Course: BUS 104-E052 | Intro to Business | Professor Buckler | Summer 2022

Are Leaders Born or Made?

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    • #12056

      Brielle Buckler
      Participant

      Read the background story of each of these 3 successful entrepreneurs, activists, and leaders. Analyze, compare, contrast their backgrounds and personal characteristics.

      What do they have in common? What stands out about these individuals? What do you notice that is different? Write a response below explaining commonalities and differences.

      Given what you’ve learned about each of these entrepreneurs: do you think leaders are born or made? Why?

      ————

      In order to receive full credit for this assignment, all components of this assignment are due by 11:59pm ET on Sunday, August 14, 2022. You should first contribute a thoughtful post of your own before viewing/commenting on the posts of others. Students should review others’ submissions and comment meaningfully (refer to this guide from MSSU for reference) to at least two other students. For reference, here is the difference between a comment and a post — you will be using both for this assignment.

      Once you submit your post, you must respond meaningfully to at least two other classmates’ threads. This assignment is worth a total of ten (10) points — 6 possible points for your original post, and up to 2 points for each of the two responses to your classmates’ posts. Please reference our Discussion Rubric for more information.

      • This topic was modified 3 months, 2 weeks ago by Brielle Buckler. Reason: Updated Date / Rubric Link
      • This topic was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Brielle Buckler. Reason: Added MSSU Guide
    • #13641

      Dilson Abreu
      Participant

      After reading and analyzing the lives of these 3 successful activists, leaders, and entrepreneurs, I can say that leaders are made.

      Alexandria, Frederick, and Lebron all experienced traumatic events that could have prevented them from becoming the people they are today. In the case of Alexandria, who was born into a working-class family and lost her father in 2008, she could have continued working in low-wage jobs such as restaurants to support her family financially. But that was not the plan for her. She attended Boston University, majored in economics and international relations, worked alongside Senator Ted Kennedy, and defeated Joe Crowley, the fourth most powerful congressman who hadn’t been challenged in 14 years for his seat, making her the youngest woman ever elected to Congress. Same with Frederick, who developed a crippling disease as a child but later recovered and then learned to fly airplanes as a teenager. Later, he would become the founding president of Federal Express, and thanks to his strategies, he was able to make the company worth over $40 billion dollars by 2016. As stated in the article “Fred Smith, Frederick Wallace Smith”, by the Editors of Encyclopedia Britannica. Lastly, Lebron James. As a kid, Lebron had a natural talent for basketball. But this does not mean he was born a leader. After a successful career in the National Basketball Association, LeBron James could have just kept all the money he earned and lived a lavish life. But that was not the case for Lebron, Lebron decided to be a role model for kids struggling and attended charity events; gave donations to charities, and opened the “I Promise School.”

      What stands out about these individuals is the dedication they put into their work. Alexandria has worked very hard on fixing the immigration system to the point where she actually went with a group of Democratic lawmakers to visit two Texas border facilities in early July 2019. Alexandria and her group saw the horrific conditions of one facility. She also claimed she did not feel safe with the Border Patrol agents supervising her tour. Frederick’s dedication to providing an express delivery service as he pictures himself, and Lebron’s dedication to helping the youth and poor by helping low-income families by providing support either through a shelter, charity, etc.

      The differences between these 3 individuals have, are the goals that they are trying to achieve. Alexandria is aiming to help improve immigration services as well as renew energy sources for the entire country with the goal of achieving net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 with her “Green New Deal” initiative, along with Massachusetts Senator Ed Markey. Frederick’s goal was to create an express-delivery service that he envisioned as an integrated system of airplanes and trucks, this was a huge success as he also introduced the introduction of drop boxes in 1975 and online tracking of packages in 1994. Lastly, Lebron James’ goal is to help the low economic families’ communities by providing support.

      To conclude, I would say that leaders are made. There are people who are gifted with enormous talents, but sometimes those kinds of people tend to become very lazy and get left behind by the people who work hard and become leaders themselves.

      • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Dilson Abreu.
      • This reply was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by Dilson Abreu.
      • #13874

        Mohinabonu Saidova
        Participant

        Hi Dilson

        You explained it well, everyone has their own opinion, and you explained it well. All three of them are masters of their fields. have their own differences.

      • #13875

        Mohinabonu Saidova
        Participant

        Hi Allah

        agree with you. you very well explained their differences and good points about them.All three of them are masters of their fields. have their own differences.

      • #13937

        Gal kedem
        Participant

        Hi Dilson,

        You analyzed the stories very well. I think that you were on the spot.

        One thing that I disagree with is regarding the differences of the these three. I think that what is different between them is not their goal, but their field of interest and occupation. They each had a different path to success that shed them to become who they are today.

      • #13940

        Bekzod
        Participant

        I agree with you. Like your post. Very interesting facts you mentioned

      • #13948

        Parhoun Farrokhinia
        Participant

        Hi Dilson, I Think you have read their biographies well.
        I wanted to add something to your comment. Not only do they have some similarities, but also their path, their past, family issues, and life situations are completely different from each other. I think these are the reason that they are different from other people.

      • #13951

        Paris Curtner
        Participant

        Hi Dilson,

        Great analysis here, I think all these leaders were extremely determined for success in each of their given occupations. I think what makes them a leader is how they didn’t automatically achieve success but had some sort of challenge to overcome in the process.

    • #13872

      Allah Williams
      Participant

      All four of these individuals are leaders in their respective fields. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a politician, Frederick W. Smith is a businessman, Lebron James is an athlete, and they all have different backgrounds and experiences, but they share a few commonalities. They are all intelligent, hardworking, and passionate about what they do. They are also all successful in their fields.   What stands out about these individuals is their ability to inspire others. They are all powerful speakers and have the ability to motivate and encourage others to achieve their goals. They are also all very successful in their respective fields.

      What is different about these individuals is their backgrounds and experiences. Lebron Jamess comes from a more privileged background and has used his platform to speak out on social issues. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a politician, and Frederick W. Smith is a businessman.  I believe that leaders are made  and not born. I think that anyone has the ability to become a leader if they have the right mindset and are willing to put in the work. These entrepreneurs have all shown that they have the ability to inspire and motivate others, which are essential qualities of a leader. They have also demonstrated that they are constantly learning and growing, which is another important trait of a leader.

      • #13938

        Gal kedem
        Participant

        Hi Allah,

        I think you mentioned really important issues.

        I agree with you that these three stand for their ability to inspire others. I think they are using this wisely to influence people in different fields and contribute to a better society. It is the responsibility and requirement that goes along with being a true leader.

      • #13950

        Parhoun Farrokhinia
        Participant

        Hi Allah.

        Your comment was good and you explained the biographies briefly!

        Being a public speaker and inspiring people in the country as a leader requires high self-confidence and knowledge. As you mentioned they are good speakers and they can influence people around the very well.

      • #13952

        Paris Curtner
        Participant

        Hi Allah,

        I agree with you that leaders are made and not born. I think even if any of these 3 individuals were born into success and didn’t have any challenges to overcome that still doesn’t automatically make them a leader. I believe it takes a certain mindset and work ethic that makes these people leaders.

    • #13873

      Mohinabonu Saidova
      Participant

      All three of these are masters in their field, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is an American democratic socialist. . LeBron James is an American basketball player for the Los Angeles Lakers. LeBron James dropped out of college to join the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers and became a star. They are all people who have achieved success in the field of life. They are connected, achieve results and have something to share. The difference between them is that Alexandria OcasioCortez is a politician and Frederick W. Smith is an entrepreneur. Lebron James is a basketball player and talks more about social issues. No one comes into the world to be a leader or a master of the field, all these things are given by our creation. They are always learning, gaining more knowledge, and then taking care of themselves, which is a very good trait in my opinion.

