Can Leadership Be Predicted? Employers hope for the best, but often guess wrong

By Paul Feeney Managing Director, Sanford Rose Associates - Wayne | October 28, 2008

Actually, personality tests do a pretty good job of revealing both natural and adapted behavior in day-to-day situations. Joe may be a controlling individual who has learned to replace domination with persuasion in order to broaden his support within the organization. Or Janice, who is most comfortable with numbers and facts, may have learned to be more expressive of her feelings in order to be perceived as less "cold."

OK, that's the daily work environment - but what happens when circumstances demand that someone must respond to the call of duty and lead? How does one identify the next Winston Churchill, George S. Patton or even Jack Welch? George W. Bush states repeatedly that he is a leader, but does saying so make it so? Or because John F. Kerry was a war hero in Vietnam, does that mean he can lead the Free World?

The truth is that leadership is generally more apparent by its absence than by its presence. How often in recent years have corporations replaced their CEO with either the current Number Two officer or with the savior from outside the company - only to regret the decision within months, if not days? The answer to that not entirely rhetorical question is more than half the time.

Companies, nonetheless, crave leadership and cite it in survey after survey as the most needed ingredient in CEOs and general business managers. Many search firms therefore tout their skills in identifying that elusive trait.

The Role That Confidence Plays

It's a clich'e, although true, that leaders inspire others to follow. The question is why?

Choose a Social Network!

The social network you are looking for is not available.


Hotel Newswire Headlines Feed  

Simon Hudson
Benjamin Jost
Elaine Fenard
Maurice Martin
Joyce Gioia
Frank Meek
Janine Roberts
Zoe Connolly
Benjamin Ebbink
Steven Klein
Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.