Business And Management Tips: Career Key Skills – Can you learn Leadership?

Opinion is divided on this issue. Let’s consider what some academics and business people in the field have to say on the subject.

Peter Drucker, one of the foremost business thinkers of our time, says there may be born leaders, but that leadership can be learnt. He defines a leader as someone who has followers.

An effective leader is not someone who is loved or admired, but whose followers do the right things. Popularity is not leadership, results are.

Harold S. Geneen was an American businessman most famous for serving as president of the ITT Corporation. He said that Leadership cannot really be taught. It can only be learned.
Mark Saner, President of Manifest Communications, Canada’s leading social-marketing agency, says that leadership can be taught because it is a skill, but it is not certain that leadership can be learned.

It seems that leadership, one of the rarest and highly prized components of human capital, is not learned easily or well.

In practice many people develop the beginnings of leadership skills in their youth-through sport, school and college, and in their community, taking roles as prefects, team captains, running drama and debating societies and taking the lead at social events.

Executive education has traditionally focused on business skills, ignoring leadership. Executives are taught to manage, but it is difficult to offer the chance to learn how to lead. As a result a significant proportion of most executive’s leadership development is on the job. Leadership skills are honed almost by chance.

Leadership is a combination of competence and character. Leaders need the courage to create a vision, challenge the status quo, take risks, make and admit mistakes.

Ronald E. Riggio, Ph.D. is the Henry R. Kravis Professor of Leadership and Organizational Psychology at Claremont McKenna College. This is his view:-

“If you accept that leadership can be learned at all (rather than just “being born with it,” or not), and if you also believe that the most powerful lessons about leadership come from one’s own experience, then the matter boils down to the process of how we learn from experience.

If one important factor in learning from experience pertains to how complex or multi-faceted one’s conceptual lenses are for construing experience, then it’s no big stretch to claim that becoming familiar with the complex variables that affect leadership give one a greater variety of ways of making sense of the leadership situations you confront in your own life.

In that way, completing a college course in leadership may not make you a better leader directly and immediately, but actively mastering the concepts in the course can nonetheless accelerate the rate at which you learn from the natural experiences you have during and subsequent to your course.”

Quick Facts: Can you learn Leadership?
Continue reading Business And Management Tips: Career Key Skills – Can you learn Leadership?


CE Wogu
Managing Director at Carl Commodities

Napoleon Hill once said, “Winners never quit and Quitters never win”. This statement is as true and as straightforward as it sounds. When faced with life’s challenges, it is normal for us to start making up a list of alternative options to get!!!!!

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Business Tips: Managing People, Management Style

What determines leadership style?

To some extent management style is an expression of personality, and a reflection of experiences and lessons learnt. It describes the principles that underline the way the manager makes decisions and relates to their staff.

Like most things, if you study and understand the theory behind it, then you can make some deliberate adjustments to make your style a little different and more effective.

The Managers role is to motivate, inspire and lead others to achieve their targeted tasks. Their style is an important part of their performance and influences how their staff respond to them. If employees feel valued and motivated they will be more committed to their work, deliver a better performance, have higher morale and lower absenteeism rates.

What is the best style?

The management style that a person adopts is in itself a function of the culture and situation they work in, and the staff they have to manage.

Some staff , perhaps in a process situation , do not want to think for themselves or take responsibility and so they have to be managed in a certain way. Others say professionals, such as doctors or lawyers, will not expect to have someone micromanaging their work on a daily basis and will expect to make their own decisions.

In the same way, a manager who adopts one style in a certain situation, may slightly or even radically modify their style in response to another situation and set of employees.

What affects management style? Continue reading Business Tips: Managing People, Management Style