Lessons in Leadership

9/14/2015

Powerful Persistence – Abraham Lincoln

“Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other.” ~ Abraham Lincoln

As the 16th President of the United States, Abraham Lincoln is most celebrated for his role in keeping the nation together during the Civil War and signing the Emancipation Proclamation, which helped end slavery in the United States.  His leadership exemplified determination and is a reminder that great leaders must remain persistent, even when others do not believe in your vision as a leader.

Humble Sacrifice – Nelson Mandela

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it.  The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” ~ Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela was a visionary leader who believed that forgiveness was more important than revenge.  As the first South African president elected in fully democratic elections, he watched his country move past an era of apartheid after serving 30 years in prison.  His commitment to justice and peace, even after being imprisoned for so many years, is a reminder that great leaders must often sacrifice their personal comfort to accomplish their goals.

Leveraging Platforms – Bono

“Real leadership is when everyone else feels in charge.” ~ Bono

As the lead singer of the group U2, Bono leveraged his platform as a world renowned music entertainer to raise global awareness of critical issues like AIDS and poverty.  He has persuaded global leaders to increase their support of the world’s poorest countries and enlisted the support of major corporations and brands through his ONE and (RED) campaigns.  His ability to challenge the conventional expectations of music performers and entertainers and use his platform to address critical global issues is a reminder that great leaders leverage their platform to reach individuals outside of their normal circle and raise awareness of important issues.

Respect Your Team – Robert E. Lee

“The forbearing use of power does not only form a touchstone, but the manner in which an individual enjoys certain advantages over others is a test of a true gentleman.” ~ Robert E. Lee

Robert E. Lee was widely adored by his men.  In victory and defeat, they witnessed his great strength of character, his high sense of duty, his humility and selflessness.  Even Northerners accepted Lee as the greatest general of the Civil War.

When you respect your employees, they will respect you.  A happy team is a productive team, and when people believe in their leader, they’ll go to war for them.

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