Tempations of. CEO

“The five tempations of ceo — Patrick Lencion”is great book on issues of building great organization. 

The below is my understating, highlights are from the Book

Organization or ceo’s look at profit and loss and lighter areas, forgetting actual areas where it would need to have more improvements in process and clean up of and struggle with leadership issues.

Like “Sri Sri” telugu revolutionary poet quoted (in telugu :tariqulu dastavedulu kadhove charitante. Charitante nava kavananiki kavalyu kuttuka) history is not about dates and proof , but is should throw light “what and what not do” for next generation.

Chasing numbers and profits just one side of coin, you should cover and uncover other areas (you can not see in other side of coin.)


1.Choosing status over results:

  • Good and bad status does not mean anything, end results are
  • How well firm has grown?
  • How well employees are grown and benefited?
  • How well society has benefited? . In India Tata, Birla have contributed to the society. Like Microsoft and other have contribute so well to charity areas.

2..Choosing popularity over accountability:

  • Making people accountable rather than getting more popularity of doing charity and too much people care.
  • Being friendly is one side of the coin, you should also get output from each of the teammates
  • Setting clear expectations.
  • Too much populist, without any results does not do any good.
  • Primus Inter pares ( First among the equals) : designation and hierarchy does not matter, promote who is delivering . It does not matter even that person junior most employee.

Servant Leaders are Resolute - Acronym

3.Choosing certainty over clarity:

    • You would never get clarity but you should start somewhere
  • Keep on changing the plan (did I mention Agile planning?)


  • eliminate and filter-out un-wanted info from close associates and decide the direction which is best for the firm and everyone around.
  • No decision is 100% correct, start some where

4.Choosing harmony over conflict:

  • Seeking peace
  • Need to use guidance than shouting and screaming
  • There is problem at hand, how do you resolve them.
  • “If everybody is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.”

    George S. Patton Jr.

5..Choosing invulnerability over trust:  ( Incapable of getting hurt or damaged VS Trust)
  • keeping the ego at door
  • It is ok to fail
  • acknowledge the mistake and show human side
  • with military kind of leaders, people are afraid to take-up new direction. failure may hit them heavily


Hope this helps.

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