There are basically three types of persons in positions of power.
The first type just wants the power because it makes them feel important. Without the power, they feel insignificant.
The second type wants to accomplish things for the betterment of his fellow man, and the power is treated as one of the tools necessary to get the job done.
The third type is the rarest. This person didn't really want the power, because he doesn't like it or trust it. But he has been asked to do a job, and the power came with that job.
In the first category, we find mostly petty bureaucrats and managers. These are people who have only one objective: to command other people. Possessing little overall vision, and a large portion of insecurity, they aren't really leading anywhere or accomplishing anything. Instead, they're always maneuvering and manipulating.
If something in their organization gets done, it's usually by others who have to work around the “boss. " These people are also among the most incompetent humans on the face of the earth. But they're the last ones to know it. Thus, they can be a huge frustration to those working with them.
If you hunger and thirst for power, but you have little idea why you need it, except that you want it, you may be in this group.
In the second category are the natural leaders who have a dream and a vision that they hunger to achieve. Visionaries accomplish the great things in this world.
Unfortunately, there are also bent visionaries. Included in this group are cult leaders.
Back around 1990 in Japan, one cult leader sprang into the news when he had his group manufacture large quantities of Sarin nerve gas and release it in the subways. He had a vision, which included overthrowing the government of Japan and seizing control of the country.
Marshall Applewhite had a vision. He dreamed of leading a group of “advanced souls" to take a great evolutionary leap forward. Accomplishing this leap was simple: all the group had to do was commit mass suicide. You remember Heaven's Gate, right?
So it's good to have a powerful vision. It will drive your efforts and fill you with energy. But never forget - that vision still needs to be sane. (And so do you. )
The third category is so rare that it's unlikely you'll ever meet anyone like this.
My granddaddy used to joke that anybody who wanted to be the US president probably wasn't fit to have the job. What we really needed, he said, was to go out and find someone who didn't want the job, then make them do it for four years. After that, they could retire from office and go fishing for the rest of their life.
I never was quite sure whether my granddaddy was joking or serious.
Of course, power, like fame, can be a nice side effect of succeeding, but it's not a very useful goal all by itself.
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