Organized planning is when your desires start to take shape to become a reality. At this stage people take their desire seriously and start to pursue it by developing a plan to do so. One of the keys to doing this, as Napoleon Hill stresses, is to build your mastermind alliance. You cannot accomplish your ultimate desire by yourself. True success always involves other people and a structured way to do this is by forming a mastermind group.
Everyone will agree that two heads are better than one. Well, most people would agree, I know a few that wouldn’t but that’s their loss, you don’t want folks like that in your mastermind group. The group won’t reach its full potential unless there is harmony where everyone can freely share their thoughts and ideas.
I believe that it takes strong leadership skills to accomplish your desires. Skills that bring people together to work towards a single objective are the skills that help leaders achieve their desires.
Mr. Hill dissects leadership in this chapter and breaks down the 11 attributes of leadership that are necessary to effectively organize your mastermind group and make plans to achieve your desires (goals).
11 Major Attributes of Leadership – Napoleon Hill
1. UNWAVERING COURAGE based upon knowledge of self, and of one’s occupation. No follower wishes to be dominated by a leader who lacks self-confidence and courage. No intelligent follower will be dominated by such a leader very long.
2. SELF-CONTROL. The man who cannot control himself, can never control others. Self-control sets a mighty example for one’s followers, which the more intelligent will emulate.
3. A KEEN SENSE OF JUSTICE. Without a sense of fairness and justice, no leader can command and retain the respect of his followers.
4. DEFINITENESS OF DECISION. The man who wavers in his decisions, shows that he is not sure of himself. He cannot lead others successfully.
5. DEFINITENESS OF PLANS. The successful leader must plan his work, and work his plan. A leader who moves by guesswork, without practical, definite plans, is comparable to a ship without a rudder. Sooner or later he will land on the rocks.
6. THE HABIT OF DOING MORE THAN PAID FOR. One of the penalties of leadership is the necessity of willingness, upon the part of the leader, to do more than he requires of his followers.
7. A PLEASING PERSONALITY. No slovenly, careless person can become a successful leader. Leadership calls for respect. Followers will not respect a leader who does not grade high on all of the factors of a Pleasing Personality.
8. SYMPATHY AND UNDERSTANDING. The successful leader must be in sympathy with his followers. Moreover, he must understand them and their problems.
9. MASTERY OF DETAIL. Successful leadership calls for mastery of details of the leader’s position.
10. WILLINGNESS TO ASSUME FULL RESPONSIBILITY. The successful leader must be willing to assume responsibility for the mistakes and the shortcomings of his followers. If he tries to shift this responsibility, he will not remain the leader. If one of his followers makes a mistake, and shows himself incompetent, the leader must consider that it is he who failed.
11. COOPERATION. The successful leader must understand, and apply the principle of cooperative effort and be able to induce his followers to do the same. Leadership calls for POWER, and power calls for COOPERATION.
Napoleon goes on to describe two different forms of leadership and which one should be used to gain the most followers, “The first, and by far the most effective is LEADERSHIP BY CONSENT of, and with the sympathy of the followers. The second is LEADERSHIP BY FORCE, without the consent and sympathy of the followers.” It’s hard to believe that this was written in 1937 and people today still try to lead by force.
Napoleon Hill address different failures in Think and Grow Rich and the following is what he wrote about in the 1930’s. How many of these failures do you see in the news, your organization, or within yourself?
Causes of Failure in Leadership
Any one of these faults is sufficient to induce failure. Study the list carefully if you aspire to be a leader, and make sure you are free of these faults.
1. Inability to organize details. The successful leader must be the master of all details connected with his position. That means, of course, that he must acquire the habit of relegating details to capable lieutenants.
2. Unwillingness to render humble service. “The greatest among ye shall be the servant of all” is a truth which all able leaders observe and respect.
3. Expectation of pay for what they “know” instead of what they do with what they know. The world does not pay people for what they know. It pays them for what they do.
4. Fear of competition from followers. Leaders who fear that one of their followers may take their position is practically sure to realize that fear sooner or later.
5. Lack of imagination. Without imagination, the leader is incapable of meeting emergencies.
6. Selfishness. The really great leader claims none of the honors.
7. Intemperance. Intemperance in any of its forms destroys endurance and the vitality of all who indulge in it.
8. Disloyalty. Disloyalty marks one as being less than the dust of the earth.
9. Emphasis on the “authority” of leadership. If a leader is a real leader, he will have no need to advertise that fact except by his conduct — his sympathy, understanding, fairness, and a demonstration that he knows his job.”
10. Emphasis of title. The people who make too much over their title generally have little else to emphasize.
If you can identify leadership failures you will start to see trends on where they are happening. Every time you turn on the news you see an example of someone failing as a leader. Napoleon Hill identified a number of areas back in 1937 that needed what he referred to as LEADERSHIP BY CONSENT.
Fertile fields in which new leadership is required (1937)
“There are a few fertile fields in which there has been a decline of leadership, and in which the new type of leader may find an abundance of opportunity.
First – In the field of politics, there is a most insistent demand for new leaders; a demand which indicates nothing less than an emergency. The majority of politicians have, seemingly, become high-grade legalized racketeers. They have increased taxes and debauched the machinery of industry and business until the people can no longer stand the burden.
Second – the Banking business is undergoing a reform. The leaders in this field have almost entirely lost the confidence of the public. Already the bankers have sensed the need of reform, and they have begun it.
Third – Industry calls for new leaders. The old type of leaders thoughts and moved in terms of dividends instead of thinking and moving in terms of human equations! The future leader in industry, to endure, must regard himself as a quasi-public official whose duty it is to manage his trust in such as a way that it will work hardship on no individual, or group of individuals. Exploitation of working men is a thing of the past. Let that man who aspires to leadership in the field of business, industry and labor remembers this.
Fourth – The religious leader of the future will be forced to give more attention to the temporal needs of his followers, in the solution of their economic and personal problems of the present, and less attention to the dead past and the yet unborn future.
Fifth – In the professions of law, medicine, and education, a new brand of leadership, and to some extent, new leaders will become a necessity. This is especially true in the field of education. The leader is that field must, in the future, find ways and means of teaching people how to apply the knowledge they receive in school. He must deal more with practice and less with theory.
Sixth – New leaders will be required in the field of Journalism. Newspapers of the future, to be conducted successfully, must be divorced from ‘special privilege’ and relieved from the subsidy of advertising. They must cease to be organs of propaganda for the interests which patronize their advertising columns. The type of newspaper which publishes scandal and lewd pictures will eventually go the way of all forces which debauch the human mind.
These are but a few of the fields in which opportunity for new leaders and a new brand of leadership are now available.”
Think and Grow Rich was published after the great depression, so we can understand that the fields which needed new leadership back then is relevant today, or at least in my opinion. This, of course, doesn’t apply to everyone in those fields, it’s usually a few that make the many look bad.