Loving leaders


Read a blog on leadership on HBR site which appealed me. Here are a few lines from the blog:

I believe lives as cold as steel will only yield a world as cruel as ice. I believe cool rationality and perfect calculation can take us only a tiny distance towards the heart of what is good, true, and timelessly noble about life. Because there is no calculus of love. There is no equation for greatness. There is no algorithm for imagination, virtue, and purpose.

Even a perfect machine is just a machine.

If we are to lead one another, we will need the heresy of love. We must shout at yesterday in the language of love if we are to lead one another. Not just to tomorrow, but to a worthier destination: that which we find in one another.

It’s often said that leaders “inspire”. But that’s only half the story. Leaders inspire us because they bring out the best in us. They evoke in us our fuller, better, truer, nobler selves. And that is why we love them — not merely because they paint portraits of a better lives, but because they impel us to be the creators of our own.

HBR blog post by Umair Haque
But as soon as I finished reading the blog, I was reminded of an ex-boss who used to say- We come to office to manage and not to make friends. But he always had this manipulative charming face on, when he wanted to impressed someone. In my habit of taking people at face value, I became very friendly with him and visited his home also with wife. But one fine day I realised that whatever we shared in confidence with him about our personal lives, he used the same things against me in office. Then only last week his the then boss (my big boss) told me that this hypocrite and two-faced boss had stopped my transfer. Coming from horse’s mouth, it was really a shocker.
So the blog above talks of thinking exactly opposite to that.
As far as I am concerned, I do agree 100 % with the views of author. If we spend 1/3rd of our lives at work, we can’t just take the people as machines and treat them as such. But in majority of cases, I have seen that happen. Whether it be bosses, peers or junior, they take office-coming as a chore and burden. I am not saying you have family relations and friendship with all, but at least in your thinking and actions, you can be honest and true with them. You can take special efforts to pass on your learnings to the juniors. You can treat seniors as elders. You can be forthright with peers. But all this rarely happens. That is why author points out that leadership of this sort is rare. 
There will be backstabbing, bitching, treachery, mockery, malice, hatred and what not when you try to practice what the author preaches, but  it is worth it. The mental peace that you will get will be all worth it.
An aside, in my last post yesterday I shared an incident with happy friend. She came to me one hour later and showed a small half-pager satire she had written on that incident. I was pleasantly surprized at the coincidence, that both of us had written about the incident in 2 hours of the same happening. So, I committed a mistake, the blog which I was keeping as anonymous till date, I blurted out that I am writing anon blog. I actually gave her a print out of yesterday’s blog. She being she, warned me that she will find out the blog address and read it. 
The I realized my folly. The fun of this anon blog was that I could write about anything and everything, knowing that no one would read it in my friend-circle. Now I risked the anonymity. Maybe I will not be this open and frank, if I get to know that she or someone known is reading the blog. I told her though that don’t tell me if you find out, so I can keep writing frankly. But I did commit a mistake by telling about the blog. What was I thinking. Idiot me. But you know that by now, if you are reading my daily ramblings.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s