Leaders, Born or Made?

Essay by solidusm88College, UndergraduateB, December 2007

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What is leadership?There is probably no topic more important in business success today than leadership. The concept of leadership has been evolving over the decades as the needs of organizations and communities change. Leadership occurs among people (as it is usually refered to as a "people activity"), where it is used to achieve certain goals with the use of influence. What makes people follow a leader? What makes people go against some leaders while passionately following others to the end of their cause? What makes a successful and effective leader? Which automatically brings us to the basic question of "What is leadership" and "What makes a leader?"It was reported that there are around three hundred and fifty definitions of leadership that researchers have generated over the past 30 yearsHemphill (1949) concludes:"Leadership is the behavior of an individual who is involved in directing group activities."This definition, written by Hemphill, gives a broad meaning of leadership as he had summed up the basic idea and dynamics behind all leadership in this small sentence.

In any organization, business enterprise, hospital, or maybe family, there has to be a leader that individuals look up to. Having the ability to influence and motivate others using special abilities and ideas, that will motivate and influence other individuals in the working place, which has a direct impact on the effectiveness and success of this group.

Leadership can have a formal aspect , which only exists in organizations as a business leadership, where a normal employee can lead his fellow workers to better performance in the firm. This "special" employee is special because others have faith and trust in the personal abilities of this individual to point out the right paths.

On the other hand, there is an informal aspect, which exists in relationship groups of individuals, where...