Leadership Thought #412 – Obama’s Substance Over Romney’s Style

Far too many people think that leadership is about style over substance these days. It’s almost as if it is more important to look and sound like a leader rather than behave like one. I wonder if historical figures like Abraham Lincoln with his high pitched nasally voice ad physical awkwardness or George Washington who was personally aloof and somewhat stiff in public settings would even stand a chance today. When a society starts spending more time focusing on how things appear rather than how they truly are, we as a people are in trouble. It is the content of someone’s character that matters most when tough decisions need to be made. We are in serious times both geopolitically and socioeconomically. We need deliberative thinkers who think before they act, don’t rush to judgment, have the ability to prioritize amongst competing issues, stay cool under pressure, maintain a reasonable level of consistency in their actions and messaging, build alliances rather than make enemies, and tell us the truth even when it is unpopular. The presidency shouldn’t be just a popularity contest.

Leadership Thought #294 – Our Political Process Is Broken

This will be a rare post on politics. It’s hard not to attention the Republican race for presidential nominee (even if it isn’t typically your party of choice). We are bombarded with news stories, debates and advertising spots that keep the issue constantly top of mind. After you receive a certain amount of information you start to block out the noise and become skeptical of anything any candidate has to say including the political commentators. It is the textbook definition of overkill. The campaign season for either party lasts ways too long for my liking. It’s a long hard slog to the convention and ultimately Election Day. And, just a thought, if your party is in power, shouldn’t it be spending its time governing rather than talking about what should be happening…