"John Paul II showed me what real leadership looks like. He modeled for me how to pursue our God-given potential. Not coincidentally, this also makes us and those around us better employees, more capable of and more willing to work hard at building a stronger company. That's something that makes both good human sense and good business sense."
Former Swiss Guard, CEO and business leader Andreas Widmer gives a behind-the-scenes look into Pope John Paul II, "the most authentically human person I've ever met, " and reveals how those memories shaped and forged his success as a corporate executive. In what papal biographer George Weigel calls "a powerful example of leadership at work," Widmer recounts his personal experiences serving Blessed Pope John Paul II in the Swiss Guard, and the secrets of successful leadership that he learned at the feet of the great pope.
"John Paul's influence made me understand that business and faith go together. The free market and Christianity are not opposed to each other but business can be a wonderful school of virtue and faith. Faith and virtue, on the other hand, make a business and the economy truly prosperous. The late pope is a great inspiration and example for business leaders and CEOs. He is for me and I hope he will be for you as well. "
"Andreas Widmer has given us a true gift by sharing his first-hand experience of Pope JPII's personal habits so that we can incorporate these in our own leadership journey," says Dr. Carolyn Woo, Dean of the Business School at Notre Dame.
This up-close look at the pope's influence raises the bar for leadership to new heights. Christian executives, CEOs, entrepreneurs, small business owners—anyone who wants to avoid mediocrity—will find the lessons Widmer learned and imparts both inspirational and practical.
Peter Cardinal Turkson comments that this book is "an excellent tribute to the memory of [Pope John Paul II] and a commendable guide to successful entrepreneurship."
Widmer learned from the pope that moral leadership doesn't just make a difference for the leaders themselves, but makes a difference for their companies, customers, and teams. Companies, led by a strong, moral leader, says Widmer, also have a proven track record of performing better in the long run.
"Andreas' insights from daily life with a great man like John Paul II drives home the point that business decisions can be made from purely human motives OR with God's inspiration for us and for our work. The anecdotes and insights make The Pope & The CEO a worthwhile read," says Claire Huang, Senior Vice President of Marketing at Bank of America Merrill Lynch.
The Pope & The CEO offers nine chapters of stories and reflections about John Paul II and practical applications connecting those teachings to the world of business, big or small, and to anyone wanting to lead a team of people in today's world.
Published by Emmaus Road, this is a first of its kind look into the life of a Swiss Guard and what he learned from perhaps the greatest Christian of our time. Widmer's observation of John Paul II, and his direct experience of the late pope's approach to leadership, had a profound impact on the way he sees the centrality of human interaction: "When you were with the Holy Father, you felt like you were the reason he got up in the morning."