President Barrack Obama is leader who has portrayed great leadership skills with an almost perfect combination of emotional intelligence competencies which have elevated him to the top in an unprecedented short span of time. On the element of self-awareness, president Obama has been very outspoken on who he is based on his history, life experiences and achievements. He never exaggerates his self assessment scorecard thus effectively portraying an honest and transparent personality. More importantly, he is self confident. Despite what is seen as an unusual background including the fact that he is black, raised by his grandparents, living in different places in different times. He has been able to stand tall believing in him to take up challenges which to others appear greater than him.
Obama also portrays great self management skills. He is highly transparent. This is supported by the fact that way before contesting for the presidency; he had already made public a lot of information about himself and his past. In addition, he has achieved several significant feats which enhance his credibility as a leader. His presidency at Harvard law school and his achievement as a social organizer and subsequent ascendancy to the country’s presidency portray a great ability and focus on achievement.
Having been a community organizer president Obama understands the need to adopt service in leadership. This is clearly stipulated in his adoption of policies such as healthcare which seek to improve healthcare delivery to an even larger population. It is also evident from his campaign organization that he has excellent organizational awareness. There were no quarrels or disagreements made in public during the entire campaign.
Obama has exhibited great inspiration to people through his well developed speeches and also through his rise from humble background to the very top of the American leadership. He shows great influence in managing to mobilize the largest amount of campaign funds from the people even in times of economic downturn. He also came to power on the promise of becoming a change catalyst and is slowly proving to be the change people expected in terms of foreign policies and healthcare.
Alienated follower refers to the follower who has an independent mind and refrains from following the leader without engaging his/her independent mind to determine the correctness or otherwise of the leader. A passive follower on the other hand is those followers who do not act or think. They have no enthusiasm and display little or no sense of responsibility. These differences in followers are mainly visible when comparing politics in the developed and the developing world. In the western developed world, alienated followers are dominant. Anybody vying for leadership has to comprehensively address the issues raised by the highly informed and independent followers and just in case he/she is unable to satisfactorily address their concerns, then he/she loses popularity and consequently leadership. In the developing countries though, a majority of followers are not well educated thus relying in the judgment of their leaders. They have little understanding of the need to question their leaders hence in many cases, leaders with little ability to add value to their life.
Leader as communication Champion
The story of the blind man shows that a leader has the responsibility to communicate in a way that offers hope for the future and appeals to the follower. Effective leadership communication differs from conventional management communication in the sense that unlike the conventional communication whose aim is to issue directives or instructions to be followed, leadership communication is aimed at shaping opinions and influencing the views of the followers.
Concept of the Boiling Frog
The concept of the boiling frog can be applied in the case of the former US president Bush Walker. During his tenure in office, he portrayed laxity in identifying the issues which mattered to Americans such as perception internationally due to foreign policy. Eventually, his demise from office was one of the most humiliating as he recorded lowest popularity ratings ever.
I agree with Lord Acton’s assertion. This has been witnessed across the world. It is thus unethical for leaders to attempt to increase their power over the people as this has little benefit to the people. It only serves the leaders interest. This assertion was made in full consideration of the history of politics and leadership. The most undemocratic leaders are also the most ruthless and act with utter impunity since there is no one to significantly question their leadership. They are able to act in ways that enable them lengthen their terms in office while at the same time act selfish. The urge to increase their powers is informed by their wish to further this course. Consequently, the more power they hold, less benefits are likely to reach the people.