Monday, 29 September 2014

This Is How You Know You’ve Found the Right Career

Warren Buffett claims that he tap-dances to work every day. And why not? In 2013 alone, he made $12.7 billion. That’s $1.5 million per hour – even while sleeping. Clearly, Buffett picked the right career – not just for himself, but also for those lucky enough to have picked up a few shares of Berkshire Hathaway.
My father bred new strains of onions, carrots and cucumbers as a professor and research scientist. Having grown up as a farm boy, he was in heaven, developing high-beta-carotene carrots in a quest to keep 500,000 kids per year in developing countries from nutritional blindness. He believed he had the greatest job in the world and would never have traded careers with Warren Buffett.
Cecile Pelous was an executive in the fashion industry nearly 30 years ago, working with the grand couturiers in Paris, when she sent a letter to Mother Theresa. “Can you use me?” she asked. Mother Theresa wrote a one-word response, “Come!”Cecile sold her house to start an orphanage in Nepal. Before long, she had legally adopted 79 kids and was raising and educating a hundred more from the streets to help them lead productive lives. Cecile wouldn’t trade places with Buffett either.
Whatever you’ve picked as a career, I hope it makes you want to tap dance – at least a few times in your work life. When you look back and survey where you’ve been, look ahead to the distant shore, or consider the people who have rowed alongside you, take an occasional pause to click your heels.
Few of us know what career is in store for us when we take our first job. But here are some signs that you've increased the odds for a spontaneous outbreak of tap dancing:
1. You've found something you can be really good at. I recall taking up piano lessons at the same time as another young hopeful would-be musician. It wasn’t long, though, before she was in “John Thompson Book Three,” while I remained stuck in “Book Two.” Had I stayed with piano, I’d have been as miserable as those on the receiving end of my performances. My fellow student, however, went on to delight others with her gift as she became a professional musician. Thankfully, I merged into her audience – to the benefit of all. There’s no sense in fighting Mother Nature on the career front if you ever hope to tap dance.
2. You like the nuts and bolts of the job. Pick something where you don’t have to fake it to make it. When I watch natural extroverts gather energy from social situations, I recognize they have something I don’t. Whereas Bill Clinton comes alive and is energized by others, being on stage for too long drains my energy. I can finally host events without anxiety, even enjoying the occasional party – but I’m always happiest to retreat into a book or a private conversation with a friend. This means that as much as I love policy issues, governance and leadership, a career in elected politics would have undone me.
3. The job lifts you. For those doing what they were meant to do, the normal irritants of the job become a kind of “atmospheric dust” that creates the foundation for beautiful sunsets. Every career has its dust, but you might be in the wrong one if that’s all you see. If you find yourself grousing, fussing and fomenting, give yourself – and the rest of us – a break. In your torrent of objections and cautions, you’ll never build a great career – and you might just keep others from achieving their dreams. No career is perfect, but the right one for you will be filled with many uplifting sunsets.
4. You're in the thick of things. Life in the backseat or on the periphery of the action rarely makes for a great career. Naturally, there are lots of great support roles on the edge of every industry, but if you’re determined to leave a mark, it generally pays off to operate at the center. If you love accounting, work for an accounting firm. If you're fascinated by the law, get into the judicial system. If you’re an engineer, build cool new stuff. If you love finance, work for a bank or an investment house. Build the motor, buy the brake pads.
5. You're in an industry that fits your personality type. Engineers are not like real estate developers, who in turn don’t think like fashion mavens, who are wired differently from lawyers and accountants. We all have psychometric preferences – ones that tend to make us more or less like those in various industries. While this alone shouldn’t determine what you choose (as there are many roles on every winning team), make sure you understand your dominant traits and those of industry leaders. Then get on a field with those playing the same sport as you.
6. You like the other people in your field. My best-ever career (and investment) decisions have come from genuinely liking and admiring people I’m working with. Grappling with the discomfort of interpersonal contretemps is never productive. It saps everyone and it ensures suboptimal performance. Also, it can take down a career faster than anything else. If you can handle snakes, you’ll be OK getting into the viper pit; but if not, pick another industry.
7. You've found an inspiring mentor. Having someone to look up to is a key to finding a meaningful career. Your mentor doesn’t need to be your file leader – or even in your industry. But if you would have a great career, find a mentor… then become one yourself.
8. You look forward to Mondays. Don’t let your week become what Thoreau called a life of “quiet desperation,” awaiting the weekends for rejuvenation. But this also doesn’t mean you should be a workaholic. There is an emotional chasm between being a workaholic and loving work. Workaholics are driven by fear; joyful workers are motivated by passion. They both work hard, but it’s not the same. So find passion. Eschew fear. I can still hear Trammell Crow say, “Work is more fun than fun” – and mean it. And Confucius said, “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” This is the essence of having found a great career – one that grows out of passion, that merges work, life, family and friends into a whole with few bright-line boundaries. This sort of “career” is a Friday-less and Monday-less one.
9. You learn, grow, become, test, try. As Oliver Wendall Holmes wrote, “Alas for those that never sing, but die with all their music in them.” Great careers test us, try us, stretch us. We find out if we can hit the high notes and we learn to recover from the low ones. But those who have figured out how to have a great career – and not just a great job – don’t die with their music in them.
10. You're proud of what you do. Once when climbing a mountain with a successful entertainment industry executive, I apologized for what I was doing in my life at that point – particularly as I compared it with his fame and fortune. He carefully chose a moment to pull me out of the earshot of others to say: “Don’t ever be ashamed of what you’re doing with your life. Life is not a competition. Unless you self limit, you can make a greater difference in the lives of the young people you work with than I’ll make in a hundred lifetimes working with the world’s celebrities.” Finding the gold amid the dross of my present situation became the key to an important renewal. And it started by feeling proud of what I was doing.
If you're planning out your future, you're not likely to be satisfied with a series of jobs that merely keeps food on the table. Instead, turn your progression of jobs and assignments into a career that creates relationships, promotes learning, and makes a difference – all of which will send you tap-dancing to the office.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Using A Recruiter To Find Your Dream Job

