Recorded on 02/03/2022

How Power Changes Us Featuring The Washington Post Columnist Brian Klaas

Play Video
Would you like to share with close friends or colleagues?

Recorded February 3, 2022. 

Watch The Washington Post columnist and Power Corrupts podcast creator Brian Klaas as he describes leadership patterns throughout history – who gains power, how power corrupts, and how we can bring better people to power – as detailed in his new book, Corruptible: Who Gets Power and How It Changes Us. As an expert on democracy, authoritarianism, and US foreign policy, and former advisor to major politicians and organizations including NATO, the European Union, and Amnesty International, Klaas uncovered several surprising insights about leadership including, how facial hair can determine who we choose to lead us and why some people are drawn to power out of a narcissistic and borderline psychopathic impulse. Klaas believes that we are witnessing democracy come under attack on a global scale, including in countries as disparate as Brazil, India, and Hungary. As most of these countries seem to be shifting toward totalitarianism – mostly at the hands of their own elected leaders – Klaas discusses why he believes it is imperative to understand why these increasingly autocratic leaders are gaining power. Drawing on over 500 interviews with some of the world’s top leaders – from philanthropists and presidents to dictators and bioterrorists – Klass also challenged some of our assumptions about leadership while providing a roadmap for enabling better-suited leaders to achieve positions of power.

About Brian Klaas

Brian Klaas grew up in Minnesota, earned his DPhil at Oxford, and is now a professor of global politics at University College London. He is also a weekly columnist for The Washington Post, host of the award-winning Power Corrupts podcast, and frequent guest on national television. Klaas has conducted field research across the globe, interviewing despots, CEOs, torture victims, dissidents, cult leaders, criminals, and everyday power abusers. He has also advised major politicians and organizations including NATO, the European Union, and Amnesty International. You can find him at and on Twitter @brianklaas.


Brian Klaas

Brian Klaas

American Political Scientist, Columnist, Author

More Recent Events You May Like...

Barbara Bush

06/23/2020 - What Kind of Leadership Does Our World Need?

Ruth Simmons Thumbnail

05/14/2024 - The Remarkable Story of the First Black Ivy League President Ruth Simmons

Website Thumbnail 1 Host 525x725

05/02/2024 - The Power of Communication: How to Lead Effectively, Negotiate Better & Increase Your Impact

We use cookies to improve your web experience, analyze site usage, and deliver personalized content to you. Some cookies are essential to site functionality, others are optional and help us see how the site is used or allow us to better service you.  By clicking “Accept” you are accepting all cookies. To better understand how cookies are used by us or to opt-out, visit Terms of Use.