The President's Job

Clock with figure of Franklin D. Roosevelt

As a nation, we place no greater responsibility on any one individual than we do on the president. Could any job be more demanding and complex? We ask the president to be executive, diplomat, military leader, and consoler. On any given day he might have to make life-and-death decisions, propose policies that will change the course of the country, and then greet a group of elementary schoolchildren.

The greatest chief executives thrive at balancing the numerous roles they are expected to play; others stumble because they cannot master one of the many duties of the office.