Personal Leadership Statement By Leonard Bickman

2060 Words Sep 12th, 2016 9 Pages
Personal Leadership Statement
When societal leaders are envisioned a faction of elites often comes to mind. These identifiable individuals embody desirable leadership characteristics. Resourcefulness, charisma, strength, tolerance, compassion, honesty, and determination are just a few of the personal facets ascribed to these leaders. However, this oversimplification of perfection is a narrative created by followers and it ignores some vital details. The leaders held above all others are simply human, and they too are flawed. The ignorance of this fact leads to blind faith which is dangerous. The leaders we look to for guidance should be ordinary people, rather than conventional figures whose established significance often overshadows their true character.
Psychological studies performed by Leonard Bickman showed that we often associate authority and leadership with a uniform (Bickman, 1974, p. 47). Bickman and his colleagues studied the way civilians would respond to commands given by other civilians, milkmen, and guards when the civilians were approached on the street (Bickman, 1974, p. 47). The results showed that 19% of passersby obeyed the ordinary citizen and 14% obeyed the milkman (Bickman, 1974, p. 51). However, 38% of pedestrians, twice as many people, listened to the guard who was in an official uniform. The correlation between the people’s response and the uniform showed that the public is apt to make snap judgments when looking to an authoritative figure. A…
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