Types of Leaders1: Thought Leaders: Thought leaders harness the power of ideas to actualize change. They stretch their followers by helping them envision new possibilities. Oliver Wendell Holmessaid, “The human mind once stretched to a new idea never goes back to its original dimension.”Sometimes a new idea can bring about a paradigm shift, which may provide a new lens for viewing or a radically different context for understanding. At other times, the new idea leads to only incremental change. But all change, whether large or small, starts with a new idea.2: Courageous Leaders: Courageous leaders bravely pursue a vision in the face of considerable opposition and risks. They have strong convictions about their mission (purpose), vision (long-term goals), and values (right and wrong). They speak up for their core beliefs and fight for their values, even when their stand is unpopular.Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City, said, “There are many qualities that make a great leader. But having strong beliefs, being able to stick with them through popular and unpopular times, is the most important characteristics of a great leader.”3: Inspirational Leaders: Inspirational leaders promote change by the power of their passionate commitment to ideas and ideals. They lift our eyes from present practicalities to future possibilities. Their words stir up our spirits, strengthen our convictions, and move us to action. We are eager to followthem because they call forth the best that is in us.Inspirational leaders have positive attitudes that create strong emotional connections with people. Their speech is enlivened with words such as justice, freedom, honor, respect, pride, and love.
4: Servant Leaders: Servant leaders care deeply about people. They seek to remove the barriers and obstacles that hold others back from achieving their full potential. They strive to create an environment where their followers can do their best work. Servant leaders frequently ask, “How can I help?”.Kent Keith, CEO of the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership, states, “I think the simplest way to explain it would be to say that servant leaders focus on identifying and meeting the needs of others rather than trying to acquire power, wealth, and fame for themselves.”
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