You can write about managers, politicians, religious leaders and many others, so your first task is to decide which kind, or kinds of leaders you will write about. If you are a student on a business or management course, you will be expected to write about what makes successful leaders in a business organization. On the other hand, if you are studying English, the leadership essay could focus on famous leaders from history such as:
- Adolf Hitler (1889 – 1945), an example of a charismatic leader, albeit one who was arguably a psychopath and certainly notorious.
- President J. F. Kennedy (1917 – 1963) who was assassinated in Dallas in 1963. He is a perfect example of a charismatic leader.
- Joan of Arc (1412 – 1431) who raised and led an army of French soldiers who eventually beat the English army and drove them out of France.
- Mahatma Gandhi (1869 – 1948), who was a spiritual and political leader who believed in peaceful protests.
- Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 – 1968) the US civil rights leader who advocated peaceful protests, following the example of Gandhi.
- Nelson Mandela (1918 – 2013) who was leader of the ANC in South Africa and then became the first black President of that country.
- Alexander the Great (356 BC – 323 BC) who had forged one of the greatest empires of the ancient world by the time he was 30.
- Mustafa Kemal Ataturk (1881 – 1938) He was the founder of the Republic of Turkey and made it a secular country. He was the first Turkish President, governing it from 1923 until 1938.
- Catherine the Great, Empress of All Russia (1729 – 1796) was a controversial figure as she took over the role of leader from her husband and proceeded to expand the Russian empire. She was a patron of the arts and had the Hermitage museum built.
- Margaret Thatcher (1925 – 2013), was Britain’s first female Prime Minister and leader of the Conservative party.
Of course, there are many examples of charismatic leaders from around the globe, this list is intended to give you ideas for your leadership essay only.
Examples of business leaders and entrepreneurs are:
- Bill Gates (1955 -) the founder of one of the biggest internet companies, the Microsoft Corporation.
- Steve Jobs (1955 – 2011), the co-founder of Apple Inc and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Pixar, Disney’s studios.
- Carlos Slim Helú (1940 -) a Mexican telecommunications businessman who was the richest man in the world between 2010 and 2013.
- Sir Richard Branson (1950 -) a British businessman who founded the Virgin group of companies.
- Mark Zuckerberg (1984 -) the founder of the social media giant, Facebook.
- Vera Ellen Wang (1949 -) American fashion designer, founder of Wang fashion.
- Oprah Winfrey (1954 -) a billionaire and media giant who has her own TV network as well as being a very famous chat show host. Many women look up to her as their role model.
- J. K. Rowling (1965 -) author of the best-selling Harry Potter books. She is also a screen writer and producer.
- Jack Ma (1964 -) founder of the Alibaba group and the first Chinese entrepreneur from mainland China to be features on the front page of Forbes magazine.
- Indra Nooyi (1955 -) CEO of PepsiCo which is the second biggest food and beverage company in the world (the largest one is the giant Nestlé).
There are, naturally many other examples of famous business leaders and entrepreneurs, so you can choose the one that you think is the best example and write about him or her, if you wanted to.