When former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani spoke at a conference hosted by the Center for Creative Leadership last year, he named six essential qualities of great leadership:
Strong beliefs that might be unpopular. Ronald Reagan’s belief that American government was too large and needed to be downsized was not yet popular. But he held to it and brought about a fundamental change in government.
Raw optimism.Winston Churchill used it to help his country survive the Battle of Britain, and Giuliani adopted Churchill’s style to lead New York in the days following the World Trade Center attacks.
“When you can visualize success,” Giuliani said, “it helps you figure out the steps to get there.”
Courage. “Courage is not the absence of fear,” Giuliani explained. “It is the management of fear.” Example: Americans should fear another terrorist attack, Guiliani said, but they should use that fear as motivation to prepare.
Preparation. New York City was not prepared specifically for an attack on the Trade Center, Giuliani said, but it was prepared for plane crashes, building collapses and other disasters.
“Something unanticipated will always happen,” Giuliani said. “But if you’ve prepared for everything else, you will know how to respond to the unexpected.”
Teamwork. “Focus on your weaknesses,” Giuliani said, and “balance these with the strengths of the other people around you.”
Communication. “You have to get your own ideas out of your mind and heart,” said Giuliani, “and into the minds and hearts of other people.”
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