The Pope as Leader

Pope-mania has hit the US, and his visit has caused nothing short of a media frenzy. By the time he leaves Philadelphia this weekend, we will have heard the good, the bad, and the ugly from the pundits.

I’m intrigued by the pope as a spiritual and global leader. Earlier this week, David Brooks commented in The New York Times that Pope Francis offers a model based on two questions: “How do you deeply listen and learn? How do you uphold certain moral standards, while still being loving and merciful to those you befriend?”

Some of the characteristics highlighted in these questions are leadership attributes that many people emulate. The ability to really listen and stay in the moment is a characteristic shared by many great leaders. And upholding certain moral standards reflects a person of character.

I often suggest to clients to study leaders they admire and identify the specific characteristics that make these leaders venerable.

Regardless of your religious background or beliefs, join me in observing Pope Francis for the rest of his visit this week. Reflect on what inspires you by his demeanor.

Among my observations, for example, he has the ability to emphatically express strong opinions without denigrating opposing points of view. His empathy is so strong that it seems to imbue his dialogue and interactions with others.

After you select these leadership characteristics, contemplate what you might to do to integrate them into your unique leadership style.

I’m interested in your observations, so feel free to email me.

Have a great day!

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