25 Great Quotes on Leadership

by Henrik Edberg

One of the more fascinating topics of life is the leaders of history and how they shaped the world.

Here are 25 great and insightful thoughts on leadership.

I hope you get something helpful out of them.

The task of leadership is not to put greatness into people, but to elicit it, for the greatness is there already.
John Buchan

The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint to keep from meddling with them while they do it.
Theodore Roosevelt

To lead people, walk beside them … As for the best leaders, the people do not notice their existence. The next best, the people honor and praise. The next, the people fear; and the next, the people hate … When the best leader’s work is done the people say, ‘We did it ourselves!
Lao-Tsu

Do not follow where the path may lead.
Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
Harold R. McAlindon

If I have seen farther than others, it is because I was standing on the shoulder of giants.
Isaac Newton

I am a man of fixed and unbending principles, the first of which is to be flexible at all times.
Everett Dirksen

Leadership: the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.
Eric Hoffer

The price of greatness is responsibility.
Winston Churchill

I must follow the people. Am I not their leader?
Benjamin Disraeli

Example is not the main thing in influencing others, it is the only thing.
Albert Schweitzer

Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.
John F. Kennedy

The final test of a leader is that he leaves behind him in other men, the conviction and the will to carry on.
Walter Lippman

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
John Quincy Adams

I cannot give you the formula for success, but I can give you the formula for failure: which is: Try to please everybody.
Herbert B. Swope

High sentiments always win in the end, The leaders who offer blood, toil, tears and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who offer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic.
George Orwell

The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.
Kenneth Blanchard

Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

The very essence of leadership is that you have to have vision. You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.
Theodore M. Hesburgh

I think leadership comes from integrity – that you do whatever you ask others to do. I think there are non-obvious ways to lead. Just by providing a good example as a parent, a friend, a neighbor makes it possible for other people to see better ways to do things. Leadership does not need to be a dramatic, fist in the air and trumpets blaring, activity.
Scott Berkun

The leaders who work most effectively, it seems to me, never say “I.” And that’s not because they have trained themselves not to say “I.” They don’t think “I.” They think “we”; they think “team.” They understand their job to be to make the team function. They accept responsibility and don’t sidestep it, but “we” gets the credit…. This is what creates trust, what enables you to get the task done.
Peter Drucker

Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.
Steve Jobs

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.
Bill Gates

It is impossible to imagine anything which better becomes a ruler than mercy.
Seneca

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.
Margaret Mead




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{ 7 comments }

Howie July 9, 2007 at 7:53 am

Nice selection. I like the one stated by John Quincy Adams. It really speaks much about a great leader who influences others with his good works.

Titus-Armand July 11, 2007 at 9:03 pm

Great quotes.

This one is my favorite: “Leadership: the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower

Henrik Edberg July 14, 2007 at 9:55 am

Thanks a lot for the comments. And I may be changing the Wordpress-theme later on.

Matt July 20, 2007 at 2:41 pm

Thanks for the inspiration — I love the one by Emerson. To me that strikes at the heart of what personal development is: Knowing what we could be (as much as knowing what we are already ;))

Neha Chauhan October 29, 2007 at 4:58 pm

All the quotes r really good ones.But according to my information the following quote:
“Do not follow where the path may lead.
Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
was said by Ralph Waldo Emerson not by Harold R. McAlindon

tracy ho December 17, 2007 at 4:26 pm

Thanks you for sharing the beautiful Quotes,

To your success,

Tracy Ho

wisdomgettingloaded

Linda Wessling January 8, 2008 at 9:23 pm

Could you post more quotes by women on this topic?

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