Leadership Quotes
(90+ quotes)

Leadership quotes apply to all of us. Whether you are a student, a stay-at-home-mom, an entrepreneur, or an employee of an organization, you have leadership qualities. 

Good leaders accept responsibility for their actions. They take calculated risks and make informed decisions. Great leaders set good examples and inspire confidence. They encourage and empower. Are you using your leadership abilities to make the world a better place? Pick a cause you have passion for and take action. Let these sayings about leading point you in the right direction.


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Creativity is a function of leadership. It requires navigating uncharted territory and having the courage to face adversity to bring your vision into fruition.
Linda Naiman

A competent leader can get efficient service from poor troops, while on the contrary an incapable leader can demoralize the best of troops.
John J. Pershing

A cowardly leader is the most dangerous of men.
Stephen King

A great person attracts great people and knows how to hold them together.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.
Douglas MacArthur

All of the great leaders have had one characteristic in common: it was the willingness to confront unequivocally the major anxiety of their people in their time. This, and not much else, is the essence of leadership.
John Kenneth Galbraith

Anyone can hold the helm when the sea is calm.
Publilius Syrus

Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily; even if you had no title or position.
Brian Tracy

Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.
Jack Welch

Earn your leadership every day.
Michael Jordan

Effective leadership is not about making speeches or being liked leadership is defined by results not attributes.
Peter F. Drucker

Effective leadership is putting first things first. Effective management is discipline, carrying it out.
Stephen R. Covey

Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate, and doubt to offer a solution everybody can understand.
Colin Powell

Great leaders are not defined by the absence of weakness, but rather by the presence of clear strengths.
John Zenger

He who has great power should use it lightly.
Seneca

He who has never learned to obey cannot be a good commander.
Aristotle

I am reminded how hollow the label of leadership sometimes is and how heroic followership can be.
Warren Bennis

I must follow the people. Am I not their leader?
Benjamin Disraeli

I start with the premise that the function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.
Ralph Nader

In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock.
Thomas Jefferson

Lead me, follow me, or get out of my way.
George S. Patton

Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them.
John C. Maxwell

Leaders think and talk about the solutions. Followers think and talk about the problems.
Brian Tracy

Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.
John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Leadership cannot just go along to get along. Leadership must meet the moral challenge of the day.
Jesse Jackson

Leadership does not always wear the harness of compromise.
Woodrow Wilson

Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without the strategy.
Norman Schwarzkopf

Leadership is lifting a person’s vision to high sights, the raising of a person’s performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.
Peter F. Drucker

Leadership is solving problems. The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help or concluded you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.
Colin Powell

Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.
Warren Bennis

Leadership is the key to 99 percent of all successful efforts.
Erskine Bowles

Leadership is unlocking people's potential to become better.
Bill Bradley

Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing.
Tom Peters

Management is efficiency in climbing the ladder of success; leadership determines whether the ladder is leaning against the right wall.
Stephen R. Covey

Men make history and not the other way around. In periods where there is no leadership, society stands still. Progress occurs when courageous, skillful leaders seize the opportunity to change things for the better.
Harry S. Truman

My own definition of leadership is this: The capacity and the will to rally men and women to a common purpose and the character which inspires confidence
General Bernard Montgomery

Never give an order that can’t be obeyed.
Douglas MacArthur

Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.
George S. Patton

No man is good enough to govern another man without that other’s consent.
Abraham Lincoln

No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself, or to get all the credit for doing it.
Andrew Carnegie

One of the tests of leadership is the ability to recognize a problem before it becomes an emergency.
Arnold H. Glasgow

People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.
John C. Maxwell

The art of leadership is saying no, not saying yes. It is very easy to say yes.
Tony Blair

The final test of a leader is that he leaves behind him in other men, the conviction and the will to carry on.
Walter Lippman

The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.
Max DePree

The greatest leaders mobilize others by coalescing people around a shared vision.
Ken Blanchard

The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership.
Harvey Firestone

The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.
Ken Blanchard

The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born-that there is genetic factor to leadership. That’s nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders are made rather than born.
Warren Bennis

The nation will find it very hard to look up to the leaders who are keeping their ears to the ground.
Winston Churchill

The supreme quality of leadership is integrity.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

There are three essentials to leadership: humility, clarity and courage.
Fuchan Yuan

To command is to serve, nothing more and nothing less.
Andre Malraux

To do great things is difficult; but to command great things is more difficult.
Friedrich Nietzsche

True leadership lies in guiding others to success. In ensuring that everyone is performing at their best, doing the work they are pledged to do and doing it well.
Bill Owens

We live in a society obsessed with public opinion. But leadership has never been about popularity.
Marco Rubio

Whatever you are, be a good one.
Abraham Lincoln

You don’t lead by hitting people over the head—that’s assault, not leadership.
Dwight D. Eisenhower

You don’t lead by pointing and telling people some place to go. You lead by going to that place and making a case.
Ken Kesey

You manage things; you lead people.
Grace Hopper

A leader is someone you would follow to a pace you would not go to by yourself.
Joel Barker

A leader takes people where they want to go. A great leader takes people where they didn't necessarily want to go but ought to be.
Rosalynn Carter

He who thinks he leads, but has no followers, is only taking a walk.
Proverb

It's not the position that makes the leader; it's the leader that makes the position.
Stanley Huffty

Leadership ability determines a person's level of effectiveness.
John C. Maxwell

Leadership is about empathy. It is about having the ability to relate to and connect with people for the purpose of inspiring and empowering their lives.
Oprah Winfrey

Leadership is about tapping the wellsprings of human motivation - and about fundamental relations with one's fellows.
Tom Peters

The individual leads in order that those who are led can develop their potential as human beings and thereby prosper.
Socrates

The only definition of a leader is someone who has followers.
Peter F. Drucker

The true measure of leadership is influence - nothing more, nothing less.
John C. Maxwell

To be a leader you must be able to create positive change.
John C. Maxwell

The leader has to be practical and a realist, yet must talk the language of the visionary and the idealist.
Eric Hoffer

The real leader has no need to lead - he is content to point the way.
Henry Miller

A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd.
James Cook

A person, who no matter how desperate the situation, gives others hope, is a true leader.
Daisaku Ikeda

If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
John Quincy Adams

A good leader is a person who takes a little more than his share of the blame and a little less than his share of the credit.
John C. Maxwell

A leader is a dealer in hope.
Napoleon Bonaparte

A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.
Lao Tzu

Leaders aren’t born, they are made. And they are made just like anything else, through hard work. And that’s the price we’ll have to pay to achieve that goal, or any goal.
Vince Lombardi

Leadership is much more an art, a belief, a condition of the heart, than a set of things to do. The visible signs of artful leadership are expressed, ultimately, in its practice.
Max Dupree

Leadership is practiced not so much in words as in attitude and in actions.
Harold S. Geneen

The challenge of leadership is to be strong, but not rude; be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not bully; be thoughtful, but not lazy; be humble, but not timid; be proud, but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.
Jim Rohn

The world leaders in innovation and creativity will also be world leaders in everything else.
Harold R. McAlindon

A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.
John C. Maxwell

A great leader's courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.
John C. Maxwell

As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.
Bill Gates



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