Evaluating Historical Views of Leadership Essay

1194 Words5 Pages
Evaluating Historical Views of Leadership
March 9, 2014
University of Phoenix

Evaluating Historical Views of Leadership This paper evaluates the leadership views of Plato, Aristotle, Lao-Tzu, and Machiavelli from the point of view of the modern military leader. The process of evaluation includes an examination of the commonalities and disparities between these views of leadership. The paper explores a definition of modern military leadership. The paper includes an assessment of the suitability of each of the aforementioned leadership views to be models for modern military leadership.
Modern Military Leadership The stereotype of the drill sergeant in basic training is not the leadership described in this section.
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Imagination, gift for teamwork, convincing professional qualities, better than average intelligence, and good management abilities are all requirements for military leadership (Mann, 2000).
Plato’s View Plato (1901) in his The Republic described the evils of democracy which lead to anarchy (as cited in Wren, 2013). The solution to the potential anarchy is the establishments of leaders who have the nature of leadership. All others are followers. The elect have qualities of a good memory and a quick study of learning to be noble, find the truth, justice, courage, temperance, and to know kindred (Plato, 1901, as cited in Wren, 2013). This view of leadership separates the leadership class and the follower class. The perfection of a leader comes with years of education (Plato, 1901, as cited in Wren, 2013).
Aristotle’s View Aristotle (1900) believed a leader must first be a follower and the leader must excel over the followers (as cited in Wren, 2013). Aristotle (1900) continued with a leader is a good man and should consider the souls of men when creating laws (as cited in Wren, 2013).
Lao-Tzu’s View Lao-Tzu believed the wise leader is (a) selfless, (b) works without complaint, (c) is unbiased (does not play favorites) and (d) has a policy nonintervention (Heider, 1985, as cited in Wren, 2013). Additionally, Lao-Tzu suggested that the group can lead itself having the presence of
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