Tag Archives: Confucius on harmony

Leadership Lessons from Confucius: harmony but not conformity

harmony but not conformity

Confucius said: “A leader strives for harmony but not conformity. A petty person strives for conformity but not harmony.”
子曰:「君子和而不同,小人同而不和。」

It’s never easy to handle differences in opinion between your team members, but your responsibility as a leader is to harmonize the diverse notes of opinion into a single coherent tune that everyone can agree to play like the musicians in an orchestra. Achieving harmony is a lot more difficult in the early stages of the process than imposing conformity, but the long-term results are far more positive and lasting. While harmony provides a framework for promoting the frank and exchange of ideas, conformity kills discussion and creativity. Continue reading Leadership Lessons from Confucius: harmony but not conformity

Leadership lessons from Confucius: perfect harmony

perfect harmony

子語魯大師樂,曰:「樂其可知也:始作,翕如也;從之,純如也,皦如也,繹如也,以成。
Confucius was talking about music with the music master of Lu. He said: “We can know this much about music: It begins with everyone trying to play together; when it gets in full swing it flows in perfect harmony, melody, and purity of tone until it reaches the end.”  (1) (2)

A leader is like the conductor of an orchestra. Your job is to make sure that no matter what their function is everyone comes together and works in perfect harmony to carry out a common mission. Continue reading Leadership lessons from Confucius: perfect harmony