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Visionary Leadership Compared To Charismatic Leadership

1824 words - 7 pages

The right people, with the right skills go hand -in-hand with effective leadership. Only special kinds of leaders can entice their follower’s commitment to fulfill difficult missions when it seems impossible. They carry a combination of characteristics that help inspire to greatness. Two styles of leadership that often get confused by each other because of the similar styles are visionary leadership and charismatic leadership.

Visionary leadership can be defined as, “The ability to create and articulate a realistic, credible, and attractive vision of the future that improves upon the present situation.” (google). The primary responsibility is to bring the vision to the table. They serve the goods as a whole. A visionary leader can verbalize their dreams and goals efficiently. This helps others see the vision of the leader. These leaders are also risk takers that work with their imagination and insight.

Most importantly, these types of leaders are strategic planners. They are social innovators and change agents, seeing the big picture and thinking strategically. (McLaughlin) They are able to see the future. They are able to envision what the organization will look and function like in the future. (Patrick) Visionary leaders are able to create an environment where they transmit their energy to others giving them a sense of hope. They concentrate more on the win/win philosophy than the win/lose philosophy. They tend to be more proactive than reactive.

We live in a world where leaders become rich at the expense of the citizens, where leaders live for selfish reasons or even where leaders send others to fight on their behalf yet they stay safe. However, Mohandas Gandhi, also known as Mahatma (“The great Soul”) Gandhi was not one of those types of leaders. He instead is a true example of visionary leadership. Everything he said, he practiced. He lived in voluntary poverty, made his own clothes and marched along side every other citizen of his country. Gandhi was born into a respectable class and was educated as a lawyer. He started a non-violent revolution, which ultimately resulted in the independence of India from the British rule.

Gandhi’s quest in hardship and struggle began while he was in South Africa. There he experienced racial discrimination and prejudice directed towards Indians. This is where he developed the idea of non-violence and truth where he coined the term Satyagraha. (Database) After spending 21 years there with multiple imprisonment and brutality, he left to India to continue his campaign. During this time, India was under the dictatorship of British and the British were mistreating the citizens. Gandhi decided to speak out and challenge the British ruling. His first movement led to the acknowledgement of breaking away from the British.

Gandhi organized a movement in 1930 where he marched 250 miles to Dandi as a protest against the British Salt tax. Gandhi and the may supporters walked down to the sea to make salt. At...

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