Thursday, March 29, 2007

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

Rudolph W Giuliani, in his book on leadership, makes these observations about leaders, not getting blogged [I did mean bogged!] down in the detail:

In 1959, the architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe said in the New York Herald Tribune that "God is in the details." Amen to that. Knowing the "small" details of a large system leaves a leader open to charges of micromanaging.

But understanding how something works is not only a leader's responsibility; it also makes him or her better able to let people do their jobs. If they don't have to explain the basics of what they need and why they need it every time they request more funds or different resources, then they are freer to pursue strate­gies beyond simply spending what they're given.

No leader can know everything about a system. A confident one won't hesitate to seek advice—publicly and privately—from those more expert in an area affecting the enterprise.

Rudolph W Giuliani with Ken Kurso, Leadership, (London: Time Warner, 2002), 46.

Image: Ludwig Mies van der Rohe