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Leadership is first about always improving and growing yourself -- so that you can actually lead effectively. Quotes on leadership from other great leaders are therefore worth consideration. Here we have assembled over 300 meaningful quotes for you to ponder as you hone and refine your leadership skills. Enjoy!

quote by John Buchan: The task of leadership is not to put greatness into humanity, but to elicit it, for the greatness is already there. with background image: photo of author John Buchan with quote

The task of leadership is not to put greatness into humanity, but to elicit it, for the greatness is already there.

--John Buchan
quote by King George VI: The highest of distinctions is service to others. with background image: person using laptop
Background Photo: John Schnobrich

The highest of distinctions is service to others.

--King George VI
quote by Laozi (Lao-Tzu): When the best leader's work is done the people say, 'We did it ourselves.' with background image: sunset
Background Photo: DiscoverQuotes Staff

When the best leader's work is done the people say, 'We did it ourselves.'

--Laozi (Lao-Tzu)
quote by John Quincy Adams: If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader. with background image: white bicycle parked beside wall
Background Photo: Brennan Ehrhardt

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

--John Quincy Adams
quote by John F. Kennedy: Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other. with background image: person sitting on chair holding iPad
Background Photo: Adeolu Eletu

Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other.

--John F. Kennedy

quote by Poole: Leadership should be more participative than directive, more enabling than performing. with background image: low-angle photo of white daisy
Background Photo: Aaron Burden

Leadership should be more participative than directive, more enabling than performing.

--Mary D. Poole
quote by Alexis Hunter: The only prerequisites to leadership are that you remain positive, calm, and open-minded. with background image: red heart wall décor
Background Photo: Nicola Fioravanti

The only prerequisites to leadership are that you remain positive, calm, and open-minded.

--Alexis Hunter
quote by Che Guevarra: The best form of saying is being. with background image: business sharing phone wallpaper
Background Photo: Muhammad Faiz Zulkeflee

The best form of saying is being.

--Che Guevarra
quote by Donald McGannon: Leadership is action, not position. with background image: business newspaper wallpaper
Background Photo: Annie Spratt

Leadership is action, not position.

--Donald McGannon
quote by James Humes: One secret of leadership is that the mind of a leader never turns off. Leaders even when they are sightseers or spectators, are active; not passive observers. with background image: desert under blue skies
Background Photo: Yuriy Bogdanov

One secret of leadership is that the mind of a leader never turns off. Leaders even when they are sightseers or spectators, are active; not passive observers.

--James Humes
quote by James Humes: The art of communication is the language of leadership. with background image: man in black pants sitting on chair
Background Photo: Ira Ostafiichuk

The art of communication is the language of leadership.

--James Humes
quote by Ralph Moody: The best boss is the one who bosses the least. with background image: man wearing watch with black suit
Background Photo: Ruthson Zimmerman

The best boss is the one who bosses the least.

--Ralph Moody
quote by Ralph Moody: Always remember, Son, the best boss is the one who bosses the least. Whether it's cattle, or horses, or men; the least government is the best government. with background image: blue painted wall with white paint
Background Photo: engin akyurt

Always remember, Son, the best boss is the one who bosses the least. Whether it's cattle, or horses, or men; the least government is the best government.

--Ralph Moody
quote by Abaida Mahmood: The journey of leadership begins outside your comfort zone. with background image: photography of yellow petaled flowers field
Background Photo: Johannes Plenio

The journey of leadership begins outside your comfort zone.

--Abaida Mahmood
quote by Celinda Lake: The fastest surging woman leadership position is heading non-profit organizations. Women are not rejecting leadership positions -- they're rejecting politics. with background image: silhouette of trees during sunset
Background Photo: Kristaps Ungurs

The fastest surging woman leadership position is heading non-profit organizations. Women are not rejecting leadership positions -- they're rejecting politics.

--Celinda Lake
quote by Amit Ray: Leadership is not a position but an energy that people love, trust and follow. with background image: silhouette of mountains under blue sky during daytime
Background Photo: Wolfgang Hasselmann

Leadership is not a position but an energy that people love, trust and follow.

--Amit Ray
quote by Amit Ray: Leadership is fixing your eyes not just on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. with background image: plain background
Background Photo: Pawel Czerwinski

Leadership is fixing your eyes not just on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

--Amit Ray
quote by Amit Ray: Leadership is igniting the creative magic within you that adds joy and value to you and others. with background image: pink rose in close up photography
Background Photo: Alice Mourou

Leadership is igniting the creative magic within you that adds joy and value to you and others.

