GM: MOD 5 – UNIT 2


Apply leadership concepts in a work context



Define Leadership

Why Is Leadership Important?

You can buy someone’s physical presence, but you cannot buy loyalty, enthusiasm or devotion. These you must earn. Successful organisations have leaders who focus on the future rather than cling to the past. Leaders bring out the best in people. They spend time developing people into leaders

Definitions of leadership

There have been many definitions of leadership.

Tannenbaum defines it as


Interpersonal influence exercised in situations and directed through the communication process towards the attainment of goals.


If we discuss this definition, we will see the following:

Interpersonal influence where the leader influences followers or employees

Exercised in situations: in the workplace, this would refer to the work that has to be done – there are other situations where leadership is also important, for example going on an expedition, sport teams, etc.

Directed through the communication process: what a leader wants has to be communicated to employees and team members

Towards the attainment of goals: the goals at work, for a sport team, the goal of the expedition, for example climbing Mount Everest


Alternatively, Zaieznik and Moment define leadership as


An interaction in which the conscious intentions of one person are communicated in is behaviour, verbal and otherwise, with the consequence that the other person wants to, and does behave, in accordance with the first person’s intentions

If we break down this definition, we will see the following:

An interaction: between the leader and the team members

In which the conscious intentions of one person: what the leader intends and plans

Are communicated: the leader communicates with the team members

Is behaviour, verbal and otherwise: what the team leaders specifically wants the team members to do

With the consequence that the other person wants to and does behave in accordance with the first person’s intentions: the end result is that team members do what the leader wants

Philip B. Crosby states:

Leading is stating objectives in a way that is precisely understood, ensuring the commitment of individuals to those objectives, defining the methods of measurement and then providing the impetus to get things done. Philip B Crosby.

Broken down, the definition states:

Leading is stating objectives in a way that is precisely understood: the leader communicates the objectives to the team in such a way that the team members understand what is expected of them

Ensuring the commitment of individuals to those objectives: the leader gets the support of the team members

Defining the methods of measurement: how will the team members know if they have been successful?

And then providing impetus to get things done: the leader motivates the team to do the work

Another definition of leadership

Leadership can be defined as directing and influencing the actions of individuals and groups to such an extent that they willingly pursue the objective and goals of the organisation.

Broken down:

Directing and influencing the action of individuals: motivating and convincing team members

To such an extent that they willingly pursue the objectives and goals of the organisation: to put their efforts into achieving the goals of the organisation.

A simplified definition of leadership can be stated as follows:

The ability to affect human behaviour so as to accomplish a mission designated by the leader

In other words, leadership is influencing a set of behaviours that help a group perform their task or reach their goal.

Qualities of a leader

Effective leaders all have certain qualities that cause people to listen to them and follow them. This is true, even when leaders are at times unpopular. President George W. Bush of the USA was very unpopular throughout the world and even in his own country, but he was elected for the presidency twice.

Margaret Thatcher was unpopular even in her own party, but she became the longest continuously serving prime minister of the UK since 1827.


The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines humane as:


marked by compassion, sympathy, or consideration for humans or animals


Leaders are concerned about getting things done. They don’t get embroiled in gossip and back-stabbing. They encourage those around them to do likewise

Humane leaders are human. They make mistakes and when they do so, they readily admit.

They treat staff as individuals. They give closer attention to those that need it and lots of space to those that deserve it.

Honest leaders have the ability to encourage and nurture those that report to them – delegate in such a way as people will grow

Leaders have expectations of and confidence in followers. Outstanding leaders communicate expectations of high performance from their followers and strong confidence in their followers’ ability to meet such expectations.


The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines empathy as:

The action of understanding, being aware of, being sensitive to, and vicariously experiencing the feelings, thoughts, and experience of another of either the past or present without having the feelings, thoughts, and experience fully communicated in an objectively explicit manner


Understanding what others say, rather than listening to how they say things – we could partly sum this quality up as “walking in someone else’s shoes”.

Empathy is:

Trying to put yourself into the world, thoughts and feelings of the other person, as he experiences them and not as you want to see them.

To be in another person’s shoes. Your attitude is one of warmth, understanding and acceptance.

You feel (name of feeling) because…(reason for feeling)

Listen actively to identify the underlying feelings. “It sounds as if you are disappointed.”




Objectivity is expressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations


In other words, seeing things as they really are, without bringing your personal feelings into it.

Objective leaders are flexible. They welcome change. They do not stick to an old position simply because it is more comfortable

They are adaptable. They see change as an opportunity rather than a threat.

Leaders focus on the future, not the past. They anticipate trends and prepare for them. They develop a vision for their team and communicate it to them.

Leaders commit to work together in a team

Leaders are not threatened by competence. They enjoy promoting people and are quick to give credit to those who have earned it.



Transparency: something transparent – a picture (as on film) viewed by light shining through it or by projection

In other words something you can see through, with nothing hidden.


Leaders have a clear vision of what they are working towards. They do not keep their vision a secret – they communicate it to their people.

Leaders are open to new ideas. They demonstrate their receptiveness by supporting change.

Leaders confront issues as they arise. They don’t procrastinate. If something needs fixing, they do it right away, even if it’s uncomfortable. The longer things are left, the more difficult they become.



Accountability – the fact that the people with authority and responsibility are subject to reporting and justifying task outcomes to those above them in the chain of command


A good leader has to be accountable for the actions of the team and the accomplishment of the team’s goals. In a soccer team, every member of the team has the responsibility to prevent the other side from scoring a goal. Similarly, every member of the team has the responsibility of helping their side to score a goal. In the workplace, this commitment is expected of every member of a team.





Responsibility – duty to perform the task or activity you have been assigned


A good leader has a craving for the responsibility that comes with promotion and respect for hard work.

A good leader should possess the courage to accept responsibility and can probably infuse the same into those around him.

Leaders are concerned about getting things done. They don’t get embroiled in gossip and back-stabbing. They encourage those around them to do likewise.

Results-orientation – directing every action towards a mission – prioritizing activities to spend time where results most accrue


The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines honesty as:


fairness and straightforwardness of conduct


Honesty implies a refusal to lie, steal, or deceive in any way

Honest leaders enjoy developing their people into leaders, not followers. They train people to take on more challenging tasks and responsibilities. They develop people’s confidence.

Honest leaders don’t betray trust. They treat confidential information professionally.

These leaders confront issues as they arise. They don’t procrastinate. If something needs fixing, they do it right away, even if it’s uncomfortable. The longer things are left, the more difficult they become.

Leaders let people know how they are doing. They reward and recognise performance that is above expectations and they help people identify ways of improving poor performance


The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines integrity as:


Firm adherence to a code of esp. moral or artistic values


Integrity implies trustworthiness and incorruptibility to a degree that one is incapable of being false to a trust, responsibility, or pledge.

Leaders can and will do what they expect of others. They are prepared to ‘walk the talk’.

Leaders encourage and reward co-operation within and between teams.

They take turns doing the hard jobs as it will benefit the team in the long run and therefore also benefit individual team members.

They support the team: the members of the team and the goals of the team.

Leaders with integrity let people know how they are doing. They reward and recognise performance that is above expectations and they help people identify ways of improving poor performance.










Let’s start by looking at the definition of assertiveness:


State a fact or belief confidently


Most people confuse assertiveness with aggression or ‘getting my own way’. True assertiveness, however, is much more than that.

Assertiveness considers the rights and needs of everybody. It assumes that everyone is equal. Because of this assertiveness can be thought of as a method of increasing choices for everyone.

The aim of assertiveness is to find the best possible solution for all people. It’s about finding ‘win – win’ solutions. Assertiveness sees everyone as equal with equal rights and equal responsibilities.

Assertive leaders reflect on and learn from their mistakes. They see errors as a chance to improve their skills.

