Leadership also has its myths. And unless we give this concept a second thought, it’s actually difficult to determine that what we have believed to be true are, in fact, lies. Let us take a closer look at leadership and debunk some myths about it:
Myth #1: All managers are leaders.
The truth is not all managers can lead. Management is not the equivalent of leadership—it’s just a subset. Even if a manager is good at establishing and maintaining systems and processes, but cannot bring out the best from its people and take the organization to higher levels, then he’s not leading at all. He simply manages and monitors. There’s no leadership when change, improvement and growth are not evident.
Myth #2: Some people are born leaders.
It’s true that there are people who are born with a predisposition to lead, however, they still must learn the skills of leadership. Being a leader is something that requires enough training and experiences so that the skills and knowledge necessary for the role will be fully developed and acquired.
Myth #3: A title is required in order for a person to lead.
Leadership is about improving people and processes in order to make things better. A person can lead even without a position title. What is actually required is the ability to know when it is appropriate to take a lead, and how to effectively do it.
Myth #4: Leaders have the right answers all the time.
Leaders must be able to ask the right questions and then know where to find the best answers. If people would always go to the leader for the answer, their thinking abilities will be stunted. A true leader doesn’t have all the right answers; instead he determines who to ask, and where to look for the solutions.
Myth #5: Leaders are focused.
If the leader is the only one who’s focused in the team, then he is not really leading. He must be able to create a shared focus so that his team members will do tasks that really matter, and resources won’t be wasted. In addition to the exercise of self-responsibility and discipline, a leader must know how to engage other people so that goals are efficiently achieved.
Myth #6: Leadership equates to ambition.
Actually, leadership is all about the greater good—it has nothing to do with ambition. Although there’s really nothing wrong with ambitions, it must always be remembered that leading means serving other people well. This is one of the signs of effective leadership.
Myth #7: Anyone can lead.
Leadership stems from a sincere desire to do so. If a person doesn’t have this desire, then he can’t lead. Similarly, a leader, or a person who’s in the position to lead people cannot become better without the same desire. Nobody can lead by accident & nobody improves by accident either.