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Ariane de Bonvoisin - Founder and Chief Change Optimist
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Thursday, April 17, 2008

Give Them the Power

Benjamin Zander, conductor of the Boston Philharmonic and author (with his wife Rosamund Stone Zander) of The Art of Possibility, has some interesting thoughts on power. While it would be all too easy for a conductor to abuse his position and manage his musicians with a controlling and tyrannical style, Zander says that a great leader understands that true power “derives from [his or her] ability to make others powerful.” A leader or manager should not ask, “How good am I?” but instead should look into “what makes [this] group lively and engaged?”

This is a lovely analogy of leadership. If you are in a management position ask yourself if the people you work with feel powerful around you? It’s an important question to pose.