Lessons from Famous Leaders

The gospel of Steve Jobs has spread far from Silicon Valley, inspiring people in every field of business.  To some, Jobs’ life has revealed the importance of sticking firmly to one’s vision and goals, no matter the psychic toll on employees or business associates. To others, Jobs serves as a cautionary tale, a man who changed the world but at the price of alienating almost everyone around him. For those who, like Jobs, have pledged to “put a dent in the universe,” his thorny life story has forced a reckoning. Is it really worth being like Steve?  Get the full story and decide for yourself.

Sally Ride, the United States’ first woman astronaut, rode into space on the shuttle Challenger in 1983. Ride was a woman and a person to be taken seriously. She was smart, determined and not one to allow biases to hold her back. In obvious and not so obvious ways, she was a pioneering role model of a leader. A close read of the Times’ obit on Ride yields a number of lessons for leaders from her life.  Read about three of her most admirable leadership qualities.

Another four years has passed, and a bunch of athletically gifted people running, jumping, biking, twisting, swimming, etc., are going to dominate your 52” plasma for the next two weeks. So what’s the big deal? For the casual observer, The Olympic games represent little more than a fresh source of entertainment and a chance to demonstrate a bit of national pride, but for the astute CEO, there is no better case study in how to pull off the seemingly impossible, while delivering the ultimate consumer experience with elegance.  Read the four leadership lessons From the Olympics.

As the chairman and chief executive of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), Vince McMahon, oversees a global professional wrestling empire with programming in 145 countries. After almost singlehandedly redefining both “wrestling” and “entertainment” in the 1980s, McMahon has successfully steered the company through scandals and even severe miscalculations. Around the ring, though, business continues to boom. In 2011, the company brought in $483.9 million in revenue. As WWE prepares to celebrate the 1,000th episode of its flagship program, Monday Night Raw, Bloomberg Businessweek asked McMahon for his managerial secrets to success.