- Education and Science»
- Sociology & Anthropology
What Makes A Person A Leader?
A leader stands out in a crowd; people notice them and want to be around them. They have interesting things to say that people want to hear; talents the public wants to experience.
But why do some people have it and others don’t and can you learn how to be a leader if you are not one?
Some are just born with this trait.
A few come into this world blazing their own trail, making their own ideas and inventing cool things and if people want to follow them that’s great and if not they’d be okay just doing their own thing but the fact is they draw people. They have a magnetism that pulls them in without even trying. Their words hold attention and most of their ideas sound wonderful.
Oldest children tend to be one more so than others but a middle or youngest sibling can be one too. Younger brothers and sisters have a natural propensity to want to do what the older one(s) are doing. They are the first bigger, smarter and more talented person they know so they automatically try to do the things big brother does.
As the younger kids get older and are exposed to more people they still might follow the elder sibling’s lead but it’s just as likely they will find they aren’t as clever as they first thought and find other more interesting role models.
Older siblings get used to telling the younger ones what to do and having followers. This builds their ego making way for a leader personality. That’s not to say they will retain this status because unless they are interesting to people outside their home they will soon lose credibility.
Not all oldest children are born leaders.
Leaders don't always have a lot of followers.
Some that are born with this trait don't necessarily have a lot of people around them but it's obvious when you talk to them that they are not followers and always lead. They'll have a few cronies that attach themselves to his shadow and pattern their behavior, attire or ideas after him.
These people can have a hard time in their career unless they learn to work with others and keep their supervisors intrigued with their abilities.
Forced or acquired leadership:
People who are promoted into a managerial position are a leader whether they want to be or not. If they are introvert, this can be difficult because they are most happy doing their own thing without an audience or being responsible for others but they can still succeed.
Being sympathetic and patient are the two biggest traits but you have to be careful or people will take advantage. Let them know you are willing to listen but you still expect their best.
Being unusual can be a bad thing but it can also be a good thing if your uniqueness is interesting. For instance: if you tell great stories, funny jokes or wear great clothes others want to emulate, then you just might be leader material.
If, however, your uniqueness is not found to be wonderful then you will just be labeled as a freak, nerd or whatever the current label is for weird folks.
People like to be around anyone who can entertain us or give us ideas so those with exceptional abilities are often leaders.
Artists, celebrities and those with unusual traits are usually leaders whether they want to be or not simply because people love their work. Fans enjoy the music they create or the stories they write so they follow them. They’ll have people around as long as they continue to produce new and interesting things.
Leaders can fall from grace.
Being a leader isn’t an easy job and your title can be taken away if you don’t keep your audience intrigued. People are fickle creatures and what they find great and wonderful today may not be the case tomorrow. Or, if you do something that is considered to be unsavory your clan can move on to the next cool individual to come along.
Take for instance some celebrities who have done things we thought were uncouth or despicable such as pedophilia or animal cruelty. Their talents and former greatness is overshadowed by that one awful deed they’ve done and people decide not to contribute attention or funds to them anymore.
Sure, there will still be a few faithful hangers on but their group is greatly depleted and they have fewer people paying attention when they speak.
Can you climb back on the podium after losing popularity?
This depends on the offense and how wonderful their next feat is. Some win a game, create a magnificent piece of art or give a wonderful speech that overshadows the faux pas. It’s even possible their fans will mostly forget what was done in the past.
Distractions help too. Look at politicians who have had affairs or said something stupid and then someone else will do something worse or a disaster happens and all is forgotten, at least for the moment.
This can happen on a smaller scale at school or work. If someone else says or does something worse than your error or an event takes the focus off of your transgressions and you say or do something new people like, you could be back on top.
Getting the big head.
One of the biggest errors many make is getting cocky and thinking they don’t have to try.
“I’ve already got all these people following me and thinking I’m wonderful, I’m invincible. What can go wrong?”
A lot, Pal. This line of thinking has been the downfall of many a great leader. They stop trying and believe they have made the climb; I’m here for good. It doesn’t work that way. Being a leader is a big responsibility. You owe each and every person hanging on your every word to be the best you can be and most of all… humble.
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