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Democracy Is Overrated
September 17, 2011
By Howard Mann

Group think and getting everyone to have their input is all well and good. But at some point the debate has to be over and decisions have to be made.  And they do not have to be popular to be right. 

Seems obvious when you read it but how many leaders practice it for fear of mutiny?

Yes, I have read the many success stories of companies with open book policies and strategy by comittee. But, in my work, what I find myself perplexed by is the lack of determination by business owners and CEO’s to be more of a dictator. 

You set the vision. You are taking the bulk of the risk. If you are leading then the right people will follow. Your business is simply not a democracy. 

I worked with a terrific CEO of a UK public company a number of years ago. He ran some of the best meetings I have ever attended.  Every person had a chance to voice their opinion and after a suitable amount of time (Probably never more than 15-20 minutes) he would simply say “Great debate. Here is what we are going to do…”  

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