Great leaders always leave their mark on the world with people remembering their messages, motivations, and ideas years after they have passed. This is exactly the legacy of Martin Luther King or MLK. Martin left his legacy all over the United States, he still has buildings, monuments, streets, named after himself because of the impact he made and because of the leader he was. He exemplified a multitude of the traits we have learned from this week’s lesson such as drive, honesty and integrity, and a desire to lead (PSU W.C 2020 L2). Due to these exemplified characteristics his lasting impressions are still relative today although leaving us fifty-two years ago.
The first trait mentioned above that MLK exemplified his actions of was his drive. He had total commitment to his cause, his most notable speech “I have a dream” is still recited today and is one of the most notable and powerful speeches in United States history. He was a voice for so many people when they did not have one, he was the leader of a movement with an entire population of the United States behind him. He served as the catalyst for the civil rights in 1964. He led a social movement unlike any before, and his drive was the reason is had the lasting impressions that it has today. Even though his life was constantly threatened, and he put himself at risk every day and every time he gave a speech, he still put that behind himself and led a group of people and changed the world.
Another example of an excellent leader which we have explored in this week’s lesson was that of honesty and integrity which was another trait that MLK had shown numerously throughout his life. He was true to his intentions and never hid or dismissed any of his thoughts in fear of putting his own life at risk. “I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation” was a quote from his speech at the Washington Monument in front of two hundred and fifty thousand people. He was not scared that vocalizing his wants for equality could hurt him, instead he was honest and stayed true to his beliefs which is a quality of an excellent leader.
Finally, the third trait I believe he exemplified of a tremendous leader was a desire to lead. Obviously, he had an immense desire to lead. He stood in front of hundreds of thousands of people to speak of an issue that was only preached about in front of small communities. As said before, he was the face of the entire movement. It was because of him that our whole world changed, and it was because of his desire to lead and change the world for his children, and his grandchildren. Without his desire to lead our world could look a lot different. He was a truly magnificent leader.
Overall Martin Luther King will be remembered forever, whether it was for his bravery, courage, or persistence he will be forever the one who changed the United States for the better. His leaderships style will also be remembered forever, he has shown an abundance of qualities of a great leader, more than highlighted in this blog post.
Northouse, P.G. (2016). Leadership: Theory and Practice. 7th Edition. Los Angeles: Sage Publications.
Pennsylvania State University World Campus (2016). PSYCH 485 Lesson 2: Emotional and Social Intelligence. Retrieved from https://psu.instructure.com/courses/2075467/modules/items/30110379
Toren, Adam. “3 Important Leadership Lessons From Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” Entrepreneur, 20 Jan. 2020, www.entrepreneur.com/article/230958.