Saturday, September 18, 2010

This Just In From The Front Lines...

 I've never examined military leadership, per se, but HR notable Susan M. Heathfield, who writes the column Your Tip of the Week for Success in Work and Life, About.com, yesterday quoted General (aka Stormin') Norman Schwarzkopf.  It's just too good to let get away:


Leadership is a combination of strategy and character.  If you must be without one, be without strategy.

     Let's pick that one apart - and see if there's value for domestic citizen development:
  • Is character, indeed, more important to leadership success than strategy?  Or, simply more preferable, based on internal makeup, abilities, or training?  Where would the reverse be true?
  • Could both exist simultaneously - and with equal emphasis?  
  • Which estate managers have higher rates of success: those favoring Strategy or those relying on good Character?
      The General, of course, means that what's on the inside of our being is worthy of higher credibility than our external processes. For domestic servants, this may translate into integrity, commitment, dependability, honesty, fairness toward others, and other such traits as being more valuable than having procedure for processes and the success that a clearly defined staffing or operations strategy could provide. Yet, could these character traits within estate leadership also produce success by inspiring the staff to their own skill and character development, thus ultimately relying more on their own core substance and self-confidence to make the right decisions - and less on external processes?
    The question then becomes:
    • Which of the two would your estate principal value?  Is their value the same as yours?  If not, can you adjust to the other?  How would you accomplish the adjustment successfully?
    Thought for the day:  A rather complex event - an entire war - was won, based on the predominate value which the victor's leader placed on the character traits developed by himself and his team.  He realized that during any effort, processes, procedures, and strategies can often go awry, yet a solid core character remains steadfast - and if it's developed well enough and given its due attention, can ensure leadership and team success.

    So, the next time staff is stressing over the strategy of pulling together a much less complex event - for instance, a little dinner party -  are there some lessons which can be drawn from here?  

    Missed his calling
    as a butler?