The No. 1 shared characteristic among successful CEOs is intellect, one IBM supercomputer analysis found. And Sunday's episode of HBO's "Game of Thrones," titled, fittingly, "The Queen's Justice," highlights that trait in Cersei Lannister. Her ability to think strategically is part of why she's a strong leader and why she may yet win the contest for the Iron Throne.
In this episode, she's steps ahead of her own brother Tyrion, seemingly the show's smartest character and Hand (chief adviser) to her most threatening enemy, Daenerys Targaryen. With ease, Cersei's army takes Highgarden, home to the Tyrells, the wealthiest family in Westeros, after she made the decision to cede the less valuable Casterly Rock.
The implications of the move are massive. The Lannisters now control the Reach, the most fertile expanse in Westeros. Cersei will be able to pay off those famous Lannister debts. And, as is implied by her negotiation with Iron Bank emissary Tycho Nestoris, when Daenerys and her dragons come attempt to seize the throne, the most powerful bank in the land will back her.
She has momentum. She has resources. And she concentrates on forging connections because the best leaders know they can't succeed alone. "No one does," says Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "When you look at most big things that get done in the world, they're not done by one person." They're done by well-constructed teams.
Cersei has chosen her friends carefully.