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Interview With Deepak Chopra on 'The Soul of Leadership'

Older, wiser population has multiple built-in assets

Q. And with the population growing older and living longer, there seems to be more opportunity for the mature person to share these qualities.

A. That's my goal. I want to bring our society to respect people who grow old, to recognize that they can learn from their experience. The mature leader has many important roles — protector, motivator, team builder, nurturer, innovator, transformer, guide and sage. Just by their presence, they should be able to dispel any doubts or darkness. If leaders can share hope, trust, passion and stability, they're very likely to be respected.

Q. By trust, you mean to trust the new worker who's still finding his or her sea legs, right?

A. The more you trust and give them that trust, the more likely they are to live up to it.

Q. That's true for children as well.

A. Absolutely. People live up to the kind of message you give them. The most important thing we can do is show emotion and caring, and if it's authentic, then it will be reflected no matter what the situation is.

Maureen Mackey is an editor and writer in New York.

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