      • #13942

        Dilson Abreu
        Participant

        Hello Mohinabonu,

        I really enjoy hearing your opinion on how leaders are made. I also agree with your statement that people are always learning and little by little start to gain more knowledge.

      • #13947

        Malcolm
        Participant

        Hello Mohinabonu,

        The best point made that I totally agree with is “They are constantly learning and gaining more knowledge”. These three individuals to continue rising and achieving greatness they are always evolving and learning new things that makes them the leaders they are.

      • #13959

        Renique Baimbridge
        Participant

        Hello Mohinabonu,

        I really like how you pointed out the difference in careers and the different paths and journeys that they were on.

      • #13962

        kfran
        Participant

        Hello Mohinabonu, I would like to say that your work is very precise and great to read, and the last sentence in your work, well I couldn’t agree more! Through their hard work, they could get to where they are in life.

        • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by kfran.
    • #13936

      Gal kedem
      Participant

      While reading and learning about the lives of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Fredrick W. Smith, and leader Lebron James, I have noticed a similarity in the path to success of these three activists, entrepreneurs, and leaders. And I can declare that leaders are made.

      The three have a common background of an obstacle they overcame during their early lives to become who they are today. In Cortez’s story, it was the fact that she was born to a working-class family from a foreign country. She lifted herself from this cycle, pursued a degree at Boston University, and worked for senator Tedd Kenedy. Her next obstacle came in 2008 when she lost her father. She could have easily chosen the easy way and stayed in casual and ordinary low-income restaurant jobs. She decided this was not her path and walked her way up through community service to challenge the 14 years Democratic rep. Joseph Crowly. She successfully won against all odds. In the story of Smith, it was a crippling disease that threatened his future. He overcame the obstacle, later pursuing a prestige Yale University degree and eventually founded FedEx.
      A single mother raised Lebron James in a tough neighborhood. Easily, he could have been affected by the distractions and followed the wrong path. He knew how to use and leverage his basketball talent, stayed focused on his way, and became one of the best players of all time.

      The thing that stands out in these individuals, each in their own field, is the desire to help the environment and society. Cortez initiated the “Green New Deal” project with senator Ed Markey to fight the global warming phenomenon. The project called for a nationwide transition to renewable energy sources in order to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. Smith initiated the idea of an express delivery company that allows citizens to send packages quickly, make their lives easier, and improve their standard of living. Finally, Lebron James established in 2004, together with his mother Gloria, the “LeBron James Family Foundation” to aid underprivileged children and households with single parents.

      What is different about the three, of course, is their field of activity. While Cortez is a social and political activist, Smith is an entrepreneur and manager of the FedEx Corporation, and LeBron James is a professional basketball player. Each of them grew up and went through a different path to success. They encountered various crises, difficulties, and successes along the way that contributed to and shaped them into who they are today.

      In conclusion, it can be seen from learning and examining the stories of these three that they were endowed with tremendous skill, but it is to their credit that they also knew how to capitalize on it and pave the route to great success. I would therefore assert that leaders are made, not born.

      • #13944

        Dilson Abreu
        Participant

        Hello Gal,

        I really liked how you describe each individual background and why they became leaders, as you stated what makes these people leaders are their desire to help the environment and society.

      • #13946

        Malcolm
        Participant

        Hello Gal,

        I do agree and I touched on similar points in my post about how even though each example comes from different backgrounds and different walks of the life, they was able to capitalize on the different challenges bestowed upon them and lead in tough situations. But in terms of leaders those attributes and capabilities I do believe is something you are born with. Having that extra will power and the ability to galvanize teammates, business, employees or the community to come together to create something special isn’t a talent that everyone has or can learn.

    • #13939

      Bekzod
      Participant

      that people acquire heredity of qualities and characteristics due to the fact that they are those need leaders.

