INTRODUCTION (UNDERSTANDING OF LEADERSHIP):
Leadership is a process by which a person influences others to accomplish an objective and directs the organization in a way that makes it more cohesive and coherent. In other words, Leadership is also defined as process whereby an individual influences a group of individuals to achieve a common goal in a simple way. Leaders carry out this process by applying their leadership knowledge and skills. We have traits that can influence our actions. This is called Trait Leadership. In that it was once common to believe that leaders were born rather than made. On the other hand, leadership of leader can be observed in Process theory of Leadership. The below diagram tells a difference between these processes of Leadership.
LEADER: Leader must have an honest understanding of himself who is he, what he knows and what he can do. It is the followers, not the leader or someone else who determines if the leader is successful. If Followers do not trust or lack confidence in their leader, then they will be uninspired. To be successful Leader has to convince his/her followers, not himself/herself or his/her superiors, that he/she is worthy of being followed.
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FOLLOWERS: Different people require different styles of leadership. For example, a new hire requires more supervision than an experienced employee. A person who lacks motivation requires a different approach than one with a high degree of motivation. He/She must know his/her people. The fundamental starting point is having a good understanding of human nature, such as needs, emotions, and motivation.
COMMUNICATION: It is an important part of the Leadership to establish a Communication between a Leader and a Follower. It may be Verbal or Non-Verbal. What and how a Leader communicate either builds or harms the relationship between Leader and his/her Followers.
SITUATION: All situations are different. What a Leader do in one situation will not always work in another. Leader must use his/her judgment to decide the best course of action and the leadership style needed for each situation. Also the situation normally has a greater effect on a leader's action than his or her traits. This is because while traits may have an impressive stability over a period of time, they have little consistency across situations. This is why a number of leadership scholars think the Process Theory of Leadership is a more accurate than the Trait Theory of Leadership.
GENERAL CONCEPTS OF LEADERSHIP:
Good leaders are made not born. If a person has the desire and willpower, he/she can become an effective leader. Good leaders develop through a never ending process of self-study, education, training, and experience. To inspire the workers into higher levels of teamwork, there are certain things a person must be, know, and do. These do not come naturally, but are acquired through continual work and study. Good leaders are continually working and studying to improve their leadership skills; they are NOT resting on their laurels. Leaders carry out this process by applying their leadership attributes, such as beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge, and skills.
The basis of good leadership is honorable character and selfless service to the organization. In his/her employees' eyes, his/her leadership is everything a Leader do that effects the organization's objectives and their well-being. Respected leaders concentrate on what they are [be] (such as beliefs and character), what they know (such as job, tasks, and human nature), and what they do (such as implementing, motivating, and providing direction).
What makes a person want to follow a leader? People want to be guided by those they respect and who have a clear sense of direction. To gain respect, they must be ethical. A sense of direction is achieved by conveying a strong vision of the future. The Two Most Important Keys to Effective Leadership:
(a) Trust and confidence in top leadership was the single most reliable predictor of employee satisfaction in an organization.
(b) Effective communication by leadership in three critical areas was the key to winning organizational trust and confidence:
1. Helping employees understand the company's overall business strategy.
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2. Helping employees understand how they contribute to achieving key business objectives.
3. Sharing information with employees on both how the company is doing and how an employee's own division is doing -- relative to strategic business objectives.
CHARACTERSTICS OF GOOD LEADER:
Leader of any company or organization must have some skills for the success of the organization or the achievement of specific goal. Here are some of the main characterstics of leader that are must in any field of the business.
INTERPERSONAL SKILL: The first leadership characteristic is interpersonal skills. Leaders that have earned the trust and respect of their followers can use this trust to move the organization towards the achievements of its goal. These leaders are able to use their interpersonal skills to work through difficult relationships and keep the peace in their departments. They are good at listening and providing constructive feedback.
COMMUNICATION SKILL: Leaders demonstrating communication skills are both good speakers and listeners. Through their words they can help keep the workforce motivated and committed. They also listen to their followers and ask questions when they want to make sure they have a good understanding of what is being expressed.
VALUES: Leaders must also value the diversity of a workforce and understand that a diverse group of employees will bring a larger perspective to the organization. They need to treat followers with the respect they deserve and do not display favoritism. They operate with a high level of ethics that sets an example for others to follow.
