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If only Tony Blair had paid attention to Genghis Khan…. He (Genghis) has much to teach us. A thought-provoking book

William Leith


The Leadership Secrets of Genghis Khan

Genghis Khan is history's greatest conqueror. As a teenager he was an outcast fleeing enemies on a mountain in northern Mongolia, an exile, a nobody. Yet it took only twenty years for Genghis to build the largest land empire in history - four times the size of Alexander's, twice the size of Rome's.


How did he do it? What lessons does his life reveal about the nature of leadership? What is 'greatness' in leadership? What traits did Genghis possess exactly? Were they unique, or might some apply in other times and other places - even here and today?


In Genghis Khan, I considered his qualities: brutal ruler, or great leader, or both? Then leadership theory took off, making it possible to analyze him in greater detail. He was, in fact, both ruthless and a leader of genius. These traits, and others, explain how he rose from nothing to found an empire. I extracted 21 lessons from his life, some of which are universal attributes of leadership. Rights have sold in Russia, Mongolia and China. Watch out, everyone.



John Man’s new book, extracting 21 business lessons from the Mongol emperor’s life, shows that Khan would have Alan Sugar for breakfast

The Times

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