One Other Voice

“A leader cannot be in the fray and above it at the same time. Nor can any single figure embody all the requisite qualities: a young leader may lack experience; an experienced leader may lack youth and fail to see new opportunities. There must be at least one other voice – spouse, friend, advisor, trusted colleague – because the judgement of even the greatest will fail at times. These figures are often invisible to the public: they are helpful precisely because they are discreet. Yet they are often a leader’s most important defence against disaster, and without them failure will eventually follow. A leader’s strengths are his or her own, but it takes someone else to protect them from their weaknesses. Self-help is often not help at all.”

Morality, p. 43