Leadership is a choice not a position

Often I am asked what is the most important characteristic of a leader? Is it integrity, vision, passion, empathy, communication skill?  My answer is getting to be repetitious. There are certain core attributes that almost all effective leaders share. In my research and experience these are integrity, decisiveness, empathy and communication skill. The rest is up to the unique make up of the individual. This is the absolute beauty of diversity. If you have these bedrock attributes make your own recipe and learn to lead from your strengths.  You see almost anyone can be a leader, act in a leadership capacity. When all the world asks are leaders born or made they ask the wrong question. It does not matter whether one or the other is correct. What matters is the choice that is made by an individual to act as a leader to become a leader. This is what matters.  A leadership is a choice not a position.  Sure there are roles that come complete with an office, corporate credit card and a leadership responsibility yes but a role does not make you a leader in anything but the title. What makes you a leader is the choice you make internally to stand up for something, to resolve to change something, to right a wrong, to voice an unspoken truth. Leaders exist when they make such a choice. The choice comes from a deep seated awareness of a cause that must be addressed and the courage to step into the breach of change.  Our culture throws the word courage around to carelessly. Leaders are almost by definition courageous. Not the absence of fear but the willingness to stand in against a frightening situation for a just cause.  The argument of choosing to lead falls a bit short with the word courage even. I have witnessed and experienced that there is an emotion underlying the courage, passion. I have heard passion described as a fire burning within that cannot be put out. This is what I have discovered to be the heart of leadership; a passion to see a cause through to the end. The passion with in us, this is the core of a leader. We chose to become a leader when we embrace the passion within. Have you found your passion? Over the past several years I have developed some exercises intended to help people get in touch with their passion. If you want to learn more contact me at ronn.hurst@gmail.com lead well 

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