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"Although sound moral judgment is an important characteristic of an effective leader, it is not as important as a leader’s ability to maintain the respect of his or her peers."

Write a response in which you discuss the extent to which you agree or disagree with the statement and explain your reasoning for the position you take. In developing and supporting your position, you should consider ways in which the statement might or might not hold true and explain how these considerations shape your position.

I agree with the claim made by the statement. An effective leader is defined by how well she/he is able to implement policies and the extent to which she is able to drive change. To do so, it is imperative to gain the respect of her/his peers, regardless of the moral profile of the leader.

Consider the example of Nazi Germany's ruler, Hitler. He had no conscience or moral judgment whatsoever. Yet, with the support of his peers - the non-Jewish community - he was able to defend Germany from several attacks in the World War 2. Hitler successfully eradicated a vast majority of the Jews through horrendous initiatives like various "camps" where he steamed over 20000 Jews by poisoning the shower outlets. As a leader, such examples show that he was effectively able to carry out his missions, without any morality.

Another case is of the former US President Donald Trump, who openly has taken an immoral stance against same sex marriage. However, he was respected by many of his peers who actively campaigned for him, helped onboard the voters on his side, which resulted in him winning the 2016 Election. Moreover, he brought about many successful changes during his presidence such as ensuring that 63% of US citizens over the age of 16 were vaccinated within 6 months of the COVID vaccine release. He has also improved the economic growth of the United States by 22% by building strong trade relations with powerful nations like India and China. This can be attributed to his effectiveness as a leader, despite his personal moral judgment.

Bill Gates is an interesting example, who after gaining the reverence of his peers at Microsoft and making it the highest valued stock on the New York Stock Exchange, quit the company and went to build his non profit foundation which helps improve sanitation in low income countries like India and Africa. The above examples prove how moral judgement is important, but not necessary to be an effective leader. A more important indicator is how well they are able to motivate their peers tand eventually drive successful change.

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