• http://www.facebook.com/dim.tso Dim Tso

    Seeing how every member of a group is the same in the eyes of the company they work for, the title of the leader, is there….just to be there.
    I could be wrong but since leaders have no say in the way the group develops, it’s just a title and that’s all.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Nate-Broadus/100003245734823 Nate Broadus

      It may sound pessimistic, but that is dead on.

      Leader or figurehead? I can’t quite tell the difference.

      • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

        They probably don’t. The question really is, do they think they do?

      • http://twitter.com/IgnisInvictus Ignis Invictus

        Could Monitor be a more accurate term? Like a class monitor which I think is the basis of having leaders in kpop groups in the first place. Just maybe.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Nate-Broadus/100003245734823 Nate Broadus

          Either one fits better than leader.

    • http://twitter.com/silverukiss Silver

      But there are some leaders that do take the effort to actually lead their group, making it more than a title. And different companies will give their “leader” more power than some other companies might.

      The members of U-Kiss have made constant little mentions to how now that Soohyun is the leader, he helps smooth out problems between the members. They have also mentioned before that he leads their practices. Correcting their mistakes, making them do things over until they get it right. He’s even ended their practices early before, telling them to go home and rest (without the knowledge of the managers). So apparently he has a bit more freedom with what he does with the group, and doesn’t always have the managers looking over his shoulder.

      I think it could also have to do with the size of the company a band is in. Popular bands that come from large and rich companies have a lot of people they hire to work with the band, making a leader not really as necessary. Smaller companies have a lot less manpower. Some of them, such as NHM, have probably started to rely on the leader to work more as a manager, even if they may not be paying them more.

  • VLF218


    *Sidenote* That CL picture is my phone background lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1179715473 Ilham Bint Ahmed

    Leader is not really needed. Look at miss A, they have no leader and are popular as a whole group (even though Suzy is gaining a lot of fame a bit more than her members but she is putting their name out their).
    And 2PM seem to be doing better without a leader – no disrespect to Jay Park, I actually like Jay Park.

    • eschjapade

      Agree but only partly. I think it depends on the group itself. miss A is a great example of a group which does not need a leader but I cannot imagine INFINITE without Sunggyu as their leader. He pulls the members together as a unit because they have such distinct personalities. :)

      • http://www.facebook.com/kennedy.halstead.3 Kennedy Halstead

        Totally agree about Sunggyu. Of course, we can never know how things would be if he weren’t the leader (in some alternate universe I don’t want to visit), but I do believe that with so many people and all with their own needs, desires, wants, and ways of doing stuff, bringing them together cohesively is a monumental task and he does it quite well.

        Seguing into another group with a similar problem, though less people – MBLAQ. Seungho has got quite the job managing 4 other very strong, creative, dynamic people, but you can see, they all respect him for it. I mean, G.O’s like the same age, he could totally be the leader, but he steps back because he knows Seungho can and does get the job done. I mean, Kpop is a job and the leader’s duty is to make sure everyone contributes, if that makes any sense.

    • leesigh3

      A lot of people like Jay Park. His last CD sold 90,000 copies (a lot more than Wooyoung’s solo CD).

    • yuuki

      on side note.. 2pm calls Jun.K or i still call him as Junsu as leader now it was often mentioned in 2pm show

  • kelliusmaximus

    I’m sorry but it is so incredibly unfair, and quite frankly wrong, to think anything along the lines of “Didn’t he fail as leader since the old TVXQ broke up?” about Yunho.

    He is a leader, not a dictator. JYJ wanted to leave so badly they were willing to sue SM. He could not have stopped them, and he could not have done anything to change their minds. And if you think he’s a failure for not joining them, well… if he disagreed with their choices but left anyway, he’d be a follower, not a leader. Leaders lead by example.

    All the split did was show what a great fucking leader Yunho is, and proved that he values DBSK over everything and would protect the group no matter what. You might not think being reduced to two is being ‘protected’ but what sort of leader would let his group be BLACKLISTED FROM THE INDUSTRY OF TWO DIFFERENT COUNTRIES? On what planet would he ever let their reputation and status within the industry become what JYJ’s has? On what plane of existence would he ever let their career and path to success become limited by lawsuits and falling out with companies? People have different priorities but it’s obvious Yunho’s has always been keeping a good, clean image and being as successful as possible. It’s one of the things that made him such a great leader to begin with.

    Yunho hasn’t failed one bit. Doubt his decision all you want, but their tours (5 dome tour, just added 2 Nissan Stadium dates- the biggest stadium in Japan of over 70k seating capacity), sales (2.5 overall million since KYHD) and insane improvement in performing speak for themselves. It was the right choice, he didn’t fail. He managed to salvage a broken group and was brave enough to do so while everyone was doubting them, to continue the DBSK name.

    Ok that was a sore spot, had to get it out. But aside from the lawsuit, he’s a really great leader. Diplomatic spokesman, great manners, never attention seeking or greedy for personal success, never gets into scandals, strict but kind, hard worker etc etc. I’ve come to think of him as a leader in kpop, not just DBSK. Now the other 3 have left, he seems a bit lost with nobody to lead so he’s taken to giving advice to all the rookies he can (and they fawn over him for it). You can see it at the end of every Hallyu concert/SM Town, the way he leads the bows and such. He’s clearly a natural leader and does indeed take the role very seriously. But contrary to what the author said, he’s said many times since the split that he’s not really the leader and Changmin’s his equal. He introduces himself as such but I don’t think Changmin needs much leading (just someone to talk for him when he doesn’t want to lol)

    • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

      “…I don’t think Changmin needs much leading (just someone to talk for him when he doesn’t want to…”

      Absolutely true.

      • kelliusmaximus

        Oh it’s fair not to think it’s pertinent enough to talk about at length. But it got mentioned and it’s something I’ve been annoyed about for a long time so I took the chance to rant.

        It does bother him but he’s never really taken responsibility for it, aside from saying that he was especially hurt as a leader. He’s been pretty clear that he blames them and that’d be why he doesn’t interact with them.

        • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

          Feel free to express your opinion. That’s what Seoulbeats is for. :)

          As for me, I’ll stay away from making any rash judgments (not that your opinion was rash or anything. It’s just not my role to.)

