Leadership Lessons from Hallmark Movies

Leadership Lessons from Hallmark Movies

I love Hallmark movies – especially the Christmas ones!  I call it the adult fairy tale channel. It amazes me how they can take the same, highly predictable plot and make it work in so many ways – boy & girl meet, they fall for each other, have some form of conflict, and then discover their happily ever after together. If we dig a little deeper into the plots, we can learn some valuable leadership lessons.


One half of our couple seems to always see or hear something and make a wrong assumption about it.  Whether it be a friendly hug, an arranged meeting out of their control, or half of a phone conversation, it gets misinterpreted. Then, they go to a friend and enhance the story just a bit to make sure it justifies their behavior. This usually causes a scene in the movie where there is a struggle around this false assumption and reality is brought to light.

As leaders, we can sometimes make wrong assumptions about things we see or hear which causes stress in the relationship.  Matthew 5:23-24 provides instruction on how to handle situations like this. “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” Although this would make a Hallmark movie shorter and take away from the plot, it’s the right thing to do.

Head vs Heart

Another recurring plot in Hallmark movies is that the main character knows what they want in their head.  They want the successful executive in the city to complete the whole “power couple” vision.  This is their perfect happily ever after … until … they end up in a small town during the holidays where they cross paths with a local who captures the heart of our Romeo or Juliet. There is an internal struggle between heart and head and, in the end, the heart usually wins.

There's an internal struggle between heart & head; in the end, the heart usually wins. 

If your desire is to be a Jesus-like leader then your heart is the first thing you must get in order.  Commonly referred to as “the love chapter,” 1 Corinthians 13 is all about love.  Verses 4-7 state, “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” Jesus led out of love when He was on Earth. He taught the disciples to lead out of love as well. When we let our pride of thinking we know the best plan for our lives or fear of making ourselves vulnerable or possibly failing, we edge God out. We must learn to overcome our pride and fear to exalt God only.


In the end, there is usually a lesson in humility. Our star realizes their ego got in the way and now a taste of humble pie is in order.  

Humility is knowing whose you are and who you are. Romans 12:3 says, “Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.”    Humility requires us to take the focus off ourselves and look for ways to lift others up.

As you go throughout your daily routine, I challenge you to look for opportunities to lift others up.

As you watch the Hallmark movies, look for these and other leadership lessons that can be applied to our lives.

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Kim Rider

Kim is the Director of Operations at Lead Like Jesus. She comes to the Lead Like Jesus team with nearly two decades of management and IT experience, including network support, project management, and department director roles. She also enjoys communications, and writes as a hobby.  She received her dual Bachelor’s of Arts degrees in Computer Information Systems and Business Administration from Piedmont College in Demorest, GA.

Kim and her husband live in Northeast Georgia with their two children and grandson.  She enjoys playing golf, running, and hiking in the North Georgia mountains.

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