Finding your perfect job can be a very time consuming and frustrating activity, especially when you’re doing it alone. I have shared some of my tips for finding and securing your perfect job in previous blogs, from ensuring your knowledge of the company is good, to asking the right questions in an interview. I always encourage jobseekers to actively explore opportunities and be self-starters, but sometimes you need a helping hand, which is where recruitment agencies can come in.
By taking advice and guidance from someone with industry knowledge, you have a much better chance of covering all bases. Here are a few ways to make the most of your recruitment consultant;
Know what you want
You need to have a strong idea of your capabilities and what job you feel is the best fit. This isn’t just about the type of role you want – you should explain all the aspects that make up your working life. Do you prefer to work for a large corporate or a smaller enterprise? Do you want to work in a team or do you prefer something more individual? I would suggest creating a detailed description and taking it to your first meeting with a consultant, so after that meeting they can be specific and tailored with their search for you.
Take initiative
Recruiters are experts, but also remember this is your livelihood. Don’t allow yourself to be spoon-fed or led down a path you don’t want to take. You should be giving them strong direction. Also be thorough whenever a job opportunity is put in front of you – go away and do a solid amount of research rather than just accepting the first thing that is put in front of you.
Find specialists
You always want to speak to people who know exactly what they are talking about in your sector. In other words, you don’t want someone who's a jack of all trades but master of none. Find an agency that is a specialist in your area and find out about things like their clients and the types of placements they have made before. Don’t be too concerned with whether they are an established agency or a startup – as somebody who has invested in 7 startups this year alone, I can tell you that recruitment businesses are often started by people who have already worked in one, so they will have an excellent contact book anyway. The key is for them to be specialists – find one that works for you.
Understand the relationship
It is always best to build a good rapport with a recruitment consultant and maintain that relationship. Keep in close contact with them throughout your job search and let them know how things are at your current company. Even after you get placed, you should meet up with them now and then – they will be keen to know how you are finding your new job. If at some point in the future you are looking to move on again – that relationship you have built will give you a head start.
Encourage feedback
Whenever you go for an interview, the recruiter will get feedback on your performance. They will tell you what you did well, and what you didn’t do so well – but you should then ask them to help you improve. Perhaps your body language was wrong, or there was a certain type of question you didn’t answer well. Go in and see your recruiter, and get them to almost coach you so you can improve. Every step of the job seeking process is an opportunity for you to learn and develop.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Answering The Question: Where Do You See Yourself In Five Years?

