FIVE WAYS TO BE A REBEL LEADER IN THE BOARDROOM
By David Solot, Ph.D.
A lot of things come to mind when people think about
Han Solo – gambler, smuggler, scoundrel. Yet this all-time
favourite Star Wars character doesn’t usually get
credit for one of his greatest strengths – leadership.
With the global business climate in a now-constant state of
flux, it’s time to rethink some classic views on leadership. Han
Solo exemplifies some of the essential characteristics of a modern
leader. Here’s how he does it and how any leader can be the next
Rebel Leader in the boardroom.
BE FLEXIBLE AND ADAPTABLE
Solo is a master of flexibility. When Luke Skywalker is trapped in
the frozen wastelands of Hoth and Solo’s tauntaun dies from the
cold, Solo immediately changes tactics. He uses the tauntaun to
keep Skywalker warm and gets a shelter built to ride it out until
morning. When he leads the rescue of Princess Leia on the Death
Star, he calmly grabs the commlink and bluffs the Imperial troops
by pretending there’s a reactor leak.
In business, no matter how good a strategic plan may be, lead-ers
will be called on to change it. That’s the nature of a constantly
changing business environment. A Rebel Leader doesn’t cling to a
plan that is failing – they change direction and find a new path to
success (preferably one that takes less than 12 parsecs).
Everyone loves Solo for the big risks that he takes and how they
pay off for the Rebels.
Solo has plenty of opportunities to take his shots and he takes
them every time. He hung the Millennium Falcon off the side of a
Star Destroyer to escape detection. He led a strike team to Endor
in a stolen Imperial shuttle, using a clearance code that might
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