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Unformatted text preview: UNE scrutinized many candidates, rejected most,
and identified four who seem to have been born with it: Barksdale, Jordan, new Sears CEO Arthur Martinez, and Bain & Co. featur es.blog s.for tune.cnn.com/2012/06/10/what- exactly- is- char isma- its- r eal- it- matter s- and- it- can- be- dang er ous- for tune- classic- 1996/ 2/5 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 chairman Orit Gadiesh. Martinez, in particular, feels a passion about the subject. "Charisma matters more than it used to,"
he says. "When you had command-and-control environments, everyone knew his role and almost automatically executed the
boss's program. T oday, if you're unable to galvanize people into action, all the thinking, the analysis, the strategic prioritizing
doesn't matter at all."
Acquiring charisma isn't easy, and a lot of leaders shouldn't even bother. Who hasn't cringed at the sight of an awkward guy
trying to be a live wire? Or remember Richard Nixon schmoozing with Elvis? Still, there are aspects of charisma that are very
useful--and easily attainable. Says Jay Conger, a professor at the University of Southern California who has written books
on the subject: "Understanding the traits of charismatic people can help anyone become a better leader."
SIMPLIFY AND EXAGGERAT E. Charismatic people have a remarkable ability to
distill complex ideas into simple messages. What's their secret? T hey communicate
by using symbols, analogies, metaphors, and stories. If they're really charismatic, the
guys on the factory floor, even the janitors, understand their pitch. Remember Jack
Welch redirecting GE--going on the road to tirelessly preach his "No. 1 or No. 2"
strategy requiring managers to "fix, close, or sell" any business that wasn't first or
second in worldwide market share. Recall Ronald Reagan, unwavering on his two
core beliefs: a strong defense and less government.
Barksdale uses the same technique. "Jim views his mission in life as boiling
everything down to a few basic principles that motivate people," says Craig McCaw,
who was Barksdale's boss at McCaw Cellular. McCaw, not a detail man, says, "Jim is like the World War II general, you
know, in the movie Patton. T he one played by the guy in the American Express commercial."
Karl Malden, Craig. He played Omar Bradley, the mild-mannered "soldier's soldier." Unlike the brilliant Patton, who often
terrified his troops, Bradley was an amiable teacher who turned a million undisciplined boys into great fighters.
Last January, when Barksdale arrived in Silicon Valley, Netscape was a chaotic corps of 100 employees, some younger
than his own kids. Engineers were panicked about product-delivery deadlines. Managers were bewildered about strategy.
Jim Clark so feared Netscape would run out of money that he had imposed a hiring freeze. Says Marc Andreesen, 24, the
engineer who developed the predecessor to Netscape's software with his pals at colleg...
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This note was uploaded on 04/01/2013 for the course BUSI 405 taught by Professor Blackburn during the Spring '10 term at UNC.
- Spring '10