Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Leadership Lessons - Patton

"A piece of spaghetti or a military unit can only be led from the front end."  George S. Patton .

That quote is true for every venture, adventure and outing in life.  If you want to go somewhere and get something done using others - you must go first.

Here are a few facts about Patton that will help us better understand his style -
  • He read up, researched and understood his role and how others before him had devised and executed their tactics.  Example - Patton read about the Roman invasion of Europe and used the same routes in his journey into Germany.

  • He broke the rules and made changes to ensure success.  Patton had each of his own personal jeeps (or peeps) modified so that he could travel safely and successfully even in the middle of a firefight.

  • He changed his persona to suit the surroundings.  When in polite company Patton would take on the air of a perfect gentleman.  When with the troops he would swear, cuss and use foul language to make a point.  He fitted in with whom he was talking to and was able to relate to others where they were at.
Being a man of action and a straight shooter often times saw Patton on the wrong side of his peers andpublic opinion.  But sometimes you need to have the spine to ignore others, make the right call and make results happen.  It is up to you to decide where, when and what is important enough to warrant such action.

"If you tell people where to go, but not how to get there, you'll be amazed at the results."  George S. Patton.


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