Listening to Inma Shara is a delightful experience. The Basque conductor is a great example of a successful and humble leader, but sadly less known by the general public.
A few days ago I had the pleasure of listening to her at the Equestrian Circle of Barcelona in an act centered in leadership with two excellent participants: Anna Gener (CEO of Savills Aguirre Newman, Barcelona) and Marius Carol (Director of La Vanguardia).
I have met few people who combine their passion, closeness, technical preparation, perfectionism, perseverance, communicative ability and fire in the eyes. Ingredients that make up an inspiring leadership, a message and an imprint that leaves its mark.
Soaking up your vision of leadership is a breath of optimistic and authentic air. An energy that contrasts with the warm leaders that abound in this era. People pay more attention in the following elections or the next quarterly results instead of thinking and managing with perspective to improve the life of the following generations. Men and women who do not live in coherence with a personal transforming purpose.
The world of high level conductors impresses with the huge leadership challenge they constantly face. Achieve every time the perfect concert with very few days of joint rehearsals and aligning wide teams of musicians, often with great cultural diversity and strong egos for their extensive record of successes.
I would like to share 15 of her key ideas about leadership. Words that resonate with force and challenge us to be more authentic in our personal and professional life.
1. Leadership: It is a moral obligation to positively impact society and not only obtain an individual benefit. Directing is a passion. I lead with the soul.
2. Self-responsibility: In society we not only have rights but also obligations. And this has to be taught to the youngest even if it is not a politically correct message today.
3. Communication: Directing is having the ability to transmit and excite. If you do not connect with others, you can not lead with impact.
4. Affectivity: The world needs more music because it links you to beauty and feelings. We live in a world that is too hard and rational and we should promote music in education to forge nobler spirits.
5. Attitude: It is more important than talent. Resilience and discipline go further than brilliance.
6. Success: The greatest personal satisfaction is having tried with determination to be your best version, not what others think of you or what public recognition you have. To prepare a concert I study 10 hours a day and not only the score but the whole historical context of the creator and his work to achieve an excellent interpretation and the most genuine possible.
7. Failure: We interpret it as something negative, but, in reality, it helps you to know yourself and grow, to know where your limits are and what your weaknesses are.
8. Vulnerability: After twenty years directing the first five minutes I’m still afraid of direct until the person becomes an artist. From that moment everything flows and all fears disappear and the heart and passion arise.
9. Character: When I go to the stand the work is mine. It is my vision and interpretation of that work. First I have to line up the whole orchestra and then take it to the audience as a single voice.
10. Female Leadership: I have no complex to be an exception in a world of men. If the girls see us on the podium directing they will have in their minds that they can also get to this position.
11. Humanism: Directing human collectives is the most exciting thing there is. The essence is the same, both in a company and in an orchestra: putting the accent on human capital, which is what makes the difference and generates competitiveness.
12. Team: An orchestra is a living, dynamic organism. The main keys are commitment, listening and teamwork, beyond the personal egos and individual talent of each musician.
13: Harmony: In a team you have to avoid cacophonies, the noise that prevents the energy of the group from flowing positively. Let’s transform our reality in terms of serenity.
14: Mood: You can achieve extraordinary results without screaming or missing in this regard. Good forms, education, and sweetness are fundamental and give credibility.
15: Authority: To direct you only need to connect with the orchestra and the public. Nothing more and nothing less … I could lead with an invisible baton.
At only 16 years of age, Inma said she wanted to become an Orchestra conductor and she has succeeded, despite the difficulties due to the lack of references of women in a profession that is full of men and extremely exposed to failure. That is why it is a good example of female leadership.
Like Rafa Nadal or Pau Gasol has arrived and remains at the top by his own merits and how they move his words but his example drags.
As it says, let’s change the fear for determination and routine for the passion to move towards a better world.