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The Terrible Leader by Dan White

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Lesson 1: Learning from mistakes

Remember those Sissy leaders? They will want you to treat every mistake made by one of your direct reports as ‘a learning opportunity’. We have, by now, realised the pure soft-mindedness of this sort of approach. The day you catch yourself treating a mistake as a ‘learning opportunity’ is the day to check yourself into the old people’s home and start some peremptory drooling. This is not the way of the Terrible leader. And that is not to say we ignore mistakes, quite the opposite. Now, let’s learn from some leaders who knew how to handle the odd dip in performance from their staff...

Vlad the Impaler, or Vlad Dracula, ruled Wallachia (around a third of modern-day Romania) on and off between 1431 and 1476. He knew ...

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