The Mind of the leader

date Feb 13, 2009
reading time 1 min
  • Book Title: The Mind of the leader - Havard Business Review
  • Year written/published: 2005
  • Some extracts

first 6 months…

Major changes in the first 6 months will inevitably be perceived as arbitrary, autocratic, and unfair, as much for their timing as for their content.

followers who agree too much…

…effective leaders can end up making poor decisions because able and well-meaning followers are untied and persuasive about a course of action… Charismatic leaders, who are most susceptible to this problem, need to make an effort to unearth disagreement and to find followers who are not afraid to pose hard questions.

6 ways to counter wayward influences:

  1. Keep vision and values front and centre
  2. Make sure people disagree
  3. Cultivate truth tellers
  4. Do as you would have done to you
  5. Honour your intuition
  6. Delegate, don’t desert


The example of Polaroid and Land suggests how leaders think about goals. They are active instead of reactive, shaping ideas instead of responding to them. Leaders adopt a personal and active attitude towards goal. The influence a leader exerts in altering moods, evoking images and expectations, and in establishing specific desires and objectives determines the direction a business takes.

5 components of Emotional Intelligence at work:

  1. Self-awareness
  2. Self-regulation
  3. Motivation
  4. Empathy
  5. Social Skill