This assignment mainly focus on a review of leadership theory and competency frameworks based on the debate “leaders are born not made”.after that I have tried to relate these argument with Leadership Models and Competency Frameworks, which are currently being used in organisations. These all things will help to understand that in which qualities required of people in leadership positions and will help to improve the leadership development process. Also some private sector, some public sector are discussed and web links to the full models included where available.


“Are leaders born or made?” this is a long debatable question from long times ago that whether leaders are born or made. But many researchers trying to find out this question answer for decades. The decades are going on and now we know the answer. Finally it has decided that leaders are sort of born and they’re always made. Early theories mainly focused on the difference between leaders and followers but theories in now-a-days are focused on situational factors and leadership skills. Now I am going to discuss this topic through eight leadership theories, models and leadership frameworks and with comparing and contrasting the theories in below:

1. “Great man theories”:

This theory assume that leadership capacity is inherent -and it also assume that great leaders are born, not made. These theories assume that these leaders have come when the country has needed to them. So its totally destined to leadership when needed. These theories also portray leaders as heroic, mythical. And most leaders were male in this theory. For example: Gandhi, Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Eisenhower, Churchill were great leader.

2. Trait Theories:

Like “Great Man” theories, trait theories assume that people will have inherited main qualities and traits that will help them to do their lead. It assumes that leaders must have to follow some particular behaviour which will help them to be a great leader.This theories also assume that people are born with inherited traits. Stogdill (1974) identified the following traits and skills as critical to leaders.


Adaptable to situations

Conceptually skilled


Diplomatic and tactful

Fluent in speaking

Knowledgeable about group task

Organised (administrative ability)


Socially skilled


Alert to social environment

Ambitious and achievement-orientated





Dominant (desire to influence others)

Energetic (high activity level)



Tolerant of stress

Willing to assume responsibility

Behavioral Theories:

Behavioural theories assume that great leaders are made, not born. According to this theory, that great leaders are made, not born and through teaching and observation people can learn to become leaders. Furthermore, they follow that what leaders actually do.

Contingency Theories:

Contingency theories of leadership mainly based on some special variable which actually find out that particular style of leadership will be fitted for the environment of organization. This theory assume that there is no best leadership style which will be fitted in all situation..

Participative leadership:

Organization will be developed when people are more committed to their relevant action and this action will happen on that time when company will involve all employees with their relevant goals and decision. People are less competitive and more collaborative when they are working on joint goals. When all people in company take decision together , the social commitment become higher and their commitment to decision will increase.

Situational theories:

Situational theories are best for taking certain types of decision making and here leaders choose their best course of action based on many situational variables .

Transactional Leadership:


It assumes that people are motivated by reward and punishment. Here total system activated by a clear chain of command. It means people will agree to do a job and authority will be given by a manager. Here subordinate will do their job to get a decision of manager, they are fully responsible for that job. In case of any failure subordinate will get punishment.


Transformational Leadership :

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It assumes that people will follow a person who inspires them. Here a leader must have a vision and passion to achieve great thing and he or she must have to work hard through enthusiasm and full energy.

Now I m going to comparing and contrasting those above theory in briefly:

Great Man Theories

Here leaders are exceptional people, born with innate qualities, destined to lead.

Trait Theories

It describes about leaders qualities

Behaviourist Theories

These assume that what leaders actually do rather than on their qualities. Here different patterns of behaviour are observed and categorised as ‘styles of leadership’.

Situational Leadership

This is an approach where leadership is very specific to the situation. It also assumes that different required leadership styles may be required in different levels in the same organization.

Contingency Theory

This theory find out the situational variable which best predict that which leadership style will be followed.

Transactional Theory

This theory mainly focuses on the relation ship between leaders and followers and here leader give the reward based on loyalty of the followers.

Transformational Theory

Here main concept is change and envisioning and implementing is a main thing to get better performance.


In his section I m going to explain about different leadership models and frameworks which is used in practice across the public and private sector organisations.

Private sector frameworks:

BAE performance centered leadership:

For improving the business, Performance Centred Leadership competencies provide a set of related behaviours. That’s why they have been developed from 360 degree feedback information, benchmarked against the competencies of high performing organisations, each with related behaviours there are five core competences.

