Followership Vs Servant Leadership [blc]: Compare and Contrast

About this sample

About this sample


Words: 945 |

Pages: 2|

5 min read

Updated: 29 March, 2024

Words: 945|Pages: 2|5 min read

Updated: 29 March, 2024

Table of contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Body
  3. Conclusion


In the disciplined realm of military leadership, especially highlighted within the Basic Leader Course (BLC), the dynamic interplay and contrasting philosophies of followership and servant leadership are central to the curriculum. These concepts, often debated as followership vs servant leadership in BLC contexts, serve not merely as theoretical constructs but as practical tools for shaping the next generation of military leaders. This essay aims to dissect and compare these foundational ideologies, shedding light on their distinct characteristics, their overlap, and their unique contributions to leadership development.

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As emerging leaders embark on their journey, understanding and integrating the essence of both followership and servant leadership principles becomes pivotal. It equips them with a versatile leadership toolkit, enabling them to navigate the complexities of their roles with agility and insight. This comparative analysis endeavors to elucidate the significance of each approach in fostering effective leadership. It invites readers to consider how these models can be harmoniously blended to enhance one’s leadership effectiveness, encouraging a reflective examination of their own leadership journey and aspirations. In doing so, we delve deep into the heart of what it means to lead and follow with purpose, integrity, and a deep sense of service within the military and beyond.


The journey of leadership development in the military, particularly illuminated in the BLC, calls for a nuanced grasp of both followership and servant leadership. These paradigms, while seemingly at odds, share a foundational commitment to the betterment of the team and mission success. However, they approach this goal from distinct vantage points, offering a rich tapestry of strategies for emerging leaders.

Followership, often overshadowed by the allure of leadership roles, is in fact a cornerstone of effective team dynamics. It emphasizes the active engagement and critical thinking of the team member, qualities that are indispensable for mission success. Effective followers are not passive recipients of orders but are proactive, critical thinkers who can foresee challenges and propose solutions. This ability to anticipate and react constructively underlines the strategic value of skilled followership within military operations. The Two-Dimensional Model of Follower Behavior introduced by R.E Kelly categorizes followers based on their level of engagement and critical thinking, ranging from passive to active. This model suggests that understanding the spectrum of followership can empower leaders to foster a more cohesive and adaptable team dynamic.

Conversely, servant leadership shifts the focus from the success of the leader to the growth and well-being of the team members. This leadership style is characterized by a deep sense of empathy, active listening, and a commitment to supporting team members in achieving their full potential. The servant leader's foresight—anticipating the needs and hurdles before they become impediments—is a testament to the proactive and nurturing ethos of this approach. For instance, the logistical planning required for an operation, such as ensuring soldiers are fed during range days, exemplifies servant leadership's anticipatory and caring nature. The essence of servant leadership is encapsulated in its ability to foresee, empathize, and act in the best interests of the team, illustrating a profound understanding of leadership as a service to others.

While both followership and servant leadership are critical to the fabric of military leadership, they offer contrasting lenses through which to view the leader's role. Followership, with its emphasis on adaptability and proactive engagement, can be seen as the groundwork upon which effective leadership is built. It prepares leaders to be better followers, understanding the value of each team member's contribution. Servant leadership, on the other hand, offers a model for those in leadership positions to guide their teams with a focus on empowerment, care, and the collective mission. It is a leadership style that, by design, transforms the hierarchy of traditional leadership into a more inclusive, participatory framework. This approach not only enhances team performance but also cultivates a culture of mutual respect and shared responsibility.

The interplay between followership and servant leadership within the BLC framework highlights the complexity of military leadership. Leaders are encouraged to navigate these roles fluidly, applying the principles of each as the situation demands. This dynamic application of followership and servant leadership principles enriches the leader's toolkit, enabling them to lead more effectively and empathetically. It challenges the binary perception of leadership and followership, promoting a more integrated approach to leading and serving within the military.

In essence, the dialogue between followership and servant leadership in the context of BLC underlines the importance of versatility in leadership roles. Leaders are tasked with the challenge of discerning when to step forward and lead and when to step back and follow, always with the mission's success and the team's well-being in mind. This balance is crucial for the development of well-rounded leaders who are equipped to face the multifaceted challenges of modern military operations. By embracing the lessons of both followership and servant leadership, BLC graduates are better prepared to lead with confidence, compassion, and a deep sense of duty.

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In sum, followership and servant leadership compare and contrast within the context of the Basic Leader Course illuminates the complexities and complementary nature of these leadership models. As emerging leaders venture through their developmental journey, embracing the lessons of followership and servant leadership becomes paramount. These concepts are not in opposition but are instead facets of a comprehensive leadership approach that values critical thinking, adaptability, and a steadfast commitment to the welfare of the team. By integrating the principles of both followership and servant leadership, leaders are better equipped to navigate the challenges of their roles, fostering an environment of mutual respect, collaboration, and excellence. The synthesis of these leadership models offers a robust framework for developing leaders who are not only effective in their current positions but also visionary in their aspirations for the future.

Introduction close-button

Should follow an “upside down” triangle format, meaning, the writer should start off broad and introduce the text and author or topic being discussed, and then get more specific to the thesis statement.

Background close-button

Provides a foundational overview, outlining the historical context and introducing key information that will be further explored in the essay, setting the stage for the argument to follow.

Thesis statement close-button

Cornerstone of the essay, presenting the central argument that will be elaborated upon and supported with evidence and analysis throughout the rest of the paper.

Evidence & citing close-button

The body of each paragraph builds an argument in support of the topic sentence, citing information from sources as evidence.


After each piece of evidence is provided, the author should explain HOW and WHY the evidence supports the claim.

Conclusion paragraph close-button

Should follow a right side up triangle format, meaning, specifics should be mentioned first such as restating the thesis, and then get more broad about the topic at hand. Lastly, leave the reader with something to think about and ponder once they are done reading.

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This essay was reviewed by
Prof. Linda Burke

Cite this Essay

Followership vs Servant Leadership [BLC]: Compare and Contrast. (2022, February 10). GradesFixer. Retrieved April 20, 2024, from
“Followership vs Servant Leadership [BLC]: Compare and Contrast.” GradesFixer, 10 Feb. 2022,
Followership vs Servant Leadership [BLC]: Compare and Contrast. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 20 Apr. 2024].
Followership vs Servant Leadership [BLC]: Compare and Contrast [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2022 Feb 10 [cited 2024 Apr 20]. Available from:
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