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Leadership is not just about intellect and vision but also about getting results

Source | LinkedIn : By Kinjal Choudhary

The biggest concern impacting several organizations today is not lack of intellect or vision. Rather it is the inability to translate that intellect or vision into results which is becoming an all pervading phenomenon. The intellect, vision and thought help in creating the strategy. The deficiency plaguing several organizations globally does not lie there. It is the conversion of strategy into results which is called execution. And that is where there is a serious gap which is prevalent widely.

There are many who consider thought leadership, vision and intellect to be synonymous with leadership. They are not entirely wrong but they miss a very vital point. The point is that intellect and vision sans the ability to execute means nothing less than disaster and can actually turn out to be counter- productive. There are umpteen examples in history where leaders with incredible intellect and vision but lacking the ability to execute proved not just ineffective but seriously dysfunctional.

There are occasions when intellect and vision are given higher weightage than ability to execute while deciding on selection of leaders. However, that can prove counter- productive if the selected individual lacks ability to translate strategy into action irrespective of the individual’s intellect, thought leadership or vision.

Let us take the case of two emperors from medieval India- Both Muhammad Bin Tughlaq and Akbar were emperors with high intellect and vision. However, the former is considered as an emperor with perhaps a fickle mind and the latter is known as perhaps the best emperor India ever had.

Muhammad Bin Tughlaq ruled over the northern parts of the Indian subcontinent and the Deccan from 1324 to 1351 AD. A learned man with an open mind and a unique streak of intellectual creativity, Tughlaq was well versed in poetry, astronomy, religion and philosophy. A ruler whose real expertise shone in the times of war, Tughlaq took some very bold and strong measures to reform the administration during his chequered reign as the Sultan of Delhi. Muhammad-bin-Tughluq next to Alluddin Khilzi was the greatest sultan of Delhi who is best remembered for his bold experiments and innovative thought in the field of administration as well as in agriculture. He was one of the most remarkable rulers of his time. He was highly educated and was well versed in Arabic and Persian language. He was well read in the subjects of religion, philosophy, astronomy, mathematics, medicine and logic. He was also a good calligraphist. Further from military point of view, he was an excellent commander and during the time of Sultan Mubarak Shaha Khiliji he was promoted to the rank of the master of the horse from an ordinary soldier. And again during the time of his father Sultan Giyasuddin Tughlaq he led the imperial forces to Telengana and Warrangal. He was highly ambitious and was a man of high moral character. He was very much faithful to his own religion and obeyed the religious rites and was regular at his daily prayers. He abstained himself from drinking in public. It is said that he was indeed very kind and generous to the poor.

Muhammad bin Tughlaq was well known for his wisdom and character. People had a lot of expectations from him and he on the other hand, had the desire for more valuable contribution for his countrymen than his predecessors. That is why right from the beginning of his rule; he decided to take some bold reformative measures for the improvement as well as safeguard of the country.

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