Enlightened Leadership

I met with a couple of colleagues last week and explored the concept of the ‘enlightened’ Scottish leader.

We brainstormed a number of  characteristics/attributes of the ‘enlightened’ leader.  I’ve tried to put them into coherent groups and them given each group a related Value.  The seven values (would you believe it) are:

Integrity; Openness; Commitment; Vigour; Compassion; Authority; and Judgement

This is very much work in progress but the associated dictionary definitions provide some semblance of logic and at least mean something to me.  Comments welcome.



Honesty – truthfulness, sincerity

Self-critical –  capable of criticising oneself objectively.

Pragmatic – behaviour that is dictated more by practical consequences than by theory or dogma

Independent – Free from outside control; not depending on another’s authority

Moral Courage – the ability to act rightly in the face of popular opposition, shame, scandal, or discouragement.

Transparency – operating in such a way that it is easy for others to see what actions are performed



Free thinking – inclined to forms one’s own opinions rather than depend upon authority; exhibiting boldness of speculation; skeptical of authority.

Enlightened – having or showing a rational, modern, and well-informed outlook

Tolerant – able to tolerate the beliefs, actions, opinions, etc., of others

Innovative – to renew or improve things



Hardworking – characterised by hard work and perseverance

Service – the action of helping or doing work for someone.

Duty – refer to what one feels bound or obliged to do.

Resilient – recovering readily from adversity



Aspirational – strong desire and ambition

Energetic – possessing, exerting, or displaying energy

Dynamic – pertaining to or characterized by energy or effective action; vigorously active or forceful; energetic

Positive – tending to emphasize what is good or laudable; constructive



Humility – is the quality of being modest and respectful.

Co-operative – marked by willingness to cooperate

Compassionate – feeling or showing compassion; sympathetic

Complementary – combining in such a way as to enhance or emphasize each other’s qualities.

Generous – liberal in giving or sharing; unselfish; free from meanness or pettiness; magnanimous.

Supportive – providing encouragement or emotional help.

Receptive – ready and willing to receive favourably

Humour – the faculty of perceiving and expressing or appreciating what is amusing



Competitive – having a strong desire to succeed.

Decisive – having or showing the ability to make decisions quickly and effectively

Confident – having strong belief or full assurance; sure

Determined – marked by or showing determination; resolute

Passion – a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object, or concept



Long-term – lasting, staying, or extending over a long time

Rational – having or exercising reason, sound judgment, or good sense:

Learner – someone who learns or takes up knowledge or beliefs

Considered – thought about or decided upon with care