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Lead Like Reagan: Strategies to Motivate, Communicate, and Inspire by Dan Quiggle

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1Creating the VisionSetting Expansive Goals

Our country is a special place, because we Americans have always been sustained, through good times and bad, by a noble vision—a vision not only of what the world around us is today but what we as a free people can make it be tomorrow.

—Ronald Reagan1

When Ronald Reagan was sworn in as president of the United States in January 1981, there was widespread malaise domestically. The nation suffered from high inflation, scarce jobs, and low morale. Yet Ronald Reagan immediately took office and began to talk about a new dawn, morning in America, better days ahead, and the proverbial shining city on a hill.

In reality, the country was no different on Ronald Reagan's inauguration day than it had been the day prior. Yet President Reagan proposed a new, ambitious vision, and so America's perception of its own future was entirely, and immediately, different. The images of reclaimed greatness he envisioned for the country made others believe that restoration was possible, not only for the future, but that change was already taking place. America wanted desperately to believe in itself again and in the promise of its future. Through words initially, then subsequently backed up by policy and action, Ronald Reagan made that vision for America a reality.

He was a man of vision and knew how to articulate that vision in compelling, inspiring ways. Ronald Reagan, known as the “Great Communicator,” was once quoted as saying, “Most often it's not how ...

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