Former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton offered their advice to future leaders on Thursday, saying that an important part of being president was learning to be “humble in victory”, The Hill reports.
“He (Clinton) was humble in victory, which is very important in dealing with other people,” Bush told the crowd of his predecessor. Clinton joined in, adding that humility is an important characteristic for good presidents.
“If you want to be president, realize it’s about the people, not about you. You want to be able to say ‘things were better off when I quit, kid’s had a better future, things were coming together.’ You don’t want to say, ‘God, look at all the people I beat.’” Clinton said.
The two former presidents never mentioned President Donald Trump directly during their talk, which lasted almost an hour, but Reuters reported that the two made several veiled references to the 45th president.
Both said that being prepared to deal with the unexpected is an important trait for leaders today.
“The decisions you make have a monumental effect on people. Presidency is often defined by the unexpected. It makes the job interesting,” Bush told the crowd.
“If you don’t deal with the incoming fire, it will undermine your ability to do anything else. If all you deal with is incoming fire, you can’t keep the promises you made when you were running,” Clinton added.
“The best thing that can happen to you when you are in politics is to be consistently underestimated,” Clinton noted. “I was pretty good at that,” Bush responded, to laughs.