Several issues arise when trying to compare the leadership styles of these men. One is that they operated in their own unique contexts. The other is that many of them—DuBois in particular—changed their minds over the course of their lives. That said, both DuBois and Martin Luther King advocated and practiced direct action in resisting white supremacy in the South and throughout the nation. DuBois, like King, advocated non-violent resistance. Both men believed that while violent resistance was self-defeating and immoral, blacks should not accept the status quo of Jim Crow. DuBois died at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, having moved to Ghana, in 1963. Perhaps the biggest difference between the two men in terms of leadership style and philosophies is the centrality of Christian faith to King's message and tactics. King was, of course, a minister, and DuBois was not really a man of faith. He was, rather, a scholar. So where King led with inspirational speeches delivered in the voice of a minister, DuBois is best remembered for his erudite essays and books that eloquently articulated the realities faced by African Americans. Neither of these men had much in common (except their national prominence) with Booker T. Washington, who is most famous for "accomodationism," or accepting racial segregation in return for economic opportunity.
Marcus Garvey and Malcolm X can be compared in terms of leadership inasmuch as both advocated, in different ways, a form of black nationalism. Malcolm X was influenced, to some extent, by Garvey, whose rise to prominence came in the 1920s, a few years before Malcolm's birth. Garvey believed in black separatism in the face of Jim Crow. He went so far as to establish a "Black Star" line that was to specialize in carrying African Americans to Africa. This was the crux of his philosophy—the "back to Africa" movement that emphasized "pan-Africanism." Malcolm X also emphasized racial solidarity and self-sufficiency for African Americans. He was a member, for most of his public life, of the Nation of Islam, an organization devoted to these principles. But there was a significant difference between the styles of these two men (although both were fiery speakers). Where Malcolm was austere, Garvey was flamboyant and colorful, often dressing in full military gear and riding in expensive automobiles.