Last night, my brother-in-law asked a question on Facebook wanting to know the top 5 things that you look for in a Leader. Needless to say, it elicited a lot of responses. My first response was to post the Timeless Traits of Leadership that I discussed. In addition, I followed up with two other things that I learned in the Army.
The first is to praise in public and punish in private. I can’t tell you how may times I have seed people (including myself) get dressed down in front of everybody. This certainly links back to the timeless trait that a leader strengthens others. In my opinion, the only reason people yell at their subordinates in front of others is either to deflect blame from their horrible leadership or to try and project superiority.
My other comment was around what I was taught about my responsibilities as a leader. At it’s most basic level, the job of an Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO) is to a) accomplish the mission and b) take care of the soldiers. My personal philosophy is that if I took care of (b), the soldiers would take care of (a). Essentially, if you build a good team and take care of them, they will do whatever needs to be done.
In the end, it always comes down to people. If you don’t respect them, encourage them, and give them room to grow, you’ll never get the best out of them.