Monday, November 2, 2015

ARTICLE | Defining A Leader

Defining A Leader
A timely think piece on who should be a leader come 2016 Philippine presidential election.

Who said being a leader was an easy task? Does it boost self-confidence with the assumption of power and dominance over subordinates? This writer would like to think otherwise. People who regard this kind of leader must have not experienced the genuine nature of becoming one.

They say that it is within the  family that an individual learn firsthand the basics in life. One learns to talk, eat, walk, etc. through the help of family members. The family  therefore acts an architect in shaping a person's identity. A family is expected to teach the member how to be a good citizen, but most importantly how to survive. A good family knows that a child has to grow up responsible for his actions and be mindful of how he relate with others. Through this, one is ensured that he is well-prepared no matter what obstacles he has to face later on in life. Sometimes parents can be harsh on their children but more often than not, this is a way of making sure that children grow up according to what is just and fair. A child who grew up with proper guidance from the parents are surely more effective and efficient when he grows older.

The community also plays a vital role in shaping an individual. It is within the community that a person is influenced, in all aspects of life. One learns what is socially acceptable and what is not. The community also teaches an individual to play an important role within its circle; in other words, a person becomes a part of a bigger system outside the family. This in turn moulds an individual to be more conscious about the repercussions of delivering or not delivering results, which is essentially a sense of responsibility.

In the years to come, an individual steps into a more diverse and complex world.  There is the school which creates a huge impact in the formative upbringing of a person. Here is where a person's mind is shaped and influenced by teachings in the different arts and sciences. True enough it is not easy for a child to understand the value of attending school everyday. But the realization of how important school is, sets in when a person grows more mature. And with this, one is honed to become more prepared when it is time to be a leader.

Normally, a leader is expected to carry out heavier responsibilities. It is then the leader's role and strategy on how to carry them out. Each leader types will have unique styles but the main goal is to deliver what is expected. The result is not how much perfect you've done the task, but how much effort has been poured out in the process. Eventually, the subordinates learn to trust the leader.

The pressure and expectation from the leader can at times become very taxing. Effective leaders on the surface appear composed and in control- something to be expected to encourage the members to function normally. But there are times when a leader just cannot take the toll, so the only way is to be brave enough to admit that the limit has been reached and it is now time to step out of the limelight; to let other more effective leaders to carry out the task.

Leading is not a competition but a commitment to dock  the boat ashore. There is no clear cut qualities on who is going to be a more superior leader but there is an individual who can commit and promise to serve wholeheartedly.

As a person grows older and wiser, he realizes that being a leader is both a curse and a gift. The latter outweighing the former, being a leader is certainly a gift from the Lord. Everyone can be elected as a leader, no doubt about it; but leading takes more skill than you would expect. It takes more popularity and social influence to become a truly effective head of any organization. 

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