          • keziarhh

            Why did yo even comment in the first place?

    • http://twitter.com/V_Soleil Fly

      I don’t doubt about Yunho’s leadership but neither can you blame what JYJ did. I think everyone took the path they wanted. But what annoys me the most is that it doesn’t make sense they still keep the name of TVXQ which was made for the five of the them and the meaning is “five gods of the east”, when there’s two! I know it’s beacause of their popularity and because they treasure so much the name, but still!

      • maldita

        Their name only roughly translates to “rising gods of the east” with no mention of the number 5, so they have every right to use the name of the group they never left to begin with.

      • kelliusmaximus

        uh… it doesn’t translate to ‘five gods of the east’.

        It’s their name and they have the right to keep it. Fans have no right to demand they give it up, or expect it, or even want it. Just how many sacrifices do you want them to make, exactly?

    • maldita

      PREACH! I was so ready to say my own piece about Yunho, but you’ve covered pretty much everything I was gonna say. :)

      Yunho really did take his leader role seriously. He was actually pretty hard on DBSK back in their early days, always calling out the other members’ mistakes and faults, just to get the end result perfectly. He went out of his way to introduce himself and the group to all the sunbaes, make sure they give a good impression, etc. It’s worked in the long run, and he was able to lead a group of individuals to work so well together, never mind their different (and sometimes clashing) personalities and varying strengths and talents. He took on his leader role head-on and strived to be a role model for many people.

    • mangochic

      It seems you are agreeing with the actions SM took with JYJ

    • http://twitter.com/chubipower Jay Wong

      Yunho is the quintessential leader and my perfect man *tears* thanks for your post!

    • guest

      I completely agree and i don’t think Yunho should have to carry the weight/guilt over the disbandment but i do understand the statement to an extent. As a leader he should fight for the group as whole not just one member or two for example i read somewhere about mblaq leader seungho who will apparently argue for all his members (MBLAQ as a whole) to management, i think that’s the only area if you could call it that in which yunho failed. i don’t know the underlying circumstances so i’m not in a position to say what he should or shouldn’t have done but i could tell when they’d reached that point where even though they were DBSK, it was mostly all about yunho and changmin, yunho was no longer leader of five but for two, JYJ members may have felt neglected by him as a leader because of that, don’t get me misunderstand me, i’m not taking sides just try to put myself in everyone’s shoes.

      • http://twitter.com/_chansu michelle

        I don’t think that people should call Yunho letting JYJ leave a ‘failure’ just because he didn’t manage to salvage the situation before it all went to hell. If you think about it, JYJ were clearly at their limit when they filed the lawsuit and if Yunho had forced them to stay for the sake of their name and for the sake of their fans, it would have simply been wrong of him to do so. Despite him being the leader, he wasn’t responsible for them in that he had the power to decide who has the right to leave. They were all grown, adult men during that time, and it goes without saying that Yunho likely would have rather seen JYJ happy than suffering just to keep their popularity and profits up.
        Also, although I wish Yunho could have been a little bit less serious (even now) the pressures of being named ‘Rising Gods of the East’ as a rookie group and having to maintain that image as hard working, talented, popular seniors now, it’s no wonder Yunho made being the leader everything he is.

      • Jo

        please don’t compare Shinhwa’s situation to TVXQ. Shinhwa’s contracts was finished and SM was only offering to renew Eric’s contract, but out of loyalty to his members he rejected the offer. in yunho’s situation though, it is JYJ who decided to terminate their contracts and leave SM, and hey, i have absolutely no problem with their decision. if you’re no longer happy with your workplace, no one should force you to stay, but i do have have problem with people who tries to shift the blame of the split to yunho.

        yunho’s responsiblity is towards TVXQ as a whole, but it does not extend to dictating every single actions made by the individual members.

        • greg

          “if you’re no longer happy with your workplace, no one should force you to stay, but i do have have problem with people who tries to shift the blame of the split to yunho.”
          Very well said.

    • Guest

      No wonder all the rookies left and right mention YunHo from time to time. He fawns over them too. Father figure/Older brother figure much? ♥

      Yes, I agree with everything that you said. I’ve watched videos of events and shows ending with all the Kpop artist gathering on the stage, and I can really see YunHo able to make everyone come together. He’s a natural. He was born for this.

    • Shichi

      No wonder all the rookies left and right mention YunHo from time to time. He fawns over them too. Father figure/Older brother figure much? ♥

      Yes, I agree with everything that you said. I’ve watched videos of events and shows ending with all the Kpop artists gathering on the stage, and I can really see YunHo able to make everyone come together, whether they’re from the same company or not. He’s a natural. He was born for this.

  • lokifairy

    Shawols knows that SHINee don’t have members who need a “lead”; they all exactly know what they want and what they can do (except when they debuted, they were all so nervous that Onew was usually the one who was talking for the group).

    Onew was the one who gave Taemin vocal lessons even before they debuted, the members talk with him first about their problems, Onew always tries to let the other members shine. Overall he is a wonderful leader. SHINee is not a group which needs a leader but if they need him he is there that’s why he is the perfect leader for a group like SHINee.

  • Giuliana

    That bit about SJ got me thinking… Ever since Leeteuk left for the army, Eunhyuk kinda took over the leader position, and I have to say I think he does a much better job than Leeteuk (fangirls, don’t kill me ;p)…. He’s not as much as an attention seeker and he seems to have more independent opinions (not asskissing SM like Leeteuk does), like when he said how sorry he felt for Henry and Zhou Mi during the google hangout thing

    I wonder how different suju would be as a group had Eunhyuk been the leader all along….

    • maldita

      So true. Eunhyuk’s basically the leader right now, yet nobody actually refers to him as such, but he does it anyway. Then again, being almost always in Leeteuk’s presence all these years probably made him see the cracks in Leeteuk’s leader persona, making him handle things differently now that he’s pretty much assumed the role.

      • ajj

        I’m thinking what’s gonna happen when Heechul comes back since he’ll be the eldest then.

        • maldita

          Heechul won’t play the leader role. It’s not his thing, and SM knows it. He’s more naturally the loud, moody hyung who likes to boss people around, but he’s not one to do the “leader” things. Even back in his trainee days when he, Kangin, Jaejoong, and Yunho were “Four Seasons,” Kangin was the leader, even if Heechul was the eldest.

