Dont believe the myth that some people are born to leadand others arent"One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking good performance — jobaccomplishments — is sufficient to acquire power and avoid organizational difficulties.Consequently, people leave too much to chance and fail to effectively manage their careers."Get over the idea that everyone needs to like you"Larry Summers, Treasury secretary under Bill Clinton, president of Harvard University andformer head of President Barack Obamas National Economic Council, is often described asprickly, outspoken, and not very sensitive. ... [But] not only has Summerss reputation nothurt him; it has actually helped."
Performance doesnt really matterYour relationship with your boss matters more. "In 1980, economists James Medoff andKatherine Abraham observed that salaries in companies were more strongly related to ageand organizational tenure than they were to job performance."Help powerful people feel good about themselves"Turnover in senior executive ranks was affected by CEO turnover, particularly when anoutsider came in. Thats because CEOs like to put loyalists in senior positions — regardlessof what past incumbents have accomplished."Build an effective power network
"Many studies show that networking is positively related to obtaining good performanceevaluations, objective measures of career success such as salary and organizational level, andsubjective attitudes assessing career satisfaction."Break the rules, especially early in your career"In every war in the last 200 years conducted between unequally matched opponents, thestronger party won about 72% of the time. However, when the underdogs understood theirweakness and used a different strategy to minimize its effects, they won some 64% of thetime, cutting the dominant partys likelihood of victory in half."Get access to key resources
"It would be nice to be Sergey Brin or Larry Page ... or Bill Gates. As they move throughvenues like the World Economic Forum, they are surrounded not just by security staff but bypeople who want to meet them and get close to them and the organizations they lead."Do an honest self-assessment"Because we like to think well of ourselves, we overestimate our own abilities andperformance. ... When people focus on what they need to get to the next stage of their careers,they are less defensiveAct the part before youve got the part
"Over time, you will become more like youre acting — self-assured, confident, and morestrongly-convinced of the truth of what you are saying.Be OK with conflict and showing anger"Research shows that people who express anger are seen as dominant, strong, competent, andsmart.... The researchers found that in negative situations, participants believed that high-statuspeople would feel more angry than sad or guilty and that low-status people would feel sadand guilty instead of angry."
Dont be afraid to ask for advice"In one study, participants were asked to estimate how many strangers they would need toapproach in order to get 5 people to fill out a short questionaire. The average estimate was 20people. ... [In fact], they only needed to approach about 10 people.Carefully consider and construct your image"The rise of Barack Obama in the tough world of Chicago and then Illinois politics illustrateshow Obama, from the very beginning, worked to build a political identity that would beuseful to him."Just remember theres a high price to pay for power
Image: APIncluding addiction to power. "When you leave such a position and that level of activityceases, it is almost ... like a car going from ninety miles an hour to a dead stop.And in the end, everyone loses powerCEO turnover rate increased 59% between 1995 and 2006, according to a Booz Allen study.