Servant Leadership Workplace-Gandhi Quotes

15 Great Quotes from Mohandas Gandhi

I’m in India today. I’m serving some organizations wanting to practice servant leadership more effectively.

Which makes me think of Mohandas Gandhi.

Gandhi was surely an exemplar of servant leadership.

Gandhi modeled the cardinal virtues of servant leadership: humility, generosity and foresight.* At the same time, like Mother Teresa, Gandhi got results.* He had a goal to make the world better and he led others towards that goal.* Gandhi played to win.*

Before Gandhi was called “Mahatma” – which translates to “Great Soul” – he was just another lawyer litigating cases in South Africa for his Indian clients. He started his career in business.

Indeed, in my view, it would be as easy to call Gandhi a “Level 5 Leader” – a term used in business – as it would be to call him “Mahatma.”*

Against that little bit of background, let me share 15 great quotes from Mohandas Gandhi:

  1. “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.”
  1. “It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom.”
  1. “The future depends on what we do in the present.”
  1. “The power to question is the basis of all human progress.”
  1. “Speed is irrelevant if you are going in the wrong direction.”
  1. “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.”
  1. “Conscience is what hurts when everything else feels so good.”
  1. “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” (Attributed)
  1. “The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.”
  1. “Speak only if it improves upon the silence.”
  1. “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”
  1. “The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.”
  1. “Whatever you do in life will be insignificant, but it’s very important that you do it because nobody else will.”
  1. “Truth never damages a cause that is just.”
  1. “You must be the change you want to see in the world.” (Attributed)

Which of these quotes do you like best? What would you add to the list?


As always, we appreciate your views.


* You might like these posts:

“3 Cardinal Virtues of a Servant-Leader”

“What Was So Great About Mother Teresa?”

“2 Servant Leadership Essentials Often Overlooked”

“Servant-Leaders Play to Win”

“Servant Leadership” and “Level 5 Leadership