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Unformatted text preview: s- char isma- its- r eal- it- matter s- and- it- can- be- dang er ous- for tune- classic- 1996/ 4/5 2/12/13 What exactly is Char isma? It' s r eal. It matter s. And it can be dang er ous. ( For tune Classic 1996) - For tune Featur es And so began Netscape's Bugs Bounty program. Hackers receive rewards--ranging from $12 coffee mugs to $1,000 in cash-for reporting flaws. T hus far, two significant new bugs have been detected, and $2,000 in cash bounties have been paid.
Simply by offering to pony up for its mistakes, Netscape won admirers. "If you admit you made a mistake," says Barksdale,
"the customer will always cut you slack."
SPAR AND RILE. Charismatic leaders goad and challenge, prod and poke. T hey test your courage and intellectual mettle.
Jack Welch or Arthur Martinez will lose interest in you quickly if you don't play at their level--or at least try to.
Michael Jordan is the same way. In the Bull's closed-door practices, he is always the loudest man on court. If you play
against him and don't give 110%, he riles, he trash talks, he dunks the ball on you. Says Jordan: "T hat's just a way of being
inspirational." His teammates often beg to differ. On court and off, they say, he never stops competing. But as Jordan
explains, "Success isn't something you chase. It's something you have to put forth the effort for constantly. T hen maybe it'll
come when you least expect it. Most people don't understand that."
Scott Paper's Al Dunlap also succeeds by riling and trash talking. In one year, Dunlap created $6.4 billion in market value at
Scott by slashing 11,000 jobs. Asked whether he has more enemies or friends, he laughs: "Shareholders love me! A lot of
my contemporaries don't because I challenge the status quo and I don't give a damn." Now that Scott is being acquired by
Kimberly-Clark, Dunlap is hunting for another corporate dinosaur. Says he: "I have zero problems with your calling me an
egomaniac." Spencer Stuart President T homas Neff, the headhunter who recruited Dunlap for Scott, says he's cautioned his
man to cool it. "I've told Al, 'Don't be so outrageous.' He sort of listens. But he's enjoying himself so much."
So how do you manage charisma, this wonderful, terrible thing? Gadiesh suggests using an internal compass. She got the
idea from her husband, Grenville Byford, an offbeat British entrepreneur who in the late 1980s spent two years sailing
around the world by himself. When he returned, Byford talked with Gadiesh about the importance of "true north." An ordinary
compass, he explained, points to magnetic north, which is fickle and unreliable. A gyrocompass, on the other hand, works on
its own internal mechanical system and always points to true north. Gadiesh loved the image. She adopted true north as her
personal guideline and as Bain's core value.
"T he most important thing a leader can have is true north," Gadiesh says. "It's a set of principles that directs him or her to
what's virtuous and right. Charisma can be a positive or negative force. It all depends on whether it's anchored by true
Learning charisma from people who are loaded with it is a bit like studying acting with De Niro or playing basketball with,
well, Jordan. Regardless of how hard you try, you may never win an Oscar or make it to the pros. But you'll certainly
improve your technique--a crucial advantage no matter what your career.
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