Leaders aren't born, they are made. This advice from football coach Vince Lombardi translates from the gridiron to the corner office, as quality business leaders can be created through hard work and two-way communication.
With the use of 360 degree feedback, for example, individuals in management or supervisory positions can become even stronger leaders. Through leadership assessments, team members can work with their immediate supervisor to explain what qualities and skills work, and which ones need improvement.
A recent post by entrepreneur Ben Horowitz on his blog described a similar scenario. Specifically, Horowitz explained how CEOs can be molded into greatness. Being the head of a company is not just something that individuals can pick up on a whim, because they were born with the necessary skills to be successful. Rather, according to Horowitz, the process takes time to fully develop a quality CEO.
"Being CEO requires lots of unnatural motion," Horowitz wrote. "From an anthropological standpoint, it is natural to do things that make people like you. It enhances your chances for survival. Yet to be a good CEO, in order to be liked in the long run, you must do many things that will upset people in the short run. Unnatural things."
While Horowitz speaks about doing "unnatural things" to become a CEO, using a 360 leadership assessment uses very natural aspects – such as communication – to help an individual become a stronger supervisor or manager. This well-rounded appraisal highlights strengths and provides suggestions on how a leader can improve.
Inherent traits are not the only aspects to good leadership. When managers are shown what their team members respond well to, and what tactics do not motivate them, leaders can make the necessary adjustments to keep a business successful and employees positively engaged.