Don’t cry for me Argentina – Should leaders be allowed to rock out?

Introducing Argentina’s soon to be Rock’n’Roll Vice President.  Amado Boudou rides a Harley-Davidson and relaxes by jamming with rock stars.  He also follows in a long line of Rock’n’Roll leaders – Junichiro Koizumi, Japan’s reformist President and heavy metal addict, Tony Blair, Ted Heath, Bill Clinton, David Blunkett and so on.

Bill blowin' his business horn

So, why am I writing about Mr Boudou?  It seems that his lifestyle has become the focus of debate concerning his competence to handle the country’s economic affairs.  This is encapsulated in the comment “We want a minister, not a guitar player”

I find this bizarre.  Some people delight in picking out minor aspects of someone’s lifestyle and generalise that it adversely affects their competence to do their chosen job.  I’m wondering if a similar reaction would have occurred if the media had pointed out that Winston Churchill suffered from depression?  This is not confined to politicians.  Some years ago a senior HR colleague working for the Police confided in me for some career advice.  In his spare time he ran a disco and his boss had told him to stop running it if he wanted to get on.  Why is this stuff so threatening to those in authority?

In defence of his hobby, Amado Boudou has pointed out that “Rock helps me communicate directly with the people because rock doesn’t lie, and people are fed up with lying politicians”.  Unfortunately, he is right.  If I had to choose between a cold analyst and a competent economist with a soul, I know which one I would choose as a leader.  The people who lead need to brilliant technicians of their chosen disciplines, plus they need to have humility and soul to engage their followers.  It’s a theme I explore in the book ‘Sex, Leadership and Rock’n’Roll’.

Leadership with Soul and Attitude

So, should we allow Amado Boudou to keep his hobby?  Post your thoughts on why leaders should or should not be allowed to have a life or a hobby.

The title of the post reminds me of Madonna’s take on politics from the film Evita.  Any excuse for a bit of Madge!


6 responses to “Don’t cry for me Argentina – Should leaders be allowed to rock out?

  1. What does a musician require to improve their performance? Tenacity, persistence, willingness to be judged, an iterative approach at achieving a predefined standard: not bad characteristics for anyone in a leadership role! Not to mention the need to network and share ideas with those who boo or cheer. Denis


  2. All work and no play… gets you an MBA! but seriously. I would be more worried about someone who doesn’t have a hobby to let off a bit of steam. Work is not the only thing in life, although sometimes it is difficult to remember that, and it is healthy to have a hobby that allows you to relax. I like to scuba dive and it is a great way to take your mind off things that are bothering you at work/home. Sometimes athe bit of mental space that I get whilst diving can help me come up with a new idea or creative solution to a problem. I think that in order to be a better leader Amado Boudou should be allowed to “rock on!”.


    • Although I posed the question ‘should’, I am personally in no doubt that you are right Vicki. It does however seem that some people, fuelled by a sensation hugging media will look for any piece of trivia and infer some personality defect from it. Mr Boudou has used music to get his point across for years and it would be rather inauthentic of him to suddenly sanitise his life to become a political leader. This is quite different to politicians who try to make themselves look more interesting by associating themselves with celebs. I recall Gordon Brown’s startling revelation that he liked the Artic Monkeys on Radio 1 – it felt slightly awkward.

      Thanks for your post




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