How do you define leadership? What do you think a true leader should be? What is your personal interpretation of good leadership?
There is no universal acceptable leadership definition. Each of us has to learn to have a personal interpretation of leadership. Our definition differs accordingly to our cultural background, our educational level, our personality and our social background.
A person living in China will have a different definition of leadership from a person living in Australia.
The person living in China will identify his personal hero and define leadership based on his idol.
So, what is your personal definition of leadership?
You must define what leadership is before you can become a good leader. If you do not know what good leadership is, you will not learn to be a good leader.
Each of us has a chance to be a leader in some capacity. Are you a parent? If so, you are a leader leading your kids on the life path. You are a generation older and wiser than your kids. You are leading them to the path of a successful and fulfilling life.
Are you holding supervisory position? If so, you are a leader for the team working for you. You are leading your team to meet the monthly target sets by the management.
Are you a teacher? If so, you are leader to all your students. Your students envy you and admire you. You are a great leader. All your students learn leadership from you.
Are you a career soldier? Sooner or later, you will be given opportunities to lead your men into battlefield. You are relying on them to protect you. You are asking them to sacrifice their lives to serve the country. How are you going to do that if you do not know what leadership is? A great leader is able to motivate his followers to sacrifice their lives.
Are you a high flyer in your company? If so, you are looking forward to greater role in the company. Ultimately you are to lead the whole company to achieve record high sales and profits. You must have leadership qualities to achieve all these. If you do not how a good leader should behave, how are you going to lead the whole company?
How do you define leadership?
You have to read about the great leaders of the past. You have to learn from the great leaders in your life. Whether the great leaders in your life are your parents, your bosses, your friends or classmates, it does not matter. What matters is that you learn and define the qualities that make them great.
Aldof Hitler was obviously a bad example of leadership, but he did possess the charismatic quality and able to gain the support of many Germans.
Jesus Christ was a great leader even though he died at the age of 33. He was able to teach profound lessons in simple words that moved people to action. Ability to teach, and touch the hearts of the followers are another hallmarks of great leaders.
Mohandas Gandhi was able to lead India to Independence with a clear vision. He was able to convince his people of a “Free India”. He was able to convince people that violence was not necessary for the seeking independence for India. He was firm in his belief that mankind was inherently good.
Having a vision is a hallmark of a great leader. Ability to lead and unite people towards the vision is a mark of good leadership.
What is your personal definition of leadership? Please spend time reading and studying your heroes. From their examples, you will come out with your personal definition of leadership.
Do not worry if you find that your definition of leadership changes. After all, a great leader is able to adapt to the changing circumstances. Circumstance changes and you change too. Your definition of leadership when you were 10 years old would not be the same definition you are making now.
So folks, do take time to ponder over it and you will become a great leader in your respective roles in life.