Leadership: What Is It Good For?

Actually, my real question is, “Leadership: What is it?” But every time I tried to type that question, the Edwin Starr song, War: What Is It Good For? came to mind.

So, what is leadership? That’s a big question. No, it’s a huge question. How about management – how does it differ? These are not questions I expect to fully answer here. What I am expecting to do is stir up some thinking.

And to start that thinking, here’s a couple of quotes:

Dwight Eisenhower once said, “Leadership: The art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.”

John Holt, the renowned educational reformer in his excellent book, Teach Your Own, said, “Leaders are not, as we are often led to think, people who go along with huge crowds following them. Leaders are people who go their own way without caring, or even looking to see, whether anyone is following them. ‘Leadership qualities’ are not the qualities that enable people to attract followers, but those that enable them to do without them. They include, at the very least, courage, endurance, patience, humor, flexibility, resourcefulness, stubbornness, a keen sense of reality, and the ability to keep a cool and clear head, even when things are going badly. True leaders, in short, do not make people into followers, but into other leaders.”

What is the difference between a leader and a manager? I have my own thoughts in this, but I really want yours. So I’m pleading for everyone reading this blog to post a comment below, answering the question of what the difference is between a leader and a manager. I know for a fact that the comments will mean a lot more than my opinion or any definition found in a business book or course.

Take a few minutes to click on the comment button below and write whatever you want about my question.

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