Assertive leaders enjoy a challenge. They are prepared to take risks and encourage others to do likewise. If they fail, they treat the exercise as a learning experience


The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines harmony as:


harmony of conduct or practice with profession


Leaders are consistent. They keep their principles and values at all times.

Good leaders have confidence, determination, and persistence.

Outstanding leaders display a high degree of faith in themselves and in the attainment of the vision they articulate.

Historical and present leaders

Leaders are all around us – you will find leaders in

Sport teams




Community-based organisation

Charitable organisation

Fund- raising organisation

Political parties

Some are leaders of small groups, such as a friendship group in school or a team leader in a business, while others are leaders of large groups, such as churches, political parties and countries.

We will discuss political leaders, as they seem to have the most influence over our lives. Our discussion will start with a discussion of Mahatma Ghandi, a leader who proposed non-violence protests, and Julius Caesar, who was a famous general and political leader in ancient Rome.

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Nickname Mahatma (“Great-Souled”) Gandhi

Born Oct. 2, 1869, Porbandar, India; died Jan. 30, 1948, Delhi

His father, Karamchand Gandhi was the dewan (chief minister) of Porbandar, the capital of a small principality in Gujarat in western India. His mother was very religious. Mahatma grew up to be a quiet, shy person who wanted to improve himself and the lot of his people.

After school he was studied law in England and returned to India in 1891. After working in India for a couple of years he was offered a contract in SA where he experienced insults and humiliation as a result of his race. In 1894 the Natal Legislative Assembly was considering a bill to deprive Indians of the right to vote and this mobilised Ghandi into action. He drafted petitions to the Natal legislature and the British government and had them signed by hundreds of his compatriots. He could not prevent the passage of the bill but succeeded in drawing the attention of the public and the press in Natal, India, and England to the Natal Indians’ grievances.

In 1894, he founded the Natal Indian Congress of which he himself became the secretary. Through this common political organization, he infused a spirit of solidarity in the heterogeneous Indian community. He flooded the government, the legislature, and the press with closely reasoned statements of Indian grievances. Finally, he exposed to the view of the outside world the skeleton in the imperial cupboard, the discrimination practiced against the Indian subjects of Queen Victoria in one of her own colonies in Africa.

The struggle in South Africa lasted for more than seven years. It had its ups and downs, but under Gandhi’s leadership, the small Indian minority kept up its resistance against heavy odds. Hundreds of Indians chose to sacrifice their livelihood and liberty rather than submit to laws repugnant to their conscience and self-respect. In the final phase of the movement in 1913, hundreds of Indians, including women, went to jail, and thousands of Indian workers who had struck work in the mines bravely faced imprisonment, flogging, and even shooting. It was a terrible ordeal for the Indians, but it was also the worst possible advertisement for the South African government, which, under pressure from the governments of Britain and India, accepted a compromise negotiated by Gandhi on the one hand and the South African statesman General Smuts on the other.

He returned to India in 1914 and entered the political arena where he advocated a program of nonviolent noncooperation with the British government included boycott not only of British manufactures but of institutions operated or aided by the British in India: legislatures, courts, offices, schools. This campaign was one of the factors that lead to Indian independence.

Ghandi is considered by many to be the father of his country. He is internationally esteemed for his doctrine of nonviolent protest to achieve political and social progress.

Recent research has established Gandhi’s role as a great mediator and reconciler. His talents in this direction were applied to conflicts between the older moderate politicians and the young radicals, the political terrorists and the parliamentarians, the urban intelligentsia and the rural masses, the traditionalists and the modernists, the caste Hindus and the untouchables, the Hindus and the Muslims, and the Indians and the British

Julius Caesar

Gaius Julius Caesar was born July 12/13, 100? BC, Rome [Italy] and died March 15, 44 BC, Rome

(The date of Caesar the dictator’s birth has long been disputed. The day was July 12 or 13; the traditional (and perhaps most probable) year is 100)

Caesar was a celebrated Roman general and statesman who was launching a series of political and social reforms when he was assassinated by a group of nobles in the Senate House on the Ides of March.

Caesar’s name, like Alexander’s, is still on people’s lips throughout the Christian and Islamic worlds. Even people who know nothing of Caesar as a historic personality are familiar with his family name as a title signifying a ruler who is in some sense uniquely supreme or paramount—the meaning of Kaiser in German, tsar in the Slavonic languages, and qayar in the languages of the Islamic world.

Caesar’s clan name, Julius is also familiar in the Christian world; for in Caesar’s lifetime the Roman month Quintilis, in which he was born, was renamed “July” in his honour. This name has survived, as has Caesar’s reform of the calendar. The old Roman calendar was inaccurate and manipulated for political purposes. Caesar’s calendar, the Julian calendar, is still partially in force in the Eastern Orthodox Christian countries; and the Gregorian calendar, now in use in the West, is the Julian, slightly corrected by Pope Gregory XIII.

Caesar’s clan, the Julii, were members of Rome’s original aristocracy. A Roman noble won distinction for himself and his family by securing election to a series of public offices, which culminated in the consulship. The requirements and the costs of a Roman political career in Caesar’s day were high, and the competition was severe; but the potential profits were of enormous magnitude. Julius Caesar funded and improved his political career through military victories. He was an excellent general and inspired the soldiers who served under him. This enabled him to achieve many victories on the battlefield.

Caesar was much loved by his soldiers, but his political opponents and the leaders of the countries that he defeated did not like him at all. Yet, though not lovable, Caesar was and is attractive, indeed fascinating.

His political achievement required ability, in effect amounting to genius, in several different fields, including administration and generalship as well as propaganda. He also had a great deal of intellectual and physical energy.

Next, we will discuss three famous British politicians of the 20th and 21st century.

Sir Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill was a British statesman, orator, and author who as prime minister (1940–45, 1951–55) rallied the British people during World War II and led his country from the brink of defeat to victory.

Churchill’s political career had many ups and downs. After a sensational rise to prominence in national politics before World War I, Churchill acquired a reputation for erratic judgment in the war itself and in the decade that followed. Politically suspect in consequence, he was a lonely figure until his response to Adolf Hitler’s challenge brought him to leadership of a national coalition in 1940.

On May 13 1940 Churchill faced the House of Commons for the first time as prime minister, after Chamberlain had resigned. At this time, Britain and France were losing in the war and Hitler had just invaded even more European countries, despite promises of non-violence and non-aggression to Neville Chamberlain, then prime minister of Britain.

Churchill is famous for his speeches – he was a great orator. On May 13, 1940, he warned the cabinet and the entire British nation of the hard road ahead

—“I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat”—

and committed himself and the nation to all-out war until victory was achieved.

Behind this simplicity of aim lay an elaborate strategy to which he adhered with remarkable consistency throughout the war. Hitler’s Germany was the enemy; nothing should distract the entire British people from the task of effecting its defeat. Anyone who shared this goal, even a Communist, was an acceptable ally.

With Franklin D. Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin he then shaped Allied strategy in World War II, and after the breakdown of the alliance he alerted the West to the expansionist threat of the Soviet Union. He led the Conservative Party back to office in 1951 and remained prime minister until 1955, when ill health forced his resignation.

Margaret Thatcher

She was a British Conservative Party politician and prime minister (1979–90), Europe’s first woman prime minister. She was also the only British prime minister in the 20th century to win three consecutive terms and, at the time of her resignation, was Britain’s longest continuously serving prime minister since 1827.

During her term as prime minister she accelerated the evolution of the British economy from statism to liberalism and became, by personality as much as achievement, the most renowned British political leader since Winston Churchill – she was known as the “Iron Lady”.

