Lincoln On Leadership By Donald T. Phillips

1787 Words8 Pages
The book; Lincoln on Leadership, by Donald T. Phillips, is a case study into the leadership principles and practices of arguably one of the world’s greatest leaders. Abraham Lincoln was a man with principles, ethics, decisiveness and vision. He inspired greatness in those around him. It is often said of Lincoln that he was the perfect man put in the perfect position to complete the improbable task of maintaining the union that was and is, the United States of America. In his book, Phillips delves into the leadership qualities embodied by Lincoln and explores Lincoln’s own leadership style as it related to both his early career as a lawyer and later, into Lincoln’s political life. Through his research into this book, Phillips relates…show more content…
It is as meaningful as a formal gathering, if not more so.” (Phillips, 1993; p. 26). Organizations, particularly government and police, operate in a fairly rigid hierarchy of command and control. What Lincoln embodied was that a true leader should not be shackled to a title or a managerial position. In James Kouzes and Barry Posner’s book: The Leadership Challenge (2012), the first of their five practices of exemplary leadership is, ironically, “Model the Way”. How else can a leader model the way and encourage their subordinates than to be seen and heard outside of just their position? Leaders can only truly lead if their subordinates have regular contact with them. The opportunity to interact with subordinates in a casual, informal environment presents the leader with untold opportunities to impart their shared visions and beliefs to their people. As a young trooper, my first experience with this principle was in the form of frequent post barbeques and celebrations. Every formal meeting would normally be accompanied by a more informal gathering and meal. Celebrations of holidays and birthdays were held both at work and away from the office and everyone from the Lieutenant down would attend. Everyone at the office knew each other’s families and through this, I saw that the morals and behaviors of my supervisors were consistent between their office and home lives. Later in my career, I observed many of my supervisors, who
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