      If we assume that leaders do not come into this world with extraordinary gifts, then we can say that all people are born with reserves of abilities and reserves of talents. (Thomas Carlyle, 1840).
      But there are certain innate characteristics that apply to people with leadership qualities. There is a huge difference between “mastering a skill” and improving it (someone is born with an amazing ability in music, sports, etc.). They will be simply excellent in terms of time, as other fish without water will be available to the limit of their ability to reach a certain level. Naturally born leaders are important from those who have become such through their work. All great predictions have their own interesting history. They have been leaders since the beginning of their earthly journey.

      Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, also known by her initials AOC, is an American politician and activist. She has served as the U.S. representative for New York’s 14th congressional district since 2019, as a member of the Democratic Party.
      <p class=”topic-paragraph”>Smith’s father was a successful businessman who founded Dixie Greyhound Lines, among other ventures. As a child, the younger Smith suffered from Legg-Calvé-Perthes syndrome, a potentially crippling disease. He eventually recovered, and, while a teenager, he learned to pilot airplanes. He later studied economics at Yale, where he wrote a paper about overnight delivery services. After graduating in 1966, Smith served two tours with the U.S Marines during the Vietnam War. By the time he was discharged in 1970, Smith had received two Purple Hearts and attained the rank of captain.</p>
      <p class=”topic-paragraph”>In 1971 Smith became the founding president of Federal Express, an express-delivery service that he envisioned as an integrated system of airplanes and trucks. It became operational two years later, with night flights from Memphis, its base, to 25 U.S. cities. Federal Express initially struggled—largely due to rising fuel costs—and it lost nearly $30 million in its first 26 months. Smith reportedly kept the business afloat with money he won playing blackjack in Las Vegas. The venture ultimately turned around, recording a profit in 1976. Smith took Federal Express public two years later.</p>
      For Gloria, raising LeBron James and taking care of her own needs in Akron’s Sidye was like climbing Mount Everest unprepared. Although she initiated young LeBron into fostering local youth football career Frank Walker, who not only bought him his first basketball but also gave him his early training. In general, life at the initial stage was not the best.

      What connects all these people? Probably endurance and discipline. They all have different directions and different fates. I think these are very different people. As for athletes, it's a completely different story. There are people who have trained as much in the gym and given as much time as possible to training, but they are not as famous as Leibro James. It seems to me that this is for the most part two sides at once. Leaders are made and born. You have to be in the right place, the right time. I personally know a lot of such examples.
      
      
      
      
      • This reply was modified 1 month, 2 weeks ago by Brielle Buckler. Reason: removed HTML
    • #13941

      Malcolm
      Participant

      Are leaders born or made?

      The three examples chosen Lebron, AOC and Frederick Smith are all leaders and great examples of being natural born leaders. All three were not given there positions of power or had hand outs along the way. The perseverance all three showed at young ages carried them to be the leaders they are now in the respective fields. As a Puerto Rican woman from the Bronx who graduates from Boston University in Economics, a African American basketball player from the slums of Cleveland who considered the G.O.A.T by many and a man who had a life threatening disease later rising to a two time Purple Heart winner, captain and leader of the one of biggest mailing systems, all three had to learn how to persevere and prove they can overcome these less than ideal situations.

      The differences they have are either physical or the simple gender characteristics because the similarities they have as leaders are universal and are traits you find in a lot of leaders in any field of work. All three as leaders in there fields have a unique ability to get people/teammates/community/workers to believe in them and follow there lead.

      Given what I know and believe about leaders in society I do believe it is something you are born with and is a god given skill and talent that many people think they have but few wield in a beneficial way to society. Most leaders who are put into that role will abuse power or try and control there followers with fear or money. Real leaders like the three examples are able to make people less then them feel just as important as the CEO or best player on the team.

      • #13958

        Renique Baimbridge
        Participant

        Hello Malcolm,

        Great discussion. However, I do believe that leaders can be made as well it all depends on one’s upbringing and experiences throughout life. Experience changes people.

      • #13961

        kfran
        Participant

        Hi Malcolm, I agree your discussion was very well said, but also, I respectfully disagree with you; I think leaders are made. People may pick up leadership traits, but there is always room for improvement and learning. Lastly, I think experience makes a leader, too, because you have something to reflect on.

