The concept of civic engagement, defined independently of engagement in political, social, or vocational organizations connects the parallel concept of followership to civic engagement with two kinds of follower motivation emerging: mission-oriented and leader- oriented. The mission-driven follower “owns” the cause and supports it with an ongoing, sustainable energy, while the leader-driven follower participates based on esteem for the leader. In the latter case, the leader must continually renew the follower’s engagement through direct requests and exhortation. This research has identified an area of emergent opportunity in the leadership and followership literature, conceptualizing civic engagement as most significantly motivated by mission-driven followership. Practically, mission-driven followers should be sought out and encouraged to volunteer because they support the mission and are more likely to stay with the organization through leadership changes. Theoretically, the addition of a quantitative analysis of mission-driven and leader-driven followership contributes to the emerging scholarship on followership.
Mission-Driven Followership and Civic Engagement: A Different Sustainable Energy