As a leader, South African President Nelson Mandela demonstrated remarkable leadership qualities, including advocacy for peace, powerful presence that disarmed enemies with his smile, high level of forgiveness, positive thinking, ability to see the big picture, focus on goals and missions beyond himself, remarkable endurance, grit and determination, humility, hopefulness and patience. Well, these and other perspectives, like politics, religion, economics, society, morale and ethics, play a vital role in the process of opinions and thoughts required to become a great leader who can change and lead people to a better future. Mandela and other revolutionary leaders, as well as their leadership styles, motivate and inspire the public with action.
Becoming a great leader is not about making public appearances and memorizing speeches. It is about leaving a mark on the world by displaying important qualities and giving followers a better path in life. Likewise, Mandela’s qualities and life achievements have indeed changed the heart of many not only in his country, but also around the world. With his presence, a new and better world was created.
Leadership vs Management
Leadership is defined as the ability to motivate and influence people towards achieving a certain goal, while management generally pertains to maintaining consistency and order. Good leaders, like Mandela, established their leadership styles with a vision and inspired other people to follow their directions to achieve goals. Aside from this, Mandela adopted the democratic leadership style.
Mandela’s visions led him to fight for a better mankind, where, in the early years, he saw an Africa with apartheid being eliminated and men are being equal and free. It was this vision that coerced him to do what he was supposed to do and that made him believe that he still has hope through the darkest days in his imprisonment. With his perseverance, he believed that the day would come when he could succeed to free his people from the prejudice in the past. He never gave up despite being imprisoned for 27 years before being elected as the first president of South Africa.
Considering his leadership style, a good vision in life must be for the greater good. Man’s purpose here on Earth should be remembered as a blessing to the rest of society and to be lived with the energy needed to persist until a vision comes to pass. Also, it is important to know that not all people will support a vision, no matter how ideal it is. Though it means a change for the people, some people would not want it thinking that change is uncomfortable. However, it should be fought for, as realizing it would not be a walk in the park, but rather a difficult challenge where many obstacles will be faced along the way to success. So, you have to be conscious and fight for it!
Empowering the Nation
Nelson Mandela not only traveled around his nation giving speech, but yet he organized resistance to discriminatory legislation. In addition, he also innovated and armed his nation to fight for their rights and most importantly their freedom. He also encouraged them to fight against the apartheid as well as convincing them that they could do something about the oppression.
Mandela’s Qualities As a Leader
As previously mentioned, Mandela realized his dream for his people with his remarkable leadership style. So, how he did it? Here are two of his distinguished qualities:
He embraces the ethical.
As the first black president of South Africa, Mandela showed strong ethical values when leading his people by constantly guiding them to keep the center of attention before they cat and to avoid all violence. While fighting against apartheid, he established a utilitarianism leadership style by soldiering ahead, as he had the morals and values to continue fighting. He was then described as a freedom fighter and hero due to his perseverance until he became the head of the country. His traits of responsibility and morality towards his followers were embraced through his honesty.
He has highly effective communication skills.
When facing arguments, challenges and defenses, Mandela anticipated his opponents to effectually communicate his responses based upon the issues brought forth. Communication was vital to his leadership success, allowing him to coordinate with his followers effectively by explaining to them the plan to fight for a better nation.
Mandela embraces the following set of characteristics when it comes to his leadership style.
During the 20th century, Mandela became a most influential figure who led the fight against the apartheid in South Africa. As the first black president of the country, his enthusiastic motive succeeded in attaining freedom by being charismatic. This practice was alleged to be very captivating and successful, where he held strong emotional reactions towards his followers, which built trust between him and his African National Congress (ANC) followers during his incarceration of many years. In fact, this gave them a strong belief to continue their fight and pledge willing obedience to him.
As an influential leader, Mandela was able to lead his country to nearly-liberated from prejudice. As a significant leader, he elevated his followers’ consciousness by appealing to their higher values and ideals, even encouraging many to educate themselves, as it would be the key to success. In 1952, Mandela opened the first African legal practice together with his partner, Oliver Tambo, where he was the volunteer-in-chief of the campaign, traveling across the country to raise people’s awareness and organize confrontation to prejudiced regulation. Also, he succeeded in promoting the Freedom Charter that was also adopted by the ANC.
While Mandela was the leader of the Congress, he inspired his people by helping them understand the values and importance of his visions. He encouraged them to develop their own understanding of what is important for the country, like the fight for equality by eliminating racial discrimination. This inspiring leadership has contributed to helping the country with overcoming the apartheid and developing it into a stable modern democracy. In his speeches while traveling every part of the country, he inspired and convinced people, adding that he could do something to overcome the apartheid confidently. At the same time, he also warned the people not to be overwhelmed by the ruling class and not to strike back, physically or verbally, no matter the hassle was.