Great leadership comes down to only two rules | Peter Anderton | TEDxDerby

  • Published on Jul 25, 2016
  • Peter takes us on a whistle stop tour of leadership in the last 16 centuries and tells us why everything you ever need to know about leadership comes down to only two rules.
    A Chartered Engineer who crossed over to the ‘dark side’ of HR at the start of the millennium, his role as the Organisational Development Manager for 3M UK focused on strategy, change, leadership development and coaching - ultimately becoming a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD.
    This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at

Comments • 164

  • Głōwìńg Aštërōìd

    Rule #1 service to those you lead #2 cant change them but you can change yourself #3 listen to what is being said

  • Mohammed Kamara
    Mohammed Kamara 13 days ago +2

    Great lecture! Rule # 2: I could't change other until I change myself-- Nelson

  • John Brennick
    John Brennick 15 days ago +1

    And I also value the insights from the question “what environment are we creating?” (After the 16th minute)

  • ahumanstain
    ahumanstain 29 days ago

    There’s no such thing as a good or bad memory

  • msakhmat
    msakhmat Month ago

    This is more philosophical than practical.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago +1

      Perhaps. But apply these two rules to every leadership situation you come across for the next 7 days and you’ll be amazed how practical they can be!

  • copper0
    copper0 Month ago +3

    Save your self 8:20 seconds and skip to 8:24 for Rule #1, Rule #2 follows shortly after the explanation of R1.

  • Incognito RANGER
    Incognito RANGER Month ago +1

    that was clear and inspiring! thanks

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago

      Incognito RANGER You’re welcome. Spread the word!

  • Member information
    Member information Month ago +1

    1 John 2:15-17 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world-the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-comes not from the Father but from the world. The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.

  • Jim Vasconcellos
    Jim Vasconcellos 2 months ago

    Please do not blame Taylor for the failure of Scientific Management. His approach to optimizing work was to ask the workers to tell him about how much wasted motion was built into their jobs, and what they would do about it. He went to the experts: the people actually doing the work. Command and control freaks turned that upside down and decided they knew better.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago +1

      Thank you - that's a really useful insight!

  • Adam Ma
    Adam Ma 2 months ago +4

    It took him 8 minutes and 29 seconds to get to his first point. He needs to practice what he tried to preach and not bury his points with all the fluff and non sense.

  • Sonia Gavira
    Sonia Gavira 2 months ago +2

    Loved the history lesson - definitely simple and not easy. Interesting that we speak about rule number 2 in the context of things going wrong or needing to improve. We also need to recognise when they go well and we need to keep doing whatever it is that we are doing. And when people thank us and tell us things are going well, we need to take a breath and thank them.

  • Brett Larson
    Brett Larson 2 months ago

    Very wise and I love that you close with the need to just listen. Listen to others, listen for the soft wisdom that lies below the surface, and I might add, listen without judgment either of others or of yourself. Great TED Talk Peter. Thank you.

  • Miaojun Zhang
    Miaojun Zhang 2 months ago +1

    Thank you for sharing the simple yet powerful rules about leadership!

  • Don Kirk
    Don Kirk 2 months ago

    Two rules of leadership: 1. Tuck in your shirt when speaking in public, as a sign of self-respect and respect for your audience. 2. Realize that if you're wearing your shirt out to disguise your belly bulge, you've no credibility to talk about leadership.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago +1

      That's possibly some of the most unusual feedback I have ever received. Watch out for assumptions - I am afraid they are both wrong! ;-) Not that I am denying the belly bulge!

  • Poon Kin Lap
    Poon Kin Lap 2 months ago +1

    All the things can summarize into 5 minutes. Make it more simple and direct~ =]

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago +1

      Harsh - but you may have a point. The theme for the event was 'journeys' - so my talk was under the theme "The Journey of Leadership"

  • Philippe Lott
    Philippe Lott 3 months ago +1

    Awesome speech!! Thank you TEDx!! Thank you Peter Anderton!!

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Month ago +1

      @Philippe Lott You've added a spring to my step today - thank you! Spread the word!

    • Philippe Lott
      Philippe Lott 2 months ago +1

      @Peter Anderton Very Pleased to meet you. Honestly, your talk deserves 10X more watches.. Thanks again! I added your talk to my yearly reminder on how to improve oneself and the others!!

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 2 months ago +1

      Thank you Philippe. Simplicity wins every time!

