Explore BrainMass

Leader and Psychology Theory Assessment

This posting offers notes about creating a personality profile of a (known) superior business leader. It Incorporates into the profile various personality traits that make the figure a good business leader. It also discusses the significance of each trait and how the major theorists would explain this individual's success.

Solution Preview

As you create a personality profile of a known superior business leader, it is probably best to use Oprah since she is so famous. Please allow some of my notes to help you:

First, Oprah Winfrey is a pivotal business figure. She embodies numerous traits of success in terms of her personality, ideology, work ethic, as well as her humanistic approaches to business and leadership. For example, please note how her humble attitude affords her a down-to-Earth, sincere, and genuine persona as both a leader and figure. Please note her quote, "I am most proud of the magazine, because I did not know what I was doing" ( This proud yet modest approach to business is inspirational. Her leadership is also amplified by her ability "to balance practicality and preaching" (

As you apply theory, please note that Trait Theory is one area to use to assess Winfrey. Since this research shows the links "among jobs, self-image, roles of social class, intelligence, orientation to size and power, orientation to social valuation" ( theory.pdf), Winfrey's background seems to embody these traits. Winfrey is aware of the intersections of race, gender, and class. She also empowers workers and people, regardless of social status. She is quite equitable in her approach to projects and people.

As mentioned, Trait Theory suggests that people are born with certain qualities for leadership roles. Therefore, Winfrey's style is so natural even iconic. Research about Trait Theory shows that "innate personality characteristics or traits are thus an integral part of leadership" ( Thus, this theory is feasible since it almost seems like Winfrey's personal and business traits are gifts; she is a mentor and leader of almost infinite proportions. She seems innate because she is so natural and organic in her personality and business demeanor.

Because her optimistic vision allows workers and stakeholders to be happy, satisfied, and collaborative, Trait Theory may explain her personality and business philosophies. Please note how she says, "My philosophy is that not only are you responsible for your life, but doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment" ( You might also notice how Trait Theory affects work dynamics because it influences other factors such as social space and climate. Since Oprah seems to adjust, compromise, trade-off, and even "sacrifice interests before prestige or gender type" ( theory.pdf), she may conform to this theory.

Since Oprah applies a process approach or almost a quest or calling in terms of her leadership and business style, you might also apply Trait Theory. Please note how research calls her "the first African-American woman to become a billionaire, Oprah overcame her own trials and tribulations stemming from child abuse" (

Besides Trait Theory, you might note that Levinson's Theory of Seasons of Adulthood might also apply to Winfrey. Levinson maintains that all adults have a life structure or pattern, a design of a person's life at a given time. This structure acts like a framework. Just as a house has a framework, all adults develop by having ...

Solution Summary

References and notes are provided in order to guide the user about an assessment of a famous figure in terms of leadership traits.