founder of naked leader

Three Years On…

Naked Leader Week – 119 (w/c Monday 29th August 2005)

Please send this on to those whose lives you touch

 Three Years On…


To celebrate three years since the publication of The Naked Leader I decided to answer the two most frequent questions I receive about the book:

Q1 – What was the first part of the book that you actually wrote?

Answer – The start of Chapter 23 “Recapture the Magic.” In many ways this is still my favourite piece of writing, so I suppose that after writing these, it was all downhill J

Go into any new company, one that is just starting out. Witness the enthusiasm, energy and excitement as the founders discuss their dreams, shape their future and make their plans a positive reality. Feel the culture of a new project at its launch – a new team comes together for the first time, full of hope and expectation at the success ahead of them. Experience a company as it grows fast; see the ideas, instinct and imagination flow through everyone involved, like a collective heartbeat of inspiration. It is a healing process, providing an atmosphere of certainty in the destiny that is being shaped by constructive forces.

 Go into any large company, one that has been established for a while. Introduce a management initiative, call it total quality anything, or continuous improvement, or worse still, business process reengineering, then stand back and watch. The blame starts slowly at first, then grows, fast. It eats its way through an organisation, freezing new ideas, initiative and action in its wake. It is like a virus of negativity. War breaks out as everyone focuses on saving costs, avoiding failure, and rooting out anyone who dares to make a mistake. It is a harming process, providing an atmosphere of inevitability in the disaster that is being shaped by destructive forces.


Q2 – Of all of the contributions, which has caused most feedback?

Easy one – and I can’t even remember where I found the story – if you sent it to me please let me know and I will ensure it is correctly attributed!

There once was a rich business man in London who had twins.  And you know how babies have a personality almost from the moment they are born?  One baby was miserable, the other was happy.  And it continued all the way through their early childhood – everyone remarked on it, but their father refused to accept it.  He decided to test it out once and for all on their tenth birthdays.  In the small hours he filled the pessimists room full of the most amazing toys and presents you could imagine.  And the optimist’s he filled full of horseshit.  Early the next morning he crept past the pessimist’s room. He could hear him grumbling, “This won’t last long, I didn’t really want one of these”.  Then he went to the optimist’s room – and he could hear him whistling a merry tune!  He burst in the door to see his optimist son whistling away shovelling horseshit out of the window with a spade:

 “Why are you whistling when your room is full of horseshit on your birthday?”

 “Hey Dad, with this amount of horseshit, there must be a pony here for me somewhere!”


Three reasons are mentioned – it is laugh out loud funny, it epitomizes the Naked Leader message and it contains a rude word that I didn’t think would get past the publishers!

With love, hope and peace, wherever you are as you read this.




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