Leaders are not MADE they are BORN. This famous quote with which we all have grown up since childhood has a different perspective in industry 4.0. My perception and thought process started to take a paradigm shift from the day I started my career a decade ago.
Leadership is not about having a position in the C-Suite or a level below that, it is about ensuring that “I as an individual go the extra mile in supporting my team, taking ownership and accountability, taking decisions without procrastination, and taking a stand for the team.”
If I am to believe the fact that Leaders are born, then the thought which strikes my mind is why do companies invest heavily in numerous Leadership & Management Development programmes organised in-house as well as by esteemed institutions to groom the identified individuals? These interventions break the myth and reiterate the fact that Leaders can be moulded or shaped. Having been in the HR Profession for over a decade and as an individual there comes to mind a few thoughts and pointers which I have garnered over the years:
• Every Individual possesses Leadership Skills; however, those skills need to be honed for effective results. This is where the Talent Management team plays a pivotal role in curating customised Development programmes for individuals.
• Leadership is not always about the SKILL, it is also about the WILL of breaking the barriers and creating an impact. We have heard the quote which says, “Hire for Will and Train for Skill”. A leader is expected to have the will to change, accept and learn from the team to become a better leader.
• To demonstrate Leadership skills, one needs to be pushed out of the comfort zone. When we are in our comfort zone, we take things for granted and do not explore better alternatives. Someone who can perform and lead out of their comfort zone becomes an effective leader.
• Efforts and positive reinforcement will have a greater impact on ensuring that Leadership skills are demonstrated.
• Leadership is not a position, it is a POSSESSION. The sole reason for this interpretation is the example of Situational leadership which is demonstrated by individuals.
In my view, organisations should continue to invest in grooming talent for the current and future business needs. Even those we may call born leaders need development interventions to realise their true potential.
Not every Leader possesses Leadership Skills but every individual who demonstrates the skills becomes a successful leader.