Leadership: Is it a choice?

The best leaders are born with personality strengths and character traits that impact their leadership role.

Everybody is different.  Some people are outgoing while others are passive.  There are those with drive, integrity, and perseverance while other may exhibit a different list of personality traits.  Many personality traits are so deeply engrained in the makeup of an individual that the role they play in social, business and academic settings is often determined without a conscious effort.

Those that gravitate toward leadership roles have a combination of personality traits that drive them to lead.  Successful leaders also possess personality traits that inspire others to follow them.

Of course natural leaders do not always lead and those who may generally follow always do so.  It is the transition from one role to the other that requires a conscious decision and focus.

Personality traits can and should be worked on to promote personal growth.  Everyone has good qualities along with those that could be improved.  The best way to redirect or hone personality traits is through the development of personal skills.  In a leadership role those skills may include: listening, open-mindedness, conflict resolution, vision, and the ability to delegate.

Personally I have never thought about being a leader.  I seem to gravitate to that role.  My conscious decision is made when I am in a group setting that I don’t want to lead for whatever reason.  I have to focus on stepping back and encouraging someone else to take the lead.  The best example of this is the class room setting.   There seem to be some students that would never participate if not encouraged to do so.

It is important to be true to yourself no matter which role comes naturally.  There are many examples of people who have successfully transitioned from one role to the other.  I believe it can be done it just requires focus and personal development.


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