          • ajj

            I remember them saying if Heechul’s the leader of that group they would’ve disbanded before they even debut lol..

            I was just wondering because in Leeteuk’s case Heechul listens to him and revered him. But in Eunhyuk’s case he’s younger and a little more sensitive.

        • Mika_San123

          Heechul’s a hoot but he just doesn’t have the personality to be a leader. He was once telling a story about how he rebelled against the manager by saying that it wasn’t his fault if his dongsaengs messed up, and he sure as hell wasn’t going to take any punishment for what their mistakes. The manager was so stunned that he let Heechul go. LOL Even though I completely agree with Heechul’s logic, a leader needs that whole team unity thing.

        • guest

          HAHAHAHAHAHA, Heechul as leader that has me in stitches, not that he’s bad but it just doesn’t suit him/his personality

          • ajj

            LOL. I actually didnt mean to say Heechul will be the leader when he comes back..Just curious about him and Eunhyuk the unofficial leader who’s younger than him.

          • guest

            I know i know, its that thought that made me laugh, guess its something they’ll have to work out amongst themselves, who knows , heechul may come back more mature and more willing to be leader (i’m lolling so hard as i type this for the sheer stupidity of it), i only think this because army is also team work so he may have learnt something, but probably not

          • ajj

            I dont think there’s going to be a dramatic change in Heechul. He’s serving in the PR Dept as a DJ.

    • lollipopop

      Eunhyuk might have that good side as leader but the only one that all SJ members really do listen well to is Leeteuk. Yes, Leeteuk might not have the best personality out there but he is the best leader SJ have. Leeteuk could gather all their different opinions into one same opinion. He might not be the best leader with the best personality out there, but for SJ, he suits the most as leader, he ‘leads’ them well. Btw, I am neither Eunhyuk’s fan nor Leeteuk’s fan. Just seeing this as an ELF.

    • http://twitter.com/Chouchou103 Michele

      Before his whole debacle and leaving for the army, I think Kangin was better leader material than Eunhyuk. While Leeteuk was the ‘umma’ of the group, Kangin was the ‘appa’. (It also helped that they were/are shipped together) Eunhyuk only started playing a more important role in the group’s dynamic after Kangin left. Also, you must remeber that when they debuted, Eunhyuk was part of the youngest half of the group. There is no way he could have been a good leader.

      Plus I feel like Leeteuk kinda trained him to be the next leader. I remember last year or 2 years ago during interviews, it would be Leeteuk and Eunhyuk taking the lead, passing the mic, working together to make sure every member had a chance to answer one question. Eunhyuk learned a lot from Leeteuk.

      • lollipopop

        Totally forgot about Kangin. Yes, I agree with you. If it weren’t for his scandals, he would have been the temporary leader now. Kangteuk were like the ‘mom’ and the ‘dad’ in SJ lol

    • guest

      I agree with Michele, Leetuk may have been the umma type leader but he did groom eunhyuk to an extent to take on the role, it was obvious on music shows , we’ve seen eunhyuk grow as well, i forget sometimes he was closer to the maknae line being in the middle age because he’s much more mature now, i think leetuk deserves some credit for that

  • kiribyi

    What even makes a kpop leader? Since the role is chosen arbitrarily in most cases, most of the leaders of groups may not even be the leader-type. I think the title more so aims to fit the standard issue image titles of each member (like, maknae, visual, rapper, and of course, leader).

    I think a leader does do more behind the scenes, which is probably why So Nyeo Shi Dae’s Taeyeon stepped down from the title. People say that she stepped down because it was too stressful to handle such a large group and the logistics were ideally a nightmare. But people only say, there can be two sides — because for SM, whose groups don’t really have significant “leaders”, there would be no point in announcing Taeyeon’s resignation as leader and typically crushing fans’ fantasies of her as the “kid leader” (although no one even remembers that she’s not the leader anymore). On the other side, though, there could be a stronger role that these leaders play that people are just unaware of. In the cases of SM-tight-lipped-strict-image-dictatorship, we may never know.

    • http://twitter.com/amandaisbeans Amanda Ling

      There’s also that idea of leadership being forced upon you, and how those with true leadership skills step up to the plate. They may be chosen arbitrarily, but that shouldn’t stop us from commending those who have given their all to this position which has been placed upon them, especially to those who have succeeded in their role. Also, different leaders approach their roles differently. There is also the leader who steps back to give his/her members the limelight, and who supports them from the back (Onew often seems like this.) I, personally, believe that part of being a leader is being able to sacrifice your time in the limelight so that your followers can improve themselves. Sometimes, however, assigned leaders like Leeteuk just aren’t able to handle to pressure of being a leader. Imagine having the weight of 5, 9, 13 people on your shoulders when you have your own insecurities, as well as your own baggage… If only groups were able to choose their own leaders. There must have been particular individuals who really shone during trainee period.

    • maldita

      Taeyeon didn’t step down. The articles that came out from that was from a Strong Heart story that she wanted to step down. Besides, Taeyeon and SNSD is different from most groups because she’s the same age as 6 other members. It’s already hard enough to exert some form of authority when 6 other girls see her as their equal, as opposed to other groups where the leader is the eldest, thus already automatically garners respect.

    • silentmoon

      I agree that leadership shouldn’t be force upon someone but I do think “leaders” have an important role in kpop. Sure managers and company staff may have a real say in the groups overall direction but when it comes to performances, only the group members are on the stage and that is when leadership matters. Having said that I think Taeyeon case is interesting because even if she isn’t a natural leader, she supports the group the best she can performance wise. She may not be the most memorable member (though that arguable), nor the spokes person for the group but I think she uses her skills to lead in her own way. Taeyeon is always the one who has to do the hardest lines, the most adlibs, the highest notes (even if Jessica and Tiffany are as good as her and do get those kind of lines as well, Taeyeon has the biggest role when it comes to singing) and she is always the one who sings the loudest when they are all suppose to sing (which Jess admitted was her job too but she didn’t always to do it). You can see how Taeyeon does the highest note in TTS’s Baby Steps even if its clearly out of her range because somebody has to do it, and that’s her. What I’m trying to say is that Taeyeon may not be the face or may not have the most outstanding personality but she does support the group with the best means she has, and that’s through her voice.

