Transcript from the video The Top 10 Laws of Power. Watch now on YouTube.

Today book review of Robert Greene's book called The 48 Laws of POWER.

The 48 Laws of Power is a hugely popular book best seller that has sold millions of copies all over the world.

The book is an encyclopedia of Machivellian power play and manipulation. It's a fascinating book but the reason that I want to do an article and video on it is to put you off any ideas that you may get from the book, about using some of the ideas in the book in your leadership style, in your business, and with your team. There are, however, a lot of valuable points in the book too which I will share with you which you can adopt to become a better leader.

The Deadly 6 (Not to Use in your Leadership)


Robert Green talks about using baiting and he is talking historically, he is not necessarily suggesting it. But, historically the use of baiting which is actually very narcissistic thing to do is where we start to insult other people deliberately to wind them up, to put them off their game so to speak. We see in sport quite a lot. Actually, the Australia cricket team likes to do sledging and we consider this not sportive and when the sports in context probably fine. But most of the people watching this video now are business managers or leaders or sales people looking for an education. DON'T use it! Or if you're a project manager, DON't use it! Don't use baiting and there is no need to upset the people in your team. You will lose respect.

Okay, the next part that I want to bring your attention is number five on the list is about knowing your followers and knowing your opponent's insecurities and weaknesses and then using that against them. I really want to put you off this one. This is a terrible idea. You should absolutely know the strength or the weaknesses and the insecurities and worries and lifeguards are the people in your team and use them for GOOD. You should use them to help them to achieve what they want in life. But to use it against them, you will lose respect in a heartbeat. No respect, no followers, you lose all power.

Hide your Intentions and your Goals.

Although this might sound like a good idea because in theory if you share your intention in your goals, other people wouldn't give it to you. My experience in life is that's completely wrong. My experience in life is that if other good people know your intention and your goals, they want to help you. As a leader if you manage team or you're project manager or you run a business and you hide your goals and intentions, no one will trust you. People spill bullshit from far away. They know when they're being done and they know when they're being tricked. So share your goals and intentions then have a shared goals. That's the way to get trust and respect. But by hiding it, you lose trust and respect. So DON'T do that.

Make an enemy before you make a friend.

The idea behind this and the motivation behind this in Robert Greene's book (The 48 Laws of Power) is that if you make an enemy that will sharpen your game. The problem is it will sharpen elements of your game that are not productive. It will sharpen elements of your game that very competitive and combative. That's not conducive to long term success in leadership or in business. You need to make alliances. You need to make friendships. Don't make enemies. They will be targeting you all the time. Don't make enemies, make friends instead.

Deception (or red herring)

In a business context and in any context relating to team membership or in business when you're trying to build up trust with a client, DON'T LIE! Lying is one of the worst thing you could possibly do to your team. All trust are disappear. People take it as an insult and as I said before, people know when they're being tricked. And they know when they're being bullshitted. So don't do that and don't tell lies. No red herring (deception), be straight, be honest and be transparent. You will have respect that you need to lead your team and win clients.


Spying on your team as a leader or project manager or in your company is a TERRIBLE idea. If people know that they're being spied on, they always feel uncomfortable and they won't trust you. This is a BAD idea. Market intelligence is a different deal. Market intelligence is where you're trying to get as much information as you possibly can. So that you can do very good by your employees, by your customers and so on. So market intelligence is a great idea. But the sarcasm in Robert Greene's book is that you spy and you find out what your employees are up to. You find out what other people are up to and they furious. DON'T do that! You will break trust and if you get caught, GAME OVER.

Quick challenge to you now. Obviously, one to ten of the traits that you have just seen, how many of those are you actually doing? Ten being "I'm doing all of them" and one being "well, I don't really do those at all". One to ten, what's true for you?

What you Should do! The Top 4.

