If Harry Potter Ran General Electric? - Tom Morris

If Harry Potter Ran General Electric? - Tom Morris

Have you ever thought about how it would be for Harry Potter to lead a team in a big muggle company? Read this and learn how to apply the magic teachings in the business world.

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If you could study at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry with Harry Potter and learn the best leadership techniques with the acclaimed headmaster Albus Dumbledore, which skills would be the most important in your opinion?

Ethics and courage are some of the primary abilities that Harry Potter learned with his tutor at Hogwarts. Those teachings are relevant to overcome the challenges in the magical or the real world.

General Electric is a company recognized worldwide, and the ex-CEO Jack Welch, was elected as the manager of the century by Fortune Magazine, he had been in that position for over 20 years.

If you are a leader or want to become one, read this and see how magical teachings can transform your team management.

About the book “If Harry Potter Ran General Electric?"

Released in 2006, the book “If Harry Potter Ran General Electric?" talks about the main features that make the wizards of this fiction great examples of leadership.

In this book, the author talks about courage, ethics, responsibility, respect, friendship, and other important virtues for people who assume leadership positions.

With 274 pages and 7 chapters, which refers to all the books, Tom Morris makes us believe that there is more than entertainment in Harry Potter stories.

Who is Tom Morris?

Tom Morris is an American philosopher who founded the Morris Institute for Human Values, a philosophy teacher at the University of Notre Dame and Indiana, that has already published many books including “If Harry Potter Ran General Electric?", "If Aristóteles Ran General Motors?" and “Philosophy for Dummies”.

Morris defends that philosophy needs to be widely accessible and works to show it to professionals in every area, introducing the great thinkers’ ideas in the business world.

Why read “If Harry Potter Ran General Electric?"

Do you have doubts that an entertainment fantasy book can teach that much about leadership? During Harry Potter’s journey, he shows lots of skills that could make him a great manager in a big company.

This book is for you who are looking for innovative and humane ways to lead and motivate your team to be recognized as a great leader.

What are the main points of “If Harry Potter Ran General Electric?"

  • It’s imperative to know how to control your emotions to be a great leader;
  • Being ethical is not the same as following rules;
  • Leadership is an interpersonal and relational paper;
  • Think more about how to not demotivate your team than to motivate them;
  • Is good to dream, mas doing is better;
  • Leaders should be guided by love.

Which are the abilities of leadership taught by Albus Dumbledore?

For Tom Morris, the Hogwarts headmaster is a great thinker and exemplary leader. The way that Dumbledore teaches Harry Potter about life can help us to learn lots of lessons about leadership.

Each member of the team needs to be very well chosen! Find people with a strong character for your team, who make good choices and are trusted. Just being intelligent is not enough because life is a dynamic process, we are all on the way to being what we are capable of being.

To the author, Hogwarts’ headmaster would follow the same line of thinking as Aristotle and would use his 10 virtues list:

  1. Courage
  2. Temperance
  3. Liberality
  4. Magnificence
  5. Pride
  6. Good Temper
  7. Friendliness
  8. Truthfulness
  9. Wittiness
  10. Justice

What are the pillars of leadership?

In life and business, the master pillars are truth, trust, and kindness. Good leaders exercise their role based on these principles.

The author explains that there is the right moment to believe, place your trust in other people, and moments to doubt. A great leader doesn't expect his team to not make any mistakes but to know how to be learners.

What is necessary to become a great leader?

To be a great leader, it's necessary, before everything, to be a great person. Throughout the book, Tom Morris talks about successful leadership virtues and emphasizes that it’s not possible to be a great leader if you don’t develop aspects like ethics, respect, courage, and kindness.

Additionally, the author says that is also important to keep your emotions under control, don’t let them dominate your actions. Make this a habit and have fun in everything you do in your day-to-day life, just like Dumbledore.

What's most important in leadership?

We learn with Harry Potter, in each one of his stories pages, how courage is a virtue and Jack Welch, legendary CEO of GE, believed that a great leader uses his courage to make unpopular decisions.

Tom Morris explains that doesn’t matter how scared we might be, we have to face what we are afraid of. Being brave doesn’t mean that you’re fearless but that you are determined to face and do what is right, even with fear.

How to be as brave as Harry Potter?

“A courageous person properly perceives danger, takes it very seriously, and understands when important values are at stake that require facing that danger.”

Tom Morris teaches us that there are five strategies used by Harry and the biggest leaders to be courageous, they are Harry Potter’s 5 steps to courage:

  1. Prepare for the challenge;
  2. Surround yourself with support;
  3. Engage in positive self-talk;
  4. Focus on what's at stake;
  5. Take appropriate action.

Being brave also asks for self-confidence. The author explains that, by not believing in ourselves, we stifle our talents since staying in our comfort zone and taking risks prevents us from raising our potential. The tip to cultivating self-confidence is to surround yourself with confident people who support you.

