A leader is not born in a single day, neither is he found in your neighbor’s house. The Leader is in ‘you’. Like every living thing needs food for growth so do the leadership qualities need some nourishment to develop. For its development we need to work on all the important elements that are required to become a great leader. This theory applies not only to an individual but to an organization too. After all it is the individual who constitutes the organization; therefore the principles which we apply to get success in our lives can be used, to get success in an organization too.
To start off, we must first and foremost deal with Personal Empowerment. Every human being, every society, every group or organization is not free from faults and mistakes. Weakness is found in everyone. Now, what matters the most is overcoming those, by making right practices and adopting good habits, along with good choices.
“The more you know, the more you realize how much you do not know-the less you know, the more you think you know”-David T. Freeman. Another factor which would empower us in true sense, which is necessary for leadership, is ‘knowledge’. If you don’t know a vital piece of information, then find it out. Ask, get the facts, you need to take smart decisions. Knowledge gives you power. Ignorance puts you at the mercy of others. Another important lesson to be learnt in this segment called personal empowerment is learning to say a ‘yes’ to opportunities. Every individual and organization needs to get out of their cocoon and experience everything that gets into their way in a bold manner.
Moving on to our second element -Control. Learning ‘To control’ is necessary for developing Leadership skills. Self-control (a form of control) is vital, one must know that he has control over his own leadership skills and can develop them. Same can be applied to an organization, it has control over its own actions, on performing the right set of actions, and one can achieve a lot.
About ‘Control’- Leadership Development Leader Robin Sharma says-“When things get difficult it’s more important than to pursue excellence, is to focus on things that you can control. Take control of things that you can do and execute them brilliantly. Then go home and let it go.” So, when you are in charge of a group you must also know how much of control is healthy for a group too. If one tries to get control on all the activities, then he might be regarded as a bad Leader. ‘Control’ must never be in excess amounts so as to frustrate.
Freedom- one might wonder, as to, what freedom has to do with leadership. Soon our doubts would be cleared. A book called ‘Leadership Development in Balance’ has to say that-“I believe those leaders who find ways to create broader amounts of freedom rooted in trust have more sustainable success over time. Of course, to provide freedom, people must be willing and able to accept it and to use that freedom for the right means and ends”. This shows how freedom is necessary to take an action and also to reach ones goals.
But with freedom comes-‘Responsibility’. A leader is responsible to perform his duties. A leader has to take accountability of his responsibility. There may be a difference in the level of responsibility, but we have our own set of responsibilities which we have to attend to and address.
This in turn must help us to develop ethics .The Center for Ethical Leadership suggests that-“Core values are what motivate every individual and shared core values are the foundation for agreements and co-operation among diverse people”, says Pat Hughes, Director of curriculum development for The Center. Ethics are vital for leadership because, these values create an impression on other people primarily. The other elements do create an impression but it is ethics which is most visible.
Hence, we have discussed the importance and necessity of each of the elements i.e. personal empowerment, freedom, ethics, control and social responsibility for leadership development.
On personal empowerment:
Quote of Freeman:
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