All entries for Thursday 27 November 2008

November 27, 2008

some debates of being a leader

During both CBE and LE module, we have been devided into different groups. In CBE, we talked quite more about leadership, but we didn't choose a leader during each team meeting or mini-project. Now in LE, we each time have a leader and we will give our personal feedbacks to the leader.

From this different situation, from the feedbacks we gave to each team leader this morning, I suddenly get back to a thought I had several weeks ago: Have a desire of being a leader not equal to be a good leader. And this actually come to a debate about is a leader born or made?

Personally speaking, I think a leader is born. I don't deny that some situation can make a leader, but if one don't have a potential to be a leader, if in his/her blood there is nothing about the desire to lead to organise to communicate or to let others work for him/herself, I really don't think he/she will be a good leader, no matter what a best situation he/she in or how hard others try to make he/she a leader.

From this point of view, leader is born. Situation may change, study and working experience may change, but one's intrinsic never change, or at least, hard to change. My undergraduate roommate, who is now studying in Stanford University which can demonstrate she is quite an excellent girl in academic area, is an example of my point. She don't like to lead, and also don't like others to lead her. She just hate such sort of things. In her mind, if we have something to discuss, if we have team meetings, OK, let's discuss, why we always need someone to lead and need someone to tell what to do and what not to do? Everyone has his/her own opinion in doing things, why I need to follow you? This thought maybe kind of extreme, but its someone's true thinking. She just focus her career life on research or other academic things, and do what's her duty well. I think people like this, no matter how hard you try to make them be a leader, they will not be a good leader. Because they don't have the desire!

This come to another debate: is desire enough for someone to be a good leader? Absolutely NOT. I have met so many people, they want to lead, they have too much confidence to be a leader, but they themselves are not a good leader at all. They don't know how to communicate with their fellows, they don't have clear target, they maybe always have a completely schedule but they are not good at time management and they cannot follow their schedule well, this, at the same time, will waste their fellows' time, and is quite bad for efficiency. Communication is quite an important part of being a good leader, during an effective communication, you can let your fellows try their best and give voluntary effort, in another words, maximise their potential.

What kind of person can be a good leader and How can a person be a good leader, this is quite a hard question, and depended on personal characters. This may also lead to so many debates. I'll post our team discussion of definition of leadership below and welcome any comment on it~~

Definition from LE team 2: Leadership is about influencing an individual or a group of people to maximise their potential for the achievement of a common goal.

and I will think a definition of leader sometime~~~


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