Leaders are those individuals who seek to inspire people by influencing them with their vision and charismatic skills; those people eventually follow their footsteps and become their followers. Visionary leaders use vision to motivate individuals to do things as they say. This could be a worldly vision of how things should be. The perfect example of this style could be the promises made by presidential candidate during the elections time to influence people in many ways, people trust them and eventually vote for them. This judgment is mostly based on government policies to mandate better working conditions or how a new product could change the world. Whereas, a charismatic leader is an individual who gain his/her following because of his/her personality and traits.
The primary difference between both leadership styles is the foundation that is, what makes people really follow their leaders? Personality or vision of the future that leaders are usually trying sell, the most common problem that a visionary leader faces is the process of implementation of a vision; the leader has to influence people to accept the vision he/she is offering and cultivate their desires to make it a reality. If a visionary leader cannot sell the idea that he/she envisions, then they had no basis for leadership. Therefore, it is important for visionary leader to dreams about the future and translates such dreams into achievable goals that it can easily be transformed with great inspiration so people can bound a commitment with his leader. Visionary leaders anticipate changes and act proactively to handle any situation. They focus on opportunities rather than problems, and emphasize win/win strategy rather than argumentative win/lose approach. According to N Nayab Visionary Leaders base their vision on “balanced expression, which includes spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical dimensions, and requires the presence of all such dimensions for success”.
However, a charismatic leader’s strength is the ability to sell his product, himself, to the people he wishes to lead by using his charm. Charismatic leaders are leading the society by the impression of personality and charm, instead of any external authority. They fulfill organizational goals by encouraging devotion; they study, scan and read the environmental operations to pick up the moods and concerns of individuals to influence larger audiences by gaining people’s trust through visible self-sacrifice and also by taking personal risks in the name of their beliefs. Charismatic leaders have the potential to advance and transform an entire company by using their charm. Thus, the most effective form of leadership could be achieved by combining the traits of both charismatic and visionary leadership. These are individuals who can sell a vision to people, and make themselves the face of that vision. Leaders can be admired and hated, but by combing vision and charismatic traits, a leader can stimulate people to follow him/her.
The best example for visionary and charismatic leadership will be Mohammad Ali Jinnah. His vision and charm inspired and motivate the Muslims of India to claim independence and a new country came in to being which is now called “Islamic Republic of Pakistan”. Because of his hard work and dedication he was able to win the hearts of many. Who gave him the title of “Quaid-e-Azam” which means “Great Leader”. Muhammad Ali Jinnah was born December 25, 1876, in Karachi, Pakistan. He was eldest of his parents’ seven children. He went to England to complete his education. In May of 1896 he passed his legal exam; he was the youngest ever to have been accepted to the bar. After completing his law degree he moved back to Bombay in August of 1896 and started his law practice as a barrister in Bombay’s high court. By 1925 he was the most famous and successful lawyer. One of his famous case was the Bawla murder trial of 1925 and Jinnah’s 1945 defense of Bishen Lal at Agra, which marked the final case of Jinnah’s legal career. In 1902 he developed the interest in politics, his inspiration was Dadabhai Naoroji who than became the first Indian to earn a seat in the House of Commons. By 1904, Jinnah started attended meeting of the Indian National Congress and officially joined the congress in 1906. By 1939 Jinnah started to believe in a Muslim homeland. He was convinced that this was the only way to preserve Muslims’ traditions and that his former vision of Hindu-Muslim unity no longer seemed realistic, due to violent events started to happen with in the country at that time. Finally on 14th August 1947 the independent state of Pakistan that Jinnah had envisioned came in to being, Jinnah became the first sworn governor-general of Pakistan, and shortly before his death he was also made president of Pakistan’s constituent assembly.
“According to Richard Symons, Muhammad Ali Jinnah “contributed more than any other man to Pakistan’s survival.” Jinnah’s dream for Pakistan was based on the principles of social justice, brotherhood and equality, which he aimed to achieve under his motto of “Faith, Unity, and Discipline.” In the wake of his death, Jinnah’s successors were tasked with consolidating the nation of Pakistan that Jinnah had so determinedly established.” (A&E Network Television)
- Bio.com. A&E Networks Television, n.d. Web. 27 May 2014.
- McLaughlin, Corinne. “Visionary Leadership.” Visionary Leadership. N.p., 2001. Web. 26 May 2014.
- Nayab, N. “Modern Leadership Styles in the Changing World: Charismatic,Transformational, and Visionary Leadership.” Bright Hub. Ed. Jean Scheid. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 May 2014.
- Patrick, Monica. “Characteristics of Visionary Leadership.” Small Business. Demand Media, n.d. Web. 25 May 2014.
- Stoner, Jesse Lyn. “Charismatic Leaders vs Visionary Leaders: 7 Indicators – Jesse Lyn Stoner.” Seapoint Center for Collaborative Leadership. N.p., 3 Apr. 2012. Web. 26 May 2014.