The Concept of Leadership Traits

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The Concept of Leadership Traits Gail Murphy BUS 660 Contemporary Issues in Organizational Leadership Prof. Felicia Bridgewater October 29, 2012 The Concept of Leadership Traits The oldest leadership theory is from the 1900’s and is known as the Great Man Theory. The original theory thought that the differences between leaders and followers were personality traits, physical attributes, intelligence and personal values. Studies have found that leaders and followers aren’t very different. Those individuals’ who are willing to take chances, are hardworking, can accomplish goals, work well with others and organize are the best candidates to be leaders. Leadership traits are the individuals’ strengths, weaknesses, skills, decisiveness, assertiveness, confidence, dedicated, knows their limitations and knows the use of body language. Not all leadership traits are positive. There are leaders who show favoritism, are selfish, indecisive, inconsistent, hypocritical and dishonest. Personality traits can play a major role in a leader’s behavior. There are five factors that affect a leaders personality: Surgency –a leaders behavior in a group setting, Agreeableness/Dependability –how the leader gets along with others, diplomatic, warm empathetic, approachable and optimistic and their patterns related to people’s approach to work, Adjustment-can remain calm under pressure and is concerned with how people react to stress, failure or personal criticism and Openness to Experience-the learning approach, openness to experience, broadmindedness, curiosity and being able to see the big picture (Hughes, et. al., 2009, pp. 207-212). Personality traits develop over time. These useful tools give insight to how one thinks, behaves and developing insight into way one does things. One of the most admired men and his concepts of leadership is Nelson Mandela. People see his passion,

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