Thatcher led the Conservatives to a decisive electoral victory in 1979 following a series of major strikes during the previous winter (the so-called “Winter of Discontent”) under the Labour Party government. As a prime minister representing the newly energetic right wing of the Conservative Party, Thatcher advocated

greater independence of the individual from the state;

an end to allegedly excessive government interference in the economy, including privatisation of state-owned enterprises and the sale of public housing to tenants;

reductions in expenditures on social services such as health care, education, and housing;

limitations on the printing of money in accord with the economic doctrine of monetarism; and

legal restrictions on trade unions.


The term Thatcherism came to refer not just to these policies but also to certain aspects of her ethical outlook and personal style, including

moral absolutism,

fierce nationalism,

a zealous regard for the interests of the individual, and

a combative, uncompromising approach to achieving political goals.


When Thatcher took office, the country was in a mess politically and economically. She entered office promising to curb the power of the unions, which had shown their ability to bring the country to a standstill during six weeks of strikes in the winter of 1978–79.

Her government enacted a series of measures designed to undermine the unions’ ability to organize and stage strikes, including laws that

banned the closed shop,

required unions to poll their members before ordering a strike,

forbade sympathy strikes,

and rendered unions responsible for damages caused by their members.

In 1984 the National Union of Mineworkers began a nationwide strike to prevent the closing of 20 coal mines that the government claimed were unproductive. The walkout, which lasted nearly a year, soon became emblematic of the struggle for power between the Conservative government and the trade union movement. Thatcher steadfastly refused to meet the union’s demands, and in the end she won; the miners returned to work without winning a single concession.

At first, Margaret Thatcher’s policies led to high interest rates, inflation rates and unemployment, but by the end of her term Britain’s economy was strong, and inflation rates and interest rates were down. Also, the power of the labour unions had been broken.

Tony Blair

Blair was a British Labour Party leader who served as prime minister of the United Kingdom between 1997–2007. He was the youngest prime minister since 1812 and the longest-serving Labour prime minister, and his 10-year tenure as prime minister was the second longest continuous period (after Margaret Thatcher) in more than 150 years.

His government carried out several reforms that had been promised in the party’s manifesto but also accepted some Conservative policies that had been implemented in the previous 18 years. His government also immediately signed the Treaty on European Union’s Social Chapter and turned its attention to brokering a peace agreement between republicans and unionists in Northern Ireland.

In 1998 Blair helped to negotiate the Belfast Agreement (also known as the Good Friday Agreement), which was ratified overwhelmingly in both Ireland and Northern Ireland and which created an elected devolved power-sharing assembly in Northern Ireland for the first time since 1972. It led to a measure of peace in an area that had been characterised by acts of war for many, many years.

After the September 11 attacks on the United States in 2001, Blair allied the United Kingdom with the United States and its president, George W. Bush, in a global war against terrorism, culminating in the Gulf War. As a consequence of this war, Tony Blair and his party lost a lot of support, as many British citizens were against the war.

We will now discuss three South African leaders who have influenced our lives greatly.

Mandela, Nelson

A South African black nationalist and statesman whose long imprisonment (1962–90) and subsequent ascension to the presidency (1994) symbolised the aspirations of South Africa’s black majority. He led the country until 1999

After the massacre of unarmed Africans by police forces at Sharpeville in 1960 and the subsequent banning of the ANC, Mandela abandoned his nonviolent stance and began advocating acts of sabotage against the South African regime. In 1962 he was jailed and sentenced to five years in prison.

In 1963 the imprisoned Mandela and several other men were tried for sabotage, treason, and violent conspiracy in the celebrated Rivonia Trial. On June 12, 1964, he was sentenced to life imprisonment.

From 1964 to 1982 Mandela was incarcerated at Robben Island Prison, off Cape Town. He was subsequently kept at the maximum-security Pollsmoor Prison until 1988, at which time he was hospitalized for tuberculosis. Mandela retained wide support among South Africa’s black population, and his imprisonment became a cause célèbre among the international community that condemned apartheid. The South African government under President F. W. De Klerk released Mandela from prison on February 11, 1990

Mandela and de Klerk worked to end apartheid and bring about a peaceful transition to non-racial democracy in South Africa. In 1993 they were awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace for their efforts.



Nelson Mandela visiting a school in Johannesburg, South .Africa

Louise Gubb/Corbis


In April 1994 South Africa held its first all-race elections, which were won by Mandela and the ANC. As president, he

established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission TRC), which investigated human rights violations under apartheid, and

introduced housing, education, and economic development initiatives designed to improve the living standards of the country’s black population.

In 1996 he oversaw the enactment of a new democratic constitution.

The following year Mandela resigned his post with the ANC and in 1999 did not seek a second term as South African president. After leaving office in June, he retired from active politics.

Nelson Mandela was known as the world’s president during his term of office and is still today revered by nations and leaders over the world.

F.W de Klerk

He was politician who as president of South Africa (1989–94) brought the apartheid system of racial segregation to an end and negotiated a transition to majority rule in his country. He and Nelson Mandela jointly received the 1993 Nobel Prize for Peace for their collaboration in efforts to establish nonracial democracy in South Africa.

Desmond Tutu

Desmond Tutu is a South African Anglican cleric who in 1984 received the Nobel Prize for Peace for his role in the opposition to apartheid in South Africa.

In 1978 Tutu accepted an appointment as the general secretary of the South African Council of Churches and became a leading spokesperson for the rights of black South Africans. Gaining national and international attention, he emphasized nonviolent means of protest and encouraged the application of economic pressure by countries dealing with South Africa.

In 1985 he was installed as Johannesburg’s first black Anglican bishop, and in 1986 he was elected the first black archbishop of Cape Town, thus becoming the primate of South Africa’s 1,600,000-member Anglican church.

He retired from the primacy in 1996 and became archbishop emeritus. In 1995 South African President Nelson Mandela appointed Tutu head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission , which investigated allegations of human rights abuses during the apartheid era. Since 1988 Tutu has been chancellor of the University of the Western Cape in Bellville, South Africa.

We will end our discussion of leaders by discussing an African leader who was, at first, popular throughout the world, but, with time, became more and more unpopular. We will also discuss and American leader who was not very popular with the rest of the world.

Robert Mugabe

Mugabe was the first prime minister (1980–87) of the reconstituted state of Zimbabwe, formerly Rhodesia. A black nationalist of Marxist persuasion, he eventually established one-party rule in his country, becoming executive president of Zimbabwe in 1987.

As prime minister, Mugabe initially followed a pragmatic course designed to reassure Zimbabwe’s remaining white farmers and businessmen, whose skills were vital to the economy.

He formed a coalition government between his party, ZANU (which drew its support from the majority Shona people), and Nkomo’s ZAPU (which drew its support from the minority Ndebele people), and he abided by the new constitution’s guarantees of substantial parliamentary representation for whites. At the same time, Mugabe took steps to improve the lot of black Zimbabweans through increased wages, improved social services, and food subsidies.

Mugabe had always intended to convert Zimbabwe from a parliamentary democracy into a one-party socialist state, so in 1982 he ousted Nkomo from the coalition cabinet, leading to ethnic strife between the Shona and the Ndebele.

Zimbabwe’s economy also steadily declined despite Mugabe’s measures, and whites continued to emigrate in substantial numbers. He faced growing unrest in the late 1990s. A failing economy and his decision to send troops to assist President Laurent Kabila of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in his fight against rebels led to strikes, and in November 1998 riots occurred following Mugabe’s announcement that he and members of his cabinet would receive pay increases.

Although Mugabe was reelected in 2002, the elections were tainted by violence and criticized by observers. A law passed later that year allowed Mugabe to pursue an aggressive program of confiscating white-owned farms; more than half of the country’s white farmers were forced to relinquish their property. Unfortunately, property was often claimed by politically connected individuals with little or no farming experience. The government’s lack of forethought in forcing out the white farmers and failing to replace them with experienced farmworkers contributed to a significant decline in agricultural productivity. This, as well as a drought, led to severe food shortages in Zimbabwe.

