Volume 95, Issue 51

Friday, November 30, 2001
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Ivey Journal vs. Izzy Asper

Battle for Kandahar

Foot Patrol offers safety in numbers

Like Maestro Fresh Wes, Zander conducting thangs

MacIntyre discusses the 5th Estate

Is Canada getting dumber? Brain Drain debate rages on

Chapters CEO bans Hitler's Mein Kampf

News Briefs

Like Maestro Fresh Wes, Zander conducting thangs

By Liam Kaufman
Gazette Writer

The conductor of one of the world's most famous orchestras spoke on-campus yesterday at a motivational seminar.

"The next 35 years are going to be the most exciting years in history," said Benjamin Zander, the conductor for the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra and co-author of Art of Possibility.

Zander spoke to members of the Western community as a part of the LeaderLab series, organized by Western masters of business administration students.

Most of his lecture focused on urging people not to fall into the "downward spiral" of life that he described as being trapped by life's negatives.

Zander said he felt "old style" leadership is insufficient for this era. He explained it is important to solve problems "outside of the box" – outside of conventional thinking.

Within the opening minutes of Zander's inspirational talk, the crowd was howling with laughter.

"[There is] no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing," he said, one of the many jokes he used to depict the positive side of a situation. Along with music, humour was one of the vices he used to highlight his points.

"Our mandate is to bring in very unique and inspiring leaders with unique personalities," said Erica Nielsen, a member of the LeaderLab executive team.

"We struggled with dates because he was so busy, but we got him," Nielsen said.

Zander has shared his leadership expertise with the World Economic Forum, IBM and NASA, she added.

Halfway through his talk, the conductor comically played on a grand piano to explain the growth of a child's piano skills and how this related to problem solving.

"He's phenomenal. He's by far one of the best speakers I've heard," said Anuj Chandarana, a second-year honours business administration student. "What he had to say applies to people of all ages and all careers."

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Copyright The Gazette 2001