  • spiralsun1
    spiralsun1 3 months ago +2

    Wow, perfect 👌 This is the key to everything.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 2 months ago +1

      That’s a really insightful point - because these aren’t simply the two rules of leadership - they are the two rules of life!

  • Master Esquire
    Master Esquire 3 months ago +1

    Rather mischaracterizes what Machiavelli was about, but not what his written work ended up getting used for...

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 2 months ago +1

      Now that’s intriguing - tell me more ...

  • René Henriksen
    René Henriksen 3 months ago +1

    If you haven´t been a leader before, then you become it to a certain degree when you become a parent.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 2 months ago

      René Henriksen absolutely - and never are the two rules more important than in parenthood!

  • Stiewie Toaashii
    Stiewie Toaashii 3 months ago +2

    Thank You For The Powerful Discussion About Chocolate Crackers, You Have Though Me The Rules Of Leadership, Its NOT About Me, And Its ONLY About Me, Thank You Again, You Have Pointed Out My Mistakes.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 2 months ago

      Toastie The Toast Thank you - but only because I made them too!

  • Kathie Britt
    Kathie Britt 4 months ago

    Are you Searching for online courses just google search as "Zoe Talent Solutions".

  • Jon Zhao
    Jon Zhao 4 months ago +3

    He is very right! Don't read the new books. Many of them are just product of marketing and media influence, instead read the old ones that are good enough to be passed down for centuries!

  • Kerrin Begg
    Kerrin Begg 4 months ago +3

    Hear-Hear! "Listen to what's already been said!"

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 4 months ago +1

      Thanks Kerrin. It's already there - we just need to notice it!

  • Mark H
    Mark H 5 months ago +1

    its actually 4,760,000,000 results

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 4 months ago

      It's terrifying how quickly this number increases!

  • Bemabond
    Bemabond 5 months ago

    He called his phone to find his phone. Turns out it was in his hand the entire time.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 4 months ago

      Classic! Sort of - I used the landline phone :-)

  • Wiktor Fogel
    Wiktor Fogel 5 months ago +3

    Wow, this guy is really wise. I really appreciate for this talk:)

  • Winnie Anyango Onyango
    Winnie Anyango Onyango 5 months ago +4

    Simple, clear ,realistic and full of wisdom.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 5 months ago +1

      Than you Am - that's exactly what leadership should be!

  • Sohel Sobhan Chowdhury/BLD/BRAC

    ha ha...Jesus is in this lecture...if only these fictitious characters you could throw away!

    • Commander Shepard
      Commander Shepard 5 months ago

      Babe jesus existed , regardless of whether you are religious or not an actual man named jesus lived and died lmao

  • Corvus Morve
    Corvus Morve 5 months ago +7

    This is the most useful unintentional ASMR I've ever heard! 😂

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 4 months ago

      Well, you know what they say - you can please some of the people some of the time....

  • railzip
    railzip 6 months ago +2

    Great TED Talk. Thank you

  • TC1TheOrginal
    TC1TheOrginal 6 months ago

    Why does this feel like an info commercial, is it because it takes so long to get to the point.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 5 months ago

      Thanks for the feedback - I'll work on that one!

    • lizi 893
      lizi 893 5 months ago

      Yes you're right about that, lots of TEDx talk's and other videos about work, life, mentoring, motivation blla blla... Are the same info-comercial. I'm not alone on this.

  • Angelicas Best Version
    Angelicas Best Version 7 months ago +8

    Leadership is about service, but I must have a human revolution within myself first ! Thank you so much for this talk.

  • Felix Mak
    Felix Mak 8 months ago +5

    Legendary China-man... 😳

  • Victor Edem
    Victor Edem 9 months ago +1

    Thanks sir, this is really powerful. I will really like to be your student. I anchor trainings on leadership.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 8 months ago

      Thank you Victor. Leadership really is that simple - try looking at every leadership situation through the lens of these 2 rules

  • Destrudo Alexandros
    Destrudo Alexandros 9 months ago

    Whats wrong with his shoulders?

    • colin noble
      colin noble 7 months ago

      looks as though he has had injury to his right shoulder, lower than his left.

  • Isochest
    Isochest 9 months ago

    Locking up Rule Number One is a product of Self Entitlement. Malignant Narcissism. The basis of "Civilisation". All idols have feet of clay but people never learn.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 9 months ago

      @Isochest How we treat those who may have nothing to 'give' us reveals a lot about us!

