Leadership: Born Or Made?

Traits of Born Leaders

Leadership is the research area and applied skill which encompasses the ability of an individual or organization to lead or guide other individuals, teams or the entire organization. Leadership is exercising the influence over other people on behalf of the leaders’ purpose aims and goals. Leadership is considered to be an art rather than science. Leadership is a set of traits which are developed to generate the skills in their workings (LinkedIn, 2016). Leadership is followed by the leaders. A leader is an individual whose work is to guide others in achieving the common goal of the organization. A leader is a person who shows the other by way of setting an example and creates an environment that makes the other members feel involved in the whole process.  There has been a long debate about whether the leaders are born or not. This debate results in different traits and lines of thought as there are some thoughts are of the opinion that leaders are born while others feel the contrary opinion (Helgeson, 2016). 

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Some leaders are born with the talent that shows in their nature and behavior. Most of the leaders are born by birth. Leadership in the individual comes in different sizes and forms. There are several personality traits that depict the leadership in the person. The born leaders are speaking with their mind, have the capacity to understand the feelings of their team members and able to recognize the efforts made by the team member to complete the work on time (Jin, Seo and Shapiro, 2016). The leaders are doing settle for the mediocrity. Natural leaders want the best and only the best for their team, for their projects, for their outcomes. Like Nelson Mandela is found to be the born leader in the society due to his personality trait. Due to the complexity of the life faced by him and exposure to the adversities of life made him have the leadership from the very starting. Some people are born with the leadership ability than others. These men and women hold the right position and traits in the society and have a different point of view. Reflecting on the styles and personality of each born leaders, it’s easy to see that each person is different from each other whether it was Bill Gates, Henry Ford, and Mahatma Gandhi. Their leadership style was a natural extension of clear purpose, their personal experience and life story (One green planet, 2018).   

Developing Leadership Skills through Education and Training

But some leaders are not born but are made by their own personality and behaviour traits. Leaders are made by their own skills and creativity. Behavioural theories believe that persons can develop leaders through the procedure of education, learning and observations. Leadership is a set of skills that can be educated, practice, insight and practice over time. Good leaders seek the growth chances that will benefit the individuals to learn the new things. Learning the leadership is the life process which can be learned by anyone. Like as the passion which is found inborn leaders can also be there in the made leader. They also have the similar capacity or more than that other possess in them. Leadership is a set of skills that can be taught through training, practice and experiencing it again and again (George Ambler, 2017).

Born leaders are born to impress the individual as they have got it in their heredity. Born leaders have the attractive feature in themselves which make their identity different and unique from others. Born leaders are found with the attractive communication skills which convince and influence their followers to do the work (McArthur, 2013). This influencing power in leaders in the organization makes the simple to achieve the organizational goals. Born leaders are self-motivated and they do not require any training and development in learning the skills of leadership. Born leaders have the skills of communication, sense of responsibility, positivity and trustworthiness, a delegation of power and authority from the initial stage. These qualities include a passion for life to achieve something big which others are not able to think and do in their lives (Burgoyne, 2016).

On the other hand, there are the leaders which have learned all these skills from the principles and rules given the management gurus which include Peter Drucker. Initially, person does not have any linguistic leadership skills set but after they are guided with the principles and other members and they are in a position to generate skills (Fesler, 2016). By giving proper training and learning session, an individual can develop the skills.  For example, the CEO of the Apple trained their personnel and transfers them the skills of having the leadership in the business. Tim Cook after the Steve Jobs has handled all the affairs of leadership in their business. Leadership is an art which gets improve day by day when practice by the individual. It is similar to the ragas used in the music. All have learned the same ragas and principles but the way to apply that principle is the creativity of the individual which makes different from other. In leadership also all the person teaches the same principles and theories but to apply that in the real life is different by all the individual and it will depend on the creativity and skills of an individual (DePrizio, 2016).