One of the more tricky questions candidates are asked at job interviews is about their 5 year plan. I have interviewed many people who all of a sudden pause and struggle when asked this, but it is actually a question that you should embrace. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re in that situation.
Those of you that regularly read my blogs will know that there are two things I always say in relation to ambition. The first is that ambitious companies look for like-minded individuals; the second is that if you're standing still you're going backwards. So when you're asked where you see yourself in 5 years’ time, don't be afraid to aim high. If you see yourself in a managerial role, say it. No manager worth their salt will think you are a threat or getting too big for your boots. The key is to back it up - don't just tell them where you want to be, tell them how you'll get there.
Of course ambition has to be related to the job you are applying for. As I touch on in the video below, when I'm interviewing someone for a mid-level recruitment role, I don't want them to say their aim is to be a vet in 5 years! Whatever you say must relate to the job and company. Even if you are on a career journey and see yourself doing something completely different - do you really want to share this at an interview?

Remember where you are
It is as important as anything that you remember your primary goal - to get this job. So when you start your answer, emphasise how you want to completely master the role you are currently going for and how you want to add value to this specific company. Also state which areas of this job you especially like and what you want to take with you even as you move upwards. For example you may be interviewing for a Marketing Executive role, and in 5 years want to be a Marketing Director. Tell the interviewer which bit of the Executive role you most enjoy and would like to still have a hand in even if you got promoted.
Never mention the money
It may seem obvious, but I have genuinely interviewed people before who said in 5 years they wanted to be earning X amount. This is generally the wrong direction to take the interview in. Of course money is the reason we all go to work, but by answering in this manner you make yourself seem totally fixated on this. Admittedly there are some jobs - namely sales related ones - where hiring managers are actively looking for hungry people that want to maximise their earning potential. But even when I recruit for these positions I still want to see people aiming for professional development rather than just financial.

Monday, 22 September 2014

How to Get the Job You Really Want - 5 Quick Tips

One of the most important parts of my role as an experienced Consultant, is setting my candidates up for success when applying for a new role. There are many of you out there who don't know how to approach an interview process, and I believe people when they say to me just how daunting getting a new role can be. For this reason I thought it a good idea to write some basic guidelines down to take with you. No matter whether you are a mid level management candidate, or a C-Suite Executive, these simple steps will help prepare you for an interview process.
1. Research the business you are applying for
This may sound unbelievable to some of you out there, but I continue to be amazed at the amount of people (again at all levels) who do not put the ground work inbefore meeting the hiring manager. As a Consultant, we should have already met you and talked to you about 
the business and role you are applying for. After this meeting, it is key that you go online and research the business you may one day work for. Visit stores and talk to staff, mystery shop to assess their service levels and ask staff questions. It is amazing how much they may share with you about the business they work for. This not only will show the hiring manager that there is genuine interest in knowing more about their business, but it may also become a conversation point in the interview process.
2. Read the Job Description
Most likely the Consultant will have been given a Job Description as part of their brief from the client. They will share this with you and it is vital that you take the time to read through this thoroughly. Most of the key criteria on that Job Spec will be what your interview will be based upon. Go through the Job Description systematically and think of live examples where you were able to put each of these points to good use.

