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IMT-64: Leadership-MT1

IMT-64: Leadership-MT1















Q1. Why is creating a vision and selling it considered the foremost task of a leader?

Q2. Why is trust building essential to become an effective leader.

Q3. Please explain the Blake and Mouton theory of leadership? Do you consider it of practical use? Please discuss.

Q4. What is transformational leadership? How is it different from transactional leadership?

Q5. What are the specific roles of team leaders?


Q1. Can leadership be taught? Discuss.

Q2. How do leaders influence their followers by role modeling? Give some examples.

Q3. Compare the leadership styles of Ram with Krishna.

Q4. What are the expectations of followers from their leaders.

Q5. Why is creation , articulation, and alignment of corporate values essential for business leaders?


Q1. Discuss the leadership qualities of Mahatma Gandhi.

Q2. "Experimentation and Risk taking are essential traits of a good leader." Discuss in detail with current examples of business leaders.

Q3. "Good leaders are very skillful in creative use of reward and recognition." Discuss with examples from great business leaders.

Q4. Why is it essential for leaders to grow continuously? What are the various ways in which leaders develop themselves?

Q5. Differentiate leaders from managers in terms of planning and budgeting, organising and staffing, developing a human network, execution, and primary coordinating mechanisms.


Arc of Leadership - Joan of Arc

She was one of the greatest leaders the world has seen because she roused a whole nation from despondency and defeatism. She spurred it to fight and eventually drive away the mighty English and unite a nation. She is a pure leader, par excellence.

This piece is adapted from Bernard Shaw's masterpiece Saint Joan. Shaw takes us through the main event of her life - her meeting Charles, the Dauphin (the uncrowned king), leading an army to lift the siege of Orleans, crowning Charles as the king of France, the betrayal of Joan by king and others, her trial, and in the end her being burnt at the stake.

At a very young age Joan saw the brutality of the English occupiers against the people in her village. She combined great pity that gave her passion and conviction. She also had a great intellect that gave her clarity of mind. She seems to have spiritual experiences that led her to believe that God was telling her to lead France, throw out the British, and crown Dauphin as the king.

She wondered why France was always losing, and concluded that they lacked a cause to fight for and that the French did not have a proper, disciplined army. She believed that she had to unify all France under one king, and that God had chosen her to accomplish this mission.

Joan's passion is in evidence throughout her life. Even though only a peasant girl, she manages to meet the commander of a local castle and then the Dauphin himself and convince a nervous Dauphin that it was possible to lift the siege of Orleans. When Dauphin hesitates she brusquely tells him, "I will put courage into you."

Dauphin yields. She is given the overall command of the army and she infuses the army with a new hope, a new courage, and a new confidence.

"Who is for God and His Maid? Who is for Orleans with me?" shouts Joan, the peasant girl, and the entire assembly of knights shouts back, "To Orleans." She lives among the soldiers, eating what they eat, and always leading from the front, an example for everybody. When wounded badly by an arrow, she gets the arrow pulled out and is back at the front, leading an inspired army. The English are defeated and the siege of Orleans is lifted. It is a miracle. Joan's story shows what faith in one's mission and an unbridled passion to achieve it against all odds can accomplish.

The army had been there for long but it could not drive the British out because it did not have faith. What Joan put into it was faith; faith in its cause and confidence in its success.

Creating faith is the hallmark of a leader. Leaders create faith in their followers by having total conviction in their cause and position. Confidence and enthusiasm are contagious. To herself she was the Messenger of God and she would not compromise even when her life is at stake.

But due to her total confidence she was also unable to see the opposition from vested interests. Church's authority lay in its claim to be the sole interpreter of God and this was being undermined by Joan of Arc. The feudal chiefs felt threatened because to them the king had been only the first among equals.

Passion and vision bring enormous changes in the established order and a leader can come to grief if he is not able to manage this. Joan of Arc was rehabilitated after she had died and was no longer a threat. But, 'if you could bring her back to life , they would burn her again within six months.'- such are the perils of leadership. The Church asked her to confess. She confessed hoping that once she did so she would be set free. But then she learnt that she would not be set free but would become a prisoner of Church for life. Now her mission was in danger.

She tore up her confession and virtually forced the Church to burn her. If she had lived France would not have been united. Her martyrdom shows a dilemma to choose between oneself and one's ideal.

Joan perished but "her heart would not burn." Her death infused a fresh spirit among the French, who succeeded in driving out the English. She became 'the soul of France.' True leadership sometimes requires the sacrifice of oneself so that the ideal may survive.


Q1. To what do you attribute Joan's success as a leader?

Q2. How did Joan of Arc accomplish her mission?

Q3. Can you think of some other people who had some of the attributes which Joan had? Please discuss.



The Sound of the Forest

Back in the third century A.D., King Ts'ao sent his son, Prince T'ai, to the temple to study under the great master Pan Ku. Because Prince T'ai was to succeed his father as king, Pan Ku was to teach the boy the basics of being a good ruler. When the prince arrived at the temple, the master sent him alone to the Ming-Li Forest. After one year, the prince was to return to the temple to describe the sound of the forest.

When Prince T'ai returned, Pan Ku asked the boy to describe all that he could hear. "Master," replied the prince, "I could hear the cuckoos sing, the leaves rustle, the hummingbirds hum, the crickets chirp, the grass blow, the bees buzz, and the wind whisper and holler." When the prince had finished, the master told him to go back to the forest to listen to what more he could hear. The prince was puzzled by the master's request. Had he not discerned every sound already?

For days and nights on end, the young prince sat alone in the forest listening. But he heard no sounds other than those he had already heard.

Then one morning, as the prince sat silently beneath the trees, he started to discern faint sounds unlike those he had ever heard before. The more acutely he listened, the clearer the sounds became. The feeling of enlightenment enveloped the boy. "These must be the sounds the master wished me to discern," he reflected.

When Prince T'ai returned to the temple, the master asked him what more he had heard. "Master," responded the prince reverently, "when I listened most closely, I could hear the unheard - the sound of flowers opening, the sound of the sun warming the earth, and the sound of the grass drinking the morning dew." The master nodded approvingly.

"To hear the unheard," remarked Pan Ku, "is a necessary discipline to be a good ruler. For only when a ruler has learned to listen closely to the people's hearts, hearing their feelings uncommunicated pains unexpressed, and complaints not spoken of, can he hope to inspire confidence in his people, understand when something is wrong, and meet the true needs of his citizens. The demise of states comes when leaders listen only to superficial words and do not penetrate deeply into the souls of the people to hear their true opinions, feelings, and desires."


Q1. Why did King Ts'ao send his son, Prince T'ai, to the temple to study under Pan Ku a man who seems to have no idea of the value of time.

Q2. Do you think that to be a good manager it is necessary to hear the unheard?

Q3. What is unheard in real life and how do effective leaders hear it?

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