Scholars who have studied the development of leaders have situated resilience, the ability to sustain ambition in the face of frustration, at the heart of potential leadership growth. "Why some people are able o extract wisdom from experience, and others are not," Warren Bennis and Robert Thomas write, remains a critical question. Some people lose er bearings; their lives are forever stunted. Others resume their normal behaviors after a period of time. Still others, through reflection and adaptive capacity, are able to transcend their ordeal, armed with a greater resolve and purpose.
Soon, each of these four men would experience dramatic setbacks. All of them would fall into depression and consider leaving public life.