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John F Kennedy Leadership Qualities

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Leaders who have, or inherited, bad qualities over their leadership are subject to critical criticism from their people or subordinates. That is why leaders who have such good qualities are very sought out. To become a successful leader one should focus on their commitment, integrity, and confidence, while staying away from being, or becoming, self-centered. Let it be known that good quality, effective leaders, do not put themselves first so being self-centered or letting their ego take control will not be tolerated. That is why it is so important for leaders to perfect their qualities because of the ones who do not are typically noticed very quickly. There are many qualities a leader can attain, this may be throughout their lifetime, or may happen during their leadership time as they learn new things and new strategies. Although not every leadership quality can be good, some will be bad and could negatively affect one’s time in power. Leadership qualities are the basis upon which one will be judged. This may be done blatantly, such as in a presidential debate between candidates, or subtlety, such as an analysis in an article or newspaper about one’s quality of leadership. Therefore, one can assume in this leadership essay that attaining or developing these leadership qualities is very important, although one should also know that not all leadership qualities are good and one should always be aware of how they act in their leadership.

Leader who is looking for success in their work, or exponential support from their subordinates and followers should first realize how committed they are. Commitment is a leadership quality that will inspire and pull individuals into one's cause. It shows that the leader has feelings and also the leader has confidence in the cause, attracting their followers to believe as much as they do. One who is committed to a cause or an effort for something will put out better quality work. This is because they will put more effort into what they are doing and may actually want to be successful and be praised. John F. Kennedy was a very popular presidential candidate in the United States in 1960, he formed a great relationship with his supporters and followers. He did not lose focus on what his goals were and what he wanted to complete during this time in office. John F. Kennedy in his inaugural address said, “Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assume the survival and the success of liberty.”(Kennedy 1) When John F. Kennedy said this, it is a perfect example of his commitment. Kennedy was committed to keeping peace and freedom in the world, which was the basis of America once it was first created. All that being said, being devoted to a cause is a very likable trait to have because it shows one has a passion or a drive for what they do. Also not losing focus is very important. This is because if one loses focus, then it could be crucial for them and it can cause them to be removed by their people or subordinates. In Kennedy’s case, this would be impeachment from office. Many people search for leaders like Kennedy, a good person with goals in his mind, always keeping integrity.

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Without integrity, no real success is possible. Integrity is one of the top qualities of an extraordinary leader. It is an idea of the consistency of actions, values, techniques, measures, standards, desires, and results. It implies that they have a profound duty to make the best choice for the right reasons, regardless of the circumstances, in every situation. Individuals who live with integrity are honest, incorruptible, and incapable of breaking the trust of those who have believed in their abilities. There are two basic parts of integrity that go past simply making the best decision when nobody's looking. The first is the adherence to an ethical or moral principle. The second is the quest for an undiminished state or condition. Everybody makes errors, so being an individual of integrity doesn't mean one has not committed an ethical or moral mistake in one’s life. It implies having the strength of character to gain from those mistakes and look for constant personal development. Integrity is molded by our most significant life lessons, those that included our most profound issues of trustworthiness and thought process. Integrity requires humble introspection, not a self-righteous asseveration. Before and after his assassination, John F. Kennedy was thought to be a potentially great leader. He showed many great qualities people thought a leader should have and many Americans believed he would change not only America but the world. Americans believed he would stick to his words and lead the country by example. Kennedy said in his inaugural address, “In your hands, my fellow citizens, more than mine, will rest the final success or failure of our course. Since this country was founded, each generation of Americans has been summoned to give testimony to its national loyalty. The graves of young Americans who answered the call to service surround the globe.”(Kennedy 2) Kennedy in this part of his speech is showing how he is full of integrity and honesty. He is aware that he will not be able to complete everything on his own. He knows that without the help of the entirety of the American people, whether it is in the aspect of the workforce, military, or support jobs, nothing will be changed in their country, or around the world. Without his confidence in the American people, he may not have said this in his speech. Having confidence can be a fatal error to one’s leadership, so it must be analyzed when this can happen.

Confidence is great. People will want to follow a confident leader. Subordinates will recognize if their leader has a lack of confidence quickly and it will diminish the trust they have in their leader to lead them. They will want to follow someone who has confidence in what they are doing and where they are going in order to complete their own goals. However, there is a line that can be crossed where confidence transforms into overconfidence. It is the place a strength turns into a shortcoming. Having confidence has levels to it and so it must be analyzed when this can be good or bad for a leader. Therefore, when one has little confidence they might begin to question their own decisions and how much they trust themselves to complete their tasks. This can be very bad for a leader who wants to be seen as strong and powerful. A leader who has a good level of confidence will not handle themselves like someone with a lack of confidence. They will make decisions fearlessly, sometimes without all the information they need. They will have the courage to make changes to their qualities and leadership style. Good confidence leaders will inspire the people they lead and hold themselves accountable for the mistakes they make. Although, leaders with high confidence levels are also at risk for their self-confidence. Being overconfident can lead to a lack of trust from their subordinates. More often than not, leaders who have too much confidence will have arrogance and resist feedback and personal change. The overconfident will fail to honor commitments they make, and this will result in damaged relationships with their people who will feel unnoticed and that they are being taken advantage of. Allie from The Society is a great example of having overconfidence. In the final episode of season one(Keyser ep. 10), Allie felt she needed to give others a chance to lead so she held an election for mayor of New Hope. She believed that she had been doing a good job to help everyone survive and go through their hardship so she would be elected with no problem. Her overconfidence led her to be arrested by the other candidates running for mayor. If she had not had overconfidence in how the people of New Hope felt about her, she may have not held the election and continued to lead and survive just fine. Now, she must prove to the people she was not trying to rig the election. Overconfidence can hurt a leader's viability. Leaders like this will be arrogant, take unreasonable risks, and pulverize trust.

Leaders should always evaluate their qualities throughout their leadership. Also one should always be susceptible to change and look at themselves often. That is because there are many qualities a leader can attain, but many of them are bad. Negative qualities will outweigh the positives when being evaluated by subordinates and the people one may lead. To turn into a successful leader one should focus on their responsibility, integrity, and commitment while avoiding acting self-centered or overconfident. It should also be known that forming these qualities take time and effort. Good leaders do not form overnight.

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John F Kennedy Leadership Qualities. (2022, December 27). Edubirdie. Retrieved December 2, 2023, from
“John F Kennedy Leadership Qualities.” Edubirdie, 27 Dec. 2022,
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John F Kennedy Leadership Qualities [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Dec 27 [cited 2023 Dec 2]. Available from:
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