Leadership Means Uniting for a Common Cause

By | September 14, 2022

[September 14, 2022] It has been written repeatedly among those who study great leaders that one of their most sought-after characteristics is to unite people for a common cause.  Such a rare capability is desirable in the obvious but requires great strength of courage, broad experience, and wisdom.  To unite is the epitome of greatness.

“Divide and rule, the politician cries; unite and lead is the watchword of the wise.” – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Of course, there are many examples throughout written history that demonstrate that people can be united in a cause that is catastrophic and even perhaps evil.  Causes that inspire can be either good or bad.  But to rally folks to something that is good requires extraordinary effort and extreme skill in a leader.  As such it is indeed rare to find it any leader.

Those folks who unite people for a common cause are sought after for their talent and the results they produce.  As we watch the societal debates in any country, it is interesting to see who is attempting to unite and who is trying to divide people.

For example Socialism (and all forms of Marxism), beautifully sounding at the emotional level, is inherently about dividing society and pitting one against another.  Along with its variants, Socialism is an ideology based on the idea that people are oppressed, and the most robust way to ensure victory for them is to unite and rebel against those at the top.  Historically it has failed and caused unimaginable death and misery (see my notes on Socialism here and here).

If we observe leaders in our community and nation, we can educate ourselves in those who are talking about bringing people together and making a better place versus those who speak of pitting one segment of society against another.  Students of leadership would do themselves a favor by watching any of the most recent social debates and speeches to see who desires uniting people or not.

We all must possess the ability to unit people for a common (and good) cause.  Even when we lack the ability to bring people together, it is imperative that we consciously embrace the ideas of unity and work hard to improve that trait in ourselves and others.  Otherwise, failure awaits.  Great leaders are distinguished from all others by this characteristic alone.

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Please read my new book, “Our Longest Year in Iraq,” on Amazon (link here).

Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I'm Doug and I provide at least one article every day on some leadership topic. I welcome comments and also guests who would like to write an article. Thanks for reading my blog.

20 thoughts on “Leadership Means Uniting for a Common Cause

  1. Bernie

    Since the annniversary of 9/11, I’ve been thinking a great deal of how we came together as a nation. It was a shock to have this unexpected attack but also the great leadership we had pulled us together. We are terribly lacking a common cause today (that 9/11 produced). How do we get it back?

    Reply
    1. 76 Wife

      Great question Bernie. That is what separates the good leaders from the hangers-on leaders. ✔

      Reply
  2. Cow Blue

    Once again, I’ve enjoyed this website content and rate it number one in my book.

    Reply
  3. Lady Hawk

    Great advice from Gen. Satterfield, “If we observe leaders in our community and nation, we can educate ourselves in those who are talking about bringing people together and making a better place versus those who speak of pitting one segment of society against another. Students of leadership would do themselves a favor by watching any of the most recent social debates and speeches to see who desires uniting people or not.”

    Reply
  4. Eye Cat

    Uniting for a common cause is, indeed, one of the most sought after capabilities of any leader. That person can make anything work.

    Reply
    1. Max Foster

      Eye Cat, you are on the right track here. There are few people born natural leaders. But, as with most things in life, leadership skills can be developed. Knowing that uniting people for a common cause is the most important (well maybe not all important but nearly so) that starts us pointed in the right direction. Gen. Satterfield is providing us with some spark to begin thinking of this idea of ‘uniting for a common cause’ as a metaphor for great leadership. Stick with him and you will grow.

      Reply
  5. Swinging Arizonian

    Hi Gen. Satterfield, I’m new to your blog and just can’t wait to read more of what you’ve written in the past. I also passed the link of https://www.theleadermaker.com to all my friends in the hope they will also start reading you.

    Reply
    1. Greg NH

      Welcome SA. Glad to have you hear. I think you will find this forum to your liking and we help folks develop ideas here as well. 😉

      Reply
  6. Adolf Menschner

    Another excellent article, Gen. Satterfield. BTW, I just finished reading your book. Sorry for being so slow but I thought it was great. 👍

    Reply
    1. Dead Pool Guy

      Right Adolf and why I keep coming back to this leadership website and making notes in the forum here.

      Reply
  7. Rev. Michael Cain

    Today’s politicians are NOT about a common cause but their cause only or you are the devil. That is dangerous thinking. They need voted out of office anytime this evil thinking raises its ugly head. I see it in US President Joe Biden. And he is evil.

    Reply
      1. Tracey Brockman

        We are in bad shape when we have our country’s leader demonizing half the nation.

        Reply

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