Are leaders born or made?
Throughout my educational pursuits, I have had the opportunity to be in many clubs, groups, and leadership programs. Through these experiences I have gotten to watch many people become, or be leaders to these groups. And it always amazes me when people say “Oh, he’s a natural born leader”, it’s such an overused thing to say. And I guess it really sort of angers me because I don’t think leadership is an inherit gene, I think leadership is an opportunity.
I think some families are a little more “opportunistic” when it comes to leadership, but I don’t think that it’s a make-or-break type of deal.
My favorite types of stories in sports are when oddball leaders make their way to the top of the ranks to lead their team to a collective victory. Not because I like feel good stories, but because I love seeing people break past their attributed potential – the potential that others see in them.
Leadership is an intangible, almost magical, and indescribable trait that I think all people possess. some people may be better than others, but only in certain situations. A great example of the weight of leadership being moved from one person to another is from my own life. I grew up having a lot of opportunities to lead a group, or a team, and a lot of the times, my closest friends followed what I said. But in high school, a place where I was president of many clubs, one of my most quiet friends stepped up to the plate, and in a big way.
During my senior year of high school, I was the SGA and Student Body President, my friend was a part of these clubs, but held no positions of power, and really never seemed to want to. During this year, tragically, a freshman girl committed suicide in one of the bathrooms on campus. It was a tragic event, which brought a lot of grief to campus. I was at a loss, I worked my hardest with the administration to help in any way possible, but I had no real ideas. I was just following the instructions given to me from above. When my friend came up with an idea to have an Awareness Day. It was his idea, and a great one. And to make a long story short, he planned, coordinated and made the whole day happen. He led me through the process and led with a great authority when having to talk to large groups. I was in awe, proudand amazed all at once at the transformation I had seen.
He was never a natural born leader, but he sure stepped up to the plate that day. the event was so successful, that it has became an annual event.