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Two Leadership Traits I Learned from President Reagan

President Reagan gave me the gift of a lifetime—the opportunity to start my professional career in his post-presidential office. In President Reagan’s post-Presidential office I had a front row seat to history. More importantly I learned what real leadership looks like, behind the scenes. Politics aside, President Reagan was one of the most gifted leaders the world has known in a generation. 

Two leadership traits I observed in President Reagan and that have stayed with me throughout my leadership journey are: 1) an attitude of gratitude 2) humor.

Listen to episode 033 of my leadership podcast to hear some of my favorite stories of how Ronald Reagan practiced an attitude of gratitude and humor and consequently influenced my perspective on leadership for the rest of my life.

In this episode of Garage to Goliath | Leaders Building Legacies you’ll hear:

  • My personal favorite Ronald Reagan story. [1:01]
  • How to create a Thank-you Department to help you lead with gratitude. [5:35]
  • What I do when I think about someone for more than 30 seconds. [6:54]
  • My favorite Mother Teresa quote on leadership. [8:48]
  • How we should all view our lives as leaders. [9:34]
  • The question you should continually ask yourself as a leader. *Warning* it may mess with your head. [10:41]
  • Why leading with humor Is so important. [12:35]
  • The time President Reagan gave me a car. [13:02]
  • The awkward (...and funny) time the President invited me into his bedroom. Seriously listen before you make assumptions; I promise there is a leadership lesson in there. [14:00]

Sometimes we get wrapped up in the leadership title and position and start wielding our power in ways that isn’t actually leadership.

Remember, real leadership is not about demanding and demeaning. It's about empowering, inspiring, and appreciating.

Lead well,


Thanks for listening! To help the show succeed, please:

  1. Subscribe to my leadership podcast on iTunes or SoundCloud.
  2. Leave an honest comment in iTunes. Your ratings help me get better as a host and it helps others find the show

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