Leading Leaders How to Manage Smart, Talented, Rich and Powerful People

Selected by the Toronto Globe & Mail as one of the Top Ten Business Books of 2006

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“To lead leaders you have to be more of a politician than a football coach – persuading them to accomplish, rather than forcing them to obey.”

So says Professor Jeswald Salacuse in Leading Leaders. He makes the argument that top performers must be led differently because they often assume that they have special value and should not be subjected to traditional rules. Further, the fact that they often have a hand in choosing their leaders may make them believe that “the leader is beholden to them and not the other way around.”

Professor Salacuse’s advice: Don’t even try to order them to complete tasks. Forming personal relationships is the answer, he writes, stating: “Positive relationships engender trust, and trust in a leader is vital in securing desired actions from followers… You need to take account of the interests of the persons you would lead. Leaders will follow you not because of your position or charisma, but because they consider it in their interest. Your job as a leader is to convince them that their interest lies with you.”


“This is sound advice.” – Paul Brown, The New York Times



Jeswald Salacuse is the Henry J. Braker Professor of Commercial Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University. He is also a faculty affiliate of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.

Leading Leaders Attributes

Author: Jeswald Salacuse
Publisher: New York, NY: AMACOM, 2005