How can one person conquer so much territory in a life time to actually change the face of the world? What characteristics and circumstances created this phenomena?
As consultants, we are brought into organizations to help the CEO’s reshape the culture, the organization and other aspects. In reading Weatherford’s Ghengis Khan, I was constantly astonished and amazed by some of his leadership characteristics. We are so quick to judge based on stories passed down.
1. He organized and promoted based on ability, not clan status or royalty;
2. Pre-planned all military campaigns leaving little to chance and learning from each encounter (from the people whom he conquered);
3. Franciscan artists borrowed themes and techniques brought thru commence by the Mongols. At the monastery at Assisi you can see subjects depicted in events from the life of Christ as Mongols with Mongol dress, and textiles unknown at that time in Europe;
3. Incorporated (not as slaves) the conquered civilizations into the Mongol Empire, taking the best ideas and people to work in the newer, larger Empire;
4. Set up a communication system, a postal system and also got into printing;
5. Established a ranking system within the military that guaranteed loyalty, fair share distribution, again based on merit, and guaranteed care for military families whether wounded or dead;
6. Women also held positions of prominence throughout the Empire;
7. He allowed all religions a place in the Empire;
This is not to say that he did not kill enemies and pillage other groups. However, he never made sport out of killing and torture as was done in Europe.
How would you judge his leadership style? Weatherford’s book is certainly well written and enlightening–a worthwhile read.