Summary of Mother Teresa, CEO

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In the early 1990s, at age 19, author Ruma Bose worked as a volunteer in Calcutta (now Kolkata) with Mother Teresa. Now Bose and co-author Lou Faust have identified eight key leadership principles Mother Teresa practiced diligently as she built the Missionaries of Charity into a global organization with billions of dollars in revenue. The authors include stories from their entrepreneurial and corporate experiences, easy-to-follow discussions, and incidents from Mother Teresa’s life to show how each principle can benefit you personally and professionally. When reflecting on Mother Teresa’s unique life and single-minded dedication, you may be tempted to view her gentle spirit, charitable work, and lofty goals as inspired by faith and somehow not relevant to the modern world. That would be misguided thinking. In fact, “you don’t have to be a saint” to gain from the fundamental tenets of her leadership, which are useful to managers at all levels. While some may think this short book is a bit simplistic, getAbstract finds that its very simplicity is a large part of what makes it so powerful.

About the Authors

Ruma Bose worked as a volunteer with Mother Teresa from 1992 to 1993. She is president and co-CEO of the wellness company Sprayology. Lou Faust, formerly with Salomon Brothers, is the founder and managing partner of Edge Capital Partners consultancy.



“The Teresa Principles”

In 1928, the 18-year-old Albanian woman who was to become Mother Teresa decided to dedicate herself to religious service and joined the Sisters of Loreto. The convent sent her to teach at a girls’ school in Calcutta (now Kolkata) in India. She left the order in 1946, driven by a call to serve the destitute, and started the Society of the Missionaries of Charity in 1950. The religious order grew from 13 sisters to a global organization operating in 134 countries on five continents with a full-time staff of 4,000, more than a million volunteers, strong brand recognition worldwide and billions of dollars in funding – all under the leadership of a woman who never received any business training. A study of Mother Teresa’s work, her “drive, determination, faith and singular management style,” reveals the power of eight straightforward leadership principles:

Principle 1: “Dream It Simple, Say It Strong”

Surrounded by abject poverty and sickness as a young nun in Calcutta, Mother Teresa realized that her true life’s work was to minister and dedicate herself to those who “have become a burden to the society and are shunned by everyone.” With...

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