David Brooks wrote an excellent article today titled “The C.E.O. in Politics” about the qualities of an executive President. Without regard to the outcome of the Presidential Primary elections, the characteristics that Brooks describe really apply to any position of executive leadership from President to Governor to Mayor. The qualities include:
- Emotional security
- Superb political judgement
- Experienced setbacks/understand personal weakness
- Instrumental mentality
On instrumental mentality, Brooks writes, “This sense of being an instrument gives them an organizing purpose. It gives them a longer perspective, so they don’t get distracted by ephemera. It means their administration marches in one direction, even though it is flexible and willing to accept incremental gains along the way.”
Along with answering these questions that we have discussed before, any candidate seeking executive office should look within themselves to see if they have these qualities.