Are Leaders Born or Made?

It has been many years since the late Stephen Covey introduced the 8th Habit which focuses on “finding your Leadership voice” which would imply that each and every one of us has one, right?  This fact has been up for debate for years depending upon who is offering the advice.

I believe everyone comes into the world with two gifts. One is the gift of life, and the other is the freedom to make choices which leads me to believe that Leadership is a choice.

Many people view management as leadership. It's not. Leadership comes from influence, and influence can come from anyone at any level and in any role. Being open and authentic, helping to lift others, and working toward a common mission build influence. True leadership comes when those around you are influenced by your life in a positive way:

  1. Influence
  2. Inspire
  3. Empower


In my personal and professional Leadership teachings, I focus on three critical components of leadership:

  1. Y.O.U. (Your Own Uniqueness) as a leader and finding your leadership voice
  2. Your organization’s leadership voice
  3. Helping your employees to find their leadership voice

This is important because finding your voice and inspiring others to find their voice, through effective organizational alignment, is critical to success. You must begin by doing a thorough self-assessment and answering four critical questions:


  1. Where have I been?
  2. Why am I here?
  3. What can I do?
  4. Where am I going?

“Where have I been” addresses a critical component of success called clarity – how do you come to a place of clarity?  You will be clear when you discover the answer to this question.

“Why am I here” addresses the courage you need in order to make a bold move.  What courage do you currently possess (or need) to take to make a bold move?

“What can I do” will determine the creativity you have inside you.

“Where am I going” is the contribution you want to make as you enter a new phase of your life.

In order for an organization (or individual) to be successful, it begins and ends with you.  You must tap into your inner navigation system – M.A.P. (Mindset/Actions/Passion). It is your roadmap to success, and it lives in you.

You are the CEO of your life, and you finding your Leadership voice is the first step in defining your own unique personal BRAND.

  • Perspectives

    • States Can Foster Job Growth if Lifelong Learning is at Play

      The worlds of work and learning are merging in powerful ways, driven by the exponential growth in human knowledge. This means the abilities needed in the workplace go beyond simple “job skills” that can be learned quickly through a short-term training program. I was with Montana Gov. Steve Bullock when he released the newest National Governors Association report, “Governor’s Action Guide to Achieving Good Jobs for All Americans,” at the opening session...



  • Most Popular Stories

    • UPDATE: Nestlé Details Fort Wayne Layoffs

      Virginia-based Nestlé USA says only 40 employees will be laid off at the company's Fort Wayne distribution center. A spokesperson for Nestlé tells Inside INdiana Business a WARN Notice filed with the state incorrectly stated the facility would close at the end of the year, affecting nearly 70 workers.

    • Fort Wayne Tops 'Hottest Real Estate Markets'

      Fort Wayne just opened its brand new riverfront Promenade Park to pomp and pageantry, hoping to make it a draw to Indiana’s second largest city. But now the Allen County community has something else to celebrate. The editors of declared Fort Wayne as the hottest real estate market in July for the entire country. 

    • Scott Kleine is one of the senior interns at Idea Co-op. (photo courtesy of NineStar Connect)

      Senior Interns Shining at Greenfield Coworking Space

      Wednesday was National Senior Citizen Day and three seniors are being celebrated for their contributions at a coworking space in Hancock County. Idea Co-op, which officially opened its doors earlier this year, has taken on three "senior interns" following a chance encounter at a local Kiwanis meeting in December. Jill Snyder, director of economic and business development for Idea Co-op operator NineStar Connect, says the men approached her with the goal of being involved in...

    • (Image courtesy of Horseshoe Casino Hammond.)

      Indiana Casinos to Begin Sports Betting

      A pair of northwest Indiana casinos will soon add sports wagering to their offerings. Horseshoe Hammond Casino and Ameristar Casino East Chicago are both set to open sports betting areas at their respective casinos ahead of the kickoff to the 2019 NFL season.

    • (photo courtesy of Purdue University)

      Purdue Researchers Land $4.3M NSF Grant

      Purdue University researchers have been awarded a three-year, $4.3 million grant from the National Science Foundation. The funding will support what Purdue calls the “modernization” of data on disease-spreading parasites.