Lincoln: Aspiring to Greatness

daniel_chester_french_sculpture_of_abraham_lincoln_inside_the_lincoln_memorial_1280x960  Before the statues and the memorials are built, attesting to an individual’s greatness, there must first be accomplishments.  Most would agree that Abraham Lincoln, the nation’s 16th president, was a great and transformational president. His legacy, holding the union together between 1861-1865 during the nation’s great civil war and proclaiming the emancipation proclamation in 1863, was acknowledged and memorialized with the Lincoln Memorial  which anchors the west end of the National Mall.   Steven Spielberg’s Lincoln , recently in the news for Daniel Day-Lewis’ award winning performance, revived interest in Lincoln’s presidency and his attributes.

Michael Maslanka recently published an article on,  reviewing Lincoln’s behavior and extracting lessons for general counsel that are also applicable for everyone.   According to Maslanka, Lincoln’s behavior from 1861-1865 personified the attributes of a great leader.  Maslanka then extracts six lessons from Lincoln’s behavior.  They are:

*  Mission over ego;

* Salvage if possible; fire when necessary;

* Acknowledge mistakes;

* Demonstrate moral leadership;

* Manage anger; and

* Accept advice.

To read more about Lincoln, check out the library’s online catalog, the Gavel, to locate biographies, memoirs, and speeches of Lincoln.

Hat Tip:  Michael Maslanka, President Lincoln’s Lessons for General Counsel,

About Lisa Smith-Butler

Associate Professor of Law Charleston School of Law 385 Meeting St., Suite 322B Charleston, S.C. 29403 843.377.2144
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s