Knowledge Center: Video


LeadershipTV® - Leading with influence: The six power bases


How can leaders inspire commitment—rather than resistance or even merely compliance—in others?

In this installment of Heidrick & Struggles’ LeadershipTV®, Brig. Gen. Bernard Banks, former head of the United States Military Academy’s Department of Behavioral Sciences & Leadership, draws on the work of researchers John R. P. French and Bertram H. Raven to identify two of the “power bases” underlying effective leadership:

  • Expert power: the belief in a leader’s deep knowledge or understanding

  • Referent power: the belief that a leader is looking out for one’s best interest

Leaders who cultivate these power bases inspire others to go above and beyond their assigned tasks and come up with creative solutions to broader problems.

About Bernard Banks


Bachelor of Science from the United States Military Academy at West Point

Master of Business Administration from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management

Master of Public Administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government

Master of Strategic Studies from the US Army War College

Master of Arts and Master of Philosophy in organizational psychology from Columbia University

PhD in social-organizational psychology from Columbia University

Completed Harvard Business School’s General Management Program

Career highlights

Brig. Gen. Bernard Banks is Associate Dean for Leadership Development at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management. Before retiring from the US Army in August 2016, he was the head of West Point’s Department of Behavioral Sciences & Leadership; he has previously served as the squadron commander of an Apache helicopter unit based in South Korea and as a military social aide to President Bill Clinton. He has also led executive education programs for organizations such as Procter & Gamble, IBM, and Best Buy.

Related viewing

View Leadership Lessons in a VUCA Worldanother interview with Brig. Gen. Bernard Banks.

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