    • guest

      this is news to me!!i’m sure she didn’t step down

  • shannie4888

    I’m not sure I know who the leaders are of many Kpop groups because most of them simply blend in with the members. They don’t have the distinguishing feature of being the core of the group or the face that the public has come to rely on as the spokesperson. I must say that YG groups do seem to have strong leaders. They really stand out and that’s what a leader should do. If a leader doesn’t have that presence, then he/she might as well be listed under dancer and supporting vocalist or something else. YunHo is the exception in SM. All of SM’s leaders besides him, seem to fit right in with the rest of the group.

    I love BEAST too, but Doo Joon doesn’t stand out as a leader. I think Yoseob would’ve been a better pick or just not having a leader.

    Kpop companies love to give labels They have members in charge of visuals or sexy charisma and just like those useless lables get thrown around, so does the label leader one.

    • http://twitter.com/untill_when_eva dash of love dust

      …For a second there I was going to comment that Yoseob was the youngest THEN I REMEMBERED -_-; Him and his baby face

    • guest

      lol, Yoseob as leader?? You’re kidding right?? Junhyung would be my pick, If you look at groups through a family dynamic, yes doojoon doesn’t quite fit the father/leader role but neither does yoseob, he’s clearly one of the children. I wouldn’t say Hyunseung, he’s too 4D lol, i think junhyung has the right balance or could if he was actually in that role. (this is excluding his personal life, could get messsy)

  • http://twitter.com/IgnisInvictus Ignis Invictus

    I wonder if leaders get paid for their extra role. Not that it matters to fans but I have always been curious about it.

  • iamthegiraffe

    What about Shinhwa’s Eric? He’s a great leader for sacrificing his own contract with SM so that Shinhwa can stay together for 15 years.

    • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

      Absolutely and totally true. I regret that I totally glossed over that. The same goes with EXO’s Kris, who seems to be pulling a lot of weight according to accounts.

      • maldita

        EXO-M would’ve been so lost in their early days if Kris wasn’t their leader. And when all 12 EXO boys are together, Kris is like their de facto leader, the one they practically follow around and hang on to his every word. Even K’s leader Suho seems to defer to Kris most of the time.

      • WorthInClay

        Curious! What ‘weight’ has Kris been pulling off? Can share?

        • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

          He’s apparently the one that’s been holding EXO up when things get extremely awkward during public events; such as answering the tough questions during interviews, helping other members with public speaking, being a representative of EXO, etc. He’s one of those people that takes the leadership position seriously, and it helps out the rest of the team. I’m no expert on EXO though, so you might want to go on mass numbers of EXO Tumblrs if you’re really curious.

          This video might help, I’m not too sure though.

          • WorthInClay

            ooohh…. thanks… his thank you speech for their 1st award is really quite well-spoken… I think I can sort of grasp why some people calling him ‘bitch’ in some forums – as some sort of a back-hand compliment, I think…
            Anyone wanna continue to mess up my bias list with this boy? ;b

          • http://www.twitter.com/hipployta Hipployta

            Oh they call him “bitchface” because when they first debuted he had that cold handsome look

      • eternalstars

        YES, haha. The moment I saw the article’s title, I was like “you’re gonna talk about EXO’s Kris, rightrightRIIIGHT?!” XD Kris reminds me of Yunho sometimes, the way he leads EXO-M (and even just EXO in general). The funny thing is (and I’ve got to say this even though I love him very much :P), he has an incredible LACK of talent when it comes to singing, rapping and dancing, and yet he is irreplaceable in the group. I don’t think EXO-M would’ve done as well as they did in China without Kris. He’s assertive, but never overbearing, quick-witted, smooths over awkward situations very well, speaks very eloquently, is responsible, polite, respectful, aware, considerate – and okay, I’m going to stop fangirling over him now. :P But yes. He and Yunho are fantastic leaders. And it’s also so cute how half of EXO seems to adore Kris. Like little puppies. Their awed eyes whenever he speaks English or Cantonese – so adorable, hahahaaha. XD

  • FranFOD

    I’m sorry, but I’m going to have to disagree with you on some of your points. A lot of what a leader does happens behind the scenes, so as an audience it’s true that we don’t fully know everything. However even though SM leaders, for example, are chosen for their age, they still have a role to fulfill. Part of the reason why Jonghyun does most of the talking in SHINee is because Onew likes to give his dongsaengs the spotlight and support them from behind. Taemin has often said that whenever he has any difficulties, he always turns to Onew for advice first.

    Q: Being an idols gets really tiring, especially with all theschedules. Is there anyone that you talk to specifically when you’re having any problems?

    Jonghyun: I think that it’s the same for everyone really. Onew-hyung is our leader so we go vent out our frustrations on him when it gets too hard to keep. He’s very supportive and will stand by us even if we want to stand independantly. At times, it gets frustrating but looking back I’m really glad to have him by our side.

    Taemin: Instead of having Onew-hyung tell us to do such and such about our situation, he gives us options and tell us to follow what we think is right in the end. He listens very intently and will always tell us that it’s okay to be a little selfish once in while but to remember that we have other people to think about too, and not just ourselves.

    Onew: Ah, this is a hard topic for me to answer. As the leader, I should be the one carrying all of the burden so when I’m ever worried about something, I tend to keep it to myself. Being the oldest, I don’t want to worry my dongsaengs so instead of going to them, I will contact Leeteuk-hyung and ask him to guide me because I am still young. Lately however, hyung told me that it’s okay to burden the members about my problems because they are there for me as much as I am there for them. So recently, if I ever encounter something that is bothering me I no longer call Leeteuk-hyung. Instead, I’ve started to talk to my dongsaengs. They’re really helpful and will guide me with different suggestions that they give.

    Jonghyun: I think that Onew-hyung worries too much about us and doesn’t think of himself. I’m really aware of this, and we are very thankful but I hope that you know that we are here for you too [to Onew].

    Credit: Candy Magazine

    • anon

      you do realize that this interview was fabricated by someone on tumblr? it’s not real

      • http://twitter.com/xJazzXxLove Smile

        well that’s true, but it doesn’t change the fact that Onew is s great leader and friend & the first part of her comment is very true.

