Are Leaders Born or Made a discussion of various leadership models and the factors that make a good leader.

Essay by FocuspointC+, January 2004

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There have been many great leaders throughout the ages Napoleon, Churchill, Mandela. However great leaders are often thought to be great militaristic leaders and not the skilled negotiators which we now consider crucial for the smooth running of business and politics. More often than not a great leader is considered to be male, this is also implicated in that fact that even if a leader is not male, they posses more often than not aggressive or dominate characteristics, e.g. Margaret Thatcher which are often thought to be male characteristics... Management skills and abilities are essential for any good leader however the question arises are great leaders born or created. Indeed what makes a great leader, what are the qualities/skills which are essential for leadership and which of those can be identified as essential or merely beneficial for low maintance management. When managing what style of leadership can be identified as good bad or indeed negative and the potential effects of that management style.

The author hopes to address the issue of whether leadership can be learned or is merely a natural attribute. Additionally the characteristics required to make a leader. So what is leadership?

"Leadership is the creation of a vision about a desire future state which seeks to enmesh all members of an organisation in its net."

"Leadership is a complex process by which a person influences others to accomplish a mission task, or objective and directs the organisation in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent."


Are leaders born or made that is the question, however before I can determine this I must first describe the attributes/skills that a leader requires. The issue with attributes and skills is that an attribute is an inherent ability; a skill is an ability that is acquired. The...