by Julienna Viegas-Haws
The reason why I am bringing up this topic is because I am tired of all these puppet leaders out there. Whether you look at the political realm, the business world, the entertainment and sports world, even some “religious” leaders out there are just plain scandalous in every way. These false leaders deceive their followers by presenting an image they are not or one that should not be followed. They are taking advantage of the people following them for their own glory rather than the benefit of all. There is no use in me starting to point out fingers and throw names. If you don’t believe me just turn on your television (as far as I am concerned I avoid it).
First let me give you my preferred summarized definition of leadership, there are many variations out there, this one is from Professor Peter G.Northouse[i]:
“Leadership is a process whereby an individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal.”
The false leader is not working towards achieving a common goal. The false leader is working towards achieving his/her own selfish goal and couldn’t care less about what happens to the followers.
“Good leaders are made not born. If you have the desire and willpower, you can become an effective leader. Good leaders develop through a never ending process of self-study, education, training, and experience.” (Jago,1982)
The world is screaming for great leadership. There are just too many bad “leaders” out there. In my opinion, there are too many dormant great leaders who just won’t answer to the call: “Great Leaders Needed”.
I truly think that when my favorite leader told his followers that they should be the “salt of the earth[ii]” he meant: with everything I taught you, with everything you know, with the promises you have made, you ought to be an example to those around you and share what you have received because it is for everyone.
Not everyone will lead a nation, a state, an organization or a community. However, anyone can be a good leader in their home, be a positive influence in their community and to everyone they come in contact with. Yes, that is called caring for others.
Caring for others comes with a responsibility. I believe that what most potential great leaders are trying to avoid is the responsibility that comes with leadership.
Here are 5 common reasons why people decline leadership:
(“I just don’t want to” is not a valid answer because there is a “why” underneath):
- Don’t want the responsibility
- Don’t want to deal with other people’s problem
- Don’t feel they have the “right” type of personality
- Don’t want to deal with people in general
- Feel like they already have too much going on in their own life
The bottom line is, if you don’t step up in the leadership role, someone else will and you may not always like what is happening.
I recently attended a communication skills workshop and found out how people easily hide behind their personality traits in order not to be “noticed” and therefore they cannot reach their full potential and fulfill their true mission in this life. Don’t worry, I have been there too. If you are familiar with the Personality Color Code test (very abridged: Red=bossy-leader; Blue=emotional-giver; White=peaceful- introvert; Yellow=fun-carefree). If you want more details you can go take the test here. Of course we all have a little bit of everything but there is a predominant “color” in our personality. They all have their positive and negative sides. The key is to learn how to transform the weakness into strength and develop the positive attributes of the other colors (for my Christian friends basically follow the admonition: “…ye should be perfect even as I[iii]…”). I am predominantly red, raised by a “red” and married to a “red” this means lots of sparks… Thanks to my faith which helped me develop more humility, I have been able to eliminate a lot of the bad “red” attributes and develop the good ones (work in progress).
My point is that it helps knowing what personality type you are because then you can more clearly see your strength and continue to develop them and you can better see your weaknesses and work on them as well. When you also recognize what type of personality the people around you have, you can learn to communicate in the right way with them. 90% of the problems we have with others (in and out of our home) are due to miscommunication. Therefore learning to communicate effectively with the four major types of personalities can alleviate a lot of pain and save a lot of time. There is a lot more to be said about this but it will be for another post.
People respond to a variety of different leaders, some can really reach you and others don’t. That is why your personality is perfect for those who respond well to you.
To end I want to share one of my all time favorite quote by Marianne Williamson:
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”