3. Write down important information and questions
I am certain we can all think of times where we have left an interview and thought to ourselves, "I wish I had said that", "I forgot to ask that really important question". One of the recommendations I share with candidates is to prepare a list, in bullet form to take with you to your meeting. If anything, again, this will show the hiring manager your interest in the business and the role, so I would not be concerned about taking notes in with you. Write in bullet form your key strengths, and some key leadership points that for you are important to share. Also, write down a couple of questions that you would like to know about the company/role. Sometimes nerves can take over your brain when in an interview, so having the ability to refer to these notes will really help.
4. Dress code
I am writing this down as an important point, as all retail businesses are different, and again, no matter at what level you are applying for, your first impression to the hiring manager is important, and if you look the part, it is easier to see you already in the business. Ask your Consultant about how you should dress for your meeting. They should know their client and be able to assist.
5. Cross Check
We should now be well prepared for the interview and setting you up as best we can for a successful first meeting. My last recommendation to candidates is always, at the end of the interview, ask these questions to the Hiring Manager - "Is there anything else you would like to know about myself or my career history?", and finally "Based on our meeting just now, and the role you are recruiting for, do you feel that my skill set is aligned to what you are searching for?"
Take these points with you and ensure you tick these off. You will find that you will be on your way to securing that job you really want!

Thursday, 18 September 2014

The iOS 8 Rollercoaster Ride Has Arrived

There is always a certain amount of anticipation and even excitement for the latest software release by Apple and iOS 8 is no exception. Despite their reputation of producing technology that just works, there will be a huge amount of people horrified by the news that in order to upgrade to the latest version, you will need a whopping 5.8 GB (more on some devices) of spare space before you can even get started.
This has baffled many users who have bombarded social media sites with questions such as “If the update is only a 1.1 GB download why do I need 5.8GB of free space?” and "Who has 5.8 GB free on a device with 13 GB total capacity?”
You can check exactly what is taking up the room on your iPad or iPhone and go to Settings > General > Usage. This will reveal the apps using the most space, but be warned, it could be your favourite apps or photos that need to be removed and re-installed when the update is complete.
If you are struggling to find enough space, you can always connect your device to a computer with iTunes and install that way as it requires less free space, but this does not quite fit into the whole “Cut the cord” ethos that users have brought into over the years and finding yourself having to download yet another version of iTunes seems a little dated.
The reality is that a large portion of Apple users will be spending the evening backing up and having a spring clean of their device until they reach the golden amount of free space available and even then you will be faced with the dreaded following message:
Update Requested: Your software update request has been received. You will be notified when the update has been downloaded and ready to install.
We often forget that when people from every corner of the world all rush to download the same software at the same time, you are going to run into a few congestion issues, but this doesn't stop anyone getting frustrated in these days where instant gratification is expected.
Of course the more sensible users reading this will simply forget about it for a few days and come back when the networks get back to normality; however the feeding frenzy and bragging rights of getting it downloaded first is all part of an Apple iOS release.
One of the great risks of being an early adopter is to rush in and throw caution to the wind, but assuming you are happy to let the chips fall where they may and have everything downloaded already, what has changed?
This year’s release is not a dramatic overhaul but simply introducing a few improvements, which can be found online in articles such as 16 hidden featuresover at the Daily Telegraph or the always reliable review from the guys at Mashable.
We are starting to see glimpses of our future according to Apple with Home Kitwhere the days of shouting “hey honey, I’m home” are replaced with "Good morning Siri" and turn the lights turn on in specific rooms, adjust the temperature and even open the garage door.
All this technology is in its infancy and we are seeing ideas slowly evolving before our eyes which is fascinating for anyone curious or vaguely interested in what the future holds.
Over the next few days, you will be sure to read about the excitement surrounding this latest software release along with details about the good, the bad and the ugly of all the new features, whilst owners of devices from other platforms such as Android will be quick to point out that every one of those shiny offerings have been available elsewhere for years.
Whatever your opinion is about the release of iOS 8, once again people from all walks of life are talking about innovation and technology which will only inspire more improvements across all platforms, for this reason alone, I will try to avoid the frustration and fanboy arguments and simply sit back and enjoy the show.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

What The World's Greatest Leaders Can Teach Us

Each year, Fortune ranks the world’s top 50 most influential leaders. And while the list is inspiring, I think the greater message lies in looking deeper to what each of these leaders stands for, and what each can teach us about leadership.
I chose a few from the list for their accomplishments but more importantly for the leadership qualities they embody.