--Amit Ray
quote by Amit Ray: You can't move up in the staircase of leadership unless you are emotionally intelligent. with background image: tiger swallowtail butterfly perched on pink flower in close up photography during daytime
Background Photo: Joshua J. Cotten

You can't move up in the staircase of leadership unless you are emotionally intelligent.

--Amit Ray
quote by Amit Ray: Leadership grows like tall trees. It needs both toughness and flexibility -- toughness for accountability -- flexibility to adapt changes with a compassionate and caring heart for self and others. with background image: photo of author Amit Ray with quote

Leadership grows like tall trees. It needs both toughness and flexibility -- toughness for accountability -- flexibility to adapt changes with a compassionate and caring heart for self and others.

--Amit Ray
quote by Andy Stanley: Uncertainty is not an indication of poor leadership; it underscores the need for leadership. with background image: silhouette of kneeling man
Background Photo: Aaron Burden

Uncertainty is not an indication of poor leadership; it underscores the need for leadership.

--Andy Stanley
quote by Andy Stanley: Leadership is all about taking people on a journey. The challenge is that most of the time, we are asking people to follow us to places we ourselves have never been. with background image: photo of author Andy Stanley with quote

Leadership is all about taking people on a journey. The challenge is that most of the time, we are asking people to follow us to places we ourselves have never been.

--Andy Stanley
quote by Andy Stanley: Uncertainty is a permanent part of the leadership landscape. It never goes away. with background image: white tulip flower in close up photography
Background Photo: Jocelyn Morales

Uncertainty is a permanent part of the leadership landscape. It never goes away.

--Andy Stanley
quote by Anonymous: And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch. with background image: woman lying on white lounge chair in the middle of pool
Background Photo: Jane Palash

And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch.

--Anonymous
quote by Anthony Fauci: Some people feel, you make your case, if they listen to you, fine, if they don't, that's it. That's not what leadership is. Leadership is trying to continue to make a case. with background image: photo of author Anthony Fauci with quote

Some people feel, you make your case, if they listen to you, fine, if they don't, that's it. That's not what leadership is. Leadership is trying to continue to make a case.

--Anthony Fauci
quote by Bertolt Brecht: There are many elements to a campaign. Leadership is number one. Everything else is number two. with background image: photo of author Bertolt Brecht with quote

There are many elements to a campaign. Leadership is number one. Everything else is number two.

--Bertolt Brecht
quote by Bill Bradley: Leadership is unlocking people's potential to become better. with background image: photo of author Bill Bradley with quote

Leadership is unlocking people's potential to become better.

--Bill Bradley
quote by Bill Owens: 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. with background image: photo of author Bill Owens with quote

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
quote by Chester W. Nimitz: Leadership consists of picking good men and helping them do their best. with background image: photo of author Chester W. Nimitz with quote

Leadership consists of picking good men and helping them do their best.

--Chester W. Nimitz
quote by Chinese Proverb: An army of a thousand is easy to find, but, ah, how difficult to find a general. with background image: red tulip in bloom during daytime
Background Photo: Huang Eugene

An army of a thousand is easy to find, but, ah, how difficult to find a general.

--Chinese Proverb
quote by Dave Ramsey: True leadership is servanthood. Put the interests of others at the center of your decisions. with background image: man and woman facing backward while woman's head on man's shoulder on tip of hill
Background Photo: Aiony Haust

True leadership is servanthood. Put the interests of others at the center of your decisions.

--Dave Ramsey
quote by David Joseph Schwartz: Think little goals and expect little achievements. Think big goals and win big success. with background image: silhouette of mountain
Background Photo: Elliott Engelmann

Think little goals and expect little achievements. Think big goals and win big success.

--David Joseph Schwartz
quote by Dean Smith: A lion never roars after a kill. with background image: man wearing black notched lapel suit jacket in focus photography
Background Photo: Ali Morshedlou

A lion never roars after a kill.

--Dean Smith
quote by Dean Smith: The most important thing in good leadership is truly caring. with background image: woman covering man's face
Background Photo: Chermiti Mohamed

The most important thing in good leadership is truly caring.

--Dean Smith
quote by Debasish Mridha, MD: Be an example, be positive, be enthusiastic, be proactive -- that is proactive leadership. with background image: green trees on brown dried leaves during daytime
Background Photo: Dominic Vogl

Be an example, be positive, be enthusiastic, be proactive -- that is proactive leadership.

--Debasish Mridha, MD

quote by Frank Herbert: A leader, you see, is one of the things that distinguishes a mob from a people. with background image: photo of author Frank Herbert with quote

A leader, you see, is one of the things that distinguishes a mob from a people.

