On November 9th, we were fortunate enough to have Benjamin Zander, Conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra since 1979, all to ourselves for an inspiring breakfast presentation at the Amsterdam Mayor's Residence. Like THNK, Benjamin Zander is all about the "posture of possibility". His ability to convey his ideas to a wide range of persons and audiences makes him one of the true creative leaders of our time.
Wealth, fame and power are the things that appear to drive most people. For Benjamin Zander, the only thing that really matters is the number of shining eyes that he creates around him. This dawned on him during his year-long practice as conductor leading orchestras. At some point, he realized:
"A conductor does not make a sound. For my power, I depend on my ability to awaken possibility in other people. (...) Cynical persons are actually passionate people who don't want to be disappointed. Who they are depends on me, not on them. (...) So I ask myself, who am I being that my people's eyes are not shining?"
The world of possibility is an open-hearted world of joy. In the world of possibility, we do not prove people wrong. Rather, we enroll people in possibility by exercising a mode of openness that radiates opportunity. This comes with a specific type of body language and a whole way of being. Every time you open your mouth, you can choose whether or not to speak in opportunities: we live our lives in a story and we can choose the story we are living in.