Developing Leaders


The historian Thomas Carlyle once said, “The history of the world is but the biography of
great men.” While history chronicles the lives of well-known leaders such as Alexander the
Great, Genghis Khan, Peter the Great, Napoleon Bonaparte, Winston Churchill, and Nelson
Mandela, most of us realize that our life stories are not going to be read in the history books.
Although leaders come in all shapes and forms, very few of us are going to be, or will be,
leaders with a big “L.” This doesn’t mean, however, that we will be strangers to smaller acts
of leadership. It might even be true to say that all of us are in the leadership business, be it at
work or in our personal lives. As the challenges of leadership are all around us, a leader is
anyone who successfully drives the accomplishments of a group of people or even to the
success of an organization, a community or a country. In the organizational world, effective
leadership and organizational success are closely intertwined with no organization stronger
than the quality of its leadership. Naturally, these observations beg the question of what is this
leadership business all about.

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