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Joe Klein Archives

Oct22
Build Up or Tear Down - Which Way to Lead Change?


Have you seen lasting change come more from tearing down a thing or from building up its counterpoint? Does one trump the other in a city dying for lack of transformation? Tom Melohn said … One way to encourage people to take risks is to reward them for it.”

Picasso, on the other hand advocated tearing down a thing,  before you can build up anything new. Completely tear it down, he insisted. Where do you stand? Do the most effective leaders you know, build up a thing, or do they tear down old structures, before they get revolutionary change? build up or tear down.jpg

The question might have
crossed Joe Klein’s mind, when he accepted the Rochester’s Business Person of the Year Award last week at the Convention Center. Joe accepted the award and then attacked NY State and Rochester city leaders for "destroying our business community and residents". 

A prominent and well respected CEO at
Klein Steel,  Joe, landed his company on Rochester’s top 100 businesses for 10 years in a row.

"I'm ashamed to live in Rochester and ashamed to live in New York state," he said Thursday in an interview. Joe’s cutting words are still buzzing all over today, as seen in NYCO’s blog and The DragonFlyEye blog and in many area newspapers and TV clips. 

The Special Business-Award-of-the-Year event, drew a record crowd of more than 1000 people to the Riverside Convention Center to hear E. Philip Saunders, founder of Sugar Creek Stores, Genesee Regional Bank, and several other New York business ventures. Guests also got an earful from Joe Klein at the dinner they paid top dollars to attend.

Here is my question: When it comes to the desperate changes needed if Rochester business is to survive, what’s best? Is it better to build up or tear down, in order to shake up new life?

Which one can move the Rochester, New York business community from it’s
basal ganglia of corruption and stagnation, into it’s working memory, where renewal stands a chance to generate new seeds for growth? What do you think?

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