As Mugabe’s popularity further declined, his regime became increasingly brutal and repressive.

media freedom was curtailed,

the opposition was harassed and beaten, and

a controversial program that caused the demolition of illegal housing structures was implemented, rendering hundreds of thousands of Zimbabweans homeless.

The economy continued to decline, and in 2007 the country had the highest rate of inflation in the world, as well as one of the highest rates of unemployment. Most Zimbabweans did not have adequate access to basic commodities, such as food or fuel, and Mugabe’s administration continued to be the subject of much international criticism. Despite this, Mugabe remained popular within ZANU-PF, and in December 2007 the party endorsed Mugabe as their presidential candidate in the 2008 elections.

George W Bush

He narrowly won the electoral college vote over Vice President Al Gore in one of the closest and most controversial elections in American history.

Almost from the start Bush set out to annoy the rest of the world:

The Bush administration announced that the United States would not abide by the Kyoto Protocol on reducing the emission of gases responsible for global warming (the United States had signed the protocol in the last days of the Bill Clinton administration) because the agreement did not impose emission limits on developing countries and because it could harm the U.S. economy.

The administration also withdrew from the 1972 Treaty on the Limitation of Anti-Ballistic Missile Systems

He also attempted to secure commitments from various governments not to extradite U.S. citizens to the new International Criminal Court, whose jurisdiction it rejected.

To many of Bush’s critics at home and abroad, these developments reflected a dangerous unilateralism in U.S. foreign policy.

The Bush administration’s first major challenge came on September 11, 2001, when four American commercial airplanes were hijacked by Islamic terrorists. Two of the planes were deliberately crashed into the twin towers of the World Trade Centre in New York City, destroying both towers and collapsing or damaging many surrounding buildings, and a third was used to destroy part of the Pentagon building outside Washington, D.C.; the fourth plane crashed outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, after passengers apparently attempted to retake the plane. The crashes—the worst terrorist incident on U.S. soil—killed some 3,000 people and prompted calls around the world for a global war on terrorism.

Bush accused radical Islamist Osama bin Laden and his terrorist network, al-Qaeda (Arabic: “the Base”), of responsibility for the September 11 attacks. In a videotape in 2004 bin Laden himself acknowledged that he was responsible.

Bush also charged the Taliban government of Afghanistan with harbouring bin Laden and his followers. Bush built an international coalition against terrorism and ordered a massive bombing campaign, which began on October 7, 2001, against terrorist and Taliban targets in Afghanistan. After U.S. forces routed al-Qaeda and forced the Taliban from power, the Bush administration began working with Afghanistan’s various ethnic and political factions to establish a stable regime there. For his handling of the country’s response to the terrorist attacks and the war in Afghanistan, Bush received high job-approval ratings.

In September 2002 the administration announced a new National Security Strategy of the United States of America. It was notable for its declaration that the United States would act “preemptively,” using military force if necessary, to forestall or prevent threats to its security by terrorists or “rogue states” possessing biological, chemical, or nuclear weapons—so-called “weapons of mass destruction.” Bush simultaneously drew worldwide attention to Iraqi President addām ussein and to suspicions that Iraq had attempted to develop weapons of mass destruction in violation of United Nations Security Council resolutions. This led to the Gulf War, which made Bush even more unpopular.

Roles of a leader

The job of a leader is to get the required results by employing the three key areas of leadership:

Achieving the task

Building the team

Developing individuals

These concepts influence each other, as can be seen in the diagram below:

In order to achieve his/her goals as well as that of the organisation, a leader must fulfil certain roles.



A visionary has foresight and imagination.


Leaders focus on the future, not the past. They anticipate trends and prepare for them. They develop a vision for their team and communicate it to them.

A good leader is clear on what the future holds and what should be done to be successful today as well as in the future. S/he has a plan and is enthusiastic about it.


People have to be motivated to do what you want them to do.

The definition of motivation


To cause a person to act in a particular way

Oxford Dictionary

Motivation starts off with a need. This need could be an imbalance caused by a physiological need (to do with the body) or it could be psychological in nature. This imbalance needs to be rectified. Because of this need there is a motive (drive) that forces a person to take certain action so that they can satisfy that need. The need and the motive will lead him to a specific behaviour. This behaviour leads to a specific result (consequence). The result is that they are either satisfied or unsatisfied, they are either happy or they are unhappy.

A leader has to be a motivator: she has to know what the needs of employees, team members and followers are and must be able to fulfil those needs in order to cause people to do what the leader wants done.

Create synergies

According to the Oxford Dictionary, synergy is:


A cooperation of two or more things to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate efforts.


Put simply, if we work together we will achieve more. It is a known fact that when people work together they can achieve results that are far greater than the individual efforts.

One of the roles of a leader is to create synergy within the team so that the team works well together. We see this all the time in team sport: the team that plays well together win the matches.

The leader also has to create synergy between his/her team and other teams, sections and departments of a business, so that the entire business can be successful.

Facilitate a developmental environment

Each member of the team has potential: things s/he are good at. It is in the interest of the team, the leader and the organisation to develop team members to do their work to the best of their abilities.

Developing team members includes:

Providing training opportunities for both strengths and weaknesses

Delegating tasks to team members

Allowing team members to express themselves as an individuals

Encouraging team members to develop themselves by praising good performance and encouraging team members to undertake all the tasks that have to be achieved – to help each other.

Sharing the vision and mission of the team, the leader and the organisation with the team. People put more effort into tasks when they know what they are working towards.


An innovator is not afraid to make changes or to do something in a new way. Leaders have to be innovators – they have to find unusual and unique solutions to problems. At times they also have to develop new procedures or even new products or services.

This means that leaders also have to listen to new ideas or unusual solutions to problems from team members.

A leader must be creative

The Oxford Dictionary describes creative as:


involving the use of the imagination or original ideas in order to create something.


It is very difficult to describe creativity in terms of business purposes but we can say the following:

Creativity helps us to think of many new ideas

Creativity helps us to think in more than one way

Creativity helps us to experience life in general in more than one way

Creativity helps us to consider more than one point of view

Creativity helps us to think of new and unconventional possibilities

Creativity enables us to create and choose alternatives

Creativity and innovation go hand in hand. To be innovative, you have to be original, you must not fall back on the conventional and you have to think in a new way. Creativity gives you the tools and techniques to think differently.

In the end creativity is an experience, a lifelong process of changing the way you look at your life, your business, your ambitions and goals.

Let us take a silly example. You have been working for a company for 10 years and have now become redundant because of new technology. There are several ways you can look at this:

Oh no! I have lost my job! What will become of me now? What will I live on once I have use all the money from my separation package?

I have lost my job and now I have to start looking for another job again! I don’t know what the company and people will be like if I get a job! Will I fit in? will I get the same salary?

Yes, at last I have some money I can use to train myself to do what I have always wanted to do – open a bakery, open a food stall at the station, open a hairdressing salon, buy my own taxi, etc.

The first two options are our traditional ways of thinking, while the third option is an innovative way of thinking.

In order to be creative, leaders have to be open-minded, even if the suggestions from team members seem silly. Rather than saying:”That’s nonsense”, try saying:”That’s an interesting idea. How can we make it work?”

This immediately encourages everyone in the team to start thinking creatively.

Another aspect of creativity is originality: is the ability to think in new and different ways. You have to think of something unique and out of the ordinary and not just the usual logical and practical things.

Creativity has led to the invention of new products such as a waterbed, the light bulb and even the telephone.

A leader must have vision

Leaders have a clear vision of what they are working towards. They do not keep their vision a secret – they communicate it to their people

Outstanding leaders develop visions that are in line with the deeply-held values of their followers, a vision that describes a better future.