ORGANIZATIONAL CONSCIOUSNESS: Leadership characteristics sometimes go beyond the personal traits and hit on areas such as organizational consciousness or knowledge. These are leaders that understand what the organization wants to achieve and know how it can be accomplished. They create networks within the organization to help their groups get things done and are just as adept at breaking down organizational barriers to progress.
CONFIDENCE: Leaders need to carry themselves with confidence and not be afraid to take ownership for both popular and unpopular decisions. They must be able to learn from criticisms and are often acutely aware of their own shortcomings. Confident leaders are able to maintain a calm demeanor even during emergencies and this can be contagious when it needs to be.
FLEXIBILITY: Another important characteristic of leaders are their ability to remain flexible and adapt their leadership style to meet the demands of the current work environment. They must be able to work with others to meet organizational goals and shift focus as necessary.
CREATIVITY SKILL: Leaders demonstrating creativity skills are able to develop innovative solutions to old problems. The diversity they build in their organizations helps them to develop more comprehensive answers to routine questions. Creative leaders are able to translate technical information into solutions that are understood by everyone.
ACHIEVING RESULTS: The last leadership characteristic we're going to discuss is achieving results. Leaders just don't set the example for others to follow; they also play a big role in achieving the goals of the organization. Through their leadership skills, they maintain a high level of performance in their organizations and are able to help keep their workforce motivated even when faced with a seemingly impossible situation.
And since they have a deep understanding of what an organization needs to accomplish they are able to quickly identify and solve the important objectives of an organization.
TWO GOOD LEADERS IN A BUSINESS:
DHIRUBHAI AMBANI: According to my understandings, Mr. Dhirubhai Ambani is the good example for the whole world in a field of business. Mr. Ambani had all the qualities that are essential for leading the business organization and achieving the goals or future target with the help of followers by leading them in a effective way. Here are some of the qualities of the Mr.Ambani that are responsible for his success:
Dhirubhai's life was, indeed, a thumping success story of a small town boy building a giant corporation that propelled him into the ranks of the world's richest men by the time of his death. In Dhirubhai's view of the world of business, the end justified the means. Not something that everyone would agree with. But Dhirubhai swore by this dictum and he proved the point in his own lifetime. He built a $12-billion company from scratch. He was the prime force in introducing the equity cult in the country. His biggest achievement, however, is something that cannot be quantified - he infused the spirit of business among an entire generation of Indians who were inspired by his rags-to-riches story. He was a living motif for how inspiration coupled with hard work and the "can-do" spirit can take one to great heights. Dhirubhai was endowed with sharp business acumen and a spirit of adventure. But more than this in-born trait, there were three characteristics that set Dhirubhai apart in the conservative world of Indian business:
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First, his phenomenal risk-taking ability that was far higher than other contemporary businessmen. He was a born risk-taker and believed in taking on and managing calculated risks. It is this same risk-taking ability that helped him when he ventured into textile manufacturing in 1966 within a year of buying out his original partner in the yarn business, Champaklal Damani. Ditto when he ventured into the backward integration project of setting up a plant to produce fibre intermediate, purified terephthalic acid (PTA) in the mid-80s - he was taking on established businesses and businessmen.
Second was his firm belief that business is nothing but a web of relationships and obligations. Success depended on the right contacts in the right places and Dhirubhai perfected this to a fine art. It was his great leadership quality that he strongly believed in a strong communication and relationship with his followers during his business that lead to him to become one of the great businessmen in the world. He believed in proactive moves rather than reacting to Government policy which is what his contemporaries were doing. This capacity to "manage the environment" would be responsible for the dark spots that any chronicler of the Reliance group's evolution would encounter.
Finally, his ability to see the larger picture and think big. Even in the laid-back 80s, Dhirubhai could see that he needed to integrate himself across the entire petrochemical chain to survive and grow. This is again the great quality of any leader that lead them for the whole future by setting the goal of an organization. Mr. Ambani also thought always about the big dreams for him and his people.
To Indian middle-class salary-earners, Ambani held out the promise of instant enrichment through the stock market. But he was no fly-by-night operator: Reliance shares offered genuine value, and those fortunate enough to have had faith in the company in the early years eventually became millionaires. Annual general meetings were held in sports stadiums where Ambani would be treated by shareholders with adulation and even reverence.
