“Therefore, the best fortress is to be found in the love of the people, for although you may have fortresses they will not save you if you are hated by the people.” – Niccolò Machiavelli
This one is real simple. What Machiavelli is saying is if you have the love of the people then you got it all. They will go to bat for you. They will follow you through hell and high water. They will be there for you.
It is when you don’t have their love that you have problems. When you find yourself without authentic followers you will have a difficult time moving mountains or defending your castle from the onslaught of a charging Mongolian Army.
When you have people that love you, your product/service, your organization or any combination is when you have followers. Just like they love you, you must to love them. You must be grateful for having them.
I am not telling you anything new.
Back in the 16th century, Machiavelli was wise enough to share this one bit of advice with his friends in the book The Prince before it was published for the masses, some five years after his death.
However, Machiavelli was not the first to come up with the concept of having people like you to help you when you need their help. Sun Tzu, in his book Art of War, mentions something to the same effect. Then scatter throughout ancient and modern history the same theme permeates.
It cannot be denied. Libraries are filled with stories of individuals, weak and mighty, who turned their backs on others only to find that they really need them and then it is too late for anyone to help.
If you can find people and keep people, you have won. Please understand, when I say keep them I mean that you have done all you can to create and maintain a mutual admiration and respect for each other then you are good to go. When you have showed them that you value them for who they are then they will value you.
Most certainly, as a King, Owner,
Dictator (wait a second Dictators don’t count), Leader, or Boss you can rule with a heavy hand or an iron fist but why would you want to? Why would anyone want to? Ask a Dictator, they will tell you why (as you are being led to the gallows).
The cool thing about staying in power and growing with power is to make as many people as you can grow with you. Appreciate those that are with you, especially the ones that have been with you since day one.
What do you think? I would like to hear from you.