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The Leadership Podcast

The Leadership Podcast

Why do we do this?

We interview great leaders, review the books they read, and speak with highly influential authors who study them.

How we do this?

#1 We interview great leaders.
#2 We review the books great leaders read and write.
#3 We have fun!

Nov 20, 2019

Dean DiSibio is the Founder of the Colonel’s Leadership Council and the Co-Author of Reel Lessons in Leadership. In Dean’s book, he breaks down iconic movie characters and the leadership qualities (and flaws) that they possess. Traits and skills like self-control, negotiation, and empathy are all part of a leader’s repertoire for success.


Key Takeaways 

[4:25] Dean co-wrote the book, Reel Lessons in Leadership, with his father.  

[6:15] Movies are a very common connection point that all generations can relate to, which is why Dean decided to breakdown leadership lessons from important movies in our era.

[7:50] Dean shares why the movie, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, has some important leadership lessons in it.

[12:10] In The Godfather, it all boils down to self-control.  

[15:05] Leaders need coaches in their corner to help guide them through troubling situations.  

[18:55] When it comes to leadership traits, Dean outlines in his book the traits that need to be developed vs. need to be practiced.  

[25:55] The military understands they have to train people. The business world… not so much. 

[32:35] Dean mentioned in his book that negotiation is a skill leaders must develop. This is something very few people are talking about in a leadership context. Dean believes good negotiators have the same traits as good leaders. They tend to have self-control, confidence, credibility, and good communication and are often well-prepared and forward-thinking.

[38:35] Dean puts leaders into three categories, Maximizers, Overachievers, and Underachievers.  

[41:25] Dean presents a challenge: Pay attention to the fictional characters you love and have a curiosity as to what leadership traits they possess. Have discussions about them with your friends and family.


Strategic Partner


Beyond the Uniform offers over 300 free episodes to help military Veterans succeed in their civilian career. This includes overviews of potential career paths, deep dives on necessary skills to succeed, and reviews of other free services that support the military Veteran community. You can find more info at


Quotable Quotes

  • “Good leaders have to have self-control.”
  • I believe folks have a high empathy muscle that they’re born with. 
  • “Self-awareness is half the battle.”
  • “I believe the best leaders are inquisitive.”


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The Leadership Podcast is proud to announce a new initiative with thoughtLEADERS to provide very short podcasts called “chalk talks.” They’re “bitesize” hacks on common (but challenging) leadership issues.


Interested in learning more?  You can only access the Chalk Talks by subscribing to our mailing list at The Leadership Podcast.


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Colonel’s Leadership Council

Reel Lessons in Leadership, by Ralph R. DiSibio with Dean A. DiSibio

One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

The Godfather

TED Talk — “The Surprising Science of Alpha Males”


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Website: The Leadership Podcast