- Leandro Herrero - https://leandroherrero.com -

My 20 Rules of Leadership

I review my 20 rules of Leadership every few months. I have published this list regularly in my Daily Thoughts. Very few if any drop out but when they do they get substituted by a new angle mostly as a result of previous months experience. This is my updated list today.



  1. Earn credibility all the time. Stocks deplete easily.
  2. Act as if you did not have anything to lose.
  3. Be unreasonable in your demands, the reasonable ones are taken.
  4. Detect bullshit and become proficient at detecting it. Then, protect yourself and others.
  5. Exercise provocation with panache and respect. Aim at being appreciated, not hated, for it.
  6. Don’t be a provocateur, rebel, maverick, contrarian or challenger for the sake of it. Have a good ‘because’ ready.
  7. Infect others, don’t do it alone.
  8. Be restless, be uncomfortable (and foolish and hungry and the rest…). They’re the only things that confirm that you are alive.
  9. Watch your ego. Most of the time it is not your friend. Rule of thumb, most of the time it’s not about you.
  10. Never settle for one possibility only.
  11. Don’t waste your time managing the ‘inevitable’. There is a lot of ‘possible’ waiting for a leader. Look for what would not happen without you.
  12. Seek unpredictable answers. The predictable ones are already seeking you.
  13. Don’t be against anything. Don’t create enemies. The exceptions are mediocrity and dishonesty.
  14. Write down your little bit of daily legacy in a secret little book.
  15. There is only one test: what will you tell the children? (that you do, you did, you didn’t do).
  16. More important than what you say is what people hear when you are saying it.
  17. Practice ‘I don’t know’, possibly followed by ‘and I don’t think you know either, so let’s figure it out’.
  18. Make things happen first, then clean up the process for the next time. In that order.
  19. The unexamined leadership, like the unexamined life, is not worth living.
  20. Play as many roles as you want, but never a victim or an enemy. Both being ‘victim’ or ‘enemy’, requires your full consent.


Continue the conversation…

Extracts taken from The Flipping Point [1]. A flipping point in the trend for adopting absurd management ideas needs to be reached. The Flipping Point [1], contains 200 short vignettes exploring what ’deprogramming management’ may look like.


If the company is overheating and has no thermostat, every day without an explosion is pure luck. Leaders are the thermostats. Amongst other things.

Inspired by the very readable anthropologist Thomas Hylland Eriksen [2]. I love his book ‘Small Places, Large Issues’ which has had several editions. His ‘Overheating: an anthropology of Accelerated Change’ was published in 2016.


This book asks you to use more rigour and critical thinking in how you use assumptions and management practices that were created many years ago. Our real and present danger is not a future of robots and AI, but of current established BS. In this book, you are invited to the Mother of All Call Outs!
Available from major online bookstores [3].