Saturday, September 24, 2011

Becoming a Great Leader

If you watch the speech that JFK did when he said his famous quote "We choose to go to the moon" you will know that there is great difference between a commander, leader and a manager. Lets not discuss if they really landed on the moon or not, lets concentrate on how to become a great leader like JFK.

The commander is someone who commands and people has to follow, a manager is someone who manages resources and time to execute what is required but a leader is totally different.

A leader is someone who is being followed without asking or commanding, a leader is someone who makes people follow his orders and execute his vision without commanding them.

They say that leadership is born with the person, this is not really true some people are born to be leaders others are leaders to be born, they just need guidance and mentoring. I think that Martin Luther King is born to be a leader.

How to identify such people, those people will have such characteristics (the more the merrier):
  • Enthusiastic
  • Lovable
  • Respected
  • Spreads positive energy
  • Patient
  • Helps others
  • Takes initiatives
  • Walks the extra step
  • Thoughtful and caring
  • Strong Personality
  • Trust-worthy
  • Listens to others and accepts criticism
  • Impressive personally and professionally
  • Passionate
  • Consistent
  • Self-Esteem and confidence (they need to start doing what they have to do instead of being told what they have to do)
  • Empowerment and Support from higher level
  • Non-questionable knowledge or experience
  • The ability to take strong decisions when needed no matter what
  • Clear and with very good communication skills
  • Ability to separate personal feelings from work
  • Embrace the good things in others and help in eliminating the bad ones
  • Quality of work
  • Committed to success (personal and team)
  • Finds a solution and knows how to fix issues
  • Being fair with self and others and follows the rules
  • Charismatic
  • Has a vision that can be shared with others and get them hocked to it
  • Integrity
  • Sense of Humor
  • Creativity and Innovation
Some of those can be grown by mentoring and guidance but others have to be built-in within the person (Leader to-be).

Being enthusiastic and energetic is circumstantial depends on the environment  while being lovable should be part of the personality itself, on the other hand, communication skills and quality of work can be grown by the time and experience.

There are great commanders in life, great managers but really little great leaders who made people follow them without even meeting them, such as Mohammed PBUH. Some great commanders were people like "Napoleon Bonaparte".

Not everyone can be a leader but anyone can be a commander, supervisor or a manager, if you are a leader then your requests and wishes are commands (commanders), people will ask you to check on them and check their work and see what they have achieved (supervisor), and people will self-manage themselves to make sure that your vision, goals and plans are achieved and are progressing as expected (manager), all of that is happening willingly by the people who accepted you as a leader.

When you reach a point that people are doing exactly what you want or think of without even telling them, at that time know that you are a great leader and you are accepted by those people as their leader.