    • Isochest
      Isochest 9 months ago

      @Peter Anderton I see this all the time. Living is all about helping others and giving everyone a hand up. That's not just people but helping dogs on their way too.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 9 months ago +1

      That's a very interesting point - as soon as we lose rule number 1 all sorts of things start to unravel. This isn't really about leadership - it's about life!

  • Isochest
    Isochest 9 months ago +1

    What is the silver bullet people are searching for? Is it the Emperors New Clothes? It usually turns out that way.

  • Sirracco
    Sirracco 9 months ago +1

    Just brilliant! Thanks for the talk.

  • M. Rizwan Jameel Sahab
    M. Rizwan Jameel Sahab 9 months ago

    Nice message, we all needed such distilled messages about complex subjects

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 9 months ago

      Thank you - we are too fond of over complicating things nowadays!

  • Jayden Seda
    Jayden Seda 10 months ago


  • ArtJourneyUK
    ArtJourneyUK 10 months ago +5

    Who takes a baby to a Ted talk? 😑

    • Winnie Anyango Onyango
      Winnie Anyango Onyango 5 months ago

      Someone who needs ted as their Nanny😊.

    • ArtJourneyUK
      ArtJourneyUK 9 months ago +2

      Isochest ...did I say it ruined my day? No. Luckily I have lived with others all my life, including babies, kids, toddlers, teens... and my husband! Not wanting to hear a baby crying when you are at a ticketed, speaking event is not that much of an odd request. The speaker himself said it was “incredibly distracting” (see above).

    • Isochest
      Isochest 9 months ago +1

      @ArtJourneyUK If a baby's cries ruin your day you cannot live with others

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 9 months ago +1

      @ArtJourneyUK OK - fair enough - I was just trying to be positive. The truth is it was incredibly distracting! 😳

    • ArtJourneyUK
      ArtJourneyUK 9 months ago +1

      Peter Anderton ...and ruin everyone else’s time there? 😕

  • Home-based Business
    Home-based Business 11 months ago +4

    Wow, Peter Anderton, you have distilled the complex subject of leadership into such simple, yet apt, rules: "Rule#1: It's not about you; Rule#2: It's ONLY about you." And, of course, "listening" is the final key to being able to practice the two rules. If a leader (designated as one, or a self-styled leader) just takes the two rules to heart and drives his/her vehicle with the third key, he/she would leap high in their role of a leader. Thank you for such a simple message. Yes, I get it, "it's not easy" because our EGO is always lurking over our heads.

  • Lily G
    Lily G 11 months ago +3

    Great words of wisdom

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 10 months ago

      Thank you Lily - words that have been around for a long time, I have just spelled them out!

  • Chris Della Porta
    Chris Della Porta Year ago +2

    Great talk, great rules, I mentioned them twice in a presentation on change management to 50 people yesterday.
    Peter, what is the name of the Chinese 6th century BC philosopher?
    Is it Lao Tzu/Laozi?

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago +1

      Thanks Chris! He can be called both - I say Lao Tzu

  • Frahana Rashid
    Frahana Rashid Year ago +7

    Really enjoyed watching this and totally agree with the 2 rules! off to have some Hob Nobs now

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago +1

      Thanks Frahana - enjoy! Thankfully I can eat them again now - there was a time when I couldn't bear the sight of them!!!

  • stan hootzz
    stan hootzz Year ago +2

    Leave the EGO (easing GOD out) at better yet just shuck it altogether? LOL's

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton 10 months ago

      Too much ego is bad news for any leader - at work, or at home!

  • ハンナ
    ハンナ Year ago +2

    Great talk Peter. Thanks for bringing wisdom into the talk. You've inspired me, a good leader indeed. And now I'm hungry for hob nobs.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago +1

      Appreciation is a good example of rule #2 - and you've just made my day with it - thank you!

  • Shaun Lott
    Shaun Lott Year ago +54

    I wholeheartedly agree with the rules (#1: It's not about you; #2: Its only about you)! It sounds relatively simple, but the challenge is defeating human ego. Our society has indulged itself in producing egotistical beings who find it impossible to conceive Rule #1. Unfortunately, our society rewards egocentric people with leadership positions because they produce results regardless of the carnage left behind. Yet, there is still hope! Thanks Peter and death to the key goblin!

