A FEW GREAT LEADERS AND LOTS OF MEDIOCRE ONES
When we look around at our so called leaders today it is often a sad experience. There are so many failures. Last year we celebrated the life and leadership of Nelson Mandela. People from all walks of life all over the world praised his exceptional gifts of mind and heart that enabled him to become one of the great leaders of history. It was hard to listen to universal praise without thinking of the dearth of good leaders that we face in our own times, especially in politics, business, healthcare, and religion.
A few comments I though you might like to read:
“Whether we think of Congress or the courts, business or industry, the news media or mass entertainment, the church or other voluntary associations, many of us feel deepening despair about the capacity of our dominant institutions to harbor a human agenda, to foster human purposes.”
Parker Palmer, Foreword in Seeker and Servant: The Private Writings of Robert K. Greeleaf, xi.
“The history of the world if full of such leaders, whose errors of judgment and refusal to listen to the good advice of their followers have left millions of followers as physical, emotional, or economic casualties.”
Kieth Grint, The Art of Leadership, p. 420.
“Leadership requires changing not only the way you think and the way you act, but also the way you will. Leading is taking change of your will–the innermost core of your humanity.”
Peter Koesterbaum, Leadership: The Inner Side of Greatness, 2.
Let us hope and pray that more men and women will take inspiration from Nelson Mandela and dedicate themselves to the service of others in leadership. We need leaders motivated by inner values, selfless, generous, and totally dedicated to others. These are leaders who are committed to their position for the good it allows them to do and not for the status or money it gives them.
I recently wrote a more detailed article on this topic which you might like to read. linked2leadership (March 8th)