Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Lincoln - A Movie Review

There are few men in history who see a moment to change its course for the better. Lincoln was one of those men. In the movie Lincoln, by Steven Spielberg, you witness any glory afforded to him was hard fought and part of a personal struggle. But, he proceeded to make history, in spite of the fact that his own wife, Molly, wanted no part, initially, in supporting the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, which abolished slavery. Needless to say there were millions as well who wanted to see no change to the Constitution either - the Southern states.

What I found most interesting about Lincoln was his patience, strategic insight, instincts and constant re-telling of stories, which placed so many metaphors on the moment. When you consider his countenance, there is no wonder that the man was slow and deliberate. But he was so, even when his cabinet challenged him on a daily basis. He did not "take the bait", he was careful with his words and thoughts.

Having been involved with several leadership teams, there is no doubt that Lincoln is a must watch. For starters, patience is critical, and reacting when it serves a purpose is a trait I hope to master. I was also struck by Lincoln's team of rivals concept. He chose for his cabinet men who would not agree with him. For starters, he appointed Republicans that actually competed with him for the Presidency! I found this to be the most striking - don't choose those who agree with you, but those who offer their own points of view, and will fight for them. Finally, in the movie, Lincoln is always telling jokes and stories, this seems to work to offset any issue with humor or helped others find insight.

May I say again... It is imperative that every strategic team watch this movie and discuss it. A worthy dive into what leadership really is!

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