Laura and I watched the movie “Bridge of Spies” on Thursday night. Below is a short clip to watch. You'll see accused Russian spy Rudolf Abel says two things which resonated with me.
First; “Would it help?” Despite all the evidence against him and having no friends in the US, Abel is resolute with his poise. He refuses to get flustered in situations that would test our nerves. Because he is able to maintain his emotions, he is able to think clearly and be present during an emotional time. This grace-under-fire is something I respect and strive towards (I am not always as good here as I would like to be).
Second; “The boss isn’t always right, but he’s always the boss.” Jeff taught me I get to try and change his mind if I think he is wrong but in the end - if I am unable to do so - he gets to decide. It’s healthy to have the ability to challenge, to speak truth to power and I rarely end up in a heated deadlock with Jeff because I know when to yield to his decisions. This makes us a good team.
I have two challenges for you this week. First, remember the quote “Would it help?” in the heat of your emotions this week. It might create that central calm in you that it created in Rudolf Abel. Second, remember the fallibility of the boss. We are conditioned from the twenty four hour news cycle to expect perfect, well informed, infallible decisions from our leaders. This is a standard that is difficult to live up to for anyone. With expectations so high, it is all of our jobs to help guide those leaders at home, at work, or in politics to make the right decision.