Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Why Do Leaders Do Stupid Things?

We all read about stupid moves made by CEOs or presidents of countries daily. The average person has got to think that every business leader is both evil and incompetent. Which, once you think about it, is a tough combination (think of Dr. Evil in the Austin Powers movies).

There are reasons for the stupid decisions being made by leaders, such as greed or arrogance. But, there is one reason overlooked:


Many of the leaders were given just enough info from their trusted subordinates for them to make that bold decision or to change course or policy. Most leaders live in a sound byte world and are easily manipulated. Add that to the fact that many of us pride ourselves in being courageous and bold and you get a lethal combination:

Inaccurate (or manipulative) info plus boldness equals buffoonery

Leaders are often initially supported for their bold decision-making and then after the dust settles are left isolated and criticized for their actions.

What's a leader to do? Force as much of the decision-making to the very people who know what is going on. Demand they take ownership. And...stop priding yourself in being a cowboy and realize that boldness is intoxicating and can blur your judgment.

Barry LaBov
LaBov & Beyond
LaBov Sales Channel
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