The 4 Primary e-Learning Leader Types

Which Type of eLearning Leader Are You? Which Type of eLearning Leader Are You? Image courtesy of suphakit73 /
Published in General
Friday, 31 January 2014 18:41
To be an effective eLearning leader, you must be willing and able to understand the world possesses talents, which still remain undiscovered. In each organization, school, or learning environment (be it conventional or unconventional) there are individuals who are unaware of their true skills and abilities. As an eLearning leader it is your job to recognize this and to make your students or employees see their own true potential. You must keep them inspired, focused, and determined to gain as much as they can from the learning process. 

Which Type of eLearning Leader Are You?

In order to do this, it is often best to first discover the eLearning leadership category that best describes you. This will give you the power to make an impact upon your students or employees by playing to your strengths and providing the best possible educational experience. There are four primary eLearning leader types: Revolutionary, Conscientious, Fearless, and Motivational. Which type of eLearning leader are you?

Are you a Revolutionary eLearning Leader?

This group of eLearning leaders has the power to influence real chance, in both their learners and the world at-large. They use ideas and knowledge to expand the minds of those they teach, and allow their learners to imagine new alternatives or options to solve problems.

If you are this eLearning leadership type, then you understand the importance of thoughts and ideas to bring about educational shifts. In turn, this allows your learners to take on a new perspective about how they learn and the concepts being taught. The keyword for this group of leaders is change. It may be a small change that only has a minor impact, or a large scale change that affects an entire generation.

In today's world, the Revolutionary Leaders use the tools available to them to disseminate ideas or inform their learners about the core concepts they would like to share. Ebooks, social media sites, and webinars are just of the ways that these individuals spread the word. These eLearning leaders want to help their learners to expand their educational horizons by empowering them and making them see the real importance of learning. Revolutionary eLearning leaders have the power to spark change and to make us aware of the fact that nothing is impossible if you remain dedicated and determined to make a difference.

Here are some examples of Revolutionary Leaders:

  • Nelson Mandela
    He elected the first leader of a demogratic South Africa and he was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize in 1993. Mantela through his speeches and way of life inspired people all over the world and showed that nothing is inevitable. He acknowledged that education is one key element against apartheid. He said that: “education is the most powerful you which you can use to change the world”.

  • Mahatma Gandhi
    He led India to independence. He was a visionary and a deeply wise man who inspired people to fight without using violence. Being a peace activist he is among the most important figures of the 20th century and his speeches and way of life still have a great influence. He said that: “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever”.

Are you a Conscientious eLearning Leader?

This type of eLearning leadership comes in the form of those who deeply care about others and want to try to provide them with the best possible educational experience. They believe that everyone should be given the chance to reach their goals and live up to their real potential, and do their best to create settings wherein their learners can be their very best and learn as much as possible.

These eLearning leaders put their students or employees first, and ensure that their needs are being met, rather than focusing on their own goals or needs. They aren't trying to acquire power or wealth, but are striving to provide their learners with an educational process that is ideally suited for their capacity. Conscientious eLearning leaders make it their mission to inspire and motivate others by allowing them to overcome challenges standing in the way of their progress. They devote themselves the enrichment of their learner's educational pursuits and to their overall personal growth.

An illustrative example of Conscientious Leader:

  • Socrates
    A classical ancient Greek philosopher. Socrates’ followers were challenged to discover the truth through discussion and a series of questions and answers since information was not given to them directly. Under the Socratic method, individuals promoted critical thinking and discovered new ideas. He devoted all of his time to his followers without expecting any rewards. His main concern was to seek genuine knowledge and truth. Nonetheless, he was a gadfly, meaning that he used to upset the status quo by his questions and often insulted the Athenian high society. He was arrested and convinced to death but he was devoted to his beliefs till the end. He said that: “true knowledge exists in knowing that you know nothing”.

Are you a Fearless eLearning Leader?

This type of eLearning leader isn't afraid to take risks and is prepared to defend their stance if they feel passionate about a particular idea. They fight for what they believe in and encourage their learners to do the same. These eLearning leaders will go above and beyond to insure that their learners grasp the core content material and fully understand what is expected of them during the educational process. Fearless eLearning leaders aren't afraid of ruffling a few proverbial feathers. They do their best to insure that their learners receive the best possible education and aren't afraid to go above and beyond to help out those who may be struggling.

Here are some examples of Fearless Leaders:

  • Susan Brownell Antony
    A distinguished American civil rights leader, feminist, and teacher.  She formed the Woman’s New York State Temperance Society and along with Elizabeth Cady Stanton published the newspaper Revolution, and later they formed the National Woman Suffrage Association. Antony was giving lectures across the country to promote women’s right and women’s position in the society. She was passionate and strove for equality regardless of the consequences she would have to face. She was fearless and did everything in her power to teach the world about the necessity for women’s rights and to bring awareness.  She was arrested for voting in the Presidential Elections of 1872, but she never paid the fine. She said that: “Organize, agitate, educate, must be our war cry”.

  • Leonidas
    The legendary king of Sparta. He served as an example of a truly fearless leader, because he was unwilling to wave from his stance and strove to share his ideas and opinions with others. He was a fearless military leader who managed to keep his followers united and fought in order to defend their beliefs and values. 

Are you a Motivational eLearning Leader?

This eLearning leadership role involves motivating and inspiring your students or employees to be their very best and to encourage them to be an active participant in their own educational process. These eLearning leaders focus on our strengths and allow us to see our true potential, so that learners feel empowered about what they can achieve. These eLearning leaders will also often point out the benefits of a lesson or course, in order to insure that the learner is aware of what they will receive if they invest their time and efforts. A Motivational eLearning leader does everything in their power to inspire others, and to make them see that they have the capacity to do great things.

Here are some examples of Motivational Leaders:

  • Randy Pausch
    Despite the fact that this professor had been diagnosed with a terminal illness, he made it his mission to motivate people into achieving their dreams. He inspired the world through his lectures and written works. He said that: “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.” 

  • Tony Robbins
    This well known motivational speaker has been inspiring people for decades with his upbeat look at life. He encourages his students to empower themselves and tap into their hidden source of strength in order to achieve success in all aspects of life. He said that: “Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach”.

The examples are given for illustrative purposes. These personalities represent great leaders from ancient years till nowadays. However, these personalities could be included in two or more categories, since great leaders are indeed multidimensional. I just hope to get inspired by them and become inspirational yourselves!

I would be very interested to know 
Which Type of eLearning Leader Are You?  and or Which Type of eLearning Leader do your admire the most? Do not hesitate to leave a comment!

Read 3204 times Last modified on Sunday, 02 February 2014 19:22
Christopher Pappas

Christopher Pappas is founder of The eLearning Industry's NetworkCurrently, the eLearning Industry has a network of more than 75,000 professionals involved in the eLearning Industry and runs the following sites:

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He is also the Founder and Owner of the Instructional Design and eLearning Professionals’ Group (64K+) (, which is the largest online community of professionals involved in the eLearning Industry at LinkedIn.

Christopher holds an MBA, and an M.Ed. (Learning Design) from BGSU.

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