--Frank Herbert
quote by Harold S. Geneen: Leadership is practiced not so much in words as in attitude and in actions. with background image: woman standing on forest
Background Photo: Tobias Hort-Giess

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

--Harold S. Geneen
quote by Harvey S. Firestone: The growth and development of people is the highest calling of leadership. with background image: photo of author Harvey S. Firestone with quote

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

--Harvey S. Firestone

quote by Israelmore Ayivor: You cannot climb up to a true leadership position unless you use the ladder of integrity! with background image: landscape photography of waves and clouds
Background Photo: Ant Rozetsky

You cannot climb up to a true leadership position unless you use the ladder of integrity!

--Israelmore Ayivor

quote by J. Donald Walters: Leadership is an opportunity to serve. It is not a trumpet call to self-importance. with background image: photo of author J. Donald Walters with quote

Leadership is an opportunity to serve. It is not a trumpet call to self-importance.

--J. Donald Walters
quote by Jack Ma: A leader should have higher grit and tenacity, and be able to endure what the employees can't. with background image: photo of author Jack Ma with quote

A leader should have higher grit and tenacity, and be able to endure what the employees can't.

--Jack Ma
quote by Jack Ma: Find the right people, not the best people. with background image: low-angle photography of man in the middle of buidligns
Background Photo: Razvan Chisu

Find the right people, not the best people.

--Jack Ma
quote by James Gibbons: There are no office hours for leaders. with background image: people walking on grey concrete floor during daytime
Background Photo: Timon Studler

There are no office hours for leaders.

--James Gibbons
quote by Jesse Jackson: Leadership has a harder job to do than just choose sides. It must bring sides together. with background image: photo of author Jesse Jackson with quote

Leadership has a harder job to do than just choose sides. It must bring sides together.

--Jesse Jackson
quote by Jesse Jackson: Time is neutral and does not change things. With courage and initiative, leaders change things. with background image: photo of author Jesse Jackson with quote

Time is neutral and does not change things. With courage and initiative, leaders change things.

--Jesse Jackson
quote by John Hume: I never thought in terms of being a leader. I thought very simply in terms of helping people. with background image: photo of author John Hume with quote

I never thought in terms of being a leader. I thought very simply in terms of helping people.

--John Hume
quote by John Updike: A leader is one who, out of madness or goodness, volunteers to take upon himself the woe of the people. There are few men so foolish, hence the erratic quality of leadership in the world. with background image: photo of author John Updike with quote

A leader is one who, out of madness or goodness, volunteers to take upon himself the woe of the people. There are few men so foolish, hence the erratic quality of leadership in the world.

--John Updike


quote by Laurence J. Peter: Lead, follow, or get out of the way. with background image: MacBook Pro beside plant in vase
Background Photo: Sarah Dorweiler

Lead, follow, or get out of the way.

--Laurence J. Peter
quote by Lee Iacocca: I forgot to shake hands and be friendly. It was an important lesson about leadership. with background image: photo of author Lee Iacocca with quote

I forgot to shake hands and be friendly. It was an important lesson about leadership.

--Lee Iacocca
quote by Leo Burnett: What helps people, helps business. with background image: person using laptop
Background Photo: John Schnobrich

What helps people, helps business.

--Leo Burnett
quote by Leymah Gbowee: Leadership is standing with your people. People say you have to live to fight another day, but sometimes you have to show you are a true leader. with background image: Arizona landscape rain
Background Photo: DiscoverQuotes Staff

Leadership is standing with your people. People say you have to live to fight another day, but sometimes you have to show you are a true leader.

--Leymah Gbowee
quote by Max De Pree: The signs of outstanding leadership appear primarily among the followers. with background image: round black clock on linen
Background Photo: Bruno Figueiredo

The signs of outstanding leadership appear primarily among the followers.

--Max De Pree
quote by Max De Pree: Leadership is much more an art, a belief, a condition of the heart, than a set of things to do. with background image: green ceramic mug on wooden desk
Background Photo: David Mao

Leadership is much more an art, a belief, a condition of the heart, than a set of things to do.

--Max De Pree
quote by Miyamoto Musashi: If you do not look at things on a large scale, it will be difficult to master strategy. with background image: photo of author Miyamoto Musashi with quote

If you do not look at things on a large scale, it will be difficult to master strategy.

--Miyamoto Musashi
quote by Norman Schwarzkopf: When placed in command, take charge. with background image: people walking on grey concrete floor during daytime
Background Photo: Timon Studler

When placed in command, take charge.

