For you who have not read the book by Robert Greene 40 Laws of Power, or might never thought of reading it, let me be of a service to you. I will read it chapter by chapter and give you the gist of the teaching it espounded in it. According to Stephen Covey, you will learn twice if you teach what you know to other people. So here it goes.
But first, let me warn you. This book is not for the faint hearted. Even I think that the ideas are machiavalian in nature. Manupulative might not be a wrong term to define this book. So with that, let us at least know what this book is all about. We would know what other people are doing, right? Say, someone is using one of the rule, the you can say to yourself “hmm, this is rule 13… Better watch out”.
The first rule, is not to outshine those that are above you. Your boss, your manager, your president. Anyone that can be considered your boss and where they would feel superior to you.
A case in hand is like Najib and Pak Lah. Najib must never look more intelligent or more forward than Pak Lah. That would be detrimental to his political career. That’s why you can see that where a lot of people are asking Pak Lah to step down, Najib is a quiet as a mouse. He must appear to be supporting Pak Lah all the way. If he look like he wants to take over, then Pak Lah would sack him in a heartbeat.
Sometimes this is hard to do. Because sometimes, the superior does not look so bright to start with. Sometimes we can outshine them without even trying and without our intention. Again, Pak Lah does not look bright, and it is easy for Najib to look more famous than he is. But still, we must still be careful so that it would not happen like that. We must still play it down. Always put your good ideas as your boss’s ideas, and put him in a good light.
Another question that is not touched by the book is when you yourself is the master. What would you do if your underlings is better than you? Do you steal the thunder or do you accept that nature has given a better deal to your subordinates? I believe that every encounter is an opportunity to either learn or to teach. If your subordinates are better than you, then it is an opportunity for you to learn from him/her. And if you can’t, just accept the fact that you are getting a good assistance from him.
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