    • Gerry H
      Gerry H 2 months ago

      thank you

    • Timmy Too Turnt Up
      Timmy Too Turnt Up 8 months ago +3

      The more you implement these practices the more you will see your team mates start to disarm themselves a bit and the human ego begins to not become a factor.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      It still plagues me today! :-)

  • Drive and Dive
    Drive and Dive Year ago +31

    Beside the 2 rules, what I really loved was "We live in a really complex world that is crying out for simplicity"
    Thank you Mr. Anderton

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago +1

      Thank you. Interestingly enough - you could go as far as saying that the two rules are not really about leadership - they are about life!

  • Heike Benkenstein
    Heike Benkenstein Year ago +14

    Thank you Peter. What an amazing gift you have and thank you for deciding to share it with the world. I stumbled upon your seminar whilest researching for my research paper (post grad project management EQ & leadership) and what I was hoping to say in it, you have so neatly packaged and substantiated and validated: If one just sits back and take into consideration the whole picture and listen carefully, the patterns amongst the chaos will present themselves. The basic truths in life are right there under your nose and it always has been - such as gravity and relativity. None of them are new. It's just that history repeats itself in seemingly new traits and every generation is convinced of it's own uniqueness and obsessed with itself. The human need to want to learn more is beautiful, but so often we want to recreate the wheel and become misguided with shortsighted competition and personal fame; costing us to unlearning the simple truths we already learnt and were originally yearning for. I love how you have looked at the whole picture and illustrated, as I had hoped to subtly demonstrate in my paper, that these "new wisdoms" are simply something we have unlearned through popular beliefs and media fads over recent history. Too often it is just the most controversial elements that shout the loudest that become fashion or popular belief. Thank you again for your passion and perseverance.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      Thank you Heike - I wish you every success with your research paper!

  • Tom Maj
    Tom Maj Year ago +23

    Selflessness and Responsibility seems to sum it up. Fascinating insights, thank you!

  • Brian de Beer
    Brian de Beer Year ago +4


  • Brian de Beer
    Brian de Beer Year ago +4

    Fantastice Simple messgae with alot of power

  • Monica A.
    Monica A. Year ago +5

    Wow!! One of my favorites thus far, hit every nail on the head during this information-overload we find ourselves in

  • Lee Milby
    Lee Milby Year ago +1

    I thought "the prince" was satire though...

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      That would by far be the best way to read it - sadly that's not the case for most who do. I am led to believe it is on the recommended reading list for many top politicians - if only they would read it as satire!

  • david nicholson
    david nicholson Year ago +1

    Peter Anderson thank you for the Ted Talk!

  • fuckshitupwith666

    I thought it was good content and a nice reflection on history, but the rules seem to contradict each other so maybe need to retitle them.
    Also, not only should we listen to past stories, but we need to listen to those around us so that we can truly serve our people with empathy.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      On first glance they can seem to contradict each other - but by digging a bit deeper it becomes clear that they are two very different statements. The wording is key - I have heard others quote rule #2 as 'it's ALL about you' - which in my view really is a contradiction because it sounds like the teenager who is still the centre of their own universe. It's ONLY about you places the emphasis on the need for each of us to take action and begin the change.
      I have thought about renaming them, but in the end decided to stick with them because I think the contrast is part of the message.
      As for your message on listening - I couldn't agree more!

  • Vishwa Dharma
    Vishwa Dharma Year ago +1

    Your voice and accent is like king of pop Michael Jackson's. A Good video with good message. Thanks.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      Thank you - that is possibly the most unique feedback I have ever received! I beleive his take on rule #2 is captured in "The man in the mirror"
      Glad you enjoyed the message.

  • Vukani James
    Vukani James Year ago

    Powerful Information. I love listen to it.

  • joe caterman
    joe caterman Year ago +8

    best leaders have the right combination of dominance and social skill and competence in the role... they also care and want to genuinely do right by their workers and care about their welfare as well as performance. Unfortunately those are rare people. but if you have those traits then you'll have respect and that's something you absolutely must have... you're not a leader without it, regardless of the position you officially hold.

    • Peter Anderton
      Peter Anderton Year ago

      Thanks Joe - I agree, leadership has nothing to do with position and everything to do with who you are. However, I wouldn't suggest that we either have those traits or not - if we really get AND practice these two rules then we can be one of those rare people too!