Leadership involves having things done through other people. It can also be defined as a person’s ability to make others follow the orders willingly. All organizations, either small or large, require smart leadership. A leader guides his people in accomplishing something, thus, leadership involves having some specific responsibilities. A leader is perceived as an authoritative instructor in some situations. Leadership is a skill as a competent leader must have skills to ensure that the group he leads sticks together. Leadership can also be nurtured.
Leadership means being visionary. Visionary leadership anticipates being aware of the right direction to follow. Such a competent leader knows the meaning of success and understands the path that should be followed for success to be achieved. However, having a vision does not mean everything, because the vision should be shared and acted upon. Leadership involves creating a vision, having it articulated, owning the vision and driving the vision to completion. It involves presenting such vision in a way that the group follows it willingly. The vision must be communicated passionately and clearly. Passion is contagious, thus, the group will like the vision and work towards achieving the goals.
Being a good leader also involves putting discipline and urging people to work hard in order to achieve goals. Discipline helps a person to direct all the actions, both his and those of the group, towards a common goal. The nature of leadership is active, which means striving ahead without getting stalled on some stage. Being a leader also involves being a person of integrity, thus, integrating inner values and outward actions. Integrity means having consistency of actions, principles, outcomes, values and expectations. A person of integrity is a trustworthy person, because he or she relies on the inner values, It means, in some way, being expeditious. Therefore, becoming a leader means being trustworthy among the team members and this can happen if the leader is a person of integrity, who is not hypocrite, but possesses inner virtues.
Leadership means dedication. A leader must be a dedicated person. This means that he spends his energy and time in accomplishing a targeted task. A leader must inspire dedication through setting an example. He does whatever must be done in order to complete a task that aims at achieving a goal or the vision. When a leader sets an example, he makes the team believe that there exist only opportunities and no threats in achieving something.
Leadership involves magnanimity, which means giving credit when it is necessary. A leader should be a generous person, who rewards his followers when they achieve something. Magnanimity also means taking responsibility on personal failures. This makes the group members feel good and draws them close together. An effective leadership is sympolized by taking blame and spreading fame. People feel good when they are praised, and, in fact, this motivates them to continue doing similar things. Taking responsibility, on the other hand, makes people respect the leader. They also feel that the leader is also a human and can make mistakes.
A leader is a person of humility. He does not feel better or worse than the group members. Leadership means elevating everyone, but not elevating oneself. A humble leader respects his status and knows that the status does not make him a God. An example of the leader, who showed humility, was an Indian spiritual leader Mahatma Gandhi (1869 - 1948). He respected everyone and was humble. He served as a role model in giving leadership, called ”follower-centric”.
Leadership means being open and ready to listen to ideas from other people, including the team members. A good leader must listen to ideas even if they do not go in line with the leaders’ thinking. Smart leadership occurs when a leader does not give judgment immediately after listening to ideas from other people.
Leadership also involves accepting new ideas, which come from other people who have gained new and constructive leadership skills. Being open leads to mutual respect, hence, trust among the leader and the followers. Openness also means the group members getting updated with the developing ides that can lead to achievement of the organization’s vision. Team members will always be free with a leader who is open, because they will also open up to him. Such a leader will, therefore, be able to understand his followers, so there will be no hypocrisy.
Leadership means being creative. This is the ability to think in a different way than the majority of people. A creative person thinks big. He comes up with solutions to problems because he thinks beyond a normal human being. A creative leader comes up with new ideas by asking himself questions such as “what if…?”. Such a question makes the leader explore, hence, come up with unique ideas and solutions. A smart leader develops or creates new things of value to the organization. Therefore, leadership means creativity, whereby, the leader does not stick to what he has but wants to be innovative.
Leadership means fairness. This means the leader dealing with team members justly and, at the same time, consistently. A smart leader listens carefully to the available facts before making a judgment. He also listens to both sides in case the issue involves two different parties. Leadership means not favoring one party over another. A leader should never jump into conclusions. He should wait until he gets enough evidence. His judgment should be based on facts and evidence. Treating team members fairly ensures that the employees remain dedicated and loyal to the leader. They will respect him, and, therefore, they will work hard towards achieving the organization’s goals. An example of fairness in an organization may be depicted by the situation when a leader rewards employees on equal measures. This symbolizes fairness of a leader.
Leadership also means assertiveness. An assertive leader communicates clearly his expectations to the team members. This ensures that there are no misunderstandings within an organization. Misunderstandings usually lead to conflicts between the leader and the team members. Proper and clear communication leads to achievement of the expected results. Assertiveness also means that the followers get the chance to communicate their expectations to their leader. Leadership means ensuring complete communication process between the sender and the receiver. A leader makes sure that the message is communicated correctly and that the process ends with feedback. Many leaders lack this quality, this leads to underperformance of organizations. As a consequence, it can be judged that the majority of leaders are either over- assertive or under-assertive.
Finally, leadership can be defined as having a sense of humor. This helps to relieve or reduce boredom, as well as tension. It also reduces hostility. Effective leadership means using a person’s sense of humor to add energy to the team members. A humorous leader makes the work place conducive for working. The team may also be fostered by humor. This ensures that in future the organization’s goals will be definitely achieved.
In conclusion, leadership may have as many definitions as possible. The most important fact here is what makes value in some certain definition in particular circumstances. Different people give different definitions of leadership. Leaders, however, should be conscious of the most important facts about leadership, because it reflects in the organization’s performance. None of the leaders resembles the other. They all possess different tactics in leadership and one person’s tactics may not work when applied by another leader. However, all leaders must understand what is expected from them when they take the role of a manager.