Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Do You Have to Change Your Personality to Be a Charismatic Leader?

Edward Brown, M.S., of Core Edge Image & Charisma Institute provides questions and answers on the connection between personality and leadership style.

Q: Based on your research on leadership development, is there a correlation between leadership style and personality?

Brown: Based on my research, leadership styles are outgrowths of personalities.  Fundamentally, individuals are merely behaving in social environments and when a certain behavior shows effectiveness within a group or organization, researchers create a leadership style based on that behavior.  The late business guru Peter Drucker suggested that business practitioners merely act and researchers create the conceptual framework around the act.

Q: So, a leadership model, such as charismatic leadership, is a reflection of researchers qualifying certain behaviors?

Brown: Yes. The operative word is “qualify.” Charismatic leaders may often be, subconsciously, acting out of deep seated desires for acclaim and adoration. Once upon a time, a charismatic leader might not have been conscious of his behavior until researchers began dissecting this style of leadership. Remember, although charismatic leadership has possibly been around since the dawn of civilization, it is German sociologist Max Weber (1864-1920), who is credited for secularizing charismatic leadership and placing it in the pantheon of leadership styles.  

Q: If form follows function, do non-charismatic leaders have to change their personalities to be effective charismatic leaders?

Brown: If you accept the premise that leadership style derives from personality and behavior, one’s comfort level will naturally gravitate to the style of leadership most closely aligned with one’s personality. As such, charismatic leadership may not be comfortable or in alignment with certain leader’s personality or temperament.  It is wise to adopt the skill set that a leadership model lends without abdicating one’s authenticity.

Q: What types of traits or skill set could a leader derive from the charismatic leadership model?

Brown: Definitely highly advanced oratorical skills as well as interpersonal relationship skills. Charismatic leaderships are excellent readers and researchers which enhances their ability to be effective critical thinkers as well as strategic planners. These skills are endemic within all effective leadership models, but charismatic leaders create missions, crusades, and lifestyles around these skills. Their personalities require that they do so. Charismatic leaders often are extremists and judge themselves by the standards of epic heroes and stellar performers.

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1 comment:

Diana Guess said...
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