Ambani was also anxious to encourage the spread of information technology among India's poor. Through Reliance Industries he arranged computer education and training for thousands of students in schools in Bombay. "You are getting an opportunity. Make the best use of it," he told children in December during one of his last public speeches. "Be daring. Think big. You can be the best. If you believe in this, you will be the best."
Think big, think fast and think ahead. Born in 1932 to a school teacher father in the small village of Chorwad in western Gujarat state, Ambani followed this advice all his life. He dreamt big even as a small boy when he used to sell hot snacks to pilgrims outside a temple in his native village. And he did not stop dreaming big even when he went to Aden as a petrol pump attendant at the age of 17 to help support his family. It was this desire to make it big in life which prompted his return to India in 1958. Ambani came to Bombay and started his first company, Reliance Commercial Corporation, a commodity trading and export house. Mr. Dhirubhai Ambani belonged to a middle class family, he was just studied till 10th standard and after that he started to work as an attendant at petrol pump.
HE HAD NOTHING JUST WITHOUT DREAMS AND WILLPOWER AT THE STARTING OF HIS LIFE IN A WORK, BUT HE HAD DESIRE TO ACHIEVE SOMETHING IN A LIFE AND HE BECAME THE RICHEST PERSON OF INDIA AMONG THE POPULATION OF 10 BILLION PEOPLE AT THE TIME OF HIS DEATH.
WILLIAM H. GATES: William H. Gates is chairperson and chief software architect of Microsof Corporation, the worldwide leader in software services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing.Bill Gates was born on October 28, 1955 in a family having rich business, political and community service background. His great-grandfather was a state legislator and a mayor, his grandfather was vice president of national bank and his father was a lawyer.
He has all the qulaities that a leader must need to become a successful in any business. Some of these are like : Bill strongly believes in hard work. He believes that if you are intelligent and know how to apply your intelligence, you can achieve anything. From childhood Bill was ambitious, intelligent and competitive. These qualities helped him to attain top position in the profession he chose. In school, he had an excellent record in mathematics and science. It was a very important decision in Bill Gate's life where he was first introduced to a computer. Bill Gates and his friends were very much interested in computer and formed "Programmers Group" in late 1968. Being in this group, they found a new way to apply their computer skill in university of Washington. In the next year, they got their first opportunity in Information Sciences Inc. in which they were selected as programmers. ISI (Information Sciences Inc.) agreed to give them royalties whenever it made money from any of the group's program. As a result of the business deal signed with Information Sciences Inc., the group also became a legal business.
Then he formed Microsoft. Microsoft's vision is "A computer on every desk and Microsoft software on every computer". Bill is a visionary person and works very hard to achieve his vision. His belief in high intelligence and hard work has put him where he is today. He does not believe in mere luck or God's grace, but just hard work and competitiveness. Bill's Microsoft is good competition for other software companies and he will continue to stomp out the competition until he dies. He likes to play the game of Risk and the game of world domination. His beliefs are so powerful, which have helped him increase his wealth and his monopoly in the industry.
Bill Gates also has a greta heart which is also a great qulaity of this person. He used to donate a lot of money for the welfare of the students, societies, poor people etc. With this, his business also expand and he get support from many of the persons. Some years back, he visited Chicago's Einstein Elementary School and announced grants benefiting Chicago's schools and museums where he donated a total of $110,000, a bunch of computers, and provided internet connectivity to number of schools. Secondly, Bill Gates donated 38 million dollars for the building of a computer institute at Stanford University. Gates plans to give away 95% of all his earnings when he is old and gray.
Gates' foresight and vision regarding personal computing have been central to the success of Microsoft and the software industry. Gates is actively involved in key management and strategic decisions at Microsoft, and plays an important role in the technical development of new products. Much of his time is devoted to meeting with customers and staying in contact with Microsoft employees around the world through e- mail.
Facts about Bill Gates 1. Queen Elizabeth gave him the title of 'Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire'. 2. IBM contracted him for the development of their first Personal Computer. 3. He is the Co-Founder and the Chairperson of Microsoft.
4. He is the world's third richest person (As per the survey done in 2008)
5. He is an American Business Magnate.
Here is lot about bill gates that is behind his success in a business world. Acccording to me, Bill Gates and Mr. Dhirubhai Ambani are the two great leader and no doubt they have all the qualities to become a good leader. These are the qualities and willpower of the person that makes him everything from nothing.