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A leadership lesson from Aesop’s fables

This blog post originally published in September 2009, just a few days after we launched the Turning Managers Into Leaders blog for the very first time. Today, over 10 years later, this story about teamwork and synergy  is as relevant to leaders as it was then.  I hope you enjoy this blast from the past.

synergyThere is a classic Aesop’s fable that offers a great lesson to leaders about synergy and teamwork.  A father whose sons were always fighting wanted to show them the value of the synergy that comes from working together.  So he had one of the sons bring him a bundle of sticks.  He gathered his sons around him, and one at a time, he asked each young man to take the bundle of sticks and try to break it.  None succeeded.  He then split open the bundle, and handed each son one or two sticks, asking them once again to try to break them.  This time, the sons did so easily.  “You see boys,” he said.  “Individually, these sticks do not have much strength, but when you combine their individual might, they form something of much greater power.  Separately, you can be broken, but together, you are stronger.” Continue reading