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Patrick Dillon



Leadership is something you are born with, but also something that evolves with time. There are many people who were born to lead and there are also people who learned to become great leaders with time. Honestly, I think it is a mixture of both that makes a great leader. There are many factors involved in becoming a great leader, for example how you are brought up as a child, how your parents raised you, and adversities people faced growing up. Some people become great leaders and some people are born with leadership qualities.

The first person that comes to mind when I about leadership is Derek Jeter. Derek is a former shortstop for the New York Yankees and a future hall of famer. Growing up in the Bronx and watching him all the time Jeter was my idol growing up. Derek was one of the most respected and liked players in the league not only because of how good he was but because of the way he carried himself off the field. He was never on the news for doing something stupid and never got in any kind of trouble in his many years in the league. One of the qualities of being a great leader is knowing that there is a time and place for everything. I’m sure he goofed off from time to time but he knew when it was time to get serious.

A leader is not only someone people look up to, but someone people respect. Not everyone may like you – they may envy you – but everyone respects you. Derek Jeter had that. “Derek carried himself like a veteran, confident, but not cocky. What I always admired about Derek was how he never changed. When I came back to the Yankees in 2000, he was the same exact guy. Much more accomplished and with a big contract, but that work ethic never changed.” This is a quote from Dwight Gooden a former teammate of Derek Jeter. Not only in sports but in life, it’s not about how much time you have in the sport or in whatever job you have, it’s about how you conduct yourself and help others around you succeed and that is exactly what Derek Jeter did. Being a leader takes work, you have to work harder than everyone else. Being a leader is being respected by your rivals and the people you compete against, even though they may not like you, they still know that you’re that guy.

“He led by example his whole career has been that way. Plays hard, plays to win. Expects the most from his teammates. When you’re in battle with a guy like that, it’s important not to let him down. From superstars to the 25th man on the roster, we all felt a responsibility to play hard and play to win because of Jeter. That’s rare.” This is a quote from Pedro Martinez, Hall of Fame pitcher for the Boston Red Sox. What he is saying is that Derek made the people he was playing against play harder. Jeter may not be the greatest player of all time, but his dedication was one of a kind. Jeter spent endless hours on the field and in the batting cage perfecting not only his craft but helping his teammates perfect theirs as well. He was always the first person to practice and the last person to leave, and that’s what it’s all about. To be a leader you have to love and be passionate about what you do, and Derek Jeter did. Derek Jeter was a phenomenal leader on and off the field and for that reason he will always be someone I look up to and aspire to be like.

I’m not sure how Derek Jeter grew up or how he was as a kid, but I do know that he is a great leader and someone I aspire to be like when I grow up. Derek has all the qualities a great leader has from a great speaker, hard worker, humble, and unselfish. These are all of the qualities I would want someone leading me to have.


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