Be willing and able to change.

Anglea Merkel, No. 2 on the list and the highest ranked woman, has proven herself a strong voice of leadership as the de facto leader of the European Union through many crises. Her ability to see the need for change and move quickly on it has cemented her as a strong, powerful leadership role model.

Surround yourself with great people.

General Joe Dunford, Commander of U.S. Forces in Afghanistan is both a soldier and a statesman, a fine line to walk. But he clearly attributes much of his success to his ability to surround himself with extraordinary people. He told Fortune that someone once gave him three rules for success; the first was to surround yourself with good people. “Over the years,” he said, “I’ve forgotten the other two.” As a leader of any group, the skill for finding and nurturing talented people is key to success.

Be willing to experiment.

Geoffrey Canada, CEO of the Harlem Children’s Zone, has been quoted as saying, “Education is the only billion-dollar industry that tolerates abject failure.” He decided to change that with a bold experiment, turning a 24-block area of Harlem into a place that nurtured and supported children from birth. His experiment has been wildly successful, expanding to more than 100 blocks and seeing a 95% matriculation rate of high school seniors going to college. He had the vision to turn traditional education ideas on their head, and was rewarded for that bold risk-taking experimentation with real results.

Real leadership is when everyone else feels in charge.

Bono, lead singer of U2, has proven himself a global leader in AIDS relief efforts, but as he tells Fortune, the real power lies in empowering others. Leaders who can make every person in the organization from the ground up believe powerfully in the mission and cause of the company, are truly inspirational leaders.

Reach people where they are.

The Dalai Lama, spiritual leader of the Tibetan people, is maybe the most social media savvy leader on this list. He has 8.6 million followers on Twitter, and you can find him on just about every other social media platform as well, from Facebook to Google+ and back. The upshot of all this? Millions of people worldwide who are not Tibetan or Buddhist look to the Dalai Lama for guidance and follow his charismatic words because he is everywhere they are.

Don’t compromise your vision.

The no. 1 slot on this year’s list went to Pope Francis. No matter where you fall on the spectrum of religious beliefs, I believe Pope Francis must be admired as a leader for being absolutely unwilling to compromise his beliefs. He has taken a stand against centuries of papal tradition by forgoing some of the opulent trappings of his office, voiced controversial opinions about the church’s role in the world and on topics like homosexuality and abortion. Yet his firm stance has done nothing but make him more popular, both with his own flock and others around the world. Knowing your own mind and not letting yourself be swayed by what’s popular is a key characteristic of a strong leader.
Many believe that great leaders are born, not made. I believe that anyone can become a better leader by emulating those we admire.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

