True or False – Leaders are made, not born?
The answer is true AND false.
There are natural tendencies, with which we are born or learn at a young age, that lend themselves more naturally to leadership qualities. Some of those tendencies include extraversion, patience and openness to new ideas. Center for Applied Cognitive Studies, CentACS, a Charlotte based company, has created a personality profile that reveals how comfortable one is with a wide range of competencies based on our personality and “bring clarity to how a personality-diverse workforce is needed to effectively accomplish the objectives of any organization in a rapidly changing, virtual world.”
Why we behave the way we do:
- Personality is one of five elements that will influence our leadership behavior. According to most studies, personality doesn’t change, but behavior can change. Leadership qualities can be taught and individuals can set personal behavior targets to begin changing counterproductive actions that hinder success into leadership qualities, or new habits, that result in success.
- The situation should determine our response to events and people. However, often times the habits we have formed in the past are what comes out in any given situation. That is reacting, not responding. Leaders understand that it is critical to respond appropriately to each situation and not let our initial reaction dictate our leadership effectiveness.
- Individual needs play into the leadership behavior we exhibit. For example, a need for power would tend to lead someone to be more authoritative and demanding, whereas a need to be liked by others would encourage “going-along-to-get-a-long.” (Contact LeadAdvantage to identify the seven needs in leadership and help understand behavior. www.leadadvantageinc.com)
- Perhaps the greatest influence on our leadership behavior is our manager’s leadership style. For better or worse, we begin to emulate our manager’s style in order to keep the peace, get promoted, be viewed as a team player, or keep our job. As leaders, we need to recognize the influence we have over others and stop and think before responding.
- Finally, the operating environment can effect our behavior. If we are in an environment that encourages risk-taking, we are more likely to take risks for instance. Leaders understand that we have to interpret our operating environment for those around us in a way that is motivating, encouraging creativity and allowing appropriate flexibility, rather than with rigidity and inflexibility.
Once we can identify the five factors that influence leadership behavior in the workplace we can set goals to enhance or capitalize on our strengths and compensate or develop other areas that get in the way of our success. Once we recognize the five factors in ourselves and those around us, we can begin to overcome our differences and work together to achieve a common goal…and that’s what it is all about. Contact LeadAdvantage for both a personality profile and a proprietary behavioral assessment, and/or leadership processes for your management teams and high performers that will lead to continued success! To think, to act, to take away something real…
Other interesting posts: http://www.effectiveconnecting.com/blog
Sherri Baldwin is Principal of LeadAdvantage, Inc., a leadership and team training and development company, and is a registered Woman Owned Small Business (WOSB). Sherri and her team use a unique blend of businessrelevant, engaging and high-energy approaches to create an environment where leaders are individually equipped to navigate successfully through their specific business challenges to achieve a desired objective.