Saturday, December 6, 2008

Coach as conductor

Came across a terrific passage last night in Lance Secretan's book "Inspire."

According to the author, it's a myth that all great leaders were also great strategists.

As he writes, "More than anything else, they found brilliant people and inspired them -- they focused on guiding the contribution of brilliance from others."

In fact, a great leader's "purpose with others is to lift their hearts, to make it easy for them to develop and implement a brilliant strategy."

Secretan uses an example to illustrate his point:

The first violinist of a symphony will generally more about playing the violin than the conductor will ever be able to learn during his lifetime.

However, the conductor is the keeper of the Cause. [His job] is to serve the violinist by providing any personal and professional support required, to help him or her grow and excel.

The leader's role is to guide the contribution of brilliance that lies waiting to be released from within us all. We are all yearning for infusion, not intrusion."