Leadership means many things to different people, and as a student of the Marine Corps, I have studied many of them. I know the traits, the principles, the roles, and the concepts. I have read of the greatest leaders in the world, and of ones that led their men to pointless slaughter. I have personally worked for men I would follow to hell, and ones I would feel safer around if they were locked in a cell. From all this, I have learned and absorbed, and I find on a daily basis the biggest part of leadership s simply to lead from the front.
There are naturally other parts, from mentoring Marines to cracking the whip on those you lead, when necessary; but as an Infantryman, I find the most crucial parts of a leader, the parts I seek to emulate, are the ones found on the battlefield. A leader must be someone that can make tactically solid and timely decisions, of course, but without heart could only respect that person?not believe In them. The expression I used previously, to follow someone to hell, means that that someone is going into the fire first, and nothing is so inspiring.
Marines can achieve great things, but often must be stirred to do so. A Marine moved to his core by a valiant superior may surprise them both with his strength of character when the chips are down. I do not write this to glorify war, but if it deifies the leader whose unit turns a battle and saves lives in their dedication, I stand by it. When Medals of Honor are given solely posthumously, and John Baseline tales are a bygone era, there seems little enough room for these warrior leaders, but the trait manifests Itself dally In other ways.
Consider It less “manifests”, and more “can be applied If enough energy and determination Is given to the task. ” A leader can pour his heart and soul Into any activity he wants, and get his hands dirty on any task with his subordinates. I do not mean to Imply an NCO, or other leader’s, Job Is not supervision, but there is fellowship to be had in any undertaking: one must simply Know winner ten Ellen Is. Being ten TLS awake Ana areas Is a small Acton Tanat snows much, likewise being the last to quit a OPT session, or volunteering for the distasteful.
This last, I have been taught by the Corps itself, must be tempered with understanding of your Marines capabilities and readiness. Again, the most emboldened leader must have the technical assets in order to be a solid leader. On that, not all of this is physical; it can Just as easily mean studying more and harder than those you push to the books, and even acknowledging when you do not have an answer but being the one to energetically seek it out. This drive to succeed for your men, to set the example, is really ordered upon the NCO.
The final line of a Noncommissioned Officer’s creed, “their performance will reflect an image of me” indicates our obligation to not Just tell, but show our Marines how to live and serve. This standard must be set, and set high to continue in the hallowed footsteps all those who came before us. A leader must demonstrate how to be a Marine and inspire others to emulate his example. Ultimately, the philosophy on leadership that I try to be worthy of, gleaned from classes, role models, and experiences, can be summed up by two words: Follow me.