12 May The birth of a leader (the leader’s nine months)
It surprises me to no extent that hardly anything relevant pops up when you try to google “The Birth of a Leader”. No I am not looking out for more information on the eternal debate “Are leaders born or made?”. A lot has been discussed and debated on those lines.
But what I am definitely interested is in knowing how a leader is born. Yes, you got me right. How a leader is born? One thing that substantiates the question is a leader is born when the first follower accepts and follows the leadership of the leader. That’s what research says. To put it in words of Derek)- “The first follower is what transforms a lone nut into a leader.” True as it may be my interest lies in exploring and understanding the process that a person undergoes before he / she comes into being recognized and accepted as a leader.
Take birth of a child for that matter. The child comes into being on completion of nine months in the mother’s womb. The process starts when the child is conceived in the womb long before it comes out into the world. Those nine months of development and formation are what make and shape the child. That’s what I want to understand. What are the leaders nine months? What changes does he undergo? When does the process start? When are the seeds of leadership conceived? When does the growth of the seeds come to bear the fruit? That’s what I am interested in.
What are the challenges and turbulence a would be leader goes through before he/she takes the plunge that help him/her become a leader in true sense. I believe that there must something that happens before a follower comes into being to acknowledge the leader. Something that defines and shapes the way the leader is going to lead. I have my own reasons to believe that this could happen over a period of one day to maybe even a lifetime. The trials and tribulations help a person come into being a leader.
The other questions what I would like to explore as well is how does a person react to the people, the situation and environment around him/her when he/she is undergoing the metamorphosis. Is he/she ready to take on the mantle? Does he/she experience a conflict, question the beliefs and challenge the status quo which further intensify the process of birth? Common sense tells yes…there has to be. The research asks me for evidence and I strongly believe there must be something to support it. Something that I might have not explored, studied or reasoned out. May that day come soon.
-by Prof. Anthony Colaco