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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Colin Powell on Leadership

Lesson #14:  Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt, to offer a solution everybody can understand.

Effective leaders understand the KISS principle, Keep It Simple, Stupid. They articulate vivid, over-arching goals and values, which they use to drive daily behaviors and choices among competing alternatives.  Their visions and priorities are lean and compelling, not cluttered and buzzword-laden.  Their decisions are crisp and clear, not tentative and ambiguous. They convey an unwavering firmness and consistency in their actions, aligned with the picture of the future they paint.  The result:  clarity of purpose, credibility of leadership and integrity in organization.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Do you think the President is a great leader?

Larry James said...

Yes, but his impact and that of most Presidents is muted, limited and compromised/complicated by the US political reality. Leading a nation is quite different than leading a company whether for profit or non profit. To give another example, Colin Powell is a great leader, but was compromised by his situation.

Anonymous said...

Just the other day I was wondering what are the 14 simple and easy leadership principles I should put into practice.

Anonymous said...

Well, since he never led a company, leading the country is the only thing we can judge him by.

Anonymous said...

Thank the Lord that the impact of the President is limited by political reality aka the Constitution.

Anonymous said...

The constraint in this case is not the Constitution. Nowhere does the Constiution suggest that Congress refuse to enter into serious negotiations and simply obstruct the process, thereby, among other things, putting the full faith and credit of the US in question for the first time in history. That has just been the choice of the current House R leadership, i.e. , a political reality. The Constitution and political reality are by no means co-equal.

What Larry is quite rightly suggesting is simply that leaders of private entities do not face such obstacles. They are placed in leadership and usually allowed to lead, with much narrower constituencies to answer to.

Anonymous said...

The private sector is assaulted right and left by the Obama administration which results in loss of jobs. He is doing it on purpose.

Anonymous said...

Yes ... since loss of jobs probably means the loss of the White House in 2012 ... that makes perfect sense he's doing it on purpose ... how diabolical ... (cue menacing laughter ... or maybe just general laughter).

Anonymous said...

He wants to win in 2012 of course, but he also wants to "fundamentally change" the country.

Anonymous said...

"Pass this spending bill right now!"

Do we get to read this one?

Anonymous said...

Did you notice the list of jobs in Obama's speech? Teachers and construction workers? This was a hand-job for the unions.

Anonymous said...

Why didn't those other shovel-ready jobs from the first 2 trillion dollars in "stimulus" spending go to the jobs he talked about tonight?

Anonymous said...

What is your problem with the phrase "fundamental change"? Why are you so freaked out by this? It's like survivalists freaking out at GB 41's term "new world order." They're just words. This country has "fundamentally" changed many times. Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, FDR, Reagan. Why are you so freaked out by these two words? It's really weird.

Anonymous said...

Obama thinks America is responsible for a great part of the ills of the world, that our wealth is responsible for the poverty in some parts of the world. He was raised with liberal socialist/communist friends and mentors. He wants to fundenmentally change America to "bring us down to size." He hates our free enterprise system. He goes around the world apologizing and bowing down to foreign leaders. He apparently knows nothing about economics. In short he wants to make us a socialist country.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the comment Rush ... or is it Glenn? That's really crazy talk, not unlike liberals contending that GB 43 was a fascist. Just extreme, absurd partisan rhetoric.

belinda said...

why do so many of you post anonymously? if you believe in what you're saying, why are you hiding?

Anonymous said...

Belittle,

Because we know liberals very well. The drug years - you know, the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90, 00s, and, well, last night - have not been good to liberals. The discipline to stay with one thought, one line of reasoning for more than 10 or 15 seconds is ... HEY, BELITTLE, OVER HEAR WHERE THE WORDS ARE ... very difficult. So by posting a name - and heaven forbid a name linked to another website - would take you away from ... HEY, BACK OVER HERE ... our main points and you may never come back to these thoughts again.