Leadership Techniques Term Paper

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Martin Luther King Junior -- the Leader

Martin Luther King Junior was born to a Baptist minister in the year 1929 in the city of Atlanta, Georgia. In Howard Gardner's book, Leading Minds, King referred to his childhood and explained that the first twenty-5 years of his existence were very comfortable years. He was not bothered about much except going to school and doing the work he was asked to do (Gardner, 1995). He was raised in the father's actions and also got his bachelor of divinity in 1951 and the doctoral in 1955. Gardner highlights that while King's personal philosophy hadn't coalesced, he was thinking about the bond between an individual's relationship to God and their resolve for social activism on the planet. He seemed to be trying to reconcile his personal encounters as part of the standard, psychologically suffused black chapel with rather abstruse concerns of latest Protestant theologians (Gardner, 1995).

Martin Luther King Junior and Leadership

Martin Luther King's renowned "I have a Dream" speech exhibits precisely what type of leader he was, a guy who had been extremely effective at what he did which was to inspire with words. King was referred to by a few as the guy who was capable of getting a distinctive way to get individuals to interact instead of fight. This leadership wasn't limited to fine speeches. In private conferences, King was generally quiet. He took in while some contended, frequently angrily and also at length, after which he'd comfortably summarize the controversy and identify a means forward. In the start of his career in Montgomery in 1955, to his dying in 1968, King conducted his demeanour with an amazing capability to get people, who'd well be constantly feuding, to operate together. He was consistently unwilling to sever or sour relations with anybody who may help the reason. It was particularly significant just because a by-product of racism would be a pronounced inclination to factionalism within the black community. King grew to become the vital centre - an item of balance and unity (Ling, 2003).

Martin Luther King Junior would be a transformational leader. In King's case, transformational leadership can be said to begin with the introduction of an image, a view for the future which will excite and convert potential fans. This vision might be produced by the best choice, through the senior team or may leave an extensive number of discussions. Although the life changing leader seeks overtly to change the business, there's additionally a tacit promise to fans they will also be changed in some manner, possibly to become a lot more like this unique leader. In certain respects, then, the fans would be the product from the transformation...Life changing leaders are frequently charming, but aren't as narcissistic as pure Charming leaders, who succeed via a belief by themselves rather that the belief in others" (Life changing leadership, 2007).

You will find others who use charisma to guide countless followers, including cult leaders. In lots of ways, Martin Luther and the other influential preacher of his time - Jim Johnson - were similar leaders. Both were charming and used the transformational leadership style well alongside their charismatic personalities. Actually, Jim Johnson can be referred to as the epitome of the charming leader. He was excellent at charming everybody around him, including many high people in politics within the Bay Area in the decade of the 1970's. He had some very noble ideas of racial equality; however, his drug abuse exhibited the narcissistic characteristics that transformed him from the transformational leader to a charming leader.

Life changing leadership and Charming leadership have most of the same characteristics. The content on Charming leadership can be summarized as:

"The Charismatic leader and the Transformational leader can have many similarities, in that the Transformational leader may well be charismatic. Their main difference is in their basic focus. Whereas the Transformational leader has a basic focus of transforming the organization and, quite possible, their followers, the Charismatic leader may not want to change anything.… Despite their charm and apparent concern, the Charismatic leader may well be somewhat more concerned with themselves than anyone else.… The Values of the Charismatic leader are highly significant. If they are well-intentioned towards others, they can elevate and transform an entire company. If they are selfish and Machiavellian, they can create cults and effectively rape the minds (and potentially the bodies) of the followers ...Their self-belief is so high, they can easily believe that they are infallible, and hence lead their followers into an abyss, even when they have received adequate warning from others. The self-belief can also lead them into psychotic narcissism, where their self-absorption or need for admiration and worship can lead to their followers questioning their leadership" (Charming leadership, 2007).

The commonalities between Martin Luther King and Jim Johnson are uncanny. Both were preachers in the same time frame, throughout the '60s when individuals finally simply understood that race and colour were insignificant in God's eyes. Both of them preached about racial equality. Both leaders were also idealistic in their stance and wanted peace on the planet. However, where Martin Luther King chose to take a nonviolent approach, Jim Johnson grew to become paranoid and thought that everybody was after him and the followers. Peoples Temple was thus built with a stockpile of weapons that they smuggled into Guyana. He had a military pressure that encircled him constantly, allegedly because there had been several attacks made on his life (Kirk, 2005).

Furthermore, focus on King's charisma conveys the misleading perception of a movement held together by mesmerizing speeches and blind belief instead of an intricate mixture of rational and sentimental relations. King's charisma didn't place him above critique. Indeed, he never was in a position to attain massive support and following for his perception of nonviolent struggle like a life-style, instead it was used as just a tactic. Rather than perceiving himself as the personification of broadly held Afro-American racial values, he voluntarily risked his recognition among the masses of black communities through his steadfast advocacy of nonviolent methods to attain radical social alterations (Kirk, 2005).

He would be a profound and provocative presenter plus a psychologically effective one. Only individuals not really acquainted with the Afro-American local clergy would think that his oratorical abilities were unique, but King set himself aside from other black preachers through his utilization of customary black Christian idiom to promote unorthodox political ideas. At the start of his political and social existence King grew to become disillusioned using the entire spectrum of emotions by connecting them together with his father's religious fundamentalism, and, like a 13-year-old, he asked the bodily resurrection of Jesus in the Sunday school class for constant and rigorous help. His subsequent look for an intellectually satisfying religious belief conflicted using the focus on sentimental expressiveness that overtakes the overall evangelical religion structures. His approach to preaching was rooted within the traditions of the black chapel, while his overall content and material, which frequently reflected his wide-varying philosophical interests, was what defined him and differentiated him using their company preachers who depended on rhetorical products that altered the feelings of the audience. King utilized his charismatic personality like a tool for mobilizing black towns (Kirk, 2005 Jackson, 2006).


Because of the miracle of television, Martin Luther King Junior is strongly appreciated being an inspiring speaker, whose leadership was apparently and obviously based around his oratory. Speeches like the 'I have A Dream' speech in the civil rights march on Washington of August 1963 united and energized the masses irrespective of their race or colour, and produced an unparalleled bipartisan coalition for anti-racist legislation (Jackson, 2006).

King unquestionably spoke to, as well as for, the African People in America, as well as their mounting challenge to…

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