Plato's Republic (I).
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|'...Therefore, a Prince should always seek advice, but only when he wishes so, and not when others wish...'
In the realm of organisational systems and leadership, the study of classical models is usually limited to those of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, leaving behind other ideas and concepts as either ancient or too new to be of practical value.
However, a comprehensive understanding of what goes on within any given organisation can only be achieved by the development of both theoretical as well as practical knowledge: expertise in command may be enough to manage many daily aspects and problems concerning any organisation, but is just a necessary but not sufficient condition to solve matters under dire circumstances or when skill and ingenuity are demanded in order to solve a new situation or when event require creative solutions, mainly because traditional ones do no work anymore, have become unfashionable, are obsolete or insufficient.
Indeed, a good theoretical foundation and a fine education are as incapable as tools to solve such problems at face value and by their own inertia as it is empirical knowledge in terms of leadership. Both factors need be united in order to provide sensible solutions.
However, the fact that modern life ends creating some 'ready-made' so-called leaders in corporations and governments by way of necessity, the case is more often than not that there are far more empirical leaders than theoretical students of this issue, and thus, the knowledge and critic of models of leadership and trascendental strategic thinking is really lacking.
As Director General of the Gea since 1987, and member of an old banking family I have found that potential leaders usually fail because of the lack of information for their decision-making work. Some are betrayed even by their own cultural background and, perhaps, even the lack of basic social skills.
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