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Even though I know better now but still when I think of a leader I think of the president, or the founders of countries, philanthropists like mother Teresa or the CEOs of the companies, I am sure I am not the only one. Leadership, to us, seems like a responsibility with unbelievable burden rather than a gift. It is seen as a curse that will drain out the happiness from your life rather than a blessing that will conjure fountains of the happiness of achieving something great. Worst of all, we think of leadership as an inborn thing, meant for the great to do the great, and confined to the most prominent positions in the world.
Like I said, when I think leader I think prominent people. Fortunately, I am wrong. Leadership is not confined to those positions. These are not the only leadership roles out there. And sure some people are born with the ability to utilize their leadership skills but far more than that is the number of people who learn to use their leadership skills later; far more is the number of people who find the leader in them. For, in every single one of us, maybe hidden under one layer, maybe hidden below 10, is a leader.
You can be a leader at your school, and not just as the school president, but in your group of friends. You lead your group to some cause or with their help implement something that has a long lasting effect on their lives; you become a good leader. Or if you lead them to something destructive, you become a bad leader. A good leader can always distinguish between what is right and what is wrong and thinks about the people he is leading more than his personal interests. You can be a leader in your house, for that you do not have to be the parent either or the house owner, you can be a leader among siblings.
In today's world, from major corporate giants to small companies, the post of "manager", in the literal sense of the word, is diminishing. There was a time when to yell was to manage well, but the time of managing is gone now and it is the time to lead. To be a leader in a company you do not have to have the top floor corner office but you can very well be at the 3rd floor and still lead your group to success.
We are all leaders. We have different leadership roles at different times of our lives and at different times of the day even e.g. a father and a manager at a company. What we need to understand is that all leadership roles are equally important and that somebody's world other than your own is riding on you.
And to lead effectively we need to keep some basic and simple guidelines in mind. Put the interests of the people you are leading before yours. Believe in yourself and the people you are leading. Communicate effectively and be available for easy communication.
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