--Norman Schwarzkopf
quote by Norman Schwarzkopf: You learn far more from negative leadership than from positive leadership. Because you learn how not to do it. And, therefore, you learn how to do it. with background image: photo of author Norman Schwarzkopf with quote

You learn far more from negative leadership than from positive leadership. Because you learn how not to do it. And, therefore, you learn how to do it.

--Norman Schwarzkopf
quote by Orrin Woodward: Leaders always choose the harder right rather than the easier wrong. with background image: white tulips in white background
Background Photo: Adriana Antunes

Leaders always choose the harder right rather than the easier wrong.

--Orrin Woodward
quote by Paul Polman: Leadership is not just about giving energy… it's unleashing other people's energy. with background image: photo of author Paul Polman with quote

Leadership is not just about giving energy… it's unleashing other people's energy.

--Paul Polman
quote by Ray Kroc: You're only as good as the people you hire. with background image: three people sitting in front of table laughing together
Background Photo: Brooke Cagle

You're only as good as the people you hire.

--Ray Kroc
quote by Richie Norton: True leadership is caring about the people who don't care about things you care about. with background image: desk with laptop
Background Photo: Nikita Kachanovsky

True leadership is caring about the people who don't care about things you care about.

--Richie Norton
quote by Robert K. Greenleaf: The most serious failure of leadership is the failure to foresee. with background image: focus photo of a hummingbird on leaf
Background Photo: Vladimir Kudinov

The most serious failure of leadership is the failure to foresee.

--Robert K. Greenleaf
quote by Robin Sharma: A leadership culture is one where everyone thinks like an owner, a CEO or a managing director. It's one where everyone is entrepreneurial and proactive. with background image: photo of author Robin Sharma with quote

A leadership culture is one where everyone thinks like an owner, a CEO or a managing director. It's one where everyone is entrepreneurial and proactive.

--Robin Sharma
quote by Robin Sharma: Leadership is a mindset that shifts from being a victim to creating results. Any one of us can demonstrate leadership in our work and within our lives. with background image: photo of author Robin Sharma with quote

Leadership is a mindset that shifts from being a victim to creating results. Any one of us can demonstrate leadership in our work and within our lives.

--Robin Sharma
quote by Robin Sharma: Leadership is no longer about your position. It's now more about your passion for excellence and making a difference. You can lead without a title. with background image: brown and gray brick wall
Background Photo: engin akyurt

Leadership is no longer about your position. It's now more about your passion for excellence and making a difference. You can lead without a title.

--Robin Sharma
quote by Robin Sharma: Leadership distilled down to 3 words: Make a difference. with background image: person holding light bulb
Background Photo: Diego PH

Leadership distilled down to 3 words: Make a difference.

--Robin Sharma
quote by Rosabeth Moss Kanter: Leaders are more powerful role models when they learn than when they teach. with background image: brown, black, and white butterfly on purple petaled flower photo
Background Photo: Dan Freeman

Leaders are more powerful role models when they learn than when they teach.

--Rosabeth Moss Kanter
quote by Roy T. Bennett: Do more listening than talking; talk more about them than about you. with background image: white tulips in white background
Background Photo: Adriana Antunes

Do more listening than talking; talk more about them than about you.

--Roy T. Bennett
quote by Roy T. Bennett: Leaders are limited by their vision rather than by their abilities. with background image: purple, white, and pink floral painting
Background Photo: Annie Spratt

Leaders are limited by their vision rather than by their abilities.

--Roy T. Bennett
quote by Roy T. Bennett: One of the best ways to influence people is to make them feel important. Most people enjoy those rare moments when others make them feel important. It is one of the deepest human desires. with background image: photo of author Roy T. Bennett with quote

One of the best ways to influence people is to make them feel important. Most people enjoy those rare moments when others make them feel important. It is one of the deepest human desires.

--Roy T. Bennett
quote by Russel Honore: Leadership is working with goals and vision; management is working with objectives. with background image: brown leaf tree facing the lake
Background Photo: Aaron Burden

Leadership is working with goals and vision; management is working with objectives.

--Russel Honore
quote by Seth Berkley: Leadership is about vision and responsibility, not power. with background image: man wearing watch with black suit
Background Photo: Ruthson Zimmerman

Leadership is about vision and responsibility, not power.

--Seth Berkley

Longer Version:

Leadership is about vision and responsibility, not power. And I try to model that in all of my interactions.


quote by Seth Godin: Leadership, on the other hand, is about creating change you believe in. with background image: desert grassland
Background Photo: DiscoverQuotes Staff

Leadership, on the other hand, is about creating change you believe in.

