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The Philosophy of Leadership :

Values and principles of good the good leader



philosophy of leadership The philosophy of leadership is the principles and values that a leader adopts in the way he lives his life and leads his team. It is the way he communicates and deals with followers and responds to events or situations.

If you are in a position of leadership, you will probably have experienced first hand how the leadership philosophy adopted by a leader can impact the morale and effectiveness of the team.


There are several routes of leadership philosophy that a leader can take;

For example, in the army, a very strict and disciplined philosophy of leadership is adopted. Lower ranked soldiers respect generals and higher ranked officers to a point of tremendous reverence and even fear.

This shouldn’t come as a surprise as the army requires orders to be followed without question and the entire squad should act in unity as this is very vital when in the battlefield. As such, a leadership philosophy of this nature is required.

Another example is leading from the perspective of parents to children. Some parents choose to adopt a distant and strict disciplinarian philosophy while others decide on a closer relationship, emphasizing on communication.

philosophy of leadership


Things such as the environment, the local culture, the group personality and the context of the leadership will determine to a large extent the suitability of a leadership philosophy adopted.

Though there are many types of leadership philosophy to choose from, it is not absolutely vital to nail down the ‘right’ philosophy that works best with your current situation and team.

So long as it is one that does not clash with the entire context and what the team is trying to accomplish, any leadership philosophy that is able to motivate and communicate with clarity is adequate.

Ideally, the philosophy of leadership adopted should be one that best suits your personality, traits as well as merits.



Being Consistent

philosophy of leadership A more important point though, is to have a consistent philosophy of leadership. Nothing communicates poor leadership more than a constantly changing approach demonstrated by the leader.

Doing so communicates a lack of self confidence, instability and lack of belief on the part of the leader. Having an inconsistent or weak leadership philosophy will only seed confusion among followers and this can be very de-motivating.

When followers knows what makes their leader ‘tick’, when they know his working style, his approach etc, this understanding can create a very harmonious and efficient environment to work in. The team and the leader will be on the same frequency and miscommunications will happen less frequently.

The whole team will perform better if they know what to expect from their leader. This clarity is harnessed from a consistent leadership philosophy.



Final thoughts…

Having a philosophy of leadership that is consistent does not mean that a leader should be totally inflexible in his approach. Remember, the main criteria of being a good leader is to be able to motivate followers and get the best out of them.

As such, if it can be seen with certainty from various responses that a different philosophy may be better, then by all means adopt a different approach. There is no right or wrong.




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