Mitra wrote: Twins growing in the same environment among same friends have different personalities. Are Leaders born that way? Well, I believe that there are traits that some people possess, by birth, which may help them become very good leaders, but their actions and implementation of them ultimately decides if they grow up to become good leaders. Having leadership trait and being a leader are two different things, I think.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Bhatnagar wrote: Well, NONE of “Born Vs Made”. It works in combinations of following complex stages. 1. Grooming (of Inherited OR Acquired Syndrome) =>Produces=> Charisma 2. Charisma (applied to identically attributed People) =>Produces=> Value Creator (Disposable) 3. Value Creator (If brings diversified attributed people TOGETHER) =>Produces=> A Mass Leader
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Mittal wrote: I would say a men is made of circumstances. It all depends what kind of circumstances a men has lived in his life. I think leadership is a skill and like many other skills in some people it is by birth and they refine it further but some are not born with this skill but they are brought up in such environment where they learn these skills and refine it with the time & practice. Hope it helps. Please let me know.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Miller wrote: I think in most cases the spark for leadership resides in many of us. In most cases the circumstances do not inspire people to act on it. Under trying circumstances the opportunity arises for people to rise to the challenge. S. Balakrishnan wrote: From my personal view, it is 80:20 (The Pareto principle.) 80% is made and 20% is born.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J. Parsons wrote: While some leaders definitely have a genetic advantage on leadership, and may find it easier and more intuitive, I think all of us can learn to improve our leadership and no good leader is strictly intuitive - all were mentored by good leaders. I don't think it is unlike athleticism. Some people are going to naturally excel at sports, but others might struggle to get to the same point. However, as much of it is about heart and passion as natural talent. The ones who are born with the most natural ability, if not carefully crafted, may fail in the end. While some people may lack enough natural abilities that lend themselves to leadership (and thus can't ever hope to learn enough to prevail), I think that group is small. Often, it is our own egos of not wanting to learn (and assuming that we know best) that keeps even naturally gifted leaders from being able to prevail. At the end of the day, I think leadership is not about the leader at all. It is about the team!!
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R. Bhan wrote: Nice question - great answers. Reminds me of something my father wrote to me when I was entering high school. "Be Deaf to people who say you can't do it. A school teacher scolded a boy for not paying attention to his mathematics and for not being able to solve simple problems. She told him that you would not become anybody in life. The boy was Albert Einstein" Does that answer?
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” F. Hayashi, PMP wrote: Each leader isborn with his own signature but....... He MUST also learn how to be a efficient leader. R. Torres wrote: They are neither born or made, but rather "fabricated."
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” G. Sadler wrote: Great question and lots of great answers! Here’s my take: First, I'd say that great leaders are FORGED not made because all great leaders have been tested or challenged to overcome adversity. Next, I’d say that Leaders (not managers or administers) emerge from LUCK which is created when opportunity meets preparation. Leaders must study and refine their skills and must also be given the opportunity to demonstrate those skills. Finally, I’d say that Leadership can be LEARNED. The military and other great organizations demonstrate this everyday. However, great leaders (like great athletes) get a huge advantage from natural ability (e.g. looks/charisma to name one.)
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” L.T. de Carvalho wrote: I think that leaders that think they're leaders because of some skill, an experience, a connection, or whatever, will show weaknesses in the future. Weakness that will surely put at risk one or more objectives of the team. True leaders aren't born; but rather they're forged on the heat of a situation where initiative, inspired views, and experience converge and set the new born leader in motion.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” S. Otterson wrote: Both. Some of the qualities of a leader are learned, others are part of one's personality. For example, a good leader can't be an introvert. Most likely those people who choose to a be leader already possess some of the character traits that they will need: courage, strength, flexibility, ambition, etc. Did they learn these, or were they "born" with them? Who is to say?