10 Good Reasons Why I Won't Hire You

There comes a time in your career where you just have to expand. That’s my advice. I’ve given that little no-brainer out since I started leading seminars years ago. I decided it’s time to take my own advice. At the urging of several clients of two of my organizations, Organization of Legal Professionals and The Paralegal Knowledge Institute, I decided that I would tackle the interesting, rewarding and what-I-think-is-fun natural expansion to continuing legal education – career coaching. Yep, I wanted to get into muddy waters, roll up my Neiman Marcus sleeves and dive right in.
Clients started coming and I haven’t even quite finished the web pages about the new divisions, Career Rx. Someone must have a lot of faith in me and I sure do appreciate that. My focus is career strategy (where do I go from here?); resume evaluation; interviewing techniques and solutions for on-the-job situations. I’ve been a CEO, written 10 books on legal careers, co-founded three associations, have umpteen years in the legal field in executive level positions. Heck, I should put this experience to good use.
When I got into it, I had an Is-that-true? moment. People had no clue why they weren’t being hired. I would hear lots of complaints and heartbreaking stories. However, I also saw through some whining such as “there are no jobs out there”; I’m entry-level and no one wants to give me a break,”; “It’s pure age-discrimination, through and through”. Then, sympathetic LinkedIn and Facebook colleagues (many out of work), would chime in with empathetic support such as, “You’re right, there’s….” which only serves to enable the victimized candidate.
My evolving practice shows me there is not as many “no-jobs-age-discrimination-no-one-wants-entry-level" problems as people think. Some of these candidates weren’t destined to get a job if the market had a job for everyone including Batman, Superman, Cat Woman and Heidi from the Swiss Alps. The funny thing is, no one thinks they’re doing anything wrong. After all, they wrote a "great" resume and cover letter, wore their Sunday Best and gave ‘em hell during the interview. Someone needs to break the news. Problem is: people who don’t get jobs think the advice does not apply to them. It’s for someone else.
Truth is: they wrote a resume that wasn't very good, did not highlight their skills as related to the applied for job, had a boiler-plate cover letter, interviewed terribly and their "Sunday Best" belonged at a football game.
Here’s why I wouldn’t hire you:
1. You have no current additional training.

There are no webinars, courses, seminars or anything else on your resume showing that you have kept your skills up-to-date. How am I supposed to trust your knowledge? Is your current firm involved in professional training, training, training? I doubt it. Do you think you know everything you need to know to do your job? If so, you need to be president and even then, a little training wouldn't hurt.
2. I looked up your professional profile on LinkedIn and your Facebook page before I thought about inviting you for an interview.
You may think that employers are checking Facebook to see if you’re that 20 year-old posting pictures of you and your buddies wildly drunk at a party. Not quite. I saw where you got into a public argument on your FB page with Sally over some petty little thing. I saw how you escalated it into the War of Words. Did I think you were a leader? Hmmm….I wasn’t particularly fond of the fact that you encouraged your FB friends to jump in and defend you. Not my idea of a leader. Here’s an indication of what may show up on the job. No thanks.
Oh, and BTW, LinkedIn showed me different dates and firms than what’s on your resume. You profile didn’t seem to be updated, either. No thanks, once again.
5. I couldn’t get a word in edgewise during the interview. I figured you had a hearing problem, so I didn’t usher you out.
No one talks over the interviewerReally, they don’t.
6. You refused to follow directions when asked to send your resume.
Don’t respond by saying, “check my LinkedIn profile” when I asked you to send a resume. I don’t care what the magazine articles tell you. I am not going to go through each candidate’s LinkedIn profile, make notes, try and cut and paste and incur all that extra work. What makes you so special that you think it’s ok to go against instructions? Then, you kept calling to see if I got your email and asking when was I going to schedule an interview. Annoying, really annoying. What this clearly says is, “This person cannot follow directions and wants to do things his way.” No thanks.
7. Your answers sounded rehearsed, routine and repetitious.

I heard no enthusiasm for the field, you had no idea of the outside world other than your last position, no real desire for the job, and no knowledge in what we’re doing. Your answers to why you left your last and prior positions were: “For a better challenge” or “I was recruited away” or “for more money”. Yuck! Mr. Creativity over here. Can we get just a little more honest?
8. You were not relating to the job I had to offer.

Whatever it was that you wanted, I sure wasn’t the person who was going to give it to you. Your answers were so far off base, I thought you dropped in to the wrong interview. You knew nothing about my organization, me nor the job. You spent most of the interview talking about your talent and experience that had no relevance to the job.
9. You interview badly.

I shouldn’t have asked you in after that ridiculous phone interview. When am I going to learn? Never second guess your gut feeling. It’s based on experience. I am sure you walked out of the interview thinking you aced it. Now I understand the phrase, “Ignorance is bliss.”
10. Your grammar was so bad, it was embarrassing.

