This week’s On Leadership interview with David Rubenstein has a valuable lesson in it for all of us.
For those reading this who don’t know who David is, here’s a short refresher:
- He is one of the co-founders of The Carlyle Group, one of the world’s largest private-equity companies.
- His business successes place his personal financial worth over $3 billion….That’s $3,000,000,000.
- His philanthropy extends broadly to preserving American history via our national treasures, monuments, documents, and funding for arts and literature initiatives. He’s funded numerous projects including buying the last privately owned copy of the Magna Carta, helping restore the Washington Monument after damage caused by an earthquake, and funding expansions and buildings at the Lincoln Center, the Jefferson Memorial, and the Kennedy Center.
- He’s authored several bestselling books and is a seasoned keynote speaker.
- He hosts a renowned interview series called Peer to Peer that airs both on Bloomberg Television and PBS.
Basically, when David Rubenstein talks, people listen.
I’ve followed his career for nearly thirty years, more closely the past ten as his deliberate philanthropy has increased exponentially.
I think the reason David’s most recent book claimed the #1 spot on The Wall Street Journal bestseller list isn’t because it’s a superbly written tome. Candidly, it’s not. I loved it. I read every word. But let’s be clear: 90% of it consists of interview transcripts with a collection of phenomenal leaders. It’s the very reason I bought it, and I highly recommend it.
But it’s not War and Peace. In case you think I’m arrogant, neither are any of the books I’ve written.
What makes David’s book so valuable is access to great leaders across broad industries and genres: Oprah Winfrey, Jeff Bezos, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Yo-Yo Ma, Condoleezza Rice, and more than twenty-five others. And access is the point.
David’s lifelong reputation has built his brand as trustworthy. He is trusted at all levels of business and government, especially in the not-for-profit worlds. His personal trustworthiness has driven his credibility on a wide array of matters including politics, finance, economics, arts and literature, business, history….The breadth is expansive. And it’s the combination of trustworthiness and credibility that provides him unrivaled access to remarkable leaders, thinkers, artists, and personalities who become unusually vulnerable in his interviews. It’s David’s access that makes this valuable compendium, How to Lead, a must-read leadership book.
Trust. Credibility. Access.
How’s yours looking?
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