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” M. Ingle wrote: It can be said leaders are born and will always be successful but there is also an aspect of being in the right place in the right time. Leading some businesses is also a matter of being in the business within which one excels not just leading. If you get a gifted individual he or she may never lead given the circumstances. So I firmly believe it is not as simple as being a "born leader" but also a matter of whether or not you are in the position within which your natural talents as a leader can come to fruition
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” T. Willette wrote: As an individual develops, their abilities develop. Attitudes, personality, beliefs, behaviors, motivations all come into play when defining who an individual is. When an individual takes everything that they are and invests that into what they have a burning desire to achieve, they become leaders. Now, everyone is living for something right? So why is it that we aren't all leaders? Confidence. Confidence in personal abilities is what sets one person apart from another. So now we get into the issue of confidence and how to build it. To build confidence in personal ability, an individual must have two things, knowledge and experience. So can a leader be made? Yes, so long as they have knowledge, experience, and motivation. Can a leader be born? No, because all of the qualities needed to be a leader must be developed.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J.H. Brondum wrote: We are all born. So guess the answer is yes. However, leadership is mainly based on personality - and of course the knowledge, skills and attitude can be improved. But as with so many other things in life you will only excel at what you are good at. You can struggle your whole life to improve areas where you lack - but most likely you will best case arrive at good. Excellent leaders are already potential leaders when they are born. The rest are trying to catch up - and mostly for the wrong reason and with mediocre results. That being said – I believe that most people can learn to manage well, since good management is based on rules - rules that can be learned and mastered - leadership has no common rules. It is a gift.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” D. Grossu wrote: Leaders are born but they also learn how to become successful; each leader has its own challenges but they know how to bring success regardless of how different people are, and that is an art that not everybody has it in its genetic print. C. Braverman wrote: Leader....Desire...... M. Krasnyansky wrote: Let's go to the basic: Encyclopedia Britannica "Leadership: Exercising of influence over others on behalf of the leader's purposes, aims or goals.“ I think 80/20 rule works here as well: 80% born with individual, and 20% by training.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com M. Herbert wrote: Leadership is earned, it is a gift from those who are willing to trust you and follow your direction. I am a believer in the Marcus Buckingham school of leadership in that the most important task of a leader is to create clarity of purpose. I have seen any people with attributes that we mistakenly label as leadership- they were charismatic, or visionary, or very smart. Perhaps it is overly simplistic, but to me the most important element of leadership is trust. Do I believe you have my interests and the interests of the organization in mind when you make decisions? The time to measure an effective leader is at the end of the journey. We can all be effective at leading a project or a task- true leadership endures the test of time. If you want to be a true leader then you have to be willing to put the interests of the organization above your own interests and demonstrate that consistently.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” M. Parkyn wrote: The answer is yes... Yes, they are born; but if their talents are not developed, their chances of leading are much lower. Yes, they are "made." Marines are trained from day one to walk the walk of leaders. Thanks to Marine Corps Recruiting Command, a substantial number of Marine recruits and officer candidate enter our ranks having already made the commitment to lead. Others, however, make the decision when they experience their defining moment, when they confront their weaknesses and fears with core values that become their own.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Campbell wrote: Leaders are bred like thoroughbred racing horses. But, even the most genetically endowed thoroughbred is no more guaranteed to win than a common plow horse; it must work to become a recognized champion; because by all practical accounts they are physically the same. Likewise we are very similar to each other, we each possess potential, but it is our training, experience and socialization that evoke leadership. Time and again the “dark horse” has come from behind, conquered all odds and shattered stereotypes, this is because effective leadership results are the sum of personal talents, and experiences based upon the development and application of innate traits. One cannot effectively lead others if their personal abilities are so limited that they easily become overwhelmed with personal challenges. They must first have the capability to manage themselves followed with the capacity to then turn outward and influence others. This requisite for leadership is not a physical breeding like animals rather it is based upon conjoining experience with natural abilities which then produces a leader.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Tupan wrote: A good discussion with some very interesting points being made. For the statistics of this question my take is that leaders are born and then made. Leadership thus is 40% innate and the rest is a matter of developing the talent.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” S. Subramanian wrote: "DNA to lead"? - I don't think so. I think what makes good leaders is that 'fire in the belly' to reach there, “never die” attitude and the continuous process of being in good company and the positive environment (it is a choice, again!) All of this, coupled with good education (not to be confused with schooling,) teachers & mentors can make a person a 'leader stuff' - To be a leader or not, it is a choice of that individual again! In simple words, the mold in which the individual chose to be molded in!