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Leadership is an Art that Improves with Practice

Born leaders are taken into consideration all the environmental factors. The view of the leaders is found to be protecting the environment from the harmful activities and doing the social responsibilities with due respect. The born leaders have the prospective view on the environment in which they think for the future development of the environment and forget the development that has to be done in the present so that the resources can be utilized and optimization of the resources can be done. From this view and opinion by the born leaders attract the individual and give chance to follow these leaders. Thinking for the future makes the utilization of thoughts and ideas in future only (Amanchukwu, Stanley and Ololube, 2015).

Leadership behaviors like any other social practice are a mixture of inherited and environmental factors. Research suggests that 30% – 60% of the people develop the skills of leadership in themselves over a period of time.  Leaders which develop their skills are done with the struggle, hardships and which they do not share with anyone. One of the leaders William McDonough is focusing on the developing the sustainable environment and design. He is working on the concept to remove the waste from every aspect of human life and focusing on giving a solution to the environmental crisis while promoting the economic growth. For understanding the needs of the environment, training is required which is lacking to the born leaders (LinkedIn, 2018). The environment training institutions and also the situations will help them to gain the knowledge and experience to be a successful leader. Everyone can become the leader but the society i9s the one who gives him the right position in the environment (Reichard and Walker, 2016).


From the above discussion, it can be concluded that some leaders are finding with the natural or born leadership whereas some have developed the skills of leadership. The debate whether the; leaders are born or made concludes that leaders are not born, they are made. The person can learn, grow and develop into the leaders using the same principles and theories which were given in the management. The leaders are born is found to be the myth and consider to be the dangerous leadership. Not every doctor child is a doctor, similarly not every leader will have a leader in their home. The entire person has a different aspect to think and percept. The leaders are generated with the traits and behaviour followed by them in society. To have the leadership skills in the individual, the individual desire is considered to learn the skills and understand the qualities the leaders must possess in them. Leadership in a person can be judged on the basis of the personality and trait followed by them, skills they possess in themselves to convince and influence their followers and lastly responsibility fulfilled by them in the society. All this quality can be learned by the individual. It is not necessary that all will lies in the person from its birth. So the leaders are made not born. 


Amanchukwu, R.N., Stanley, G.J. and Ololube, N.P. (2015) A review of leadership theories, principles and styles and their relevance to educational management. Management, 5(1), pp.6-14.

Burgoyne, J. (2016) Crafting a Leadership and Management Development Strategy I. In Gower Handbook of Leadership and Management Development (pp. 67-82). Oxon: Routledge.

DePrizio, J. (2016) Making the Case for Transforming Training. Journal of Museum Education, 41(1), pp.3-9.

Fesler, J.W. (2016) Leadership and Its Context. Administrative Leadership in the Public Sector, 20(2), p.9.

George Ambler. (2017) Leaders Are Not Born, They’re Made. Leadership Develops [Online] Available from: https://www.georgeambler.com/leaders-are-not-born-theyre-made-leadership-develops/ [Accessed on: 30th June 2018]

Helgeson, V. (2016) Psychology of gender. Oxon: Routledge.

Jin, S., Seo, M.G. and Shapiro, D.L. (2016) Do happy leaders lead better? Affective and attitudinal antecedents of transformational leadership. The Leadership Quarterly, 27(1), pp.64-84.

LinkedIn. (2016) 7 Characteristics of a Natural Born Leader [Online] Available from: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/7-characteristics-natural-born-leader-ye-jung-kim [Accessed on: 30th June 2018]

LinkedIn. (2018) Are Leaders Born or Made? A True Story [Online] Available from: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/20141026042807-150905450-are-leaders-born-or-made-a-true-story [Accessed on: 30th June 2018]

McArthur, J.W. (2013) Own the goals: What the Millennium Development Goals have accomplished. Foreign Affairs, 92(2), pp.152-162.

One green planet. (2018) 10 Environmental Leaders We Can All Learn From [Online] Available from: https://www.onegreenplanet.org/animalsandnature/10-environmental-leaders-we-can-all-learn-from/ [Accessed on: 30th June 2018]

Reichard, R.J. and Walker, D.O. (2016) In pursuit: Mastering leadership through leader developmental readiness. New directions for student leadership, (149), pp.15-25.