[April 11, 2018] You and I have probably had a similar experience with a boss that made us madder-n-hell. Like so many folks, I had a boss that had few leadership skills yet held the title of “Commander.” To those who worked for him, he was a leader in name only.
I personally don’t hold the expectation that everyone must be a leader. I don’t expect it even in the military; although many military leaders do. What I do hope to see are people in positions of formal authority actively exercising their leadership skills.
“For I shall show that it isn’t positions which lend men distinction, but men who enhance positions.” – Agiad King Leonidas
There is nothing more dangerous than a military leader who is a leader in name only. Leadership is not about a position title or designation. It’s about inspiring others, having influence, and showing passion for your profession. And it matters not what profession or job or position we may have, leadership is not about the title we hold.
In America, we are told there is a shortage of good leaders. The decline of leadership is often discussed in the quantitative form; declining numbers of real leaders. At issue however is not the numbers of leaders but the quality of leaders we do have.
The U.S. military, like so many other professions, continues to struggle with the development and retention of good leaders. Because the need in the private sector is so great for those who can exercise leadership skills, military leaders are pulled away to ply their trade with private companies that need them.
U.S. President Harry S Truman once said that “where there is no leadership, society stands still.” Progress occurs only when skilled leaders take all prospects to transform things for the better.