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” M. Shyam wrote: Not everyone can be a leader just like not everyone can become an actor. People have different skills, talents and nature. Some people inherit that from parents and some people learn as they grow. A person who is shy, afraid to speak in public cannot be trained to be a leader. A person who is concerned about the society, well being of others and want to have authority over others can be trained. Such person will need formal training to be a leader of an organization but that training will only help if the person has a desire to have authority or command others to get the work done. A person can be a very good actor. But he/she still would needs to learn how to appear in front of a camera, do make up and become familiar with the stage before going for a movie shooting. The same applies to a leader. Mahatma Gandhi is a good example of a person who had no formal training but became a leader. He did not inherit leadership skills from his parents or ancestors but became a leader since he had a great passion to serve his motherland. However, to be a leader in a structured environment, one needs some formal training besides having passion for leadership.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” M. Krasnyansky wrote: Let's go to the basic Encyclopedia Britannica: "Leadership-exercising of influence over others on behalf of the leader's purposes, aims or goals". I think 80/20 rule works here as well, 80% born with individual, and 20% by training. M. Pohto wrote: Yes.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com J.A. Cole wrote: My take is the latter - a combination of the two. While I may believe that some people are born with 'Leader DNA', if they don't have the opportunity to exercise those skills properly, they're not leaders. By the same token, should someone have all the best training, nurturing and opportunities, but would rather be on the ground directing traffic....not a leader. An unwilling participant, however hidden or unconscious. An actor, a tourist who's never on vacation. The combination hands down of 'born' and 'made' spawn the best, greatest and most productive leaders. It's really interesting to read what others have answered. Especially looking at the responses where people have cited textbooks or assigned their own homegrown labels for leadership qualities. I realize that people have a lot of 'baggage' about this topic, and in some cases it's apparent what their rub is with regard to their personal experience, and what their expectations of a leader is. Everyone wants a person who is just like them, but at the same time, their expectations of a leader clash with the human factor of trial and error or by-products of a learning curve, as well as dealing with interpersonal team issues. Often a leader is like a nanny in a big corporate/institutional playpen that has to enforce the rule of 'everyone play nice, now', then on the drive home wonders 'I got an MBA for this?' Maybe that's where the DNA plays a factor - good genes, good balance, healthy system, healthy outlook - makes it easier to maintain grace under pressure. That's my take.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J. Letton wrote: Leaders are the "Ones" that are prepared to make mistakes, and ultimately learn from them. The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it. Theodore Roosevelt Y. Hanoulle wrote: I think it can be learned. Some people learned this in their childhood, or at the first companies they work for. I have created a leadership game together with my father. In this game people learn to look at different leadership styles. I see this as the beginning of how people learn to look at leaders.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J. Munoz wrote: I think all great leaders are to some degree a combination of both born and made. Leadership is so much more and "art" than a "science" that there has to be some innate desire to take charge in a given situation already present in the person or they will not seek out or succeed at the training necessary to take this personal trait and shape it into a true ability to lead successfully.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” T. McDonald wrote: I think that they are made not born - I think with our backgrounds and the way that we are raised by our parents tends to lead to leadership in our lives. As a former athlete, I also think that plays a huge role in both our ability and our want to lead. I know that the days of participating in sports helped me a great deal both with my ability to want to lead and the ability to be able to lead. H. Cuevas wrote: This is a quintessential question. My answer: leaders are born although they might get better and polished with time. Also, leadership styles varies along time as you reach maturity
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” R.E.G. Smith wrote: When I think of leadership, I look for qualities such as strength of character, honesty, honor, backbone, accountability and in the ability to inspire others. Can this be learned? Some things, yes -- from childhood as a matter of fact. I think people show leadership qualities early on - and then it is acquiring and fine-tuning the skills needed to support the 'leadership' personality. IMHO, I don't think it's a selective process ... that of possessing leadership qualities. I also do not think just because someone is a considered an effective team leader at work, or has a senior management position, is testimony to them being a good leader. It has to be in a fabric of the person and carry over into their personal life as well - outside of the protective, and sometimes insulated, confines of brick and mortar. Leaders emerge and while their skills may be sharpened, along with their wit, humor and other attractive attributes - the qualities that make a true leader is what makes them up as a whole person and that evolves over the course of a lifetime.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” B. Simpson wrote: I like Gary's answer liking it to Athletics - you can be naturally great at Leadership - or not so great. But you can make yourself better. Winston Churchill was the greatest leader the UK has ever seen (in my humble opinion). I don't for one minute believe that anyone who had spent a lifetime studying leadership could carry off what he did. Having said that - everyone should try and improve their leadership ability. And I include in that anyone who is anyone - not just leaders.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J. Foster wrote: Both. Look back to human roots, leaders were the strongest. Survival of the fittest, hunters and gatherers, the strongest was most often the leader. Now did that mean that person was the best leader? What you learn, is life experiences. Based on those life experiences, training mentoring, you can hopefully make better more sound choices. The born traits are personality traits, and of the personality traits some can be molded from birth, some stick with the person regardless.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” A. Garoo wrote: "I wish I knew the formulae, to make the test tube baby influence the doctors!" Leaders are born first & made later! The environment and the people play an important role in influencing humans. A leader's IQ is a result of his DNA as well as quality education, while EQ is a result of atmosphere / surrounding and people with whom he/she interacts. Both DNA as well as environment play an important role in making a difference between Good to Great! A person with the right set of traits/characteristics can be groomed and guided towards excellence in leadership.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” S. Das wrote: Made, made....simple made. There are lots of theories and ideas pointing towards the opposite, but leaders are made not only circumstances and the environment, but also by how they choose and shape their personalities according to the rigors and challenges of the business and professional environment. If all leaders were born, then there would be a dearth of these individuals everywhere. Organizations now exert more influence on the global environment than governments, and since they are run by individuals at all levels, I think the answer is very clear...
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” J. Jeckmans wrote: Interesting question to start with. Is it so, that the question behind the question is maybe even more important Meaning, it only matters what you believe to be true. If you believe that true leaders are born, than no matter what, this will be true to you. If you believe the other belief, than this will be true to you.
www.Linked 2 Leadership.com “ Are Leaders Born? Or Are They Made? Or Both?” T. Schulte Both.