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Leaders with Values

Leaders with Values

Barrack Obama as a Leader with Values

All the leaders discussed in the video “Leaders with Values” have attributes that make them great leaders. These attributes influence people to look up to them and discover the changes they bring in the activities they are involved in their societies. Accordingly, for this paper, the leader chosen is Former President Barrack Obama, whom Erin Lehman selects, a Senior Researcher at the Center for Public Leadership, Harvard University, in the “Leaders with Values” 2011 video. Therefore, this discussion begins with a question, “How powerful is a president, and how do leaders’ values influence their power and leadership?

Subsequently, a president is associated with a lot of power. A leader has both responsibilities and power. Thus, with great power comes great responsibility. Proper leaders take care of their responsibilities without exploiting the power accorded to them. On the other hand, improper leaders overlook their responsibilities and misuse the power accorded. Consequently, an American president appears to be the greatest of all, with the title Commander in Chief providing the president with significant power globally. Furthermore, this power is so great that worldwide destruction will come to the world if an improper leader is in office. The leaders’ ability to lead effectively depends on the leader’s values and character.

According to Erin Lehman, a Senior Researcher at the Center for Public Leadership, Harvard University, in the “Leaders with Values” video, various qualities of Former President Barack Obama stand out. They include his ability to embrace people, accepts other people’s point of view, inspire other people, and be open-minded. Other qualities stand out from these qualities: confidence, boldness, determination, dedication, and discipline. These qualities are evident in his speeches, including the 2004 Democratic National Convention. He boldly and confidently gave a speech identifying him as part of the American dream (Greenstein, 2009). Moreover, he initially thought the opportunity to give a speech on that stage was miraculous, but his presentation was so bold and confident that he moved his audience, who later supported him as he ran for the presidency. He boldly and confidently identified as an African American whose heritage went back to Kenya in East Africa. This bold and confident virtue influenced other people to embrace him and accept him, believing in his beliefs. Subsequently, he had two terms in office, indicating that his virtues and leadership values influenced Americans to elect him twice as the president.

The other qualities he represented are determination, dedication, and discipline. These traits are apparent in more than his vision for political inclusivity. His vision drove him to become the first African American president for two terms in a row. Additionally, his visions influenced other Americans to believe in what changes he would bring and believe in his visions. Accordingly, his ability to influence people’s attitudes and thoughts is evident in the elections he won. His ability to influence people is a trait that Erin Lehman says she admires from the “Leaders with Values” 2011 video. This ability is attributed to his eloquence in Public speaking. Furthermore, this eloquence in public speaking is witnessed from his speech in 2004 to all his inauguration speeches. His ability to sway people with his speech illustrates his open-mindedness and his ability to embrace people. Despite other people arguing that there was a lack of support behind his speeches, his actions and his implementation of visions contributed to the influence he had on his supporters.

All these qualities contributed to his political skill. An American president has a lot of power and responsibility; therefore, the president must master political skills to be able to lead the country effectively. Consequently, from the beginning of his political career, it is evident that he gathered the necessary skills that allowed him to lead people effectively, even as a senator and a president. Accordingly, his ability to effectively lead the nation for two terms in a row is due to his political skills.

Subsequently, various challenges arose in his leadership. According to Greenstein 2009, some of the obstacles Former President Barrack Obama faced at the beginning of his first term include “wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, an economy in deep recession, and a host of pressing domestic problems.” Leadership comes with challenges of various calibers; therefore, for a president, the challenges are more significant since the power is greater. Accordingly, Former President Barrack Obama, being the first African-American president, his leadership faced various challenges. After he took office, he had to solve the above challenges, which he did effectively and efficiently due to all the attributes discussed above. These great leadership values and virtues allowed him to lead the country effectively and solve challenges and obstacles that arose.

In conclusion, leadership success is influenced by the leader’s character; the values, virtues, and traits associated with a leader influence a good character. Additionally, leadership involves responsibilities and power; the greater the responsibility, the greater the power. Subsequently, a leader with enormous power has a great responsibility to the people. This responsibility is greater for presidents, especially an American president whose power dominates worldwide. Thus, the phrase, with great power comes great responsibility. An example of the balance between power and responsibility is the leadership of Former President Barrack Obama. His effective leadership is attributed to his values, character, and traits, leading the US for two terms.


Greenstein, F., 2009. The Presidential Difference. 3rd ed. Princeton. 2011. Leaders with Values. [online] Available at: <>


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Leaders with Values

This week, you watched a video called “Leaders with values.” Using this video as your guide, you will write a paper about one of the leaders in the video.


Leaders with Values

Leaders with Values

  • Choose one of the leaders from the “Leaders with values” video.
  • Include the following in your paper:
    • Describe the leadership obstacles this person faced.
    • Describe the actions or behaviors that he/she did that showed leadership attributes. What showed that this person was a leader?
    • Explain what stood out to you that made you choose this individual?


  • Develop a clear introduction with a thesis, a body, and a conclusion. Focus on quality of writing, as opposed to length.
  • Research and include at least one additional, credible reference from an outside source pertaining to the leader you chose.
  • Use APA formatting for the cover page, citations, and the reference page. No abstract is required.

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