It’s hard to believe you went all the way through college. On second thought, I’d better check that fact first. I also have no issue that English is your second language. I wish I could speak more than one. However, ESL or not, your written grammar made no sense and it’s my reputation at stake. Any usage of bad grammar and incorrect wording is going to reflect on me – not you. I’m not taking the risk because I have a soft spot somewhere in my heart and I like you. No way.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Five Leadership Qualities You Didn't Know

Not a single day goes without coming across some leadership expert with his definition of what great leaders are made of. And all these opinions are stuffed with keywords such as: Visionary, Empathetic, Confident, Creative, Inspiring, Decisive etc. I can go on, but you get the point. It’s boring. Here I am going to tell the stories of five great leaders from the past and their most important leadership trait. Irrespective of whether you are running a Startup, or a billion dollar business, you will learn from these stories.
1. They Hire people more qualified than they areAbraham Lincoln, after getting elected president of the US, nominated those four people to his cabinet who were his strongest rivals during the election, all of them more qualified than him. William Seward and Salmon Chase had served as US Senator and Governor. Edward Bates and Edwin Stanton were high profile lawyers who had served as Attorney Generals. Who was Abraham Lincoln? A self educated lawyer whose best political achievement was being a Congressman. But instead of being worried that his cabinet members would outshine him, he hired the best people for the job. Rest as you know, Lincoln’s presidency turned out to be the greatest in the history of the United States.
2. They Expose themselves to their followers: Alexander the Great is considered the greatest general of all time. What was his secret of winning every single battle? In the battlefield he would stay in a similar camp as made for other soldiers and would eat the same food. In battles he led from the front where everyone could see him. Alexander's soldiers felt that they were fighting for someone who belonged to them. Compare this to Darius the great, the king of Persia. Darius had his royal tent filled with all the comforts, and he never mixed with foot soldiers. As a result his soldiers suffered from low morale. At the battle of Issus, when Alexander chased Darius away from the battlefield, his soldiers gave up, and fled in full rout.
3. They Mentor change agents: Jesus Christ was fully aware of the danger that his gospels of enlightenment ran counter to the to Roman authority and the temple priests ruling Jerusalem at that time. He selected 12 men from his followers as his disciples who were to advance his gospels throughout the world, after him. These 12 men didn’t have any extraordinary qualities when they chose him as their leader, but Jesus mentored them to spread his vision. Rest is history. Christianity is is the largest religion in the world with approximately 2.2 billion adherents.
4. They Build strategic alliances: Hannibal was considered to be Rome’s greatest enemy. He was the leader of Carthage military that fought against Rome in the Second Punic war. Before losing the war Hannibal defeated the Roman armies in many battles in Italy, Gaul (modern day Germany), and Spain. Hannibal was facing massive Roman army and could not have won on his own. So he built up alliances with other kingdoms (most notably the Gauls) and tribes that feared the ever-increasing power of the Roman Empire, and led that army to many victories against the mighty Romans.
5. They Embrace conflict and channel it: Steve Jobs embraced conflict at Apple and channelled it to create the best consumer devices. In 2005 while planning for iPhone Jobs faced the option of either shrinking the mac or enlarging the iPod. He pitched the two teams: Mac led by Scott Forstall and iPod led by Tony Fadell against each other in an internal competition. Forstall won the competition and ended up creating iOS (source: Scott Forstall Wikipedia page). Also the rivalry between Scott Forstall and Jony Ive is well known. Times magazine wrote that they would not even sit in the same meeting room together. Steve Jobs had the ability to manage these big egos and channel their rivalries to serve the ultimate goal of the company i.e. creating breakthrough products. What happened when Jobs was gone? Tim Cook fired Scott Forstall over the map fiasco, and Apple lost one of its leaders who actually understood Job’s leadership style that had brought Apple back from the brink of bankruptcy.