An effective vision should:

appear as a simple, yet vibrant, image in the mind of the leader

describe a future state, credible and preferable to the present state

act as a bridge between the current state and a future optimum state

appear desirable enough to energise followers

succeed in speaking to followers at an emotional or spiritual level (logical appeals by themselves seldom muster a following)

A vision, in other words, is a short statement of what the leader/company wants to achieve





Leadership VS Management

Before considering the terms ‘management’ and ‘leadership’ it is necessary to distinguish between the two related but differing concepts.

The difference between a manager and a leader is a manager does things right, but leaders do the right things.

Managers make things happen while leaders give guidance.

Managers make things happen while leaders give guidance

Manager administer, leaders innovate

Managers maintain leaders develop

Managers control, leaders inspire

Mangers worry about the short term, leaders about the long term.

Managers ask how and when, leaders ask why and what.

Managers imitate, leaders originate.

Managers accept the status quo, leaders don’t

Managers focus on systems, leaders focus on people

Managers have an eye on the bottom line, leaders have an eye on the horizon

Managers imitate, leaders originate

Managers emulate the classic good soldier, leaders are their own person

Managers copy, leaders show originality

Leadership can be linked to change whereas management is more closely connected with stability.

Leadership can be seen to be a concept which facilitates change and management a concept which consolidates and embeds the changes once they have been developed. This is not to be seen as a precise distinction since part of the duty of facilitating change is to develop its acceptability and part of the duty of the manager is to identify redundant activity. Nor should it be claimed that leaders and managers need to be different people; rather management qualities can be seen to embrace many aspects of leadership.

Management might be seen as the shorter-term, routine activities of the manager whereas leadership constitutes the innovatory, longer-term duties of the manager


The definitions given for ‘management’ are many and include the following:

A social process entailing responsibility for the effective and economical planning and regulation of the operations of an enterprise, in fulfilment of a given purpose or task, such responsibility involving:

Judgement and decision in determining plans and in using data to control performance and performance against plans;

The guidance, integration, motivation and supervision of the personnel comprising the enterprise, and carrying out its operations.

Consider the following quotation and consider whether you agree with Burns and why.


“ A good manager is a man who isn’t worried about his own career but rather the careers of those who work for him. My advice: Don’t worry about yourself. Take care of those who work for you and you’ll float to greatness on their achievements”

H.S.M. Burns

The role of the manager

The term ‘manager’ has become somewhat debased recently in that many people who are given the title of manager are, in fact, not managers but supervisors and at junior management level the distinction can be a fine one. The main distinction is one of discretion. A supervisor will make decisions in accordance with rules that are laid down, little or no discretion being required or allowed. Problems that cannot be solved within the established rules have to be referred to the supervisor’s superior.

A manager, on the other hand, will have the authority to use discretion in making decisions and the limits to this discretion indicate the manager’s place on the management ladder.

Not SupportedA person’s title within an organization, therefore, is not necessarily indicative of that person’s real position from the point of view of management.

Management consists of the operation of a wide variety of roles as follows:


Sometimes the manager must assume the role of risk taker. Organisations sometimes have to deal with unexpected events and in such circumstances there will be little factual evidence upon which to evaluate a possible response. In such situations it is the duty of the manager to at least participate in or, more likely, take the lead in the generation of an acceptance reaction.

An entrepreneur:

Creates a vision

Communicates the vision

Models behaviour for the vision

Rewards entrepreneurial behaviour

Conceives the big picture

Clarifies the roles that others play in the big picture and gets them excited about it

Resource allocator

The manager is the person charged with the distribution and allocation of resources.


The primary duty of leadership in an organisation lies with the manager. This is not claim that the leader need necessarily adopt high profile styles of leadership.


One of the more important roles of the manager is that of acting as the primary disseminator and receiver of information.

Monitor and controller

One of the tasks of the manager is to ensure that the organisation is working in ways, which are consistent with the achievement of its objectives.

Disturbance handler

Occasionally the organisation will not function as smoothly as it might and disturbances or disagreements may emerge. In such circumstances it is the duty of the manager to deal with these problems in such a way as to minimise the negative impact on the organisation.


One of the major duties of the manager is to ensure that the interests of those who are managed are properly recognised. In such circumstances it may be necessary to ensure that the group’s views are known.


A producer is capable of performing and even excelling in teams and in his area of responsibility; for example

If you lead a planning team you will become a good Planner.

If you lead a sales team then you can sell well.

Therefore, a producer:

Is a doer

Is a subject matter expert

Contributes to team output

Adds value by producing the product

Provides service


A manager has to “manage” three periods of time:

The Future: this includes planning (long term), organizing (short term), staffing and directing; anticipating needs

Now: this includes directing and motivating for immediate needs; hiring etc.

The Past: this includes evaluating; reviewing performances; analyzing charts and records of recent and long-term trends; etc

Team builder


Puts things together to work harmoniously

Selects appropriate people to fit the tasks

Successful in getting synergy

Avoids regression

Integrates the efforts of diverse persons and capabilities

Functions of a manager

The functions of a manager are normally listed as follows:

Planning – deciding on a course of action to achieve a desired result and focusing attention on objectives and standards and the programmes required to achieve the objectives.

Organising – setting up and staffing the most appropriate organisation to achieve the aim.

Motivating – exercising leadership to motivate people to work together smoothly and to the best of their ability as part of a team.

Controlling – measuring and monitoring the progress of work in relation to the plan and taking corrective action when required.

The Reality!

In reality the work of a manager is fragmented, varied, subjected to continual adjustment and governed to a large degree by events over which the manager has little control and by a dynamic network of interrelationships with other people.

Managers exist to control their environment but sometimes it controls them.

They may consciously or unconsciously seek to plan, organise, direct and control but their days almost inevitably become a jumbled sequence of events

One can therefore conclude that management is both science and art.

Characteristics of a manager

The question as to what constitute ‘management qualities’ and ‘management potential’ has been the subject of debate by many authorities over a long period without any total consensus having been achieved.

The reason for this dilemma is that different people have different attributes and are able to learn to use them effectively often to the extent of overcoming any lack in other ways. For example, a person who lacks the desirable quality of stamina may develop a latent capacity for organization so that his or her day’s work is planned to conserve personal energy.





Willingness to accept responsibility

Ability to delegate




Organising ability


Emotional maturity

Human understanding


Being supportive of staff

Adequate educational standard

This list of attributes is by no means exhaustive; neither are all these qualities likely to be found together in one person. Remember that they are not necessarily conspicuous in everyone who is considered to have management potential. In fact most of the desirable attributes are likely to be latent at the beginning of a manager’s career and develop through training and experience.

Management skills are on the whole largely practical and virtually any man or woman can be effectively trained for management provided the necessary latent talents are possessed.


Leadership’s relation with management

Some commentators link leadership closely with the idea of management. Some regard the two as synonymous, and others consider management a subset of leadership.

Any of the bipolar labels traditionally ascribed to management style could also apply to leadership style.


Hersey and Blanchard use this approach: they claim that management merely consists of leadership applied to business situations


In other words: management forms a sub-set of the broader process of leadership. They put it this way: “Leadership occurs any time one attempts to influence the behaviour of an individual or group, regardless of the reason. Management is a kind of leadership in which the achievement of organizational goals is paramount.”

However, a clear distinction between management and leadership may nevertheless prove useful. This would allow for a reciprocal relationship between leadership and management, implying that an effective manager should possess leadership skills, and an effective leader should demonstrate management skills. One clear distinction could provide the following definition:

Management involves power by position.

Leadership involves power by influence.

Abraham Zaleznik (1977),for example, delineated differences between leadership and management. He saw leaders as inspiring visionaries, concerned about substance; while managers he views as planners who have concerns with process.

