As businesses succeed, business leaders acquire greater power by virtue of their success. Oftentimes they are not equipped to handle this power as efficiently as they handle their businesses. It is usually described as “letting power go to one’s head.” When power goes to someone’s head, he tends to become a megalomaniac, unable to see the impact of his actions. This isn’t a character flaw but something that is learnable. In fact, it is one of the more difficult leadership lessons!
Managing one’s self is a great art that requires constant practice.
The first lesson in managing power is humility. Once, Garuda, the great eagle mount of Vishnu, was filled with great pride. He thought to himself, “I am great and powerful, even Vishnu can’t go anywhere without me!” That day, instead of mounting Garuda, Vishnu placed just his fingertip on the divine bird and asked him to fly. Garuda could not move an inch of course, thereby realizing that his power was actually due to the divine power flowing through him by the grace of the almighty.
The more power one gets, the more humble one must become – this is also to restore the balance of nature.
The second lesson in managing power is service. Leaders who understand that the power they hold is actually vested in them for serving others and treat it as a great responsibility will ultimately wield that power better. They are hailed as servant leaders – who lead from the front and inspire their people.
To be continued...