30 July 2021 12:54:48 IST

Accountability, ethics, empathy make for a good leader

Business leader Vinita Bali says behaviour of a leader impacts fellow employees

Leaders should take ownership for results and back the efforts of their colleagues,” said Vinita Bali, business leader and former MD of Britannia Industries Ltd. She delivered a talk on the topic ‘the responsibility of leadership’ at the 14th WiseViews Interactive Webinar Series conducted by ICFAI Foundation for Higher Education, for the benefit of prospective students and working pros.

In her virtual address, she emphasised that leaders should have conviction in whatever they do. “The behaviour of the leader will impact fellow employees and they should be very responsible in this regard,” she said. She cited examples of leaders such as Mahatma Gandhi, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Nelson Mandela of yesteryears and how their leadership influenced the general public. She remembered how Lal Bahadur Shastri resigned from Railway Ministry after a rail accident, even though he was not directly responsible for that. She said, “People will be loyal to you if you show empathy and stand by them during difficult times.”

Bali also shared an interesting story about a 100-year-old lady, Timmakka, for her selflessness and conviction in initiating a plantation drive in her village without waiting for anybody’s support. Later her efforts were lauded by all quarters of the society and even received recognition from foreign NGOs.

Answering a query in the Q&A session, she said that “A leader should have accountability, ethics, empathy, diverse thinking and undeterred decision-making to have an impact on their fellow employees.” She explained that a leader who is confident can impart the same to his or her colleagues to achieve the desired results.


The webinar was moderated by Prof R Prasad, Director, Academic Wing, ICFAI Group, and Prof Sudhakar Rao, Director, Branding, ICFAI Group. About 250 participants including entrepreneurs, research scholars, prospective students from various parts of the country registered in advance and participated in the event.