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Stay one step ahead of the sheep

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in Leaders & Managers,Leadership Skills

Mark Twain and Jesus had it right when they said we all are sheep.

Business improvement guru and Good to Great author Jim Collins makes the same point in Great by Choice. There, he debunks some myths.

He thinks turbulent times do not call for bold and risk-loving leaders. Most of his leadership examples are risk-averse to the point of paranoia.

Bill Gates, for example, kept a picture of Henry Ford in his office as a reminder that even Ford stumbled later in life. And Intel co-founder Andy Grove, after his experiences fleeing the Holocaust, was always looking over his shoulder seeking out “the black cloud in the silver lining.”

Neither does Collins overvalue innovation, pointing out that Southwest Airlines was a faithful copy of a failed pioneer, Pacific Southwest Airlines.

Lesson: You can lead without being a genius, as long as you’re one step ahead of the sheep.

— Adapted from “Schumpeter: Built to last,” The Economist,

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