Normally, a leader’s greatest attribute is unbridled optimism. As retired General Colin Powell says, “Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.” You would rather have Colin Powell lead you into battle than Eeyore, but you also need to deal in reality. The unbridled optimism that turns a business dreamer into a business leader has a downside: it can keep executives from confronting the hard facts about their organizations. Sometimes leaders sweep so much bad news under the rug that they can hardly see their own desks. A bright outlook is terrific, as long as it is tempered by an ability to deal in reality, a trait that not all leaders have.