Leadership Sayings and Quotes

Being a leader requires a special set of skills. Leaders must be able to motivate as well as direct. This is easier said than done. Let the wise and insightful leadership quotes below to inspire you to be the boss


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

Chinese Proverb

Even the largest army is nothing without a good general.

Afghan (on leadership)

He that cannot obey, cannot command.      

Benjamin Franklin

He who rules must fully humor as much as he commands.      

George Eliot

The good will of the governed will be starved if not fed by the good deeds of the governors.      

Benjamin Franklin

The higher the monkey climbs, the more he shows his tail.      

John Wycliffe

The master of the people is their servant.

Yemeni (on leadership)

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

John Quincy Adams

The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.

Ronald Reagan

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

Dwight D. Eisenhower

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

John C. Maxwell

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

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

Max Lucado

Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.

Warren Bennis

A man can only lead when others accept him as their leader, and he has only as much authority as his subjects give to him. All of the brilliant ideas in the world cannot save your kingdom if no one will listen to them.

Brandon Sanderson

Leadership does not always wear the harness of compromise.     

Woodrow Wilson

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

John Buchan

A gentle hand may lead even an elephant by a hair.

Iranian (on leadership)

A great one must have a long heart.     

Ethiopian (on leadership)

A ruler must sometimes humor as well as command.      

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Great chiefs prove their worthiness.      

Seneca Proverb

If the townspeople are happy, look to the chief.     

Liberian (on leadership)

If you can't serve, you can't rule.     

Bulgarian (on leadership)

In the country of the blind, the one-eyed man is king.     

Desiderius Erasmus

When we think we lead, we are most led.      

Lord Byron

To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Never give an order that can't be obeyed.

General Douglas MacArthur

Don't tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and let them surprise you with their results.

George Patton

Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.     

Albert Schweiter

You do not lead by hitting people over the head. That's assault, not leadership.     

Dwight Eisenhower