Try to achieve High Performance

• Secondly, focusing on the Customer

• Thirdly, developing Others

•fourth, Continuously Improving

• Lastly, Working Together


They mainly follow a system where they have selected 9 attributes for rating motivated leaders:

• Appeal or allure

• personal consideration

• Intellectual incentive

• Determination or braveness

• Constancy

• Flexibilty

• candour or honest ness

• Apprehension

• Respect for others

Lufthansa Leadership Compass

Lufthansa school of business is following a framework for their leadership development education which is made by Lufthansa leadership compass.

It includes the following six key categories, which set out a range of skills and behaviours including: perception, determination, concern for people, self-reflection and professional know-how:

• Firstly, Entrepreneurial leadership

• Secondly, problem solving ability

• Thirdly, Win to others

• Fourth, Lead to people

• Fifth, Attitude and drive

• Lastly, International business competencies

Philips Leadership Competencies

Philips has set some leadership competencies which will define the behaviour for achieving the business success. There are Six Leadership Competencies they has set out. These competencies are as follows:

• Firstly, leader needs to Show determination to achieve excellent results

• Secondly, they need to focuses on the market

• Thirdly, need to find better ways

• Fourthly, focus on top performance

• motivating commitment

• Develops self and others

For more information please visit: http://ad.chinahr.com/jobads/philips/leadership.asp

Shell Leadership Framework:

Shell has also used the Leadership Framework and it includes nine elements as indicated below used by Shell includes nine key elements as indicated below:

• They need to build shared vision

• Focusing on customer

• Increases business Opportunities

• Indicate professional mastery

• Shows individual effectiveness

• show courage

• Motivating, Coaching & Developing

• Need to give value differences

• Produce the Results

Vodafone Global Leadership Competencies:

The Global Leadership Programme of Vodafone are underlying by Vodafone leadership competencies. Those are divided into five categories:

• Firstly, Value the communication

• Secondly, develops the International team

• Make Strategic vision

• Need to increase organisational capability

• drives commercially

For the full framework please visit: www.glp.vodafone.com/global.htm

Public industry Framework:

Senior Civil Service Ability Framework:

Civil Service Corporate Management has recognized few certain characteristics what is essential for the Senior Civil Service (SCS). They have established six types of competencies those are associated with behaviours. The competencies are:

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• Providing goal and correct way to resolve

• Building an distinct impact

• Working towards creative strategy

• Inspiring the employees to develop best outcome

• Study and progress

• Emphasis on responding

For more information please visit:


Scottish Executive Framework

Scottish parliament recognizes seven types of standards and to clarify this, they recommend what leaders should do and how to do. They also mentioned when the leaders need to learn more to work effectively.

The leadership characteristics of the framework are as follows:

• Realising

• Self-organization

• Examination and exploration

• External attention

• Communication

• Handling people

• Team building

Management Education Training Organisation (METO) management Standards

METO has developed seven key roles for leadership, which are given:

• Organizing Events

• Organizing Assets

• Organizing Employees

• Organizing Statistics

• Organizing Spirit of the company

• Organizing Excellence

• Organizing Plans

Institute of Chartered Management – Chartered Management Skills

Chartered Manager Candidates need to demonstrate (and provide evidence of) learning, development and impact in the workplace against two of these six categories.

• Leading People

• Meeting Customer Needs

• Managing Change

• Managing Information and Knowledge

• Managing Activities and Resources

• Managing yourself


NHS Chief Executives Programmes

The NHS manage a wide range of programmes through their Leadership Centre, including a suite of programmes for Chief Executives. These comprise a number of initiatives based upon the NHS Leadership Qualities Framework, including:

National and International Learning Experiences:

• Development Assignments (Lancaster University Management School)

• Transformational Thinking (Manchester University)

• Study Tour to Canada (King’s Fund)

• Duality Leadership Programme (University of Birmingham)

• Action Learning Sets (Nelson and Pedler)

Modular Programmes:

• Experienced Chief Executives Development Programme (King’s Fund and Lancaster University Management School)

• Drive for Results (Manchester University)

Of interest here, is the range of learning opportunities being offered, from action learning sets, study tours and exchanges to modular programmes. The participants are free to choose their preferred modes of learning yet the thinking behind the programme implies that each will contribute towards developing qualities from the Leadership Qualities Framework.

