Thursday, July 21, 2011

Leading from Among

The worst managers are those who treat their staff as one of the resources they need to schedule. They don't distinguish among conference rooms, computers, office supplies and people. They are not heartless, but they imagine that the context of "employment" means that each minute of the day needs accounting.

The best managers collaborate with the people they manage. They take a partnership approach and count on their partners to achieve goals using their judgment and skills.

Laotse wrote:

There are four types of leaders:

The best leader is indistinguishable
from the will of those who selected her.

The next best leader enjoys the love
and praise of the people.

The poor leader rules through coercion and fear.
And the worst leader is a tyrant despised
by the multitudes who are the victims of his power.

What a world of difference among these leaders!

In the last two types, what is done
is without sincerity or trust, only coercion

In the second type, there is a harmony
between the leader and the people.

In the first type, whatever is done happens
so naturally that no one presumes to take the credit!

Tao Te Ching, Verse 17
Translation by Ralph Alan Dale

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