        “Part of the reason why Jonghyun does most of the talking in SHINee is
        because Onew likes to give his dongsaengs the spotlight and support them from behind. Taemin has often said that whenever he has any
        difficulties, he always turns to Onew for advice first.”

        • anon

          people idealize Onew way too much

          false interviews don’t help

          and lately Taemin’s favorite person to get advice from is his manager hyung lol

  • eschjapade

    I always thought Taeyeon is SNSD’s leader because she is their lead vocalist. Then again, what you see on the outside is not necessarily everything because you’ll never know if the leaders play a significant role within the members behind the scenes.

  • http://twitter.com/mingxiwoo Ming Xi Woo

    I’ve always thought Yonghwa was a great leader. He was the one who got the name of CN Blue REALLY out there with You’re Beautiful, We Got Married, endless variety shows.. and it certainly helps that in the band, he’s the frontman (a bit different from kpop dance groups) and the main songwriter/composer. He literally composes about 90% of their discography.

    I find band leaders somewhat more impressive than usual dance group leaders because bands work differently from dance groups. (EDIT: there are just so little idol band groups comparitively.) Some kpop fans still moan over how little screen time Minhyuk (drums) or Jungshin (bass) gets, when in reality, bands work like that. Most of the screentime goes to the main singer(s) and it must be very pressurizing, not to mention physically and mentally exhausting for Yonghwa to shoulder all of that responsibility and fall under criticism to kpop fans who don’t know how rock bands work. Bands that are not idol bands don’t even have leaders, they only have frontmen/women. He had to get the group through their early plagiarism criticisms and the attacks on how people said they were not a “real” band simply because they were hindered by the “idol” status. He not only used his excessive screen time very well to get his group to fame, he also managed to not let his members go unnoticed through individual activities after he got the name of the band out there. (Maybe this is more of FNC’s management of Yonghwa and the rest of CN Blue instead of Yonghwa himself, haha. Oh well, good job, FNC.)

    This is also why I always mistook Hong Ki for the leader of FT Island. I didn’t know Jonghun was the ldaer until I searched him up. Hong Ki lead the vocals, appeared on variety shows, acted on dramas, and was the visual of the group. I dare say that he is more famous than his band.

    Other leaders I really respect and love are Yunho, GDragon and Eric. Yunho set an example and really “lead” the group by continuing the name of TVXQ (I think the group falling apart wasn’t really his fault. He could’ve gone with the other members, instead he respected their choices. I don’t really buy the story that he didn’t know they were planning to file a lawsuit, but that’s another story for another time.) GD got his group through scandal after scandal (Daesung’s car accident, his own marijuana incident, etc.) and still got their group name out there with the Alive album I dare say that’s the album responsible for getting the name of Big Bang outside of Korea.) Eric… lead the group and they’ve been together for 15 years. If that’s not an amazing feat, I don’t know what!

    • leesigh3

      I agree about Yonghwa. He’s basically the acoustic version of G-Dragon in that he sets the group image + writes and composes a lot of the music. Totally carried the group until recently when all the members found good success with acting.

    • AnonWho

      I read an article recently about how the other CNBlue members were grateful for Yonghwa making a lunch appointment with their management’s CEO to discuss using the band’s original compositions. (The CEO said no in the end.) Might not seem like much but it takes initiative, persistence and courage!

  • AcadiasFire

    Some leaders I think are important and others…not so much. Honestly when I first found my groups and was learning more about them I was baffled at how many people I got mixed up because I thought they were the leader. In Beast I thought it was Junhyung, in U-Kiss when Xander was leader I thought it was Soohyun, in Shinee I thought the leader was Jonghyun…the list goes on :/ All in all I love all my leaders lol

    • http://twitter.com/silverukiss Silver

      Actually, Xander was never the leader. Before 0330 and the member change, U-Kiss never had an official leader. Some people would try to tell U-Kiss that they should have a leader, and it should be Xander because he was oldest, but U-Kiss would reply back that they had no leader. It wasn’t until the member change that Soohyun was chosen as U-Kiss’s first leader.

    • Chelsea

      Leaders are not people who scream “I’m the leader, here pay attention to me!”. Many groups have leader so the members can speak with him/her about their problems etc.

      A leader tries to help the members, and speaks with the company if there are problems. A leader is someone you can trust and lean on. Someone who understands you and won’t judge you; someone who will try to help you no matter what and of course someone who will lead you if you don’t know what to do.

      Yes there are also leaders in Kpop who obviously lead their members but if it’s really a good thing just to rely on the leader? Just look at EXO-M they would be TOTALLY lost without Kris. He might be not a good singer, dancer or rapper but the group would have failed so hard without him because the members were too nervous to open their mouth when they debuted. Maby of their interviews were so awkward. But lately he tried to make the other members speak as well. THAT IS WHAT A LEADER DOES. He lets the other members shine rather than himself like Onew.

      Onew spoke for SHINee a lot when they debuted but he always tried to make them talk more. He tried his best to build their self-confidence. Now after so many years SHINee is not a group who needs a leader anymore. Onew is more like a friend to them. Someone who makes them laugh and plays with them but he is still someone who they can lean on, someone who will listen to them and give them advices but he lets them choice on their own what they want to do.

      Every group has a different kind of leader, it doesn’t mean that a leader like GD would work for a group like SHINee or that a leader like Onew would work for a group like SuJu. Every group has different members with different personalities and SHINee for example has members with very strong personalities that’s why Onew doesn’t need to “lead” them anymore. They all know what they want and what they have to do but if the members feel weak and hopeless (no matter how long you are an idol you will always reach your limits again and again) he is there for them, not just as leader but also as a friend.

      • AcadiasFire

        Oh I know who a leader is and I completely understand that all leaders lead in a different way. I just love leaders who stand out I guess but I love all the leaders.

      • AcadiasFire

        You’ve given me things to think about though. I appreciate that. What I meant by stand out is the aura they present as well. I should have been more specific. I don’t know much about EXO though. I like their music but don’t know much about the group.

