Leadership is a skill that is learned through the diversity of one’s own relationships, experiences and emotions. It is a talent that thrives on bringing people together to work on a common goal. Being a leader means having the capacity to delegate the tasks at hand and get involved in the process of communication.
The story of Erin Brockovich is one such example of commendable leadership wherein her candid ability to seek a justifiable solution to the burgeoning health problems of the residents in Hinkley, demonstrated the importance of trust and consistency in communication.
In the movie, Erin had made an effort to make the residents of Hinkley feel safe to communicate their concerns since the former had entrusted the latter the power to be heard. A good leader must be able to draw out the trust of the people and make them move by allowing them to take control of the situation by giving them the opportunity to voice out their concerns within the community.
The leader should be able to build a relationship of trust with its constituents through the authenticity of his or her actions. This could be shown through the ways in which the leader takes charge of the situation at hand by comprehending the concerns of its constituents and extracting solutions that would benefit the concerned majority.
A leader who is able to sympathize with the concerns of the people he or she is governing, creates an environment of trust that grows with time as each becomes more comfortable with the leader’s ability to lead them to a better solution. This is what Ms. Brockovich exhibited in the movie when she had engrossed herself in obtaining more information about Hexavalent Chromium and its effects in the community of Hinkley and how she had relayed this to the residents affected. Ms. Brockovich’s ability to gain the trust of the Hinkley residents by getting to know each resident demonstrated her passion for the cause and her comprehension of what the residents were going through.
Ms. Brockovich’s sincerity was easily spotted by the people of Hinkely, which made them more adamant in trusting her and in letting her represent them at the court of law.
While leaders must look presentable among its constituents and give an air of unquestionable authority in order to gain the people’s trust, most often authenticity is much more preferred by the people than mere physical presentation since the former presents a sincere connection or bond while the latter creates a partition between the leader and the people governed. Effective communication is only possible if barriers present between the leader and the people are resolved through open interaction and approachability.
In all accounts, a leader must be a people person; one who can command the respect of his or her constituents by rendering genuine service and establishing accountability. The leader’s objective is to open up the grounds for communication and to increase the quality and frequency of conversations about everyday concerns of the people.
In essence, a good leader must be able to gain the trust of the people he or she is governing and resourcefully assess the solution to the problems at hand. A leader cannot possible rally the people to move if he or she does not delegate the power for them to take action. Leaders should not only be physically present among its constituents but also involve themselves in the affairs of the people concerned.
Susannah Grant. Dir. Steven Soderbergh. Perf. Julia Roberts, Albert Finney, Pat Skipper, Jack Gill, Aaron Eckhart. 2000. DVD. Jersey Films, 2001.
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Topic: Erin Brockovich
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