"Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings." — Salvador Dali
Every great leader begins with a great dream. Ambitious visions not only require a capacity for meaningful change, but also provide the energy and inspiration to engage others. These tasks -- articulating a dream and rallying others around it -- are the essence of leadership.
Ambition can be developed in an organization, but it must be held first by senior executives in the enterprise. And, if the organization is to be more than a collection of ambitious individuals, its leaders must be able to articulate a shared, compelling purpose and must engage others in its pursuit. In sharing their dreams, leaders encourage others to dream, and to perform.
Ambition is wanting to move to the next step. Sometimes opportunity is staring us in the face but we may not recognize it. Ambitious people look at the status quo and see ways to do things differently. Ambition may be the driver that challenges assumptions. Part of a leader’s responsibility is to identify the need for positive change and to usher in that change. Looking to do things differently can be a force for the good.
Without ambition, it doesn't matter how smart you are. Ambition is the driving force that makes our intelligence actually useful.