I’ve written many essays about different leaders who used their power and the consequences of their actions. I’ve written about this specific contrast in leadership many times, but it’s worth repeating.
The first gentleman stood out as the best example of a leader who recognized his power and used it for resourcing and enabling his key people to be as successful in their jobs as possible. Because of his influence, they let nothing and no one stand in their way of achieving excellence. He used his power to build one of the finest resorts in Las Vegas.
Lenette and I were part of his key personnel. He never once interfered with what we wanted, needed or how we ran the resort’s youth program. He trusted us completely to create the finest children’s program in the world, and that is what it became and remained until the resort was sold.
Sadly, the purchasing corporation took over the resort’s operation and replaced the leadership with one of their own from their New York operations. The new leader immediately began to call all department heads to his office to firmly establish that he was the boss and the one in charge. Lenette and I quit on the spot.
As most of you know, the resort and the youth hotel failed and were repossessed by the bank in less than two years. Still, in my experience, there was never a clearer example of the use and abuse of power. The first leader used power to build; the second leader used it to destroy.