Commonly Asked Questions Asked About The Mysterious World of Leadership
On this page you'll find a fairly wide range of questions and answers about leadership, leadership principles, how and why it works, and lots of ideas on how to become a better leader. For more specific questions and answers about leadership, access the relevant pages using the box to the right.
- How come a leader can be effective in one organization, move to another, and seem to fail miserably?
One of the more curious aspects of leadership is that a leader effective in one company or organization can fail miserably if moved to another organization, and it's clearly not because his or her skills worsened.
- Is there a core set of leadership skills that are essential or mandatory for leadership success?
You can argue that communication skills, or delegation skills, or other generic skills are ESSENTIAL for someone to be effective as a leader, but what's interesting is that for the most part, effective leaders can have completely different skill sets.
- Where does power fit in leadership?
Most of us think that power (as in formal authority) and leadership are one and the same, but often power is illusory, because it's "granted" by those that follow. Having formal power doesn't mean a leader will be effective.
- Is it possible to use "too little power" as a leader?
So much of leadership effectiveness has to do with the "fit" between a particular person in a leadership position and the context, so it's possible that too little power can be seen as weakness. or not.
- What is the difference between leadership and management?
The most common question people ask about leadership. The standard responses, and even the question itself are somewhat over-simplified.
- Is it possible to be an effective leader without being a great manager?
Can you be a good manager, but not be a particularly good leader?
Both of these questions are good ones, but the key to success is that the ORGANIZATION have both leadership and management in place, but not necessarily in one person.
- How do values and beliefs affect leadership behavior?
Values and beliefs are important, but there's no one set of values and beliefs that is mandatory.
- Is leadership about using the right "techniques"?
Technique is relevant to the extent that the person uses the right "techniques" for the right situations. That's why effective leaders can look so different from the outside.
- Where does trust fit in terms of effective leadership?
The ability to generate trust in followers is a huge advantage for any leader. That said, there have been effective leaders who are mistrusted by followers.
- Where does leadership credibility fit in terms of effective leadership?
Crediblity ties into the trust factor, and has to do with the degree that followers believe what the leaders says to them. It's a complex factor, but an important one.
- Do leaders need to be liked in order to be successful?
No. That was easy, wasn't it?
- Can reliance on technology interfere with being an effective leader?
The answer is yes. More specifically, leaders who rely on technology to communicate with followers run a high risk. High touch tends to be important for sustainable leadership.
- What Does "Leadership As Partnership" Mean?
The older version of leadership involves doing things TO people while a more modern view is doing things WITH PEOPLE.