Okay, now we're on to list of the best traits. So Rob Greene's book has got a lot of good stuff in it. It's historical, it's very interesting when you read it. You just have an idea of how politics works. You will see how all politicians around the world actually operate. However, there are some good points in the book. Now, I want to bring your attention and we'll go through those points right now.

Master the Art of Timing.

Timing is absolutely everything in disruption, in market disruption and so forth, timing is everything. Amazon found that it had the technology to launch Kindle long before it actully launch Kindle. They already had the code and so forth but it had to work for technology to catch up before it could be launched. If it had launched Kindle as it was at the time, it would have been a complete fail. And I personally work in a dotcom boom time where we've got websites for corporations around the world including Sony and Playstation and some of these global corporations but the timing was wrong. Not everybody had a computer. Definitely, there were no smartphones at the time. In fact, phones are big back then. So timing was everything and that's why it's a good point to take on board and we'll do a video and it's just on mastering the art of timing and we'll do it as Robert Greene suggested. But number five in the list, master the art of timing.

Be Calm & Sphynx-like.

This is a very good advice. You probably saw from another video that we did on the traits of the best leaders in the world. From all of workshops I've done around the world, the answers that people gave. Number one of the list was calm and secure. So Rob Greene's advice from history is that the best leaders are calm and sphynx-like and it's absolutely correct there. You very much want to be a calm leader, you don't want to be one of those leaders that constantly emotional and bouncing of the walls. DON'T be that leader. Be calm and sphynx-like.

Never Outshine the Master.

It's kind of common story that the best leaders actually hire people smarter than them. But the reality is that most people are not secure enough emotionally to work with people smarter than them without becoming completely uncomfortable and eventually ending up in a combat situation. So you have to be mindful about not outshine the master. You have to be very much a team player and bring everyone along. Always say "we" and never "I". That's really important. That's something that's looked up very seniors leaders, board level managers about the verbal that gets used, the words that get used, and if you say theword "I" all the time, They're likely to see you in a certain way and it's not going to be in a favorable way atall. So use the word "we" a lot and be a team player but try not to outshine the master. Try to bring the whole team up and get our team success first and foremost.

Build Alliances

As you can probably imagine from the traits that you've seen so far from Robert Greene's book (POWER), it's essentially in the cycle of encyclopedia on Machiavellian power play that you see in something like Game of Thrones. Game of Thrones is almost like a documentary of Machiavellian power play. But one thing you notice on that drama and one thing you notice when the most successful leaders and managers around the world is they build really strong alliances. Champions for themselves, champions for their services, champions for their team, and they do that through building strong alliances within their organizations. And actually if you do business development, you need to build strong alliances within that organizations as well. One of the best things you can do in business development is make a champion of somebody in an organization that you're targeting.

Have no Insecurities

He makes a good point of this in the book that is mentioned many times throughout the book and I reinforced it here that is actually very good advice. It's good advice for a few reasons. Number one, it will make you happier to have no insecurities. You need to work through your insecurities. The things that triggers you, the things that worry you, especially the things that really upset you sometimes when somebody maybe makes a comment or so forth what are you sensitive about. These insecurities are going to hold you back as a leader. They're going to hold you back.

Work with a professional, work with a counsellor if you need, to talk and uncover what some of those insecurities are. It will make you simply better leader, someone that can be trusted who will become sphynx-like as we said. But have no insecurities. It's very important. What we often see with very charismatic leaders who unfortunately end up being and prime ministers around the world is that they often are riddled with insecurities and it shows how easily baited.

Charismatic leadership is often one of the things that we see with insecure people that they kind of trade on there's charisma but that's not what you need. If you're a leader or project manager or owner of a business or a salesperson, you need to build other sources of power. Those sources of power in the course that we have. The leadership certification for career success and the four sources of power. Charisma is only one. There are three more which you can learn about in the course. The main point for now is to have no insecurities.

That is excellent advice from the book The 48 Laws of Power, and that's our top recommendation for you.