Conscious BusinessIn the landmark book Good to Great, Jim Collins studies what drives average companies to take a quantum leap and become extraordinary. He concludes that a crucial component of greatness is leaders with a paradoxical blend of personal humility and professional will. These leaders, whom Collins calls “Level 5,” channel their ego ambition away from themselves into the larger goal of building a great company. However, Collins couldn’t answer a central question: how to develop Level 5 leadership. “I would love to be able to give you a list of steps for becoming Level 5, but we have no solid research data that would support a credible list.”

To help us address this question, our guest is Fred Kofman, author of Conscious Business: How to Build Value Through Values, a book that has been translated to more than ten languages and received numerous awards. Fred was a professor of Management Accounting and Control Systems at MIT, and today he is co-founder of the international consulting firm Axialent, and Professor of Leadership and Coaching at the University Francisco Marroquín.

Fred uses seven qualities to distinguish conscious from unconscious leadership.

  • The first three are character attributes: unconditional responsibility, essential integrity, and ontological humility.
  • The next three are interpersonal skills: authentic communication, constructive negotiation, and impeccable coordination.
  • The seventh quality is an enabling condition for the previous six: emotional mastery.

Resources Mentioned in This Episode

Subscription Links


Your Feedback

If you like our show, please rate us on iTunes. That makes a huge difference in helping more people discover it. We love to know your thoughts about this episode. Please submit your comments below! You can also email comments to Jesse at [email protected], subscribe to him on Facebook, or follow him on Twitter

For the transcript of this episode: How Conscious Leaders Build Value | with Fred Kofman