    • #13943

      Parhoun Farrokhinia
      Participant

      When I was perusing the biographies of these three splendidly awesome people, I realized that all of them were made to be leaders, athletes, and entrepreneurs; precisely speaking, these talents were not inherited but gained. It should be taken for granted that everyone realizes their own interests and aptitudes in different fields as a child does so in numerous cases of life, but few people pursue their talents.

      Starting from childhood, children begin to grow their interests in various fields; this enables them to follow their purposes, but when some force from outside such as family and society tend to neglect their talents and suppress them, they will mostly lose their confidence to become a very successful person (like those three people whose biographies we read). Definitely, the individual’s effort and follow-up, and stability towards the goal are the most important factors of progress, but in my opinion, family, society, and school also play a very pivotal role in this field.

      Notwithstanding the fact that James was inherently bestowed to be a player, he literally worked out. This effort and also the god-given talent were not enough; external forces such as government and school paved the way for him.

      From my standpoint, the reason for the success of countries like America is the support of children and students. No matter what field suits pupil’s interests, schools are meant to find a way to flourish their talents by discovering them materially. Sadly, developing countries have not paid due attention to discovering and flourishing pupils’ needs.

      In my opinion, what these three people had in common was consistency in the way of the goal and unceasing effort. Truth to be told, an intelligent effort, not that they try without any idea or plan. Also, this sentence by James drew my attention, “It’s so much bigger.” I’d just love for kids to understand how empowered they can feel and how empowered they can be if they don’t just give up on their dreams.

      In my opinion, the only differences they had were their goals and activities in different fields.

      Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who I think is a very successful woman and whose life story really attracted me, was active in many fields. Although she had a hard life and had to work in different restaurants, she tried to get her degree from Boston University. She could spend the rest of her life working in the restaurants. By doing so, she tried and succeeded. This is a sign of stability and continuous effort on the way to the goal.

      Frederick Smith was an American business executive who founded (1971) Federal Express (later called FedEx), one of the largest express-delivery companies in the world. As a child, he suffered from Legg-Calvé-Perthes syndrome, a potentially crippling disease. However, he was able to establish this great company and reached the rank of captain.

    • #13949

      Paris Curtner
      Participant

      I think it is impossible to be born a leader. We all come from different background but even people who are born into an already really successful family doesn’t guarantee they will be a leader. All individuals are born different and have different mindsets and work ethics. The three people for this assignment were not born automatically as leaders. They all came from different backgrounds and had different challeges thrown their way that had to be overcome. I think what makes these people similar is that they all wanted to perfect their craft and wouldn’t stop until they became successful at it. None of them were born into a position of leadership or had an easy path but overcame challenges that put them in the situation they are in today. I think what makes these people different is what craft they perfected. Becoming a leader isn’t a one size fits all type of solution so what worked for one of these people isn’t going to work for the other. So they all had different challenges thrown their way and overcame them in different ways for their specific craft.

    • #13956

      Mubtasem Ali
      Participant

      Cortez, James, and Smith all started from humble beginnings and went on to bring a lot of change to the places and industries they worked in. Cortez has brung change to immigrant and poorer communities’ representation. Furthermore, she has brings the spotlight on important issues to her and is not afraid of backlash. Smith led FedEx through tough times and kept his belief in the idea of his vison, and held it through to allow it to become the giant it is today. Their similar in that they are not afraid to try something and follow through on making it happen. Cortez pushes new legalization agenda, Smith broke grounds in shipping and Lebron has improved the power of players in the league. They are different in the way they lead, Cortez leads by representing the views of her citizens, Smith shows leadership through his vision and beliefs and James actively changes the NBA and takes the role of being the voice of the NBA.

      I do not think leaders are born, a leader must be made. Leaders are developed through experience, many great leaders start off not feeling comfortable in their role. Over time though they get a better idea of how to deal with making hard decisions and putting themselves out here, as well as, dealing with the pressure.

