• Leadership by Soul

    Regular reflections for leaders who want to make a lasting difference.

    "Jonathan nimbly blends philosophical insight with practical solutions."

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    "He built his talk to such a powerful crescendo, with such quiet and graceful ease"

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    "Not many great speakers on leadership can draw on their experiences living in the centers of conflict in Africa and growing up in tribal New Guinea. The audience was mesmerized ... and fundamentally changed by the experience."

    The Story

What do you care about most?
What are you doing about it?

Leadership begins with vision. Vision arises out of the collision between what you know matters most, and what’s not right with the world around you — whether what’s not right is structural, technical, methodological, procedural or ethical.

Leadership ends with legacy. Between vision and legacy is unrelenting action — acting on your vision, again and again, day after day, with resolute focus, with dogged determination, relentlessly, for years. All great achievements — the building of value-creating companies, the abolition of the slave trade, the ending of Apartheid — were the result of what the philosopher Nietzsche called “a long obedience in the same direction”.

Action that builds legacy is shaped by purpose, discipline and trust. What drives it is soul — that clear-eyed understanding of what the leader knows is utterly important, and what he or she is uniquely qualified to do about it.

Leadership by Soul™ is where I explore, with you — through blogging, videos and public speaking — how we can make the difference that lasts.

Thank you for coming here. Welcome to the journey!

Who is in the Boat with You?

Hire a greedy person, and your reward will be decisions based on quick-gain considerations that minimize or harm value.
Hire an egotistical person, and you will ensure the failure to think systemically and to take responsibility for an institution that is “too big to fail”. You will guarantee silo-ism and the failure to generate the cooperation and creativity that generates the most substantial value.
Hire a person for whom personal need takes precedence over the greater good, and when the storms come you will have an executive who lacks the self-discipline that brings sanity and order in the midst of chaos.

The Quiet Leader

Issue 5.10 | July 2019 In this Special Edition: Remembering John D Wilson. He never saw himself as a leader, [ … ]

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How (Not) to Lead Big Change

Issue 5.9 | January 2018 In this Article: to transform whole social systems, we need not only passion and innovation, [ … ]

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Big Boss: How (Not) to Use Your Power

Issue 5.8 | June 2017 In this Article: there are two basic kinds of power in organisations, and each [ … ]

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