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    Itzhak Perlman Inspires Pointers on Perfection for Women Business Leaders

    Women business leaders can employ these pointers gained from watching a maestro take an orchestra to perfection.

    I had the privilege of attending a rehearsal concert where Itzhak Perlman was mentoring aspiring musicians from around the world. As I nestled into the music, I could not help but note his leadership style that resulted in the magical sounds. It was the gentle coaxing and a quest for excellence that most impressed me. What I observed was how he led the orchestra to excellence.

    Here are a few nuggets that women business leaders can take into account when leading your team to excellence:

    • Humor – there was a great deal of smiling and levity amid the seriousness of the instruction. Itzhak was enjoying what he was doing and this translated to the entire orchestra.
    • Kind and gentle – but firm – rather than criticize mistakes, be constructive and collaborative. Compliment your team but keep at it until you get it right.
    • Quest for perfection – phrases such as “It’s good, but it can be better” and “Almost Entirely, Perfect” describe the constant push for perfection. The piece was done over and over until it was perfect.
    • Harmony – there was not only harmony in the music but also harmony among the orchestra. They worked together effortlessly.
    • Respect for individual expression – the young musicians were encouraged to: “Add your spirit to the music” –  the art is in taking the team in the same direction without stifling the individual talent.
    • Tap into the passion -  “Don’t try too hard. It should come easy.”  As the musicians were intimate with their musical instruments so should you ensure that your team is intimate with its skill set. Each person brings their own set of talents and it is up to the leader to harness and leverage these talents.
    • Empowerment and trust – trust that each person will do their part.
    • Clear sense of the end game – Itzhak knows how the music should sound. He has the tune in his head just as a leader has her vision. It is up to her to motivate  the team/company to make the vision a reality.

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