    • #13957

      Renique Baimbridge
      Participant

      Given what you’ve learned about each of these entrepreneurs: do you think leaders are born or made? Why?

      What is a leader? According to an article published by betterup.com “A leader is <b>someone who inspires passion and motivation in followers</b>. A leader is someone with a vision and the path to realizing it. A leader is someone who ensures their team has support and tools to achieve their goals.” I believe that leaders can be born and made because some people have personalities with leadership qualities such as decision-making, communication skills, goal-driven, problem-solving and more. Whereas your upbringing and some experiences in life build those qualities in a person. i.e. Growing up I was always shy and to myself but as I got older and went into high school we were taught to speak up and put in situations that pushed us to think for ourselves and make decisions not only for ourselves but for others. I had a classmate who I believe was a natural-born leader because she was very goal-oriented, great at decision making, a people person, and an all-around scholar. Whenever we had a group project she would take over and give instructions on who should do what and how everything would be executed. Graduated from high school and she started her own language tutoring academy a couple of months later. She wasn’t meant to conform or to take orders, she was meant to build.

      What do they have in common? What stands out about these individuals? What do you notice that is different? Write a response below explaining commonalities and differences.

      I believe one of the biggest similarities between LeBron James, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Mr. Frederick W. Smith is that they were all goal driven. No matter the setbacks that faced them they continued on their journey. In the biography, it highlights that Alexandria became a community organizer after graduating college but faced difficulty when her father passed amid the recession, and though Frederick grew up privileged he suffered from “a potentially- crippling disease” he recovered and went on to receive many accomplishments. Everyone faces some form of hardship in life but not everyone bounces back. What stands out to me is how they all come from different backgrounds and they all persevered and became who they are today.

    • #13960

      kfran
      Participant

      They are leaders that were made through hard work. Although some characteristics of excellent leaders may occur to be essential, leadership is something that can be learned. For example, creativity, focus, and adaptability traits can be expanded and improved. They may have acquired necessary leadership qualities in specific environments they were raised in or possess them naturally. Honestly, I would not call it leadership; some people pick up better traits than others. In the end, I think experiences and mistakes are how you learn to be a good leader.

      The three have in common that they were dedicated to what they did and never stopped working and wanting more. I notice that they adopt a particular leadership style at specific points in their lives and learn to approach things differently as they get older and wiser from their mistakes. More importantly, they had to be leaders of their own lives, making decisions for themselves even if it may be difficult. For instance, LeBron said he would join the Miami Heat for the 2010 season. When he did that, people did not support his actions, and some may have believed it to be a betrayal of his hometown. If they had any hardships in life, it pushed them to want to do better and get away from negativity.

      Another thing is that their backgrounds humble them. As for Alexandria, although she could have easily moved on to better after graduation, she returned home and became a community organizer, and she took numerous underpaid restaurant positions to support and keep her family economically stable. I would say that the two people that shocked me the most are Frederick W. Smith; although he came from a well-off family, he still worked hard to get to where he was at, and I think that having the sickness he had opened his eyes and made him want to achieve something better for himself. The other person is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who was able to achieve such an honor at a young age and gets to claim that she was able to achieve what others may not have done.

    • #14083

      Frances Dotse
      Participant

      After reading up on the 3 entrepreneurs, my stance remained the same- Leaders are made, not born! Both Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Lebron James came from difficult backgrounds which could have easily held them back in life but instead they persevered and fought against the odds. James and Ocasio-Cortez both have determination and grit. Both of these individuals know what it’s like to have nothing, come from the struggle and to have something to lose. Although Frederick W. Smith had to do some work to get to where he is, he had a good foundation. Almost everything was made ready for him and all he had to do was some minor fixing here and there.

      In conclusion, leaders are made. Riches and immediate access to resources does not automatically make one a leader or gives them the potential to be one. The thirst and motivation to work hard and achieve the impossible or ones goals despite all the odds stacked against them is what makes one a leader

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