All leaders differ in the way they implement their leadership. Margaret Thatcher and Fidel Castro are two leaders who have proven this statement true. Despite the fact that both leaders were dubbed with what may seem as negative nicknames, Thatcher with Iron Lady, and Castro as practising in Fidelism which relates to being stubborn, they were both great leaders. As been reviewed in this essay, Thatcher and Fidel shared more similarities than differences. Thatcher was the prime minister of the United Kingdom, and Fidel was the president of Cuba.
When analysing their charismatic and transformational leadership, a range of similarities emerged. In particular, the similarities were that they both demonstrated referent and expert power. This aided their personal power amongst their followers. Both were transformational leaders in the charismatic sense in that they appealed and engaged with their audiences and demonstrated skills to influence their followers. Also, they both improved the economic state of their countries. Another similarity was found when analysing their power and politics.
By holding respective positions as prime minister and president, Thatcher and Castro held legitimate power. Besides making decisions and expecting compliance, they both actively participated with the decisions they made. In return, they had gained respect, understanding, and empathy between themselves and their followers. Reviewing their traits, motives and characteristics found more similarities. It proved that both leaders demonstrated certain task-related traits that are closely linked with task accomplishment.
However, each leader showed different sets of traits. Thatcher showed passion and patriotism towards her people, while Castro showed courage, motivation, resilient and empathy towards the underprivileged people of Cuba. Another difference between Thatcher and Castro was in terms of delegation. Due to his health decline, Castro delegated his authority in dire circumstances when he passed on his presidency to his brother and vice president, Raul Castro. However, Thatcher would only delegate authority if the outcome was known or favourable to her.
PART B: KEY SUMMARY Through the analysis of Fidel Castro and Margaret Thatcher we've learnt that despite the fact that autocratic style of leadership, in this day and age, is perceived as undesirable by subordinates and modern leadership practices, in their time and situations it was. They were effective as leaders due to the fact that they were task orientated, which is a key trait of the autocratic leadership style. By being task orientated Castro and Thatcher demonstrated the effectiveness of setting standards or goals and finding a means of achieving them.
Thatcher aimed to bring the economy out of bankruptcy among other activities, while Castro recognised the need to assist the underprivileged by bettering their right to employment, proper health care and education. Both parties stepped into their leadership position, at a time when their countries were vulnerable and in need of an influential and effective leader. They improved the functions of their government and living standards of their people. Although they had qualities that would generally be perceived as undesirable in today's leadership and management practice, they proved to be effective for both Castro and Thatcher.
During the time before they took leadership, both Cuba and Britain were in need of a decisive, passionate and instinctive leader. A leader to bring about positive transformational changes that would ultimately benefit their countries in the long run was in need and occurred when Castro and Thatcher stepped in. During their time as leaders, they both acquired their own leadership style, although criticised by many Fidelism and Thatcherism came to rise. It was the way they believed was the best way to lead their country.
They were recognised through their styles, traits and characteristics. Being determined and showing passion towards your goal would eventually allow you to reach your desired outcome. This was evident by both Castro and Thatcher as they were highly motivated and filled with drive and determination to become the leader of their country and make an impact for the better. In conclusion, it is evident through Castro and Thatcher that in politics while holding government leadership positions that the autocratic leadership style was effective, although perceived as undesirable.