In 1947, Hideo Yoshida became the 4th president of Dentsu (an international advertising and public relations company located in Tokyo). Hideo Yoshida was known as the “demon of advertising” and powered Dentsu’s tremendous growth during Japan’s post-war era. He implemented a work philosophy summarized in a list of 10 principles or rules that became known as the “鬼十訓” or the 10 rules of the Demon.

1. 仕事は自ら創るべきで、与えられるべきでない。
2. 仕事とは、先手先手と働き掛けていくことで、受け身でやるものではない。
3. 大きな仕事と取り組め、小さな仕事はおのれを小さくする。
4. 難しい仕事を狙え、そしてこれを成し遂げるところに進歩がある。
5. 取り組んだら放すな、殺されても放すな、目的完遂までは……。
6. 周囲を引きずり回せ、引きずるのと引きずられるのとでは、永い間に天地のひらきができる。
7. 計画を持て、長期の計画を持っていれば、忍耐と工夫と、そして正しい努力と希望が生まれる。
8. 自信を持て、自信がないから君の仕事には、迫力も粘りも、そして厚味すらがない。
9. 頭は常に全回転、八方に気を配って、一分の隙もあってはならぬ、サービスとはそのようなものだ。
10. 摩擦を怖れるな、摩擦は進歩の母、積極の肥料だ、でないと君は卑屈未練になる。

English version:
1. Create work for yourself; don’t wait for work to be assigned to you.
2. Take an active role in all your endeavors, not a passive one.
3. Seek out large and complex jobs. Trivial tasks debase you.
4. Welcome difficult assignments. Choose them. Progress lies in accomplishing difficult work.
5. Once you begin a task, complete it. Never give up.
6. Lead your fellow workers. Be an example for them to follow.
7. Set goals for yourself to ensure a constant sense of purpose. This will give you perseverance and hope for the future.
8. Move with confidence. Confidence gives your work force, focus and substance.
9. Find new solutions. This is the way we ensure satisfactory service.
10. When conflict is necessary don’t shy away from it or be afraid. Conflict is the mother of progress and the source of aggressive enterprise. If you fear conflict, you will become timid and servile.

Yoshida’s “鬼十訓” and philosophy embodies key notions of effective and dynamic leadership, a philosophy to motivate and create associates poised to act and innovate. It has been almost 70 years since this principles were put into practice, they are as effective as the day they were implemented. What are your guiding work principles?

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