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Associate Director of Campus Activities, The Catholic University of America

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Titles are essential for leadership

We have all been taught that you don't need a title to be a leader but no one I've interacted with actually believes that. We look to those with titles as the leaders.
Leadership is about relationships and titles help define the relationship you have to someone or something.
Every relationship has a title and every relationship needs leadership skills and knowledge to help it grow - thus every relationship title is a leadership title. Employee, sister, father, stranger, student, musician, cousin, roommate, pilot, supervisor, American, homeowner, etc. These are all titles and if people viewed them as leadership titles maybe we'd take more responsibility for the influence we have in those roles.

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    Sep 19 2012: Leadership is about leading; it is about having followers; a leader could also be the known best, or the first.
    Everybody has his or her own extent of influence; but not everybody is a leader(which would be the case if your idea that leadership is about titles were true).

    The reason why leadership qualities/skills are desirable in everybody is that, it helps in being a good influence on someone who may become a leader(or is already a leader).
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      Sep 19 2012: Another reason those qualities might be desirable is that everyone has the opportunity to be a leader, but perhaps in different environments. I know lots of people who can be classified as a leader, but are not perceived as such by most other people. They all have one thing in common; they provide a good example and stimulate others to do the same (without expecting it).
    • Sep 19 2012: yes! we need to be developing leadership qualities/skills in everybody because we are all in positions of influence. The more others become aware of the potential influence they have, the more likely they will influence in goal oriented ways.

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