  • ajj

    Infinite wont be Infinite if there’s no Sunggyu and BAP without BYG is unthinkable.
    I thinks leaders are important and yes they come in every shape and color to fit just right for their group. When people say leader Yunho come into mind almost, immediately he embodies the role perfectly even if there’s only the two of them now. I don’t see any reason why he would refrain from introducing himself as the leader because although Chagmin nags him a lot he does treat Yunho as such. Besides it always slay me when he takes care of all the SM dongsaengs during SMTown concerts, he’s just amazing. Leeteuk maybe a lot of things but I think he’s the best leader for SJ, 12 were a lot of people and I think he did great. And of course there’s Eric, I cant imagine anyone as selfless as he is in Kpop idoldom.

  • Creamomo

    As someone who older than most of the star in the idol world, I really put an attention to the leader. because if the leader, who usually the oldest, if older than me I can feel less guilty.

    there is some people in Kpop that really deserves to be called a leader (that haven’t mentioned above), like Seungho and Donghyun.

    Seungho proves that despite he get the tittle because he is the oldest, he really is the leader of the group. with his experience as the class president from primary to high school, he really lead his member well. G.O (who only twenty days younger than him) said that he really glad that Seungho is the oldest, since he is the most suitable one for the role. even B2ST’s member said that they think Seungho feel like a leader for both group.

    And Donghyun, for being the only 80s born in the group, obviously have the maturity above the others.

    Of course being the oldest doesn’t always mean the best leader in the group, here I’m talking about Hyosung, Jihyun, Doojoon, and Jungah. focus at Jungah, I really don’t think she can take the place Kahi leaved because she the oldest one. she is a great singer and dancer, but she is not a leader. I can’t see her doing his role well. especially when Afterschool has Jooyeon and Lizzy who speak well in front of camera.

    I also want to share about Min. for several first times when I know Miss A, I think she is the leader. being the one who talk the most and the one that always sit on the seat usually taken by the leader. until one day I know that Miss A have no leader and they still have a good teamwork (despite one member out shined the others)

  • justsaying09

    you should also take eric as leader comparison among all idols generations, it’s gonna be contradictionary definition of leader you mention before, with him I can say that leader isnt only as status but core of group

    leader not play significant role as they must be because everything they’ve doing already arranged before by their company. Play their role in safety zone didnt show their capabilities.

    Give leader preasure then you know the real capability, as far as I know it just eric who could show it.he is the ideal leader among idols history.Other leader is important but other go for status. There’s nothing significant if the role given to other member. But yeah,, beg,bap, and as have different stories, with yunho , i just feel even in db5k era other members feel leadership from jaejong too.Yunho is leader but jae is their center.

  • Mika_San123

    I wish you had mentioned Sunye’s leadership of the WonderGirls – I think that would’ve been an interesting topic to discuss. I mean, on one hand, she seems to be a great leader – she took Sohee’s faulty chair and gave her her own chair, she continued to perform in spite of the death of her father… she’s done a lot. But on the other hand, there are people who consider her a selfish leader after her marriage (and her pregnancy just worsened their opinion), because her marriage puts the group on a longer hiatus, making them even more obsolete. They say that she should just leave so that the group don’t have to wait for her to promote. (And there are other comments about how her pregnancy ruins her image of being an idol – which I think is a little unfair to include.) How much does a leader need to give up before he/she just says, “enough!”?

    • http://splashofinspiration.wordpress.com/ Shweta

      Sunye is very intriguing, and I did consider including her at one point. She does a lot of things that are mentioned in this piece and other things that are extremely commendable. The thing is, describing Sunye’s role would get messy because then you have to start talking about the decisions she made in the personal life that have impacted her leadership postion and so on; long story short, I would end up with a new article’s worth of stuff! I wanted to avoid that, plus give you all people to bring up and talk about. (I know, I know, cheap cop out. ^__^)

  • http://www.facebook.com/ophelia.oh Ophelia Oh

    When you mention ‘leader’ in k-pop, you must not leave out Eric of Shinhwa. He is what I define as a true leader. How many artists in the past and current k-pop history can actually sacrifice their own luxurious benefits for the sake of the group’s existence? Not to forget, all the legal procedures and efforts to get back the rights to use the name ‘Shinhwa’ from the ex-company, and also forming their own company for the sake of the group to carry on with their promotion without stooping to any of the greedy entertainment companies. These are no easy feat. Managing a company and managing the group’s activities at the same time, no wonder Eric has ceased his own individual activities. But I’m glad the group is independent of any external powers but their own selves.

    • guigui

      this!!!!!!! ur oppas and unnis would never!! I never seen any leader as amazing as Eric, someone tell me and give me prove pls, is there any leader out there that can handle the group like Eric does?

  • leesigh3

    GD would be amazing as the leader of SNSD. I’m disappointed in the author for not bringing this up…smh.

  • http://twitter.com/Iwoveyeollie Jinee Scarlet

    I’m not a cassie but talking of kpop in general, when someone says leader, Yunho flashes in my head.
    second: Onew. I think SHiNee has come to a point where they don’t really need much leading. Everyone does what they have to do without Onew telling them to the point that Onew himself said that now he treats them as friends rather than someone he had to lead.. I don’t know about Suju or SNSD but in SHINee it seems like that.
    third: Sunggyu. Since I’m into infinite now, no matter how squishy the dude looks I think he’s on his way to become someone like Yunho actually because without him infinite would be another underrated boyband…

  • happy_slip

    No one mentioned Gyuri, whose leadership imo is quite admirable even though I don’t stan KARA at all. While it might be true that she was the last to know about the scandal or that she didn’t have any idea what some of her fellow members were thinking, I like that she was so calm and strong all throughout their ordeal. I don’t think I ever saw her lash out at the other members or even blame other people for what happened to them; she didn’t even play the victim card at all (from what I remember) — she just took everything in stride and focused on making them complete again. Not to discredit the other girls of course (as their issue was really complicated), but I think if Gyuri openly retaliated and gave up, it would have been harder for them to get past that experience. This might not be a good a proof of someone’s leadership skills as they almost broke up, but looking back, I do admire Gyuri’s quiet resilience at that time.

    On the other hand, I do like YGE’s way of choosing leaders. GD and CL are sometimes accused of hogging the spotlight, but if you follow their groups you can actually see why they were chosen to lead — it’s natural and justifiable, not random and forced.