--Seth Godin
quote by Sheryl Sandberg: True leadership stems from individuality that is honestly and sometimes imperfectly expressed… Leaders should strive for authenticity over perfection. with background image: silhouette of man and woman during sunset
Background Photo: Abdul Gani M

True leadership stems from individuality that is honestly and sometimes imperfectly expressed… Leaders should strive for authenticity over perfection.

--Sheryl Sandberg
quote by Simon Sinek: Be the leader you wish you had. with background image: photo of author Simon Sinek with quote

Be the leader you wish you had.

--Simon Sinek
quote by Simon Sinek: A boss has the title, a leader has the people. with background image: photo of author Simon Sinek with quote

A boss has the title, a leader has the people.

--Simon Sinek
quote by Simon Sinek: The cost of leadership is self-interest. with background image: photo of author Simon Sinek with quote

The cost of leadership is self-interest.

--Simon Sinek
quote by Simon Sinek: Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting and, most importantly, a way of communicating. with background image: man on running field
Background Photo: Braden Collum

Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting and, most importantly, a way of communicating.

--Simon Sinek
quote by Stevie Wonder: Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there. with background image: photo of author Stevie Wonder with quote

Ability may get you to the top, but it takes character to keep you there.

--Stevie Wonder
quote by Tom Peters: Organizations exist to serve. Period. Leaders live to serve. Period. with background image: snow-capped mountain at the horizon viewed from lake dock
Background Photo: adrian

Organizations exist to serve. Period. Leaders live to serve. Period.

--Tom Peters
quote by Tom Peters: Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing. with background image: aerial's photo of metropolitan during night time\
Background Photo: Zac Ong

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

--Tom Peters
quote by Tony Blair: The art of leadership is saying no, not saying yes. It is very easy to say yes. with background image: photo of author Tony Blair with quote

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

--Tony Blair
quote by Tony Hsieh: The best leaders are servant leaders -- they serve those they lead. with background image: person holding brown leaf
Background Photo: Caleb Jones

The best leaders are servant leaders -- they serve those they lead.

--Tony Hsieh
quote by Warren G. Bennis: The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective. with background image: person standing on top of mountain
Background Photo: Alessandro Erbetta

The manager has a short-range view; the leader has a long-range perspective.

--Warren G. Bennis
quote by Warren G. Bennis: Leaders must encourage their organizations to dance to forms of music yet to be heard. with background image: green trees on brown dried leaves during daytime
Background Photo: Dominic Vogl

Leaders must encourage their organizations to dance to forms of music yet to be heard.

--Warren G. Bennis
quote by Warren G. Bennis: Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality. with background image: focus photo of a hummingbird on leaf
Background Photo: Vladimir Kudinov

Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.

--Warren G. Bennis
quote by Wendell Willkie: Education is the mother of leadership. with background image: low-angle photography of man in the middle of buidligns
Background Photo: Razvan Chisu

Education is the mother of leadership.

--Wendell Willkie
quote by Scott McNealy: Get the best people and train them well. with background image: person using laptop
Background Photo: John Schnobrich

Get the best people and train them well.

--Scott McNealy
quote by Mitt Romney: Leadership -- leadership is about taking responsibility, not making excuses. with background image: photo of author Mitt Romney with quote

Leadership -- leadership is about taking responsibility, not making excuses.

--Mitt Romney
quote by Danny Meyer: Constant, gentle pressure is my preferred technique for leadership, guidance, and coaching. with background image: close-up photography of heart shaped fairy lite on brown sand
Background Photo: Fadi Xd

Constant, gentle pressure is my preferred technique for leadership, guidance, and coaching.

--Danny Meyer

quote by Anne M. Mulcahy: Good leadership is about the company's success, not your own. with background image: green and blue chevron textile
Background Photo: Toa Heftiba

Good leadership is about the company's success, not your own.

--Anne M. Mulcahy
quote by Alan Sugar: Effective leadership is about earning respect, and it's also about personality and charisma. with background image: photo of author Alan Sugar with quote

Effective leadership is about earning respect, and it's also about personality and charisma.

--Alan Sugar
quote by Alan Autry: Leadership demands that we make tough choices. with background image: people standing inside city building
Background Photo: Charles Forerunner

Leadership demands that we make tough choices.

--Alan Autry
quote by Alan Autry: Leadership requires the courage to make decisions that will benefit the next generation. with background image: green trees on brown dried leaves during daytime
Background Photo: Dominic Vogl

Leadership requires the courage to make decisions that will benefit the next generation.

--Alan Autry

Thank you for checking out our selection of quotes on leadership! Please consider sharing and also connect with us on social media. Wishing you a successful and productive day!