Tuesday, March 22, 2011

eLearning CE: Activity 3 - Tan Jian Hui (21)

A good leader does not necessarily mean a righteous or virtuous leader. A leader may only serve his own interests, while convincing people to do things for him. An example would be Vladimir Ilyich Lenin or Napoleon Bonaparte. Lenin is a great leader; as his party, Bolshevik Party seized power, he propagated the slogan "All Power to the Soviets" in his speeches. This particularly appealed to the working people (the proletariat) and the peasants, as much power was held by the bourgeoisie (middle classes). By using this tactics, he rallied support from these people. An example of a righteous leader would be Abraham Lincoln. As many people know, he fought for the emancipation of black slavery. This launched the Civil War, where he gave his famous Gettysburg Address, whether a nation "conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal" could survive. Slavery meant there were discriminations, and does not agree with the idea of equality. However, even after this, the "war" of anti-discrimination or segregation of blacks still continued, many great leaders have come forward, such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela fighting the apartheid in South Africa. 

As can be seen from above, these leaders have left a significant mark in history, with their leadership, whether for the good or the bad. They possess traits that really gave them the charm, or with words and ideas. Therefore a good leader, can use words or ideas that appeal to a large public to convince them. Lenin worked on the ideal of "All Power to the Soviets", while Lincoln worked on the basis of the democracy and moral rightness. 

However a good leader faces crisis under stressful situations too. When the Confederate waged war against the Union, Lincoln went to the battlefield, giving orders. He introduced photographers to the battlefields, snapping moments of battle and dead bodies of soldiers, giving the general public an insight of the aftermath of war. Lincoln used this tactic well, as he used the peoples' beliefs well. His Gettysburg Address also served him well, as a thought-provoking speech that touched on the basis of equality and the forefathers who have the ideal of equality. Thus, a good leader must know what to do in a crisis, the next step could be the last step. Acting calmly and using basic "tools" well are just some of the ways extraordinary leaders cope with stressful situations. 

Source: Simon Seabag Montefiore. (2005). Speeches That Changed The World. Britain: Quercus Publishing Plc

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