Naqshbandiya Foundation for Islamic Education

The Naqshbandiya Foundation for Islamic Education (NFIE) is a non-profit, tax exempt, religious and educational organization dedicated to serve Islam with a special focus on Tasawwuf(Sufism),

Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Islamic Perspective of Leadership: A Role Model for Today’s CEOs 

Muhammad Yousaf Jamil Director Quality Enhancement Cell, University of Management & Technology, Lahore (LUMS)

Abstract : The concept of leadership can be approached thorough various points of views including administrative, army, community and spiritual or from business perspectives. The author discusses the concept of Leadership as observed through literature survey about the Leadership qualities of our beloved Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) and his Sahaba (R.A). This paper aims to provide an analysis of a religious aspect of Leadership and its importance in the lives of every Leader especially Chief Executive Officers (C.E.Os). This paper discusses key attributes needed in an effective Leader from Islamic perspective and how these attributes can be made part of the practical lives of today’s leaders like CEOs. The key word “lead” means “to show the pathway”. The leader can drive persons forward with a vision to accomplish the common objectives. A true leader must have some universal inevitable characteristics such as self-confidence, trustworthiness, communication skills, compassion, hopefulness, promising, far sightedness, Passion / Truthfulness, Humility, emotional quotient, Problem solver, Delegating the authority, appraising, training, Succession Management and so on. This paper also addresses at length about the examples taken from Quranic verses and the life of our beloved Holy Prophet (SAW) and the practical examples taken from some of the renowned business empires of the world. Combining all the three sources, at the end of the paper, the author proposes a conceptual framework for an effective leader which can be set as a role model for today’s Chief Executive Officers etc. Objectives of this study are firstly, to define the key attributes of leadership derived from the Holy Prophet (SAW), the sahaba and the Quran. Secondly, to propose a conceptual framework for an effective leader and can be set as a role model for C.E.O’s.

Introduction Leadership is the capability of a person to lead cluster of individuals for the completion of a certain specified mission, grooming their followers with the aim of succession Management so that no flaw can be created. A true leader is always a man of principle who has effective communication, firmness and dynamism in their personalities. He / She must be sincere to commitments and must have a positive attitude during the conduct of their personal as well as professional lives. Leadership is looked upon as a means of motivating and guiding people in a manner and direction that is planned such that it is in the preeminent concern of the organization; it is basically making a change for the betterment of the organization. The Holy Book, Quran proposes and creates concrete commendations for the potentials that must be there in a leader so as to result in an effective leadership. Our beloved Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (SAW), for the duration of his stay at Madina served as the head of the Executive or the equivalent of the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the State, Justice, Controller, Commander-in-chief and Mentor etc. The problems faced by the individuals and the society were being addressed and resolved effectively and in a very well organized manner by the Holy Prophet (SAW). To accomplish the determined probable output anticipated out of a leader, it is vital to sustain a comprehensive compliance and authenticity in the fullest possible sense to the shariah. Also, a leader is continuously required to be able to perform in a way and in accordance to how Allah and His Prophet would want him behave. Trust, responsibility and accountability or Amanah, Taklif and Mas'uliyyah are qualities that guide a leader in his quest. Thus, the leader is one of the most imperative members in any organization. Most prominently, firm characteristics of leadership assimilated into the religion of Islam and best characterized by the Great Prophets, need to be agreed upon and examined. In the Islamic context, leadership means to guide an organization towards realization and the attainment of the common goal, and to create a system where there is contentment, or alfalah, for everybody.A leadership model which is associated with the organizational values can resolve the problems and can stimulate the rest of the purposes of the organization. The Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (SAW) had all the qualities which if implemented in our real life whether it’s personal, practical or corporate, it can be made successful. There are some universal attributes /characteristics such as self-reliance, trustworthiness, communication skills, compassion, positivity, inspiring, awareness and far sightedness which can be helpful in order to become a successful Leader. Allah SWT has considered Him (SAW) in the Quran in these verses:“There has undoubtedly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an exceptional arrangement for any person whose faith is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] evokes Allah frequently.”i If we summarize the Qualities of Leadership as observed the life of our beloved Holy Prophet and his companions, we may include the followings;  Motivate people  Affectionate and sympathy to devotees  Conviction  Raised self esteem.  Open to recommendations  Aware of accountabilities  Unbiased  Swift decision making powers  Empathize with people undergoing hardships  Effective Communicators  Able to consolidate material  Executing the strategy  Self-motivated  A man of principles  Could plan with long term goals in mind.

Journal of Islamic Thought and Civilization, Volume 5, Issue II,  Fall 2015 -Full Paper PDF


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