Paul Birch (1999) also sees a distinction between leadership and management. He observed that, as a broad generalization, managers concerned themselves with tasks while leaders concerned themselves with people. Birch does not suggest that leaders do not focus on “the task.” Indeed, the things that characterise a great leader include the fact that they achieve. Effective leaders create and sustain competitive advantage through leadership. Managers typically follow and realise a leader’s vision. The difference lies in the leader realising that the achievement of the task comes about through the goodwill and support of others (influence), while the manager may not.

This goodwill and support originates in the leader seeing people as people, not as another resource for deployment in support of “the task”:

The manager often has the role of organising resources to get something done. People form one of these resources, and many of the worst managers treat people as just another interchangeable item.

A leader has the role of causing others to follow a path he/she has laid out or a vision he/she has articulated in order to achieve a task. Often, people see the task as subordinate to the vision. For instance, an organisation might have the overall task of generating profit, but a good leader may see profit as a by-product that flows from whatever aspect of their vision differentiates their company from the competition.

Bruce Lynn postulates a differentiation between ‘Leadership’ and ‘Management’ based on perspectives to risk. Specifically,

A Leader optimises upside opportunity

A Manager minimises downside risk.

He argues that successful executives need to apply both disciplines in a balance appropriate to the enterprise and its context.


Leadership without Management yields steps forward, but as many if not more steps backwards. Management without Leadership avoids any step backwards, but doesn’t move forward.


Accountability and responsibility

Both leaders and managers have to be responsible and accountable for their actions, as well as the actions of their employees.


Responsibility refers to the duty of all employees of an organisation to perform the tasks or activities that have been assigned to you.

When doing your job, as an employee or a manager, you always have to comply with:

The policies and procedures of the organisation: These have been put into place for a good reason: to ensure that the work gets done safely, on time and with high quality standards.


A policy is a deliberate plan of action to guide decisions and achieve rational outcome(s). A procedure is a sequence of activities, decisions and calculations that have to be done in the correct sequence in order to deliver the required product or service.


For example, each organisation has a policy on the type and quality of products or services that have to be delivered, while the procedure informs employees on the steps to take to deliver the product or service as required.


Legislation, both on national level as well as provincial and local government level: Failing to comply with legislation has negative consequences, including the possibility of losing your job, fines and even jail time.


Legislation will include conditions of employment, health and safety regulations, industry specific regulations as well as regulations made by local governments.


Levels of authority: Every organisation has levels of authority and no employee may exceed his/her level of authority. You may also not refuse to accept responsibility specific to your level of authority.



Structure of the organisation: this is closely linked to the levels of authority, as the structure of the organisation will determine the level of authority. The structure also includes levels of communication and how and when the different the different levels of authority in an organisation should communicate. The structure will also determine communication channels between departments.


Accountability refers to the fact that the people with authority and responsibility are subject to reporting and justifying task outcomes to those above them in the chain of command.

This means that a manager and/or leader has to report to higher levels of authority about the work being done. This reporting is determined by the policies and procedures of the organisation:

When must reporting be done?

How must it be done?

What information should be included in the report?

Where should the report be sent to?






The Traits Approach To Leadership

The Trait theory of leadership describes the types of behaviour and personality tendencies associated with effective leaders throughout the world. In 1841, Thomas Carlyle used such an approach to identify the talents, skills and physical characteristics of men who arose to power. The trait theory is based on the ‘ great man theory.’

Supporters of the trait approach usually list leadership qualities, assuming certain traits or characteristics will tend to lead to effective leadership.

Key leader traits could or would include:

Drive: a broad term which includes achievement, motivation, ambition, energy, tenacity, and initiative

leadership motivation: the desire to lead but not to seek power as an end in itself



self-confidence (which is associated with emotional stability)

cognitive ability

knowledge of the business.

According to recent research, there is less clear evidence for traits such as charisma, creativity and flexibility.

In 1965 Dr, Anton Rupert corresponded with famous business people to find out what qualities they regarded important for effective leadership. These business people included Rockefeller, Rothschild and Eisenhower.

From their responses Rupert identified the following qualities:

Physical and mental health

A sound philosophy of life

A willingness to serve


Language skills etc.

This approach has not found much following and is said to have little practical value.

The Behaviouristic Approach

Here the behaviour of effective leaders is shown.

Blake and Mouton’s managerial grid

Blake and Mouton have designed a model that identifies five different leadership styles based on:

Concern for production and

The concern for people

Each aspects is measured a scale of 1 (low) to 9 (high).


A graphical representation of the Managerial Grid

As shown in the figure, the model is represented as a grid with concern for production as the X-axis and concern for people as the Y-axis; each axis ranges from 1 (Low) to 9 (High). The five resulting leadership styles are as follows

The five managerial styles are:

The impoverished style (1,1)

The country club style (1,9)

The produce or perish style (9,1)

The middle-of-the-road style (5,5)

The team style (9,9)

The impoverished style (1,1)

In this style, managers have low concern for both people and production. Managers use this style to avoid getting into trouble. The main concern for the manager is not to be held responsible for any mistakes, which results in less innovative decisions.

This leader/manager:

Does only enough to preserve his/her job and job seniority.

Gives little and enjoys little.

Protects himself by not being noticed by others.

Tries to stay in the same post for a long time.

The country club style (1,9)

This style has a high concern for people and a low concern for production. Managers using this style pay much attention to the security and comfort of the employees, in hopes that this would increase performace. The resulting atmosphere is usually friendly, but not necessarily that productive

The produce or perish style (9,1)

With a high concern for production, and a low concern for people, managers using this style find employee needs unimportant; they provide their employees with money and expect performance back.

Managers using this style also pressure their employees through rules and punishments to achieve the company goals. This style is used in cases of crisis management.

The middle-of-the-road style (5,5)

Managers using this style try to maintain a balance between the goals of the company and the needs of the workers. By giving some concern to both people and production, managers who use this style hope to achieve acceptable performance.

The team style (9,9)

In this style, high concern is paid both to people and production. Managers choosing to use this style encourage teamwork and commitment among employees. This method relies heavily on making employees feel as a constructive part of the company.

The Situational Approach To Leadership

This theory offers an alternative approach. It is based on the assumption that different situations call for different characteristics.


This theory holds that leaders behave differently in different situations.


According to this group of theories, no single optimal psychographic profile of a leader exists. The situational leadership model of Hersey and Blanchard, for example, suggest four leadership-styles and four levels of follower-development. For effectiveness, the model states that the leadership-style must match the appropriate level of followership-development. In this model, leadership behaviour becomes a function not only of the characteristics of the leader, but of the characteristics of followers as well.

In this approach, many situational factors are identified that will influence leader’s behaviour:

The traits of the group

The physical circumstances of the group

The values and attitudes of group members

Communication patterns in the group

The nature of relationships in the group etc.

Blanchard and Hersey characterised leadership style in terms of the amount of direction and support that the leader provides to his or her followers. They categorized all leadership styles into four behaviour types, which they named S1 to S4:

S1: Telling Leaders define the roles and tasks of the ‘follower, and supervise them closely. Decisions are made by the leader and announced, so communication is largely one-way

S2: Selling Leaders still define roles and tasks, but seeks ideas and suggestions from the follower. Decisions remain the leader’s prerogative, but communication is much more two-way

S3: Participating Leaders pass day-to-day decisions, such as task allocation and processes, to the follower. The leader facilitates and takes part in decisions, but control is with the follower.

S4: Delegating Leaders are still involved in decisions and problem-solving, but control is with the follower. The follower decides when and how the leader will be involved.

Of these, no one style is considered optimal or desired for all leaders to possess. Effective leaders need to be flexible, and must adapt themselves according to the situation. However, each leader tends to have a natural style, and in applying Situational Leadership s/he must know her intrinsic style.


To apply this leadership style, the leader must adapt to the so-called maturity of the subordinate.


Maturity in this sense refers to

the subordinate’s desire to achieve,

his willingness to accept responsibility and of course

how much experience the subordinate has and how competent he is in performing the required tasks.

