A "consigliere" is "an adviser or counselor, especially to a mafia boss. The consigliere is a close, trusted friend and confidant."
Do you have this kind of person in your life? Do you have someone who will tell you your zipper is down?
A true consigliere seems to have these two qualities:
1. No agenda. This is why your parents don’t count, nor do your subordinates or superiors. People in your life who have their own agenda (try as they might to keep it independent from you) cannot be a close confidant.
2. Close but not too close. The person needs to know what’s happening in your life. But your success can’t affect his or her successes. Your actions can’t directly impact his life. This probably elimiantes people in your immediate family, people in your company, people in your industry. All these kind of people are too often the direct recipient of your actions.
In the cutthroat business world, where everybody is trying to get ahead, it can be difficult to find someone who meets these two criteria. Maybe that’s why they say the job of CEO — surrounded by power-hungry yes-men — is one of the loneliest.
Do you have a trusted advisor who can cheer on your success and offer wise counsel without becoming too involved so as to develop his own self-interested agenda?
(Hat tip to Kai Chang for this idea)