Band of brothersDarrius Haywood MSC 252 LTC Ryan/ Lake April 12, 2010 Leaders are naturally gifted at the skill of leading; there is a difference between having authority over a person and actual being a leader. Being reliable, committed, a people person and hardworking are essential when it comes being a leader, if subordinates see their leader slacking on his or her duties they will do the same, in turn you have to practice what you preach.
There are five types of leadership styles directive which just involve giving orders, transactional motives by presenting awards are punishments, transformational focus on inspiration and change, participating more hands and subordinates are involved in planning, and delegating in which subordinates are accountable for their own action. Captain Herbert Sobel leadership style can be put in the transactional category. Colonel Bauer loves to quote the saying “An officer on duty has no friends. ” I always assumed I knew what he meant but I got the full understanding after reading about Herbert Sobel.
Herbert Sobel was Jewish, urban, and earned a commission from the National Guard. His career in the army started as a private, he then received his commission from Officer Candidate School and was assign as CO of Easy Company and became a Captain. Sobel had no friends. Officers would avoid him at the officers’ club. None went on pass with him, none sought out his company. No one in Easy Company knew anything about him and no one cared. Sobel was consider a tyrant and was as hard on his officers as his enlisted. It could be assume that Sobel would be the classic chicken shit because of his background.
He had been a clothing store salesman and knew nothing of the out-of-doors. He was ungainly, uncoordinated, in no way an athlete. This led to Captain Sobel using his authority cruelly but effective to reach his goal of his company being the best in the regiment. They drilled longer, ran faster, trained harder and were punish harshly for morning inspections and late returns on Sunday. Captain Sobel infused hard work and discipline in his men but not respect. Captain Sobel proved to be a great training but failed to be leader because he never got on a personal level with them treating them as things and not people.
If I was to assess Captain Sobel using the updated blue cared he would receive an “N” for his non-satisfactory leadership tactics, although he wasn’t terrible across the board and had some high points. Military bearing, which involves projecting a command presence and professional image of authority he would receive an “E”. Everyone knew who was in charge of Echo Company although nobody liked it. Winters recognized that Sobel was a “disciplinarian and he was producing a hell of a Company. Anytime you saw Easy Company, by God, the men were sharp. Anything we did, we were out in front. Private Rader said of Sobel, “He stripped away your civilian way of doing things and your dignity but you became one of the best soldiers in the Army. ” Physical fitness, having sound health, strength, and endurance that supports one’s emotion health and conceptual abilities under stress was a personal problem for Captain Sobel because he struggled on push-ups and injured his feet on a jump resulting in him receiving an “S”. Taking into account that struggling is not failing which Sobel did not do because he manage to do his 30 push-ups which amazed everyone.
This is still unacceptable taken into account the standard he held his subordinates to he should have been able to set the example. Resilient, showing a tendency to recover quickly from setbacks, shock, adversity stress or injury while maintaining mission and organization focus. Sober received an “S”. Sober had to deal with a lot because none of his men had his back are respected him but he never seemed to let them get the best of him. His subordinates wanted him to fail the pt test he passed; they fired shots at him which Sgt. Earl recalls “Sobel experienced some near misses.
More than one shot was aimed from the rear and side to crack by close Sobel’s head”, Captain Sobel just acted as if it was normal. The guys even convince Sobel to cut a farmer fence by posing to be Major Horton during a cross country march; Sobel caught hell but remained Easy’s C. O. His best example of being resilient was when he was chosen be a causality. The medic put him under real anesthetic, pulled down his pants, and made a real incision simulating an appendectomy. Sober was furious but didn’t allow it to ruin his career.
Mental agility, flexibility of the mind: a tendency to anticipate or adapt to ever changing conditions, improvisation. Sound judgment, assesses situations and draws feasible conclusions: make soundly and timely decisions Sobel received an “N”. A lack of careful planning by Sobel to steal rifles to teach his men a lesson about leaving their rifles unmanned backfired. At night Sobel and Sgt Evans began to steal rifles. The mission was a success as the two secured over fifty rifles. “To Sobel’s great embarrassment, it turned out that he and Evans had been lost, strayed into Fox Company’s bivouac area, and stolen their rifles. Sobel looked like a complete idiot not only in front of his men, but also another company. Another lack of mother wit became apparent when Sobel was in command and the same accident mention before about the cross country march. Pvt. George Luz imitated Major Horton, the battalion Executive Officer saying “Cut those fences,” Luz called out continuing to imitate Major Horton. Sobel simply replied, Yes Sir and cut the fence. Sobel’s unwariness cost him to get verbally abused by Colonel Strayer. One time they were doing an exercise in the woods that was supposed to be relatively easy. All they had to do is sit and wait.
Well, the wind began to blow and leaves started to rustle, and Sobel jumped up screaming “Here they come! Here they come! ” If that had been a real life combat situation, the majority of the men would have been slaughtered. Interpersonal tact, effectively interacts with others, possesses the capacity to understand personal interactions with others: awareness of how others see you. Sobel received an “N”. This is the one area that Sobel performed horrible in which led to the other failure. Sobel was not interested in the well being of his men he just cared more about his personal glory which he would received for his company being the best.
The men could sense this which led to hopes of the Captain getting relieved of duty and if this didn’t happen killing the Captain in battle was another option being considered. The NCO’s were even turning on Sobel and when that takes place the officers command presence is usually lost. Sobel continued to do chicken shit activities which involve trashing the soldiers’ personal property looking for contraband. Tipper recalled “That marked a turning point for me, before Sober raid I had disliked hum but had not really hated the man, afterward I decided Sobel was my personal enemy and I did not owe him loyalty are anything else. . The men wanted Sobel to fail so they could get a new leader, hopefully Lt. Winters. One soldier said this after Sobel passed his pt test: “We comforted ourselves with the idea that he was still a joke, no matter what. ” There was no way Sobel could repair his reputation with the men of Easy Company. This was a neutral feeling shared by every man in Sober’s Company and they were happy to see him go after mutiny was starting to develop to get rid of Sober.
Based on the facts already provided you could easily finish Captain Sober blue card and determine he was a below average leader but a great training. The army realized this and sent him to Parachute Jumping School where his strength could be used and his weakness minimize. Sober left his mark on Easy Company and it all wasn’t bad. That is why, even today, if you were to ask one of the men from Easy Company if their outstanding unit cohesion, the remarkable staying power of the identification with each other was because of or in spite of Sobel, you would more than likely get the response: both. Rod Strohl looked me in the eye and said flatly, “Herbert Sobel made E Company. ”Sobel had potential to be one of the great leaders he just wasn’t a people person and didn’t have a sense of humor which led to his downfall.