Choosing a Political Leader – Don’t Judge a Politician by His/Her Shortcoming, But by the Sensibility for Ruling


While choosing the political leader for their constituency, people generally take into account the candidate’s weaknesses but this is not a sound decision. Every person has strengths and weaknesses, but people generally focus on the candidate’s weaknesses.

Don’t judge the politician by the shortcomings, but judge him/her by his/her sensibility for ruling.
For example, Ulysses S. Grant, one of former presidents (18th) of the United States of America, is best known as the Union general who led the North to victory against the Confederate South during the American Civil War. He was an alcoholic but he never overlooked his responsibilities and duties. Most importantly, he got the desired results which none of the earlier generals were able to achieve. Grant had worked in the US army for fifteen years and he performed well in the army despite his habit of drinking alcohol. He never neglected his job and the habit never interrupted him while being on duty in the army.

Abraham Lincoln was a strong political leader; he also suffered from clinical depression, but he served his people with tremendous zeal. People appreciated his great leadership and never minded his weakness. In many countries people think about their political leaders’ abilities and serving capabilities, they don’t care about the politician’s weaknesses. They are choosing the leader for good service and good administration.


But in India, people’s perception of choosing a political leader is different; they just highlight the person’s weaknesses to judge his capabilities as a leader. Here people have a notion that leaders should not have any weakness. People mistake at the primary level and thus forget their principal objective of choosing a political leader.

While choosing political leaders, don’t judge them from the standpoint of their weaknesses; know about their standards of personal integrity and the abilities to serve the people. While weaknesses are OK, unethical and unprincipled behavior cannot be compromised.

One leader may not be good at English and another’s weakness may be science. Another may not look great and handsome. Yet another may have a limp. Every leader has one or other issue; and if a person has no issues, s/he is likely to be mediocre. This is stupid. Peter Drucker, the Father of Management Science says that the absence of weakness will lead to a mediocre leader, that is, someone who is not capable of doing fantastic good work. Thus by choosing a political leader by focusing on the weaknesses, people end up choosing a substandard candidate. Focusing on weaknesses only helps such substandard candidates.

While a more solid candidate may be rejected because of some weakness that may not impact on doing a good job for the people. Many candidates have mastered the art of winning elections by throwing mud on other candidates, rather than based on their capabilities.


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