Brookings Executive Education (BEE) has invited Paul Paese, of PMC, to continue teaching open enrollment and outreach courses, this year focusing on conflict resolution and effective leadership communication. BEE is a partnership of the Brookings Institution in Washington, DC and Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis. The Brookings Institution and Washington University share a common benefactor and visionary in Robert S. Brookings. The mission of BEE is to deliver on Robert Brookings’ desire to “teach the art of handling problems rather than simply impart accumulated knowledge” to those in and engaged with government. Starting last month and continuing into June, Paul will be teaching two Brookings courses: “Leading Through Empathic Communication” and “Strategies for Conflict Resolution.”
Leaders need strength to be successful. While this obvious truth is widely recognized, opinions differ on what constitutes “strength.” In the eyes of many, strength means standing firm, winning your position, exuding confidence, and minimizing vulnerability. At PMC, our clients are often surprised to hear that we see vulnerability as a key source of leadership strength. Which is stronger, a leader who advocates a position and stands firm until others bend? Or a leader who advocates a position while remaining open to different views, even inviting challenge from others? Leaders who take the path of openness will naturally feel vulnerable. Paradoxically, this vulnerability is not a sign of weakness, but rather a clear indication of leadership strength.