P.T. Barnum & Nelson Mandela: Embracing Leadership Styles for Positive Change - Essay Sample

Paper Type:  Essay
Pages:  4
Wordcount:  1025 Words
Date:  2023-02-27


Various leaders in history have transformed and inspired the world to make a positive change in the life of other people. P. T. Barnum is among the leaders that have influenced leadership styles that leaders need to embrace. P. T. Barnum was able to make the right decision from a poor boy to a successful leader. P. T. Barnum attributes need to be embraced by the modern day in helping people beat the challenges that they might be facing.

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Nelson Mandela is another leader that has contributed significantly to the world today by changing the world positively and better for all people. The leadership style of Mandela was transformative, where he wanted to transform his people into better lives (Pietersen 62). Among the most significant things that Mandela did is being imprisoned for twenty-seven years in search of freedom. Mandela did not give up on leading the people of South Africa to gain independence despite being tortured. The native people were denied their rights in their land; hence, Mandela saw the need to lead the people in a fight for freedom against their colonial masters. Mandela remained focused until he was detained.

Nelson Mandela was a passive communicator when sharing ideas with the people on various issues that they needed to know in their fight for freedom. He was also an effective communicator when passing information (Pietersen 65). The colonizers took advantage of the communication style to spread propaganda and divide South Africans. The cool personality of Nelson Mandela was a weakness in fighting for freedom because the people were discouraged from fighting back the way they were being fought. However, Mandela had the leadership skills of uniting his people to continue fighting for freedom even after he was imprisoned. Mandela taught the world that forgiveness was not a sign of weakness. Mandela forgave the colonials when he was released and become president despite being jailed for twenty-seven years. One of the shortcomings of Mandela is that he never used to predict what the colonizers would do to him and hide.

Mahatma Gandhi is among effective leaders that the world has come to know based on his effort to fight for equality of Indians. Effective leadership influences and motivate people to accomplish particular tasks (Rao 44). Mahatma Gandhi is remembered for leading the Indians to fight for their independence. The Indians required a leader to guide the people towards fighting for the independence of India to become an independent state. The previous political leaders were unable to guide the people in demanding their freedom, prolonging the time at which India spent fighting for their freedoms.

Mahatma Gandhi used non-violence protest and civil disobedience, where the people protested against colonial rule. One of the characteristics of effective leadership is the transformational leadership style, where the leaders bring new ways of transforming the people by making their lives better (Rao 46). Mahatma Gandhi inspired the people that they could fight for their rights from colonial rule. The leadership traits that made Mahatma Gandhi great are his humbleness, where he was able to connect with the people regardless of his status in society. He was able to interact with the people and communicate his views on how to fight for independence.

Gandhi was an aggressive communicator when it comes to communicating with colonial oppressors. Mahatma Gandhi had studied law in South Africa and seen how different communities were fighting for their independence (Rao 44). He used the tactics learned to gather followers and inspire the people to fight for their freedoms and rights. Mahatma gave hope to the people that they could be able to have the freedom and eliminate the challenges that they faced, such as poverty and religious rights. Mahatma is remembered for leading the people successfully in fighting for their freedom.

Among the beliefs of P. T. Barnum that makes good leaders include having a positive vision of the things that one wants to achieve. The vision keeps the leader focused on the things that the leader wants to achieve. The vision enables one to set strategies to use in achieving the vision that one needs to achieve. The other attribute of successful leaders, according to P. T. Barnum, includes accepting responsibility for one's actions. Leaders also make mistakes; hence, they should accept the mistakes they make to learn from them. P. T. Barnum also advocated for a positive attitude when doing things.

Martin Luther King Jr. was a civil rights activist in America who formed the civil rights movement that advocated for equality in the United States. He was a conspicuous and eloquent leader that fought for equal rights of black Americans living in the United States (Carson 27). He inspired black Americans to fight for equality and to be treated as American citizens. The personality of Martin Luther King Jr. had an admirable character from his peers. He used the transformative leadership style where he wanted the lives of the black Americans to be transformed for the better.

Martin was an aggressive communicator, where he urged the people to fight for their rights. The communication strategy was effective in making the people understand his message on the factors affecting the people (Carson 28). He had an admirable personality that many people admired. He made speeches that highlighted the rights of the people and the freedoms that they have the right to demand - the shortcoming of martinis that he was not adaptable to changes.


In conclusion, the three leaders have transformed the world in different ways, and the leaders had effective leadership skills that enabled them to succeed in their endeavors to transform their communities. The leaders faced challenges, but they were able to achieve their goals despite facing the challenges. The personality of the leaders also helps in creating good relations with the people that they were working with to achieve the goals.

Works Cited

Carson, Clayborne. "Martin Luther King, Jr: Charismatic leadership in a mass struggle." Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights Movement: Controversies and Debates 74 (2007): 27.

Rao, M. S. "Soft leadership: a new direction to leadership." Industrial and Commercial Training 45.3 (2013): 143-149.

Pietersen, Willie. "Nelson Mandela taught the world about leadership." Leader to Leader 2015.76 (2015): 60-66.

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P.T. Barnum & Nelson Mandela: Embracing Leadership Styles for Positive Change - Essay Sample. (2023, Feb 27). Retrieved from https://proessays.net/essays/pt-barnum-nelson-mandela-embracing-leadership-styles-for-positive-change-essay-sample

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