Chapter 10. Thinking Gray and Free

Steven B. Sample

Contrarian leaders think differently from the people around them. In particular, such leaders are able to maintain their intellectual independence by thinking gray and enhance their intellectual creativity by thinking free.

Conventional wisdom considers it a valuable skill to make judgments as quickly as possible, and conventional wisdom may well be right when it comes to managers. But contrarian wisdom argues that, for leaders, judgments as to the truth or falsity of information or the merits of new ideas should be arrived at as slowly and subtly as possible—and in many cases not at all.

One of the most rewarding aspects of teaching a class on leadership has been the opportunity to watch bright ...

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