Is Leadership a Genetic or Learned Behavior?

Is Leadership a Genetic and Learned Behavior

The question of whether we are born with leadership skills or learned them has always troubled me. When I was nine years old, I remember taking the hands of younger 4-H members and teaching them the sewing skills I learned the year before. My father told me I was bossy. I thought I just cared about people, but as I matured, I found myself increasingly in leadership roles. Was genetic make-up to blame? Perhaps it was simply the fact that I was the youngest of five children and had to fight my way to the top.

Who are the relevant teachers in our lives that teach us leadership abilities? Our parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles, and school teachers help us understand society rules, ethical behaviors. They drive us to learn and speak-up for ourselves. Most leaders have a role model in their life who believes in us no matter what we do. At some point, if we turned out to be a leader, we committed to constructive behavior. We developed ethical values and beliefs that help us think as a leader would and behave as a leader would behave. We are aware of these thoughts and feelings, and we make a conscious decision on how to address situations that require our leadership commitment.

Successful leaders are often successful because they choose to believe they will succeed. They have a positive self-image, which manifests itself into self-confidence and is contagious to those around them. They courageously apply their abilities and strengths, and others see them as winners in the game of life. However, they can sometimes reflect arrogance and overate their performance as compared to their peers. They also have difficulty accepting feedback from their peers and supervisors because the opinions expressed are inconsistent with their image of success.

Successful people walk the talk and consistently reflect the behaviors they preach. They are self-determined and possess a sense of ownership and personal commitment to the projects or activities they accept. They require consistency that unfortunately leads them to resist change. They feel like the real “me” cannot make these changes to the business. They hold that feeling to themselves and move forward as a leader would by supporting the company plan. Successful people. Communicate success to their co-workers. They are persistent in the face of adversity and have a high internal focus of control. They often have a hard time letting go of failures and easily over-commit their time. They like to win!

Can anyone be a winner, or do they have to possess the genetic make-up to be one?. Leaders can be developed through exceptional role models, self-confidence, and a positive coaching environment. However, being an excellent leader takes courage, humility, and discipline. If you believe you can be a better leader, contact me at mary@goldenprofessionalcoaching.com to discuss a coaching engagement.

Coaching in the New World

Marshall Goldsmith’s Stakeholder Center Coaching takes leaders from learning what to do to stopping behaviors that are making them fail!

Coaching in the New World

Leadership is a commitment to constructive behavior. Marshall Goldsmith’s Stakeholder Centered Coaching provides guaranteed and measurable leadership growth by enabling successful leaders to lead and behave more effectively through positive behavior change that is sustained, recognized and acknowledged by others.

At Golden Professional Coaching, we work from the outside in. We identify behaviors that need changing and work with executives to think, feel, and behave differently. We work with the individual’s value system to ensure the change is long-lasting.

Leaders often fall into one bucket. Either they are so self-confident that they already believe they are successful, or they decide they are choosing to succeed or they have a strong attitude that they will succeed. A successful coach meets the individual where they are and helps them overcome the arrogance associated with their current attitude. For example, if an executive says I am already successful, he or she may consistently overrate his/her performance as compared to their peers. They may have difficulty accepting feedback or have opinions that are inconsistent with their image of success.

Peter Drucker once said, “50% of leaders I have met don’t need to learn what to do. They need to learn what to stop doing.”

As leaders, we spend a lot of time teaching others what to do, but virtually no time teaching leaders what to stop doing. The greatest challenge for new leaders is giving up their old familiar tasks and delegating them to someone new for fear the new person will not do the task the same way they did. Even worse, the new person may do it better!

Contact Golden Professional Coaching, LLC to set up a coaching engagement today! (214-668-0093)