In the modern world of personality politics, there are few opportunities to take genuine leadership lessons from politicians. For one thing, they live in a 24-7 popularity contest, which CEOs thankfully don’t.
A crisis like coronavirus perhaps presents an exception. Donald Trump has been true to form in presenting a bad example, initially downplaying the virus and now trying to turn it into a points-scoring blame game. Brazil’s president Jair Bolsonaro is arguably even worse, downplaying COVID-19 as ‘the sniffles’ and leaving social isolation to attend supermarkets and hug fans at rallies.
On the other end of the scale, New Zealand’s centre-left prime minister Jacinda Ardern has won plaudits for her sensitive handling of the crisis.