Sunday, October 17, 2004

Okay, a good post now...

Quoting from Colin Powell:

"...Titles mean little in terms of real power, which is the capacity to influence and inspire. Have you ever noticed that people will personally commit to certain individuals who on paper (or on the org chart) possess little authority-but instead possess pizzazz, drive, expertise and genuine caring for teammates and products?"

Examples of 'real power':

- Queen Elizabeth I of England. Just finished reading about her in A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Vol II. Her people loved her. She turned England's focus outwards. She even sacrificed her own desire to marry for political stability. England - Protestants and Catholics alike - almost worshipped her.

- Sir Winston Churchill. Today he inspires people in all walks of life with his message of 'never surrender' - and a life that pretty much epitomises that.

- Ronald Reagan. I read one of Reagan's advisers describe him going out to a press conference... paraphrasing here: "He would bounce out of the oval office and walk at increasing speed down the hallway toward the podium, virtually jumping on the lectern to meet the press." Energy - can't beat it.

It's also worthwhile to note that these people all attracted criticism. They were not neutral people, nor could they be.

In the case of these people - and other leaders - I don't think their level of energy or drive could be drummed up. They were simply being their remarkable selves. And that's what made them remarkable.


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