The following is my conversation with one of my awesome followers, ObstructedByNone, who nominated this blog for a Liebster Award:
OBN: I nominated your blog for the Liebster Blog Award. You don’t have to do all of the questions and the like, but I’d be interested in how you got into the Lincoln Daily Management business.
Me: I honestly did not know there was such a thing (a Liebster Award) until I read your comment and then googled it – but thank you very much! I am honored and will be happy to answer all of the questions. From what I understand, you have to ask me 11 questions (I wonder why 11, but whatever).
In answer to this question, Lincoln Daily Management was created from the combined inspiration of my own desire to have humanity work for better leaders and managers, and 3 books: Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, Daniel Pink’s Drive: The Surprising Truth Behind What Motivates Us, and Leading So People Will Follow by Erika Andersen. In my own personal experience, I’ve worked for a few great leaders – and absolutely horrible ones. I’ve also been one several times, am one, and I can only hope that I fall into the first category.
OBN: Sweet! Alright, since you answered one already, I’ll give you ten questions:
1) What’s your favorite food?
Me: Anything Mexican, except chile verde and menudo.
OBN: 2) What’s your favorite spot to think in?
Me: My car…while driving. Scary, huh?
OBN: 3) In what ways do you hope your readers will apply what they learn from your blog?
Me: I hope that managers and leaders take each tip that I offer daily to try to be more like Lincoln. Their employees, customers/clients, and their own bosses and stockholders deserve it. To me, he was the most proven executive who ever lived. Who else is better to offer lessons in leadership?
OBN: 4) Who’s a better leader, Lincoln or George Washington? Explain why.
Me: They are apples and oranges – but both are amazing though. You have to take them each in the context of their times and situations. If you were to put them both in a modern context (through a time machine, for example), I think Lincoln would be more successful in corporate America, and Washington more successful in public service. Ironically, I don’t think Washington would want to be involved in today’s politics (much like Colin Powell shunned it). I can honestly see Lincoln running a start-up or shaking up a stagnant company. Lincoln’s looks and off-beat wife would’ve limited Lincoln’s chances politically today.
OBN: 5) What do you think is the worst quality that can hold back a potential leader?
Me: Selfishness. Your followers may look out only for themselves, but you can’t afford to do that. A huge part of your job is to look out for them.
OBN: 6) What do you think is the most important quality of a potential leader?
Me: Sorry, I’m going to cop out and call this a tie between passion and responsibility. Without passion, you don’t inspire or communicate effectively. Without responsibility, you can’t set an example, protect your people, be a professional, do the right thing, or take care of yourself.
OBN: 7) Would you rather have a cat, dog, horse, or ferret?
Me: Dogs. Want to learn to be a leader? Raise a dog.
OBN: 8) How much fun should a leader have in their occupation?
Me: If you’re never going to have any fun, don’t do it. Some days, it will be no fun at all, but there better be some fun most days, or you’ll burn out. Fun is probably not as important as happy satisfaction though.
OBN: 9) Where do you find so much biographical info on Abe Lincoln?
Me: Everywhere. Did you know that there has been an average of one book written every day about Lincoln and/or the Civil War since the end of the Civil War? That’s mind-blowing. (I think my book’s day was sometime in February.) The place I recommend starting is with Goodwin’s book, Team of Rivals.
OBN: 10) What’s the most fun aspect about blogging for you?
Me: The exchange of ideas. At first, you just want to get your own point across. But then you realize that for people to read you, you need to read them. It’s a great give-and-take. Now, I enjoy the reading/participating aspect of blogging just as much as the writing part.
OBN: P.S. I suggest making a post of this QA so that more of your readers can see this and get to know you more. 🙂 Thanks for your time, I know it’s a lot!
Me: I did! You’re welcome – it was my pleasure.