Phases in applying this style

In the initial phase a high task orientation is present with a low emphasis on the relationship between leader and subordinate.

During phase two workers begin to fit into the work pattern, but are not yet able to accept full responsibility. Confidence and support of workers increase and management gets to know the workers better. Management therefore becomes more employee-orientated.

Phase three is characterised by the workers’ desire for greater responsibility. Workers become more self-assured, self-motivated and have the experience to continue on their own.

Phase four is the maturity level where employees are willing and able to accept responsibility. This style has low behaviour relations and low task orientation.

This theory recommends a kind of dynamic and flexible leadership. The ability and experience of subordinates must be evaluated regularly to determine the leadership style that must be applied. As subordinates become more mature, the degree of direct control and supervision should decrease.


Effective leadership is defined not as one best approach to use all the time; it is the ability to vary one’s approach appropriately for different circumstances.


Source: Adapted from Hersey & Blanchard (1982:152)

Using this leadership style

The three keys for effective use is the ability to:

Diagnose the team member’s development level

Be flexible enough to match behaviour to the diagnosis

Contract with the team member what steps to take

Phase 1

Low relations and low task: If the team member exhibits…

A low level of competence in the job or task

Low confidence

Then the leader would

Tell the follower what the job tasks are and how to do them

Make decisions

Set goals

Provide specific instructions

Guide and direct activity

Closely supervise and evaluate performance


Phase 2

High relations and high task: If the team member exhibits…

Limited ability to perform task or assignment, but

Willingness and motivation to try

Then the leader would…..

Continue close supervision but increase two way communications.

Explain decisions

Solicit feedback

Support progress and follower’s initiative

Phase Three

High relations and low task: If the team member exhibits

a moderate to high level of competence in the job, but

A variable degree of confidence in the job

Then the leader …..

Involved the follower in problem solving

Ask the follower to decide how to perform the task

Share responsibility

Work with the follower to evaluate performance

Promote discussion and share ideas

Provide encouragement

Phase Four

Low relations and low task: If the follower exhibits….

A high level competency in the job and

A high level of commitment/ confidence/motivation

The leader would…

Jointly define the problem with the follower

Turn over responsibility for decision and implementation

Allow the follower to develop action plans

Accept the follower’s decisions


Servant leadership

Robert Greenleaf defined this leadership style, where the leader’s role as steward of the resources (human, financial and otherwise) provided by the organisation is emphasised.


Servant leadership encourages leaders to serve others while staying focused on achieving results in line with the organization’s values and integrity.


The concept of servant-leadership is thousands of years old. Chanakaya or Kautilya, a famous strategic thinker who lived in ancient India, wrote about servant leadership in his 4th century B.C. book Arthashastra:

“the king [leader] shall consider as good, not what pleases himself but what pleases his subjects [followers]”

“the king [leader] is a paid servant and enjoys the resources of the state together with the people”.

In approximately 600 B.C., the Chinese sage Lao Tzu wrote The Tao Te Ching, a strategic treatise on servant leadership:

The greatest leader forgets him/herself And attends to the development of others.

Good leaders support excellent workers.

Great leaders support the bottom ten percent.

Great leaders know that the diamond in the rough is always found “in the rough.”

(Quote from The Way of Leading People: Unlocking Your Integral Leadership with the To Te Chong)

The concept of servant leadership in the west can be traced back, at least partly, to Jesus, who taught his disciples that

“You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10:42-45)

Other leadership theories have a top-down hierarchical style. Servant Leadership, on the other hand, emphasises collaboration, trust, empathy, and the ethical use of power.

At heart, the individual is a servant first, making the conscious decision to lead in order to better serve others, not to increase their own power.


The objective is to enhance the growth of individuals in the organization and increase teamwork and personal involvement


There are ten characteristics that describe the essence of a servant leader.

Listening actively to others

Empathy with others, especially team members

Healing: this applies to conflicts, the trauma associated with change as well as anything that disrupts the harmony of the team

Awareness of the needs of team members, the team and the organisation

Persuasion: servant leaders persuade team members to their point of view, they do not force their will on others

Conceptualisation: the ability to form a mental concept (idea) of what the team/section/department or organisation has to do in order to meet the objectives of the organisation so that the organisation is able to survive. This of course has to be communicated

Foresight: a servant leader also has the ability to foresee both positive and negative consequences of actions of team members as well as the output of a team. For example, what will happen if we make a mistake or if we finish the job early.

Stewardship is the careful and responsible managing of resources entrusted to his/her care

Commitment to the growth of others: a good leader is committed to giving his/her employees (followers) the opportunity to improve their skills and knowledge, even if it means that they become as good as or better than him/her

Building community: in the business world, a community is a group of people with a common characteristic or interest working together within a larger society – in this instance, the organisation. A good leader will build his/her team into a tight-knight and loyal community that is committed to the goals of the team.

Transformational leadership

According to this theory, transformational leadership takes place when people engage with other people in such a way that the leaders and followers raise one another to higher levels of motivation and morality.

There is a difference between transactional leadership and transformational leadership. The difference between transformational and transactional leadership is what leaders and followers offer one another.

Transactional leaders use conventional reward and punishment to gain compliance from their followers.

They have continuing, often unspoken interaction with other people that take such forms as:

Do as I say and you will get a raise

Meet this quota or you will get fired

Transactional leaders accept the goals, structure and culture of the existing organisation.

Transformational leaders offer other people a purpose that goes beyond the short-term goals of the organisation. This results in followers identifying with the needs of the leader. The four dimensions of transformational leadership are

idealised influence (or charisma)

inspirational motivation

intellectual stimulation

individual consideration

Charisma or idealized influence

The degree to which the leader behaves in admirable ways that cause followers to identify with the leader. Charismatic leaders display convictions, take stands and appeal to followers on an emotional level.

This is about the leader having a clear set of values and demonstrating them in every action, providing a role model for their followers

Inspirational motivation

Inspirational motivation depends on the degree to which the leader articulates a vision that is appealing and inspiring to followers. Leaders with inspirational motivation:

challenge followers with high standards

communicate optimism about future goals

provide meaning for the task at hand

Followers need to have a strong sense of purpose if they are to be motivated to act. Purpose and meaning provide the energy that drives a group forward. It is also important that this visionary aspect of leadership be supported by communication skills that allow the leader to articulate his or her vision with precision and power in a compelling and persuasive way.

Intellectual stimulation

The degree to which the leader challenges assumptions, takes risks and solicits followers’ ideas. Leaders with this trait stimulate and encourage creativity in their followers

Individualized consideration or individualized attention

The degree to which the leader attends to each follower’s needs, acts as a mentor or coach to the follower and listens to the follower’s concerns and needs.

This includes the need to respect and celebrate the individual contribution that each follower can make to the team. (It is the diversity of the team that gives it its true strength).

Visionary Leadership

Today, fast growing organisations are built on leadership innovation, that is, they are not built by product visionaries but by social visionaries — those who invent entirely new ways of organising human effort.

Visionary leaders are social innovators and change agents: they see the big picture and think strategically.

They use imagination and insight to present a challenge to employees, thereby focusing in the best in people and bringing them together around a shared sense of purpose.


Visionary Leadership – Workers have continuous learning opportunities with decision-making responsibility. Employees with natural talent are quickly recognized and their unique skill is quickly adapted to the organisation. As a result efficiency of the workplace increases.


Characteristics of visionary leaders

A clear, inspirational vision

Visionaries who are successful at conceptualising their visions base their leadership on an inspirational, positive picture of the future, as well as a clear sense of direction as to how to get there

They keep communicating the vision to create a strong field which then brings their vision into physical reality. Nelson Mandela clearly held a positive vision of a racially harmonious South Africa during his 28 years in jail and helped bring it into reality peacefully– to the amazement of the world.

