A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.
I’ve been hammering home the lessons of effective team unity for the last year and that’s a good thing. SEAL Team Six, Mt. Everest climbers, even brainstorming at Google all exist and excel because of their dependence and reliance upon each other and a transparent leader. So it it doesn’t surprise me that even during my “off hours” I see the rewards of a well-oiled machine right before my eyes. Trolling the YouTube universe I stumbled upon a real gem – Procul Harum Live In Concert With the Danish National Concert Orchestra and Choir at Ledreborg Castle in Denmark.
Backstory: I’ll never forget my first hearing of “A Whiter Shade Of Pale” in Scott Pierson’s GTO while a bunch of us were tooling down Ridge Street toward the Rye Canteen. That organ sound. Those odd lyrics that seemed to speak to me. The drama of it! I was smitten. Then we poured out of the car and into the teen dance (we were all 16) and the cover band, Psychedelic Lollipop was PLAYING it. Live. The rotating light show and that one Rheingold beer I had, and the ceiling flew away indeed.
I followed the band loyally and their “Salty Dog” LP was by far my favorite. So when I saw a live version on YouTube, I gave it a shot, never realizing that my two worlds (rock ‘n’ roll and corporate training) would collide. After over twenty viewings, I still cannot just listen to it in the background. It commands such attention. And much of the reason is the entire stage is in total union with the performance. Six band members, thirty members of the orchestra, another 18 in the choir and the conductor, all working together. And that is not even taking into account the sound and lights crew as well as the video and audio recording teams. Quite possibly over a hundred people working in tandem to produce this work of art:
I can only assume that lead singer and pianist, Gary Brooker, is leading the team. Yes, the conductor is keeping everyone on score but a well-synchronized team always points to its leader. And a good leader lets his team excel.