Anger and leadership

Obama angryAlthough “coolness” was a factor that helped get him elected, President Obama has come under fire for not showing more anger — with banks, terrorists, or oil spills.  School of Management Professor Kathy Kram, an expert on executive leadership development, says temperment is basically a set of preferences for how one wants to be in the world — and staying cool has been what has worked for Obama through his career.  Leaders must show emotion, she says in a BU Today interview, and Obama seems more inclined to express his emotions in a planned, thoughtful way rather than in random outbursts.

“I think a lot of times constituents are looking for passion. I suspect that Obama’s logical, rational, fact-based approach can sometimes mask his passion. Maybe that’s what the public is looking for at the moment: the passion to get things right.”

Contact Kathy Kram, 617-353-4269, kekram@bu.edu

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