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16 Leadership Quotes and Principles From Secretariat

Secretariat is AMAZING and the best movie I saw in 2010!  Randall Wallace has given us a great gift in the creation of this film.  With the dvd coming out on Tuesday, I cannot recommend it enough for your entire family.

The following are the leadership quotes and principles from the movie.

  1. Our Lives Are One Phone Call Away From Changing Forever.  Penny Chenery, played by Diane Lane, receives a phone call in the opening scene notifying her that her mother has passed.  This begins the series of events that resulted in Secretariat becoming the greatest racehorse of all time.  I have had several instances this year where my life was propelled in another direction simply as a result of an unexpected phone call so this principle hits close to home.
  2. “It’s not whether they think we won.  It’s whether we think we won.” – Penny’s father Chris Chenery
  3. “Great colts come from great sires.” Fathers, we are not horses obviously, but can you see the application?
  4. Talent is Often Uniquely Packaged.  Lucien Laurin, played by the incredible John Malkovich, is eccentric in wardrobe and personality to say the least.  Be careful about making judgements based upon external appearances.
  5. “I got what I wanted.” – Penny Chenery referring to acquiring Secretariat in a coin flip followed by her brother Hollis’s statement “You got what no one else wanted.”
  6. Always Trust A Woman’s Intuition.  Penny received no support from either her husband or brother.  It is one of the truths of this life that God gives women a sixth sense regarding life’s issues.  Husbands, trust your wives’ insights.
  7. “Let him run his race.”  Good words for us as leaders.
  8. “He’s (Secretariat) slower than a fat man encased in concrete being drug backwards.” – Laurin
  9. “The owner hates the attention but the horse loves it.”  Do you have anyone on your team like that.  If so, that is not necessarily a bad thing.
  10. “My father’s legacy is not his money.  My father’s legacy is the will to win.”
  11. You never know how far you can go unless you run.”
  12. I will not live the rest of my life in regret.” – Chenery
  13. “One loss can happen.  Two is non-performance.” – Chenery’s primary financial backer Ogden Phillips played by James Cromwell.
  14. “I told her I’m taller when I stand on my wallet.” – Jockey Ronnie Turcotte when referring to his tall, blonde date for the evening.
  15. I’ve run my race.  You run your’s.” – Chenery speaking to Secretariat the evening before the Belmont Stakes.
  16. Let him run Ronnie!  Let him run!” – Chenery as Secretariat was going down the backstretch at the Belmont.

After watching the movie, and I suggest you buy the dvd, I’ve thought a lot about those final words from Penny Chenery.  Leaders, RUN…JUST RUN.  And to those who serve on your teams, Let Them Run.  Let Them Run.

As a special gift to you, click here for a very unique interview between Tony Morgan and director Randall Wallace.

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Brian Dodd is a church stewardship & leadership consultant. See www.briandoddonleadership.com for additional insights.