Evaluating Your OPERA-tions : Part I

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an idea to help you strengthen your decision-making.   Reading time: 2:48.

           The newly-appointed division president came prepared for his first formal meeting with his boss, the chairman of the multi-billion company.

Scene from Phantom of the Opera

Scene from Phantom of the Opera

            But the chairman seemed more interested in talking about the opera. Whoa there!

           What does an appreciation of the opera have to do with leading a multi-billion company ? Everything.

          After all , the word “opera” means work in Italian.

          And the production of an opera requires all the facets of corporate work including, people, planning and production.

        As Fred Plitkin writes in his book Opera 101: “Opera-going at its best is about the rekindling of the soul, about having an open window into what makes us human.”

         Husbanding that humanity — or at least harboring that humanity with a greater sense of feeling — is a key leadership skill.          Indeed, the opera is filled with complexed characters that every leader interacts with, characters “opera-ting” in  creative, often unpredictable ways that informs a leader’s  insight into the human condition.

Learn to LIVE to LEAD

         Consider how  famous movies use the music of the Opera to add passion and power, flawed and otherwise (a.k.a –the human condition) in Hollywood’s Big Screen Sensations like Fatal Attraction (Madame Butterfly by Puccini), God Father I ( La Travisata by Verdi) or Shawshank Redemption (The Marriage of Figaro by Mozart.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            That sense of heightened living-magnified on the BIG SCREEN and portrayed so personally on the live opera stage, imbues us with a greater sense of learning what life is really all about  and informs us of  what a heightened sense of leadership can be all about.  As former CEO David D’Alessandro writes in his book Executive Warfare, perspective is critical in establishing your leadership skills:

          “You cannot develop perspective if your entire life revolves around your job. To get to the top – and stay there – you need to be able to lead human brings. And, the only way to learn how to lead is to live.”  

           And appreciating the Opera is one keen way to appreciate Life. Your life and the lives of others you lead. Those insights stir thought-provoking questions -making like these:

Is conformity undermining your business success?
Are you pigeonholing some talented people in your company just because they’re not from the “right background”?
Are you confining your new product development process to too narrow a cycle?

       Connect with an Opera-tor of another kind. Learn how understanding opera can add value to effective business leader’s decision-making ability. See next post Thursday December 20:  Evaluating Your OPERA-tions Part II.

Today’s ImproveMINT

Learn to live to keep your leadership thinking in mint condition.

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