Lincoln Principles

I started out my career as a banker. First in auditing, then as a loan officer, then as a branch manager and commercial lender. In those early years I knew that learning and growing were important for me to make it to the top. That is when I began to read about leadership and management. I read a book about President Lincoln that I recently took off my shelf again (Lincoln on Leadership by Donald Phillips). As I scanned through the book I was struck by some of the incredible leadership principles Lincoln had. No wonder he was such a great leader. Most are simple yet profound. Here are some for you to ponder:

“Showing your compassionate and caring nature will aid you in forging successful relationships”

“A good leader avoids issuing orders, preferring to request, imply, or make suggestions”

“It would not hurt you much if, once in a while, you could manage to let things slip, unbeknownst-like”

Remember: Your organization will take on the personality of its top leader”

“Do the very best you know how-the very best you can-and keep doing so until the end”

“It’s not entirely safe to allow a misrepresentation to go uncontradicted”

“Remember that it is not best to swap horses when crossing streams”

“Seize the initiative and never relinquish it”

“If you are a good leader, when your work is done, your aim fulfilled, your people will say, We did it ourselves”

“Sometimes it is better to plough around obstacles rather than to waste time going through them”

“Leave nothing for tomorrow which can be done today”

“If you never try, you’ll never succeed”

“Loyalty is more often won through private conversation than in any other way”

“Remember, everyone likes a compliment”

“The probability that you may fall in the struggle ought not to deter you from the support of a cause you believe to be just”

“Remember, that the best leaders never stop learning”

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