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What does leadership exactly mean?

30 January 2023

Dr Md Mahmudul Hassan :
Leadership is the quality or skill of a person that helps to guide people in the right direction, motivate them and build confidence in them.  The person who has this leadership quality is known as a leader and he takes many good steps in the society with this skill.
A leader is a man who always thinks for his colleagues and comrades. He creates a positive situation to solve any problem.  A leader never follows negative people; rather he is a person whom people follow because of his ability to make an impact on others.
Great leaders of the past have always thought of the greater wellbeing of society.  They have always been influenced by the real example of the society and their own practice. They guided people to the right path.  Over the ages they have set a shining example of hard work, patience and compassion. By learning from failure they have established themselves as leaders in their own glory.  A great leader always leads the people for good and vows to shape the future of the people. Leadership is actually a combination of qualities.  A good leader must have praiseworthy qualities like; Integrity, intelligence, physical and mental strength, strength of character, courage and willpower, communication skills, strategy, ability to make quick and correct decisions etc.
Leadership means selflessness.  It teaches the leaders to think about society's interests rather than personal interests. A good leader always leads the society by example and is focused on reaching his goals.
Leadership is about understanding the language of colleagues or followers, shedding self-interest for them and actively listening to all about any change and adapting to implement it.  Leadership is the technique of directing subordinates toward specific goals.  Applying such strategies requires the leader to have the necessary understanding of subordinates' emotions, feelings and problems.  Subordinates want their leaders to be mentors and well-wishers.  Therefore, it is possible to manage the subordinates properly only if the leader knows the values, skills, demands etc. of the subordinates.
A leader is not born as a leader; i.e. no one is born into the world as a leader.  Rather, one who applies constant effort after birth can become a good leader.  He thinks about the good of the others.  A man becomes a true leader by regular practice, leadership spirit, constant pursuit and dedication to the welfare of the people.
A leader establishes discipline by systematically directing work through his skillful leadership.  In this, all the workers employed in the organization are bound by the formula of cooperation.  One of the key characteristics of leadership is the regular presence and focus of followers.
Competent leadership always adapts to the prevailing environmental conditions.  The environmental conditions in which the leader operates have the greatest influence on leadership.  Therefore, the leader must create the conditions of the organization in such a way that leadership can be successful.
Effective leadership is always managed by maintaining communication with subordinates.  Effective leadership is not possible without communication.  Through effective communication, the leader conveys his decisions, instructions, action plans and thoughts to the subordinates and gets informed about their reactions, attitudes etc.
Leadership is associated with motivation and influence.  A competent leader tries to achieve work by creating motivation in the minds of colleagues through his personality and behavior.  For this reason, the leader should be aware of the various financial and non-financial communication methods and their effectiveness.  Hence competent leadership acts as an essential motivator for colleagues in the workplace.
In leadership strategy, the leader never discriminates among his colleagues.  He sees everyone as equal in team work.  A leader does not function well with a superior or subordinate perspective.  If he cannot remove the thought of who is senior or who is junior in the workplace, success cannot be achieved at work.  But a competent leader is determined to reach his set goals with due respect to all.
Leadership is associated with risk taking.  As the leader exercises leadership, he has to assume responsibility and risk.  Any new initiative has many challenges, various obstacles and adversities.  The leader has to overcome these to reach his goal.
Every teacher is a leader in an educational institution.  In the classroom, the leader establishes his leadership through intellectual assessment by providing opportunities for students to gain sound knowledge.  Therefore, leadership in this case is to ensure the equal right of learning to all students while maintaining the quality of education.  A head teacher or principal is the leader in an educational institution.  He establishes the right of all by treating all officers, employees, teachers, students and parents fairly.  He works for the welfare of all.
In the above description, it is clear that great leaders are not born as great, they selflessly make themselves great by constant efforts.  They always think of the greater motives for others and try to help distressed people.  To be a great leader, he has to be a good person first of all and show kindness to every living being around him.  Anyone can become a great leader by proper observance and practice of these great vows of leadership.  A person can be proud of himself as a perfect leader if he can establish a successful and beautiful leadership in any office, corporate or factory.  In essence, the real secret of leadership ability lies in the underlying meaning of leadership.

(The writer is Principal, Daffodil International School).

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