“...the masses will never learn to conduct the political struggle until we help to train leaders from this struggle, both from among the enlightened workers and from among the intellectuals." --V.I. Lenin, "What Is To Be Done?"

 

Communists are usually modest people. Because of that, it is often unfortunately difficult to find volunteers for leadership.

Generals, bosses, or cadre?

A quick review of what is written through the ages on the isolated topic of “leadership” shows that it is all but worthless when talking about developing strong clubs or units of the Communist Party. After all, the “leaders” of most organizations have power over their followers, as in the ranks of the military, or they are able to significantly reward them, as capitalists pay their employees. Neither situation describes our party. Communists are free volunteers.

The fact that Communists act collectively does not mean that we are mysteriously connected to one another like honeybees or ants. It means that we know when and how to assert leadership and when and how to let others take the lead.

Communists aren’t likely to elevate somebody to act as our “boss.” At the same time, people who sincerely want to get things done value leadership, because we recognize that we are more effective when organized. Within our organizations, we are all leaders. We are also all followers. In a given situation, comrades may be more suited to organize a group toward our common goal. In another situation, the comrades wisely follow whoever is more suited.

From time to time, we run across the word “cadre” when talking about organizations and leadership. Some people think that a “cadre” member is someone who takes orders without question. Others think a “cadre” member is one who issues orders. Each meaning taken separately, is wrong. Cadre members are actually building blocks for an organization. Cadre members of the Communist Party lead and follow with the same sincerity.

Are leaders born, or made?

There is no heredity basis for leadership. Put simply, a leader is recognized for knowing what to do next. We weren’t born knowing what to do next, we learn it. We may have been well-prepared with scientific background knowledge before confronting a given situation, but our main leadership strength is in studying that new situation and deciding what to do next.

Anybody can do it.

To put it more strongly, everybody SHOULD do it! All of us want to be as effective as possible, and that means leading when appropriate as well as following and cooperating when appropriate.

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