  • http://twitter.com/lillian23910 Sharon

    I wouldn’t say the leader position is useless. When you bring a group together, naturally there’s going to be one person who will decide to take the lead and bring the group together in some way or form.

    Then there are pll who naturally just like to follow the others lead. Instead of picking a member to lead though, companies should just leave the group to decide who will lead them. Bc I will tell you, the members all unconsciously decide to follow someone. It’s just natural for pll to do this. Or in some cases, they could be more than one leader in the group, therefore finding it hard to pinpoint a leader.

    • guest

      i don’t think in korea people tend to be as big headed and proud about themselves so much, the one thing i like is that they really respect seniority…even if a member were to unconsciously decide to follow someone who is not the leader they would hardly start/cause a rebellion/riot in the group. In countries like in west where there is no respect for seniority/position the leader position is indeed useless e.g one direction, they all consider themselves to be hot, popular, equal so why should they have to follow a specific member when all they want to do is get up to their own business. Not saying in korea members don’t have such feelings but at least the position of a leader carries weight, it serves a purpose. even in groups where there is more than one leader that is the leader known to the public and the leader known to the group, it still works and serves a purpose the members know which is which and whom they can turn to depending on the situation. Just my opinion

  • Jaclyn

    Not only that, but Yunho’s a leader to everyone. You hear over and over (and over) by people in idol groups and the industry how Yunho had helped them. I’ve actually lost count of the number of idols who’ve said that Yunho has given them pointers or watched them, even the little rookie groups.

  • guigui

    Sorry but all of you are irrelevant… the lack of Eric here makes me confused. No one recognizes his effort and his true ability of a leader without showing off & that he’s a leader that sacrifice himself for the group? He’s basically a legendary leader, every leader in kpop group should look up to him. he leads in the back and let Minwoo to lead in front… This article writer should do some research first tbh… without Eric this whole article is irrelevant imo :D

  • http://twitter.com/LiannaKuku Lianna

    You forgot to mention Kris.. He’s the spokeperson of EXO (not just EXO-M) , he’s the most charismatic member and he takes care of the other members. He’s done a pretty good job as a leader so far, despite leading 11 members who talk in different languages and live in different dorms. He’s also not the oldest member which means he earned that title with his personality not his birthdate.

  • hapacalgirl

    As an older fan and incredibly Shinhwa biased (14 years of fandom will do that to you) none of these leaders, not even Yunho, hold a candle to the kind of leader that Eric has been in the past and remains to this day. how you can write an article about leaders and not so much as mention Eric is rediculous but also tells me hat you must be a newer kpop fan. At any moment in his career he could of left Shinhwa altogether, he had a lucrative acting career and is arguably the most successful and has the most wealth as an individual out of the group, but since their inception he has always put Shinhwa above all. He gave up a lucrative SM deal because SM didnt want all of Shinhwa, he put his OWN money to pay for the lawsuit and buy the rights for the Shinhwa name back in the early 00’s , and when they were finished with the military and needed a company to do group work, he once again with the help of Minwoo used his money to make SHINHWA COMPANY and create Shinhwa broadcast. He is incredibly childish and 4D but all of the group members/brothers respect him the most and trust him wholeheartedly and honestly he is the most mature and business minded in the group despite his 4D personality.

    • guigui

      yep! and when other ppl praise him for what he did, that he sacrificed for the group, he never agreed and just said that he did all those things bcs all the members wants to stay together… and that they r more comfortable together. he don’t like being praised, that 4D kid…

    • http://twitter.com/crisisgal11 Ophelia

      Well, to be fair, the writer did mentioned that he/she regretted about forgetting to include Eric (see the first comment). I’m sure all SHCJs are extremely proud of him and we’ll continue to adore him and all his 4D-ness. :P

  • LoveVictoria

    Victoria <3 Indeed one and only umma leader of f(x) babies. Caring, lovely and puretty leadah. Strong woman with soft image.

  • cancertwin2

    Since I’m a diehard Cassie, you had me eating out the palm of your hand with everything you said about Yunho.

    Above all else, he is the leader of TVXQ. Some Cassies back in the day used to say that he took things too far since he was serious about being the leader. He withheld praises from the members, he kept them in line (sometimes even with force) and as the members put it “he never let us leave his hand”. Jaejoong said that Yunho was a better choice as the leader because he himself didn’t have the heart to punish the members for their mistakes or take the punishment from the managers whenever the group messed up.

    The members themselves used to always thank Yunho whenever they won because they felt that he had a lot to do with the group’s success. Some of the big choices he made worked in the group’s favor. For instance when TVXQ didn’t do as well as expected upon debuting in Japan, SME wanted to send them back to Korea but Yunho told them that the group was staying until they became a success. Sure, they were all home sick and a little defeated, but it made them stronger as a group.

    So, when I think about a leader in Kpop I think about Yunho and a lot of the hard decisions that he made which helped make TVXQ what they are today.

    Honestly it is a bit weird that he’s the leader of the duo since Changmin truly doesn’t need much leading. Back when they were five, he was nicknamed “the unofficial leader of DBSK” because even though he was the youngest, he took charge of tough situations.

  • Lili Little

    Before reading the article I was wondering if I was going to have to write a comment about Eric (*sigh*). Definitely beat to it though (and not surprised about that). Still, casting another vote for Eric being worth mentioning as a good leader. His group wouldn’t be together today if it weren’t for him.

  • saroj khan

    if yo have to talk about leADERS–THE BEST –THE ONE AND ONLI ERIC MUN FROM SHINWa–he did a lot for the group.i think respect is of utmost importance and i feel the boys respect him a lot.

    others –i know some of them back then when i started into kpop so keep in mind that i dont follow them anymore so it might have changed.

    super junior –first group i got into.loved evryone but never really thought of leeteuk as a leader.the are so many quiet people in the group like rye,sung –i wished he would at least let them talk and try and focus the attention on them .leeteauk usually talks by himself ,he doesnt bring out the quiet members to the front or include them .members dont really respect him as leader .

    dbsk::ya yunho took the leader position way too seriously.you have to chill once in a while ,let the kids have fun ,too strct.
    snsd:dont see taeyeon as a leader either.
    2pm hwne jay was a leader–jay was a good leader-strict when needed but also fun .those kids knew how to have fun .he was outspoken on interviews regardless of his inefficiency in korean and the gys respected him.id ont hwo the leader is anymore… .
    big bang:gd defines big bang in my opininon.he holds the group –even after all the controversys they are stil together which is alot in kpop.the members really look upto himm–the onli thing with big bang and 2ne1 –they really should do more variety shows :((..

