Leadership by Lincoln

First, great movie. I actually hate history but if i have to learn about history a really good movie is an acceptable method. HA!

Anyway, as I head into 2013 where the last few months of my life have been consumed with a NHL lockout and an impending fiscal cliff the most refreshing thing about the movie was how Lincoln handled his Leadership responsibility.

Here’s a few things I took away:

1. He did what he knew to be RIGHT even though it wasn’t a popular choice. My favorite part of the movie is when his cabinet who has repeatedly told him  that trying to pass the 13th amendment is a bad idea, starts in again and Lincoln explodes (it’s the only time in the movie he got angry with co-workers) and he says something along the lines of “i know you can’t see this as important but it is, I know it is and we are going to make it happen”.

2. He compromised. He knew in order to get to the end game, he’d have to take baby steps and get buy in from his enemies.

3. He moved deliberately, slowly and questioned himself constantly. It was refreshing to see a leader who could admit he didn’t always have all the answers and that his tough decisions were thoroughly thought through.

4. He made his points through story telling. Often, in the middle of a negotiation Lincoln would start of by telling a story to make his point. It was a very effective, light-hearted way to make a point.

So, that’s it. I can only hope I’m half of a shadow of the leader Lincoln was. He seemed like one heck of a guy 🙂

If you’ve seen the movie, let me know what leadership traits spoke to you that you plan on implementing in 2013.


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