Lessons from the career of Dr. Antonio De Olivieira Salazar (1899- 1970)


The long and illustrious career of Dr. Salazar ,who was a professor of Economics and law who subsequently became the Finance Minister of Portugal and ended up as Prime Minister,shows a number of positive things that are helpful to us.It is also seen that there are some mistakes he had,which is another type of learning to us,in order to avoid falling in to the same type of pitfalls.
Hence the two types of lessons are presented below, under two headings. In learning from his shortcomings and failures, I have only put the lessons to be learnt, and not the shortcomings.
Positive Lessons
*Know your subjects deeply and widely.
*Be an expert
*Learning is a continuous process, hence be updated with new knowledge.
*Results speak much louder than rhetoric, hence tie up your reputation to achievements
*Practice the art of looking at the whole picture, and also be alert to details.
*Grasp opportunities at the earliest possible instances.
*Be firm and decisive, but not hard and cruel.
*Keep away from unwanted alliances that curtail your freedom or drag you in to unwanted situations.

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*Develop systems, and do not rely on personalities.
*It is the work and the results that count, not the person. Hence, eschew any type of Personality Cults.
*Be self-disciplined, frugal in habits and tastes, and maintain your personal integrity.
*Keep to your core-values, even at a cost to oneself.

Negative Lessons
*Develop a set of second-rung leaders
*Have a clear- line of successors.
*Relinquish power at your prime, so another person can take the lead easily from where you stop.
*Be adaptable to changes, or make necessary change in anticipation of coming events

Jagath Gunawardana Attorney-at-law


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