Focus on Leadership

On a slow boat to China

Alexander Kopylov


Some days ago I bought a new CD of Ella Fitzgerald on which the well-known jazz standard “On a slow boat to China” sang by her was recorded.

But I haven’t heard it earlier. I have got a lot of musical pieces performed by this great singer, and each time when I discover for myself a new wonderful song I get surprised again and again at the range of her creativity which seems unlimited. You feel as if you know all her songs but nevertheless you can find some fine music unknown to you.

When people ask me to give an example of personal leadership I say the name of Ella Fitzgerald. She is constantly ranked first or second in the rating of the best and famous jazz singers of the world sharing this place with Billy Holiday. Her leadership is unquestionable. She has got 14 Grammy Awards, more than anybody else. It was a tradition in the jazz world to give additional names or some sort of titles taking into account the merits of this or that musician. Ella Fitzgerald was called “First Lady of Song.” The name is self-explanatory.

The leadership of Ella Fitzgerald is the leadership in its clear absolute form, it is sublime and undisputed. And what’s important, too, it is an example for all who want to and can be leaders in some professional area. Be like Ella Fitzgerald!