For further information please visit: http://www.nhs-leaders.org

NCSL Leadership Development Framework

The National College for School Leadership is one of the leading organisations in relation to their awareness of the importance of distributed leadership. Recent years have seen an increasing move from the competency-based approach of the Hay McBer Model to the development of a Leadership Development Framework.

The outcomes of a Think Tank report lead to 10 propositions about school leadership.

School leadership must:

• be purposeful, inclusive and values driven

• embrace the distinctive and inclusive context of the school

• promote an active view of learning

• be instructionally focused

• be a function that is distributed throughout the school community

• build capacity by developing the school as a learning community

• be futures oriented and strategically driven

• be developed through experiential and innovative methodologies

• be served by a support and policy context that is coherent and implementation driven

• be supported by a National College that leads the discourse around leadership for learning

Personal Characteristics of Effective Leaders


Early research on leadership sought to identify a list of personal characteristics that set effective leaders apart from other people. No single list has been found to hold true for every leader in every context. As a result leadership research moved on in a different direction – focusing instead on what effective leaders do. For decades traits were largely ignored. However, despite lacking 100% generalisability, contemporary leadership scholars have recognised that personal characteristics are important to effective leadership – particularly intelligence and aspects of personality such as dominance, extraversion, sociability, self-confidence, high levels of energy and resilience[8]. The concept of intelligence is expanded upon further in the next section, and a more comprehensive list of personality traits associated with effective leadership is shown below: 

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For those seriously interested in developing leadership, it is important to appreciate the impact of personality. Greek philosopher, Aristotle once said that “we are the sum of our behaviours; excellence therefore is not an act but a habit.” Personality is a key driver of our day-to-day habitual behaviours and as such can help or hinder our leadership effectiveness. Leaders should:

Be aware of how their personality helps and hinders their leadership effectiveness, then

Find leadership positions where their strengths are called for, then

Offset their weaknesses through a combination of tapping others’ strengths and their own development



Effective leaders typically have higher than average levels of intelligence – specifically reasoning and memory. During World War I, the armed forces used IQ tests to select potential officers and they continue to be used as a recruitment tool in many contemporary organisations such as Microsoft. A high IQ does not make you an effective leader.

Be accurately aware of themselves – their emotions, tendencies, strengths and weaknesses.

Use emotions to enhance thinking and decision-making.

Consciously regulate emotions and moods in intelligent ways.

It has been claimed that emotional intelligence is a better predictor of leadership success than IQ.

More recently social intelligence, previously considered a sub-part of emotional intelligence, has been shown to be the single largest factor impacting on leadership effectiveness. 


Leaders are Sort of Born

It seems like there’s only one thing that a person needs to actually be born with in order to be a leader later in life. That’s intelligence. A leader needs to be smart enough.

Effective leaders aren’t necessarily the smartest people in the room or the company or even on the team. But they have to be smart enough to do the job they’re assigned.

What’s more important is what kind of person the potential leader is when he or she becomes an adult. The person who emerges from adolescence into young adulthood has the psychological and character traits they’ll demonstrate for the rest of their life. Some of those matter for leadership.

By the time a person becomes an adult we can tell if they can help other people achieve results. That, after all, is what we expect leaders to do. We expect them to achieve success through a group. We expect them to help their subordinates grow and develop.

By the time a person becomes an adult, we can tell if they want to achieve objectives or if they just want to go along and take it easy. We expect leaders to be responsible for achieving results. You can have a marvelous life without a results focus, but if you’re going to lead successfully you have to have the drive and willingness to be measured by the results of your leadership.

By the time a person becomes an adult, we can tell if they are willing to make decisions or not. Lots of people wake up every day and let the world happen to them. But leaders must be able and willing to make decisions that affect themselves and others.

By the time a person becomes an adult we can tell if they have the basic qualities that we expect leaders to have. We can determine if they’re smart enough to do the job. We can tell if they are willing to help others to achieve results as a group. And we can tell if they will make decisions.

Those things are essential. People who have them can learn the multiple skills it takes for them to become effective leaders.

No matter how they measure up on the key essentials, no one emerges from the womb or from adolescence with all the skills in place to be an effective leader. Everybody has to learn the job. That’s why leaders are always made.

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