23 years ago I had a two hour one-on-one with Shimon Peres in Jerusalem. I had been honoured to be asked to give the opening speech for the Peres Centre for Peace in Ajami, a predominantly Arab area in Jaffa a year earlier, and was fortunate enough to be invited back to meet again with President Peres to celebrate Saatchi & Saatchi’s being awarded the United Nations Gold Award for our Blood Relations campaign.
Our meeting ran one hour over the allotted time (much to the frustration of the Government time-keeping folks) as the President dispensed wisdom, humanity, principles, hopes – all in the context of Peace and Harmony. If only he were with us today. How the world needs such morally principled leadership!! When our meeting eventually ended I rushed into a private room to list 12 things I remembered from our two hours. Here they are.
12 Leadership Nuggets:
- Leaders must not be afraid of being alone.
- They must have the courage to be afraid.
- A leader must decide. He should not agree or disagree. He says Yes or No.
- A leader must pioneer not rule.
- A leader is not on the top of his people but ahead of them in front.
- Leadership is extremely hard work.
- When you have chosen a destiny … never give up.
- Leadership is based on a moral call.
- What is right today is different tomorrow.
- It’s not enough to be up to date; you have to be up tomorrow.
- To lead is to listen, to pay attention to every detail, to decide.
- Everything that once was controversial ultimately becomes popular.