“Leadership is the process of providing vision, direction, and inspiration and bringing out the best in people, teams, and organisations.” (Warrick, 2016, 1.1).
Leadership can be defined in many different ways because a leader is many different things. Whether that is a great leader or a horrible leader, leaders empower their employees and push them to do great things or horrible things. True leadership is motivating somebody to go above and beyond their normal culture.
If one is able to do that, in my eyes they are a true leader. Most people are not able to do that and one that is able to do that is a great leader. There are leaders that can make people do things, but if one is able to get others to do things out of the goodness of their hearts then that is what a leader is.
An example of somebody who does this is the current CEO of T-Mobile, John Legere. He is able to not only turn around the company in the right direction, but able to motivate the employees to work hard every single day and make everybody feel included. He has been a major impact for the organisation is only doing great things.
If every CEO was like him, every industry would be at whole other level of competition. Every company would have to challenge competitors because they are working so well and find new ways every single day to push each other.
Warrick, D.D. (2016). Leadership: A high impact approach [Electronic version]. Retrieved from https://content.ashford.edu
As many managers learn becoming a leader is not merely a title bestowed upon an individual. The route that is taken to achieve leadership may vary from instance to instance based upon the circumstances that a leader has risen to power. In the purest definition I believe that leadership is about gaining influence over others.
The way in which a leader achieves the influence varies from social structure to social structure. Often many leaders achieve influence is through fear.
One of the first works on practical politics is Machiavelli’s “The Prince,” throughout the treatise Machiavelli argues that the end result justifies any action needed to secure power stating that it is better to be feared than loved (Machiavelli, 1987). Many of us have also had managers who seemed to share the same beliefs.
While some leaders are able to gain their influence through authority the best leaders are those who gain their influence through inspiration (Haslam, Reicher, & Platow, 2011).
To inspire others, a leader must have a clear vision of their goals and display dedication to bring their vision to reality. One of the most effective yet flawed leaders in the modern era is Steve Jobs.
Steve Jobs was a deeply flawed leader who was known to be cruel and regularly displayed emotional outbursts, yet despite his shortcomings he gained an almost cult following through his ability to share his vision and drive (Isaacson, 2012).
Though some of his behaviour was abusive, he was still able to inspire others to bring a failing company on the brink of collapse to the largest company in history.
He is largely responsible for ushering in the smartphone and tablet era, which has changed the way we society interacts with one another. Steve Jobs serves as evidence that two of the most essential elements of leadership are vision and drive.
Haslam, S. A., Reicher, S., & Platow, M. J. (2011). The new psychology of leadership. Hove: Psychology Press.
Isaacson, W. (2012). The Real Leadership Lessons of Steve Jobs. Harvard Business Review. Retrieved From: https://hbr.org/2012/04/the-real-leadership-lessons-of-steve-jobs
Machiavelli, N. (1987). The prince. Retrieved from https://ebookcentral-proquest-com.proxy-library.ashford.edu