7 Creative Leadership Lessons from the Former Disney CEO

I’ve admired Disney for numerous reasons. They are brilliant storytellers and I’ve always been fascinated how they ended up acquiring big corporations like Pixar, Marvel, LucasFilms and Fox. They now stand at the forefront of changing the media industry landscape.

Bob Iger has been instrumental in bringing in these changes at Disney. Steve Jobs mentions instantly liking Bob for putting all cards on the table during the Pixar acquisition and being candid about how badly Disney needed Pixar to survive. Handling Big CEOs with big egos is not an easy job and requires people skills.

Iger’s book — The Ride of a Lifetime is a fantastic read. It beautifully distils down his 40+ years of wisdom on corporate culture, dealing with people and taking risks.

Here are my Top 7 learnings from the book:

  1. In his early days as a young executive at ABC Sports, he missed procuring rights for a race during which a British Runner set a world record. Producer Roone Arledge raged in a room full of senior executives about the miss. Nobody knew who was at fault. And Iger raised his hand. From that day onwards, he was treated with higher regard.
    It is important to take responsibility when you screw up. You will be more respected and trusted by people around you if you honestly own upto your mistakes.

Marketing, Coffee and Formula 1 keep me up at night.