The idea of a leader resembling the conductor of an orchestra is one that is very often used and serves in explaining in some ways one or two important points of a leader’s work.
When the orchestra plays sure the conductor is there to coordinate and inspire the orchestra members’ performance to produce the whole experience.
But probably a more important role of the conductor and something that not many remember, is his role and responsibilities before the concert. He must put his talent and effort to organize, coach and prepare his orchestra members the way he wants them to perform. A long and an arduous work for a moment’s glory on stage. The moment is of course important but it is not the producing factor.
It is the same with the leader.
A good leader sure must have visibility as a coherent inspiring symbol but doesn’t have to be there all the time for his team or organization to perform. His most important work like that of the orchestra conductor, has been done long before the stage performance.