This article deals with paradigm shifts in the research about leadership. It is argued that the research reflects a shift from management and management techniques to transitional leadership. Subsequently, the thinking on leadership in ecclesiastical research reflects a move towards leadership in a missional congregational setting. This shift is characterised by the growing consensus that transitional leadership is visionary, transformational, empowering and consists of specific competencies that can be acquired.
In the article an overview is provided of the change in thinking. The issue of adequately describing the core essence of leadership is also addressed. The differing views between secular leadership thinking and religious leadership are pointed out, whilst the common denominators are also noted.