The best visionary leaders move energy to a higher level by offering a clear vision of what is possible. They inspire people to be better than they already are.

A commitment to core spiritual values

A visionary leader has to be committed to values and personal integrity. Rather than being corrupted by power, visionary leaders are elevated by power and exercise moral leadership

Visionary leaders follow an inner sense of direction, and lead from the inside out, as exemplified by Mahatma Gandhi. He said, “I must first be the change I want to see in my world.” He was a prime example of a commitment to values, as he freed India by appealing to the moral conscience of Britain and using “satyagraha” or non-violent action to reveal the immorality of the British Empire.

Respectful, empowering relationships

Good relationships are the heart of effective visionary leaders.

Visionary leader care about their employees and see them as their greatest asset

Old leadership styles focused on telling people what to do and pushed and dominated employees. Visionary leaders, on the other hand, prefer to view relationships with employees as partnerships by creating a shared sense of vision and meaning with team members. They exhibit a greater respect for others and carefully develop team spirit and team learning

Visionary leaders have excellent communication skills. They know how to listen and learn from the ideas of other people and are also able to communicate their vision clearly.

The most effective visionary leaders are responsive to the real needs of people and they develop participative strategies to include people in designing their own futures.

Innovative and courageous action

It takes courage to suggest change, as most people do not like change. Visionary leaders, therefore, must have the courage to communicate their vision and persuade others to make changes.

Visionary leaders anticipate change and are proactive, rather than reactive to events.

Their focus is on opportunities, not on problems

They emphasize win/win -rather than adversarial win/lose- approaches

A visionary leader sees the bigger picture and is able to persuade others to also see this big picture. CNN founder, Ted Turner, transformed television news by boldly creating an around-the-clock international news network. Before that time, news was broadcast only at certain times and with no breaks for advertisements or special discussions on current topics. This was a dramatic change for people who had gotten used to the old way of broadcasting news.


A successful visionary leader must be able to explain new concepts so others can understand them. S/he is able to explain how and why the efforts of employees contribute to the vision.


Visionary leaders are by their nature innovators. Innovators bring about changes in the way we think by proposing to do something in a new way.

Every successful innovation is the result of a dreamer with a mission.

Job insecurity often kills innovation. Who in their right mind is going to innovate themselves out of a job?

Experts who are familiar with a subject or problem often raise barriers to innovation. They tend to know all the reasons why something will not work. Their over familiarity and previous successes with a problem can blind them to seeing newer better ways to solve it.

Innovators are wild cards. When they believe in an idea, they will move impossible barriers to see their idea become a reality.

Some innovators

The innovators under discussion were inventors who were so focused on their vision that they did not let public ridicule deter them.

Alexander Graham Bell

He invented the telephone and was granted patent rights in March 1876 (No. 174,465) for the development of a device to transmit speech sounds over electric wires. This patent is often said to be the most valuable ever issued. At first, the telephone was regarded as a joke and its creator as an eccentric, but it did not take long for businesses and households to realise its value.

Robert Hutchings Goddard

He was the first to develop a rocket motor using liquid fuels (liquid oxygen and gasoline), as used in the German V-2 rocket weapon 15 years later. In a small structure adjoining his laboratory, a liquid-propelled rocket in a static test in 1925 “operated satisfactorily and lifted its own weight,” he wrote. On March 16, 1926, the world’s first flight of a liquid-propelled rocket engine took place on his Aunt Effie’s farm in Auburn, Mass., achieving a brief lift-off.

His experiments and calculations took place at a time when any news of his work drew from the press and the public high amusement that “Moony” Goddard could take seriously the possibility of travel beyond Earth. His small rockets, early prototypes of the modern Moon thrusters, achieved altitudes of up to 1.6 kilometres (1 mile) above the prairie.


The world’s first successful televisions were built by Johan Logie Baird in Britain and Charles Francis Jenkins in the United States. The question of priority depends on one’s definition of television. In 1922 Jenkins sent a still picture by radio waves, but the first true television success, the transmission of a live human face, was achieved by Baird in 1925.

The efforts of Jenkins and Baird were generally greeted with ridicule or apathy. As far back as 1880 an article in the British journal Nature had speculated that television was possible but not worthwhile: the cost of building a system would not be repaid, for there was no way to make money out of it. A later article in Scientific American thought there might be some uses for television, but entertainment was not one of them. Most people thought the concept was lunacy.




Key Areas Of Leadership

Whatever the qualities and characteristics of a leader/manager, the job of a leader is to get the required results by employing the three key areas of leadership:

Achieving the task

Building the team

Developing individuals

The leader’s skills in achieving the required results through the group are matched by his skills in managing the hostilities and anxieties and individuals and of the group.

This is the work the supervisor has to perform to be a successful leader.


Achieving the task

The need to accomplish the task or job to increase productivity is the most obvious duty of the leader. Some of the leader’s contributions are:

Knowing exactly what the job entails. An understanding of how the job and the team fits into the overall company and departmental objectives.

Planning the work.

Selecting and providing the necessary resources.

Controlling the progress of the work.

Following up, evaluating and comparing results with the original objectives, in order to improve.

Questions to ask yourself:

Am I clear about my own responsibility and authority?

Am I clear about my objectives?

Do I have an action plan to reach these objectives?

Can the jobs be reconstructed to get better results?

Are physical layout, lighting and equipment right for the job? 1



Developing individuals

Each member of the team needs to express himself as an individual. Each person has unique needs that must be satisfied. These needs are the mainsprings of motivation. If a leader can identify and then satisfy them, he will be developing each individual.

The leader also has make sure that individual team members have opportunities to develop in the team by exchanging team roles and thereby exposing team members to other roles in the team.

Another important task of the team leader is to see to it that team members have opportunities for training and education so that they expand their knowledge and skills for future promotion.

In order to develop individual team members, the team leader should also:

Make sure that each team member knows what is expected of him/her

Make sure that the resources to do the work is available and that team members know how and when to use the resources

Questions to ask yourself:

Has agreement been reached with each person as to his responsibilities and standards of performance expressed as results, not activities, by which we can both recognise success?

Does each person have a prioritised list of agreed short-term targets?

Does each person have the necessary resources?

Do I know what each person’s needs are?

Building the team

Most of the supervisor’s work is accomplished by people working as teams, or at the very least a team effort would certainly help him in most work.

The successful leader understands that a group has it s own personality, power, attitudes, standards and needs. He will be successful if he takes this into account.

To build a team, the team leader has to:

Discuss the objectives of the team with the team in order to obtain buy-in

Make sure that the team members have a clear view of the working standards that are required

Make sure that the right people are working together

Make sure that specific activities are carried out by the people best suited for the job in terms of skills and knowledge

Make sure that the team functions as a whole

Questions to ask yourself:

Do I set group agreed upon group objectives?

Is the group clear as to the working standards required?

Are the right people working together?

Do I build teamwork into the jobs?




Role Model

A role model is a person whose behaviour in a particular role is imitated by others.


Human beings tend to imitate the behaviour of people we admire: followers identify with the values of role models whom they perceived in positive terms. For example, a child playing soccer will imitate the playing style of one of his heroes in the national soccer team, or a young person will want to be like a favourite singing star.

In this sense, leaders have a big responsibility to display positive behaviour and to encourage positive behaviour from his/her followers.

Role-modelling applies to the workplace as well. A popular leader in the workplace will have many followers and support who admire the leader and will support his/her ideas.


“Mandela, Nelson.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

“de Klerk, F.W.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

“Tutu, Desmond.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

MLA Style:   “Blair, Tony.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

“Thatcher, Margaret.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

“Churchill, Sir Winston.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009

“Mugabe, Robert.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009

  “Bush, George W.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.

“Caesar, Julius.” Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica 2009 Deluxe Edition.  Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica, 2009.




September 28, 2015

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