IntroductionLeadership is such an extraordinary power that can make the difference in building a winning organization or the fall of an entire empire. The number of definitions that exist on leadership implies that leadership is still an evolving science with various leadership models to be studied over thousands of years. Popular reading such as Bass and Stogdill's Handbook of Leadership encourages the reader that the principle concern of leadership theory and research is managerial performance effectiveness. From the Pre-Classical Era of ancient Egyptians to the Modern Era of General Patton, leadership models have similarities and differences that strike a cord to get people to follow. Leadership studies traditionally agreed with elites tactics: military, political, financial, aristocratic, or cultural elites. In all eras, Leadership is considered an executive occupation and privilege.
Pre-Classical EraThe Pre-Classical Era of leadership was created before the birth of Christ. Before the industrial revolution organized management consisted of the household, military, church and government. Products were made or grown by the family for usage by the family. As civilization advanced and cultures changed the industrial revolution would begin. English (1994) expounds on early leadership as a heroic effort of philosophers and conquers, "Homer's stories had a significant impact on the philosophers and rulers who shaped the European world from Plato to the modern day. Alexander the Great kept a copy of Homer's Iliad, edited by Aristotle, under his pillow" (p.24).
The Greeks addressed leadership as a matter of birthright. Countrymen had to be born into leadership to become the ruler. Bass (1981) explains "A preoccupation with leadership as opposed to headship based on inheritance, usurpation, or appointment occurs predominantly in countries with an Anglo-Saxon heritage" (p. 6). This form of Pre-Classical leadership is still prevalent in Europe today with monarchies, although they exist today mainly as symbolism. The King was ordained by the church and authority was lead by the patriarch or matriarch of the familyThe Egyptian are noted as having an office of the "vizier" or what has become known as the supervisor. The vizier's office was responsible for measuring the changes in the Nile River, of which the economic infrastructure of Egypt depended on. The early Egyptians had established project management and leadership to get task accomplished , (Wren) "through forecasting, planning work, dividing the work among the various peopleand departments, and establishing a "professional" full-time administrator to coordinateand control the state enterprise" (p.17). Historians view point on leadership during the early Egyptian period, reveals, (Wren, 2004) "the Egyptians were aware of limits to the number of people one manager could supervise. In the earliest dynasties, it was the custom to kill and bury workers and servants with the departed pharaoh" (p.16).
The Chinese general Sun Tzu, wrote the book The Art of War, which has been considered a contributor to Western military strategy. He wrote about placing the army into subdivisions and establishing ranks among officers and using flags and signals fires as communication tools. (Wren) "It appears that the problems of line and staff relationships are at least 2,500 years old. Sun Tzu also provided strategic decision rules for the leaders:This is the art of...