Leadership Case

What bases of power did Thatcher develop in her early career?
Margaret Thatcher got acquainted with the politic in very young age. Very often she was present at her father’s political meetings. Her insight and focus on goals helped Thatcher to rise to leadership in the English Conservative party. She came to power with a philosophy based on the condemnation of the government and rigidly pragmatic attitude to current events. Her distinctive feature is uncompromising perseverance in carrying out its line. Forming policy, she seeks to provide it by all means. Apologetics of free enterprise and individual initiative were early bases of her power. First of all, Margaret Thatcher refused of the old models of state regulation of the economy and tried to implement her own, a new one. It is decentralizing economic management, reduced the state apparatus.

How did she exercise influence?
She vigorously and decisively broke the country’s current system of public corporations. The privatization of the socialized sector is one of the main elements of the economic restructuring. She thought that a very important task of government is creating the most favorable conditions for private business, which may work to increase profits under the condition of full responsibility for the results of their own particular activities. Relying on the initiative and independent citizens, Thatcher stated that whoever is willing to work more than others, should receive the greatest reward. In her foreign policy Margaret Thatcher sought contacts and possible cooperation in the world. Because of it Britain got a possibility of increasing its weight, prestige and its influence in the world as well.

How did she build credibility?

Thatcher has many qualities that, regardless of her political positions, characterize Margaret as an outstanding leader. Convinced of her aims and methods, she heard only her own inner voice. Thatcher was able to feel the need to change the previous model of the United Kingdom. In her numerous speeches, it is impossible to find such words as “monetarism”, “statism”, “labor relations”. Instead, much closer to wide audience concepts of “big government”, “honestly earned money”, “austerity” are used. In her work, she highlights the simple, understandable for everyone slogans: maintaining law and order, everyone gets what he earned. Neo-conservatism in the interpretation of Thatcher represented for many ordinary British not another political or philosophical theory, but almost a kind of religion, designed to improve society, to give it the forgotten dynamism, its ability to self-development. To a large extent, it was contributed by Thatcher’s phraseology, her desire to explain to the public social and economic problems in terms understandable for a simple housewife. An adding of personal moments in politics it is the characteristic of Thatcher’s political style. Perhaps, it stems from her attitude to politics; she considered it not only as a “work” but also as a “hobby”.

What lessons do you draw from this case for building success in your own career? What questions does it raise?

Thatcher’s experience may be very useful for my future career. All her strength, extraordinary intellect she gave to the state and political activity. Her work was everything for her. It is well-known that if you like your work you will be successful. Margaret Thatcher was strong but fair, able to show stubbornness, but to enter the position of the enemy; an ambitious but impassive and cold-blooded and these qualities helped her to achieve her goals. Every leader should have such character. Thatcher has reached the pinnacle of power elite, focused on male supremacy, and has achieved this only by devoting her life to ambition and struggle. Only such people like her, who knows the value of success, become leaders.

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