There is no underestimating the vitality of effective leadership in taking developments to desirable heights. Good leadership especially stands out in the areas such as education, science, politics, governance, bureaucracy, business, etc. and it is valued particularly in these fields as milestones achieved here decide the course of matters pertaining to numerous other things relevant to the common man. And, conversely, any deficit of leadership in areas such as these will have a telling impact on various aspects of common lives. Economic excellence is generally rated very high and is a widely accepted parameter for development and progress. India's rank on the global indexes of ease of doing business and economic freedom have significantly improved in recent times but the reason ground reality does not yet reflect its benefits is that the social aspect of development and intended advancements do not adequately consider the social pertinence of decisions and developments. Prioritising economic gains over social upgrading can improve ranks on global indices but changes on the ground are more enduring and therefore need to be given greatest importance. There are several ways of reaching out to the grassroots, the determinants of a thriving society; politics is one way but competing political outfits are bound to be driven by interest over everything else. Another means that reaches out to various areas at all possible levels is the bureaucracy. Functioning at the behest of the government, the aim of public service is general welfare. There is a need to combine bureaucracy and governmental intervention for the benefits to trickle down to those at the lowest and the furthest in the system. It is vital that the institutions of the government at all levels, and especially the basic, ground-level ones be allowed to exercise autonomy for optimum results. It was in 2014 when PM Modi, before he rose to power at the Central government, insisted on the notion of 'maximum governance, minimum government'. This novelty led to the rise of numerous start-ups, aspiring entrepreneurs, business students, traders, venture capitalists, etc. and entrepreneurship was suddenly in vogue like never before, to the extent that Modi was even compared to 40th US President, Ronald Reagan. 'Maximum governance, minimum government' is also essentially about limiting the interventionist power of the government in financial developments, social spaces, and cultures. For this to happen, the most obvious method is to empower people in a manner that it also helps in delivering good governance. With respect to bureaucracy, the much-needed leadership traits like empathy, empowerment, enablement, and collaboration can not only be found but must also be encouraged as well-meaning officers play a proactive role in taking societies towards the heights that nation drams of achieving. In recognition of this notion, 16 district magistrates were honoured with The Indian Express Excellence in Governance Awards for their pioneering work across different categories, some of which are projects like a cluster of solar panels installed on a hillock as an alternate energy source and a neo-natal unit in the heart of Maoist territory and an anti-corruption drive along the international border. This acknowledgement is made to celebrate the finest work done by the women and men at the forefront of governance and bringing change across the country.