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We are Smarter Than Me: How to Unleash the Power of Crowds in Your Business by Jon Spector - And Thousands of Contributors, Barry Libert

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08. Lead from the Rear

All through history, leaders have sought to persuade or compel communities to change their ways. The more drastic the change desired, the less likely the success. The “Great Leap Forward” of China’s Communist leader Mao Zedong, for example, imposed a whole new political structure on his people in his rush to industrialize. It was a major disaster: Millions died of starvation, and the economy was devastated. Fifty years later, Mao’s folly remains a cautionary tale for anyone who hopes to control the attitudes and actions of a group of independent people.

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As we have argued throughout this book, wikinomic communities can often ...

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