How to be an ethical leader?

Being ethical doesn’t mean staying out of trouble, but having strong relationships, friendships, communities, families, and organizations.

Harry Potter is considered a leader by his friends and teachers at Hogwarts, not just because of his abilities, but because they know that can trust him.

If you want to be an ethical leader, just be honest with yourself and others. Be self-disciplined, ethics is not about what you can’t do, but about having a strong character.

The golden rule 

There is a question that can always be done when we have doubts about an ethical attitude: “Am I treating everyone involved as I would want to be treated?”.

This is the golden rule, if the answer is not, so don’t. The author believes that, if mature Harry Potter ran General Electric, the concern for ethics would probably always be at the center of decisions.

“Great leaders treat others the way they would want to be treated.”

How important is honesty in leadership?

During the Harry Potter books, lying is present in many ways, not only with the villain Voldemort and his followers but even with Harry himself. Tom Morris explains that there are 8 kinds of lies:

  1. Lies of malicious intent;
  2. Lies to protect the guilty;
  3. Lies of self-aggrandizement;
  4. Lies of convenience;
  5. Lies to help a friend;
  6. Lies of legitimate self-defense;
  7. Lies to preserve or promote a noble cause in the fight against evil;
  8. Lies to protect the innocent.

Lying is not a good thing because no organization can exist without truth, honesty, and trust. However, there are cases when a lie is necessary.

The best leaders are guided by a sense of what's best for the community and the organization.

How to lead and get many results?

For Tom Morris, a good strategy take you to success, the best leaders create genuinely wonderful results in their organizations and have a positive impact on the lives of the people they lead.

If you are looking for results, take the initiative to do what needs to be done. Harry Potter is an example, none gave him the title of leadership, but when his friends needs protection against Voldemort, asked him to teach them how.

Harry and Dumbledore are seen as good leaders because people know what they have already done.

How to motivate my team?

Harry and Dumbledore's leadership happens, especially, by example. A liderança de Harry e Dumbledore acontece principalmente pelo exemplo. When addressing the subject of motivation, Tom Morris quotes the author Jim Collins, who emphasizes the importance of having the right person in the right place, this way it’s not necessary to worry about motivation.

The author believes that the best way to manage a team is not to demotivate them, cause the right person is self-motivated.

“The alchemy of great leadership transforms ordinary people into extraordinary performers. It prepares people to be their best and do their best.”

What makes a wise team manager?

True wisdom is having good insight for living. It takes a little bit of luck, but mostly it takes knowing how to prepare for challenges.

When something unexpected comes out, it's necessary to think beyond what is happening. Focus on the place you are and where you want to go looking at every possible angle.

A good example is when Harry went through Triwizard Tournament. After the shock, he thought, used logic, and acted. The author says that there is nothing more magical than this.

There is always a blessing and a challenge

When analyzing the journey of Harry Potter, Tom Morris realized that he was a blessed person, but also cursed at certain points. When managing a team, the leader goes through the same difficulties.

Just like Harry, all of us have moments of happiness and victory, but also frustration, sadness, and anxiety.

Know who you can trust

Tom Morris uses Ginny Weasley as an example, in the second book of the series, to alert us about knowing well who you can trust. To be a great leader is necessary to have good friends.

Harry Potter wouldn’t have survived his first year at Hogwarts if it weren’t for his best friends, Ron and Hermione.

Is it possible to be a happy leader?

All of us have desires, it’s from the desire that all of us create our goals, and no human being can live without a goal. The author believes that happiness comes when you know how to mix satisfaction and fun.

The secret to being happy is the balance between being and doing, and always having someone to count on.

Success comes when you act with love

Jeff Immelt, who was General Electric’s CEO for 16 years, proposed that the way to have a good company is to care about others. What do people need? What we can do to make other people's lives better, and how to transform the planet into a better place?

When we make our work with love, those questions became the most important, guide yourself by love.

The biggest difference between Harry Potter and Voldemort, and also his followers, was that love was part of who he was and guided his decisions.

More books about leadership

In the book "Leadership" by Daniel Goleman, you can learn about the importance of emotional intelligence for people in leadership positions and explains how to develop this soft skill.

In “O Livro das Poderosas”, the entrepreneur and singer Anitta teaches us how to create a strategy to achieve success with your business. In the book, we see that creativity and the ability to reinvent yourself is one of the techniques that a leader needs to have up his sleeve.

Brené Brown’sDare to Lead” it’s an excellent read to help you, dear reader, to understand and use vulnerability as a people management tool, and to be an emotionally intelligent and courageous leader.

Okay, but how can I develop leadership from the teachings of this book?

  • Be honest with yourself and others;
  • Don’t pretend you are perfect;
  • Take care with who you trust;
  • Improve courage and self-confidence;
  • Do what’s right not what’s easy;
  • Think about what others need.

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If Harry Potter Ran General Electric? - Tom Morris