LEADERSHIP SUMMIT 2009 – Tony Blair: An Interview

Posted on August 7, 2009




I felt very normal, but I have felt compelled to step out.

Most people like to be liked. People want to be popular. But you must take it within yourself that there are things that you will stand for, and not be flexible on. Part of leadership is having that inner core. I used to call it the “irreducible core.” That cannot be chipped away at, and that’s where I stand. For me, for my country, the final duty I owed them, is to do what is right, and their prerogative is to vote me in or out of office.

How do you handle doubt? Doubt is bestly reflected as a deep consideration of whether or not what you’re doing is right. The process of doubting and thinking through is positive and right. But there comes a time when you’ve got to put away the fear so you can make a decision. In the end, what you learn, is that people divide into two types: people that are constantly making commentary, and people that are making the right decisions.

What role has faith played in your leadership? Faith, and its role in the world is very potent, both for good and bad. I believe the single most important thing is that faith plays a considerably stronger constructive role in the 21st century.

What are the most important things a leader must do in leading them through crisis? The moment I realized how critical this situation was, were we as a country going to react, or were we going to stick to the values of our community? … Get the facts, make the managerial issues as best as they can, then speak to bring the people together.

How do you deal with disappointment? By counting your blessings. Realize that we’re blessed, and privileged. Never forget that. Every day, I get up and feel motivated.

“Leadership is a blessing, a gift you’ve been given to help others. And no matter how difficult, and challenging, and painful it is at times, it is your duty. The way the world around you works, without the leader, things don’t get done. The joy of getting things done makes all the pain worthwhile.”