Change Decisionmaking Leadership Motivation

on Niccolò Machiavelli #8

“For whoever believes that great advancement and new benefits make men forget old injuries is mistaken.” -Niccolò Machiavelli

I once fell into a very large pile of rusty, old concertina wire (razor wire). If you know what razor wire is you know it can get pretty nasty if you get tangled up in it. Needless to say, I are tangled up in. It happened when I was in the Army. We were out on field maneuvers patrolling in a wooded area. I was part of the left flank as we approached a clearing. My attention was focused on the clearing and what might or might not be there. Then the forest floor gave out on me. I found myself bouncing on something semi-springy. I landed on my back onto the largest collection of used concertina wire in all of Fort Benning, Georgia.

To this day, I see one of the scars every time I sit down to type. I sliced open my right ring finger from my middle joint to just below my fingernail. While lying on top of the pile I could see the ligament and bones. It was a nice clean slice of course that was just before the bleeding started there and on my left calf with the six-inch slice. A medevac flight, some bandages, and a nice tetanus shot later I was good to go. Having learned my lesson, and just like that, I never walked in those woods or any other woods the same way, again. Every field exercise or deployment after that, I made certain I knew what I was stepping on and most certainly, where I was going.

The same applies to the top quote by Machiavelli. When we move forward. It is through our gained experience that we can move forward with caution and with speed. Speed in that we know where the landmines (or bundles of trashed concertina wire) are and caution to ensure that we avoid and freshly laid landmines.

What I am trying to say is don’t forget that the unexpected is always just one footstep away and don’t forget that as you go on your way forward.

David Guerra


Leadership Motivation

on Niccolò Machiavelli #5

“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.


Change Leadership

on Niccolò Machiavelli #4

“It must be considered that there is nothing more difficult to carry out, nor more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to handle, than to initiate a new order of things.” – Niccolò Machiavelli

Niccolo Machiavelli

Imitating change is always the most difficult thing a leader can do. A leader, in any organization, has spent time, energy and resources to become the leader, to become someone people trust and want to follow. Then when changes must occur it is almost as if she has to start all over again.

Then comes the uncertainty of how will the change(s) be accepted. Will people buy into the change? Will they come along willingly or will they come kicking and screaming?

An organization that prefers to have their employees come along willingly for the ride as opposed to being herded like cattle to slaughter will do everything in its power to minimize the push back and increase the buy in.

Whether a company does a little or a lot to increase the buy in to any change there will still be resistance. It is expected. As I mentioned, increase the buy-in before implementing change and things will not be as bad when the time comes.

Fail to communicate properly to your followers about the coming change(s) then you get what you rightfully deserve.

I would love to read your feedback. Please leave comment.

Thank you.
– David G. Guerra