In Good to Great, Jim Collins elaborates on whether or not you can learn to become exceptionally effective leader:
My hypothesis is that there are two categories of people: those who do not have the seed of Level 5 and those who do. The first category consists of people who could never in a million years bring themselves to subjugate their egoistic needs to the greater ambition of building something larger and more lasting than themselves. For thos people, work will always be first and foremost about what they get—fame, fortune, adulation, praise, power, whatever—not what they build, create, and contribute.
The second category of people—and I suspect the larger group—consists of those who have the potential to evolve to Level 5; the capacity resides within them, perhaps buried or ignored, but there nonetheless. And under the right circumstances—self-reflection, conscious personal development, a mentor, a great teacher, loving parents, a signifcant life experience, a Level 5 boss, or any number of other factors—they begin to develop.