When it comes right down to it, leadership is really a reflection of…who one is! It is about one’s character and principles. It is about one’s philosophy.
I posted about John Allison in “Those With High Character Take A Stand” and in reviewing his Number One New York Times Bestseller, The Financial Crisis And The Free Market Cure. That book was selected by the Wall Street Journal as one of the top 5 books on the financial crisis.
Just a few weeks ago I posted a review of his newest book, The Leadership Crisis And The Free Market Cure. I gobble up books on leadership and have learned a ton from many of them. This one might be the most important one yet.
After all, there’s a lot to learn from someone who as Chairman and CEO led his company, BB&T, through 20 years of explosive growth (from $4.5 billion to $152 billion in assets during his tenure!). This while many of his competitors were failing left and right.
More importantly, he did it the right way; through creating value for everyone whose lives he and his bank touched. He refused to participate in sub-prime lending even though that would’ve been the easy, profitable and accepted way to do business at that time. In fact, he was — let’s say — strongly encouraged by government regulators to do so. However, because it was contrary to what he believed was right, he refused. Yet, his bank flourished.
Harvard Business Review named him one of the decades top 100 most successful CEOs!
And, this brings us to today’s conversation. You see, all the above was driven by his character, based on the values and principles he lives by, congruent with his life philosophy. And, as he discusses both in the book and in our chat, this influences all forms of leadership: personal, business, and societal.
The current CEO of the highly-regarded libertarian think tank, Cato Institute, he doesn’t pull any punches, and you’ll see he doesn’t here!
In this chat we discuss:
- A nut-shell explanation of the cause of the financial crisis
- Why leaders fail
- That we all have, and live by, a philosophy…whether we realize it or not
- The importance of training your emotions to support what you know is the right decision
- The essence of self-esteem and why it is THE most important issue of all
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