By William Seidman

I’m back from the Transformational Leadership Gala in Chicago, sponsored in part by the Wright Institute for the Realization of Human Potential.

Judith  Wright, Ed. D.  and Bob Wright, Ed. D.  did an amazing job organizing this for 350 participants.

I joined a discussion on leadership that transforms society for the better.  At dinner I sat next to Ronald Riggio, author of Transformational Leadership and a great guy. His work examines the characteristics of what makes someone a transformational leader.

Our work was about how such a leader can touch hundreds or thousands at once, and we had much to talk about.

The keynote speaker was Brad Anderson, CEO of Best Buy, who gave a great speech about how he went from a “fat, long-haired hippy” managing a three-person video store to building Best Buy into a multi-billion-dollar company.

Anderson stressed that a key idea is to empower others to be creative, and to not overly-centralize decision-making.

It was clear in listening to him that he was simultaneously pretty humble and damn tough. He could be supportive and demanding at the same time – good combination!

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