  • http://www.twitter.com/hipployta Hipployta

    I don’t know why but I was expecting Shinhwa’s Eric and EXO’s Kris in this article LOL…

  • http://www.facebook.com/djem.mars Djém Mars

    I’m sorry to shinwa fan but honestly speaking that is the only person whe can think about since numerous idols think that Yunho is the LEADER in the kpop industry saying he helpep them, guided them, conforted them and sharing with them his experience and having meaningful talk even to rookie group……
    so Jung Yunho is a great and legendary leader.
    and even if the group is reduced down to two members, even if changmin doesn’t really need to be directed anymore he himself said that yunho will forever be the only leader of their group.

    On a side not I also like the leadership style of Bang Yong Guk ! he leads the group very well….making them interrested in society problem, helping unicef and such…..
    A new great leader is born !

  • screaminpka

    imo, only the members of the group have the rights to say whether or not their leaders are worth the title or not.

  • Janey

    Great leader? No need to ask, it’s the one and only Eric Mun of SHINHWA

  • nard

    No Eric, this ‘article’ is irrelevant

  • orangelatte

    Eric and Leeteuk in my opinion are the best leader so far :)

  • Isme

    late to the party, but “behind-the-scenes” leader award goes to Sunny Hill’s Janghyun

  • yuuki

    you shouldn’t forget Eric as the leader of Shinhwa who has been leading for 15 years now. Yes he did get into position for being the eldest and tallest from dongwan’s perspective (this was meant to be funny). However it is undeniable that Eric has managed to put Shinhwa together through rough times when they have to fight (legally) against SM which is hardcore mania at providing bad contracts to a group. Also everyone expected Shinhwa to be parted during their 4/5 years hiatus but no one imagined that Eric had different plan to actually establish exclusive company just for the Team.. from public point of view he is man with less word, extremely handsome and cheesy acting lines but I am sure as hell that Shinhwa Changjo and the members know more than anyone that Eric is notably an excellent leader on his own way.. he stands behind and support and when needed he is very quick to act and a decent act on top..
    And i think this is what SHinhwa actually needed just like how every team has diffrent needs because, in SHinhwa they have someone who can speak confidently in concert (Minwoo) Variety (Junjin) and media (Dongwan) so, Eric is fine shutting his mouth and trolling his member behind the scene…
    Another one could be Jokwon from 2AM who is indeed very not so serious looking guy given his Kkap imagge but actually is very sensible and lead the team despite not being the oldest. I think he played the main role in bringin 2AM to light which JYP didn’t give a flying shit to promote them and focused on 2PM only. He would go to variety and make first impression which is extremely important in K-pop scene where god knows how many idols are there and then blew up everyone by his singing skills following up with introducting 2AM to the world (i mean Korea)..

    Apart from that I actually agree all of your point about the leadership and the leaders.. my favourite one is CL although I am a huge Bigbang stan that girl surely is full of leadership skills..

  • SecretTime

    A lot of people say that Luna should be the leader of f(x) since she’s the most outspoken one (besides Amber) and respectful one, but I think being the “mother-type” leader is the best thing for f(x) since most of their members debuted so young (I believe Krystal and Sulli were only 16 when they debuted?)

    Also, Victoria seems to handle really bad situations really well. When Krystal fainted she completely stopped dancing and walked calmly over to her and she and Sulli helped her up. I can’t blame her, but Luna continued to sing as she was probably unsure of what to do (fainting on stage isn’t something you’re supposed to expect, after all). Regardless, I think Victoria doesn’t really get enough credit as the leader of f(x).

  • greg

    Tiffany Hwang is the leader of Girls’ Generation.

  • Lorimar Lopez

    OMG! I seriously couldn’t keep reading… Ok! So, maybe Onew does not show the great leader that he is on TV, but that doesn’t mean he is not a good leader. It’s not that Jonghyun does all the talking, it’s that he doesn’t know when to shut up (sorry Jjong). Have you seen them practice? Have you seen how focus he is? He puts the order when SHINee is out of focus… really, you should investigate better. How come that you write an article saying that you don’t know who the leader of B2ST is… then investigate! The discipline of a group is reflected on the groups behavior… like SHINee for example. They are such good kids. Super Junior… Super Junior??? Really? Leeteuk? Come on! I think you are not a big fan of SM groups. Leeteuk has prove multiple times how great of a leader he is. He is the one that have to smile in front of a camera when his own company tries to jeopardize them. He is the one the fans follow. He is the one that give advises, even to idols that are not part of Suju. He is the one that cares for them, and makes sure everything is in order. How do you believe that a Kpop group, with so many members, and the world against them, has survive so many years… it’s because of him. He even had to find a way to mention Hangeng on TV to please the fans, after SM prohibited mentioning Hangen’s name. He is the one his members waited two years to make a comeback. He is the one ELF’s call “our leader”. He is the one that always wins best leaders on surveys. He is the one that knows exactly what to say in complicated situations. He is the one that wrote a goodbye letter when he left and a hello-i’m-back-letter when he came back. Am not saying that other leaders are not good too, I’m just saying that you should open your eyes a little bit more and reestablish your concept of a leader in the kpop world. It makes you look that you are new into the kpop world wich I guess you’re not. Trying to not position myself as an ELF here is hard, though I firmly believe you have some of those leaders backwards.

  • Linh P.

    You say Onew doesn’t have the leadership material, it’s either because you don’t know him well or you just can’t see the way he even lead his group on some extent. He used to talk and represent SHINee, but after that he just give that chance to his members. You should see every time they win an award, especially when they won the “Best Artist Award” in 2013, he bowed in whole 90 degrees, in concerts, etc. as well. He is the main reason why the group stays together up to this days and he’s also the main reason why SHINee is able to keep their respectful image. He supports and encourage his members, he isn’t the type of leaders who be telling members what they need to do or what not, he fully listens and guide them on the right direction. He treat them as friends, but also as a big brother.