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The Talent Magnet Leadership Podcast


Episode #173: Making Leadership Tangible: Analogies in the Arts with Louis Langrée and Guest Host, Daniel Wachter

Being a great conductor is just like being a great business leader. Today’s guest on the Talent Magnet Leadership Podcast, Louis Langrée, shares this insight with guest host Daniel Wachter. Louis is a conductor and has been the Music Director of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra for the past eight years. He has won several awards including the Best Recording of the Year Award at the International Opera Awards, and Best Video Performance at the International Classical Music Awards. In this episode’s conversation, Louis and Daniel talk about his role as a conductor, and how the disciplines in that field can be applied to leadership in business.

  • Leaders have to create conditions where their employees can be their best, and where energy and talent thrive to build a unique culture. [3:10]
  • Louis explains that conductors interpret a composer’s work through the prism of their own sensibility and experience. The conductor also takes into account what the composer envisions for their piece. [4:55]
  • The more you know a score, the more freedom your musicians have. If you’re not sure, you micromanage. It’s the same in business: the more leaders understand and are confident in the bigger picture, the less they will micromanage their employees.  [9:14]
  • Musicians in an orchestra must listen to one another, and tune together. They have to  give their best as a collective, and know how to blend and balance with each other. [12:24]
  • It is arrogant and counterproductive to enter a new environment as a leader with the intention of changing the established culture; even more so if you’re only there temporarily. “You have a limited impact in a short amount of time,” Daniel remarks. [17:36]
  • Louis talks about the challenges of having to perform without rehearsal with an orchestra. [19:47]
  • If leaders try to control too much, it’s no longer leading but reacting. [22:19]
  • Encouragement is the most powerful thing a leader can give to their employees. This can become problematic however, as it can go so far that the leader becomes obsolete. On the other hand, pushing too much can cause your team to become demotivated. [24:47]
  • Louis talks about staying motivated when you’re not playing in front of an audience. [28:00]
  • In a business crisis, having a turnaround mindset and using that crisis as a catalyst for change is much more productive than a mindset of resignation. [33:57]



Daniel Wachter | LinkedIn 

Louis Langrée | Twitter | Instagram


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