In the next weeks I will be focusing on each of the 10 leadership principles I learned as an officer in the army. This the first of these principles.

I always like to say that competence is the heart of leadership. Remember that competence consists of 3 domains: knowledge, skills, and attitudes.

  • People want to follow leaders who are competent and able to lead them to victory.
  • The idea that you can be an effective leader while being a so-so manager is a myth. Leaders must be effective at planning, organizing, directing, coordinating, and controlling.
  • Be clear on your objective(s) before considering the factors and making a decision.
  • Make decisions as fast as required, but not so fast that you rush headlong into the first course of action that pops into your head.
  • Consider multiple courses of action before making a decision.
  • Surround yourself with the right people.
  • Create a strong team and organization.
  • Communicate clearly and directly.
  • Follow up and ensure effective and efficient implementation of your plans during execution.
  • Designate your main effort and give it the resources and attention it requires.

Richard Martin is The Master Strategist and Leadership Catalyst. An expert on strategy and leadership, Richard brings his military and business leadership and management experience to bear for executives and organizations seeking to thrive and grow in the face of rapid change, risk, and uncertainty.

© 2014 Richard Martin. Reproduction and quotes are permitted with proper attribution.

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