The oversimplified image or idea of a particular
type of leader would be someone who possess a highly developed intellect, is
tough, and is high-handed. This essay was not written to justify those
stereotypical perceptions but rather give you a fresh concept of what a good
leader should really look like. Although skill or talent may help you get to
the peak spot, it’s the personality that puts you in a favorable position.
There are so many factors that make up a good leader
but it all falls out under two great qualities, namely, personality and talent. The question is, which of these two brings more
importance to know that a person is, indeed, a great leader?
every team, there is a leader and they are the ones who get to handle the whole
group and direct the people in it. There’s nothing more important for a good
team than having the right mix of people and the company they offer. If you get
to gather such, then it would be safe to say that you have a far greater chance
of reaching goals and producing success. The very first step in making this
possible is having a leader that would bring out the best in his people by
being an inspiration, touching their lives, and playing a role of someone that
most people would choose to look up to.
Personality is what builds up a person. It’s
not something that always comes out positively but this factor molds a
character in producing a great leadership. Your personality has the power to
negotiate, interact, and act upon situations and it also affects the way you
function in a particular group. Having the talent may be a very great privilege
to help you get into such a high place of excellence, but none of it will ever
compare to a person who takes himself up to a high level by building a strong
foundation of good personal views, values, and attributes.
skills can be learned, but it’s way more difficult to train a person’s
personality. As a matter of fact, this shouldn’t even be something that someone
must study for because it has to come out naturally. Most jobs can be extremely
quick to learn once you have been thrown in the deep end and within few months,
you’ll eventually find yourself digging in and out of the hole. But having the
proper attitude in dealing with negotiations, making resolutions, taking a
stand, being a good role model, investing in a healthy relationship with your
members as a group, having a heart for your people, being responsive in meeting
their needs, and being the one who unites a number as one is a whole new
different story. Basically, having a good personality is already a form of
talent and an attribute that couldn’t be learned at the drop of a hat.
According to an executive study conducted four years
ago, personality outshines skill set or talent during the hiring process most
of the time. The study, done in 2013 by Hyper Island, a number of 500+ leaders
across companies in the communications, technology and business were polled
about their preferences in choosing personality or skill. The result,
seventy-eight percent respondents chose “personality as the quality they most
The Hyper Island CEO stated, “What we found most
compelling about this research is how clearly it highlights that personality,
not competence, is the determining factor of who’s going to get the most
attractive jobs among tomorrow’s recruits. Also, there’s a growing desire for
talent with a unique combination of skill and flexibility––people who can
collaborate, adapt quickly and are enjoyable company, but also have the drive
to get things done. All those traits boil down to a personality that is
essential for businesses operating in an ever changing digital landscape. Thus,
specific competence is less important” (Frelin, J. 2013).
The Leadership and Organization Development Journal
tried to determine the foremost basis that most raters make in selection for
formal leadership positions
“The results suggest that raters may not consider
their own Implicit Leadership Theories (ILTs) when attempting to identify
future leaders. Given this lack of a natural tendency toward selecting
individuals that match one’s perceptions of an ideal leader, future research
should focus on adapting current selection methods to leader selection and the
development of new selection methods that are more valid” (Leadership &
Organization Development Journal. June 2015).
Richard Branson, who’s possibly the most popular
entrepreneur in the world, spoke about the essential benefits about hiring for
personality and experience rather than the talent itself. He went on to
highlight the merit of hiring a person who develops versatility of personality
that is beyond the credential qualifications as his top priority (Branson, R.
One of the most successful coach mentor Bud Bilanich
wrote in his blog that personality is a very significant tool over anything. A
lot of people would say that one’s credentials will be the key in gaining an
edge but no. Personality is the key that unlocks all the possible achievements
of a team.
“In my eyes, personality always wins over book
smarts. Company knowledge and job-specific skills can be learned, but you can’t
train a personality.”, “The person with the top grades and most
credentials isn’t always the best person for the role. Time and time again I’ve
seen people with a background of broad-ranging employment and skills hired for
a job where they don’t necessarily tick the specialist criteria boxes”(Bilanich,
Forbes magazine’s contributor Mike Myatt, shared his
personal views by giving 6 leadership characteristics that require no skill or
talent. According to him, a good leader must be able to acquire the following
steps in order for them to have an effective leadership sense, one is to show
up, two is to care, three is to hustle, four is to follow through, five is to
have a positive attitude, and the sixth is to do the right thing.
“Here’s the thing –
most foundational elements of leadership require no skill or talent whatsoever.
Clearly the difference possessed by all great leaders is they
continue to refine, develop and build from their foundation – they understand
leadership is not a destination; it’s a continuum. The best leaders
combine attitude, effort and skill, but of the three, skill is the least important.
When in doubt, always choose attitude over aptitude” (Myatt, M. 2012,
Having all those written, there is no doubt that
personality indeed outshines a talent. Sure, talent gets you into the highest
position possible, but personality gets you everywhere. Being a good and
effective leader isn’t just about taking over situations and giving mandates,
it’s about inspiring your people to be just like you and being the bigger
person to understand what it’s like to be in the shoe of a follower. Our
character is what builds us up and personality is what makes up the great wall