"Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and the Sultan of Johor are seen in a blue Proton Saga... "When asked whether there is any tension with the sultan, Dr Mahathir said: “No, I don’t see anything because I went to see him and he drove me to the airport. I don’t want to comment on the sultans because if I say anything that is not good then it’s not nice because he is the sultan”"

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Saturday, September 02, 2006

My favourite periodical always gets the funniest letters (these are from last week):

SIR – It might interest you to know that not a single serious study has ever been able to demonstrate a link between “emotional intelligence” and leadership effectiveness. The most robust and consistent single predictor of leadership effectiveness is, simply, intelligence. Emotional intelligence sells well, but scientific evidence supporting it is almost as solid as that supporting the effectiveness of homeopathy.

Erkko Autio
Professor, department of management
HEC Lausanne
Lausanne, Switzerland

SIR - Only a man could fail to mention the real advantages that men have over women: an ambition for success, even at the cost of their own health; and a parasitic ability to utilise the domestic and child-care labour of their women without feeling guilt. Forget about empathy and emotional intelligence—they just get women sidelined into personnel departments. The only way to attain real power is really, really to want it and not to care about the cost.

Hilary Potts

SIR – Or is it madam? As a male engineer, I read your thoughts on gender differences with new-found resolve. At work today, I had ample time to contemplate my impending obsolescence after switching on my computer so that it could set about the passé task of designing aircraft. In the past it was slide rules and T-squares that did this work, but the tremendous amount of muscle power needed to wield these instruments saved me from redundancy. Clearly, what I need to do to get ahead is to work on such social skills as going behind people's backs, staying angry for long periods of time and spreading bitchy rumours—teamwork and technical skills be damned.

Paul Gush
Madison, Alabama
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