The Minute Book
Wednesday, 4 February 2015

A Worthy Leader
Topic: Leadership

A Worthy Leader

US Army Infantry Journal, February 1943

A leader then, to be worthy in the eyes of his men would do well to follow these commands:

1.     Be competent.

2.     Be loyal to your men as well as to your country and Army.

3.     Know your men, understand them, love them and be proud of them.

4.     Accept responsibility and give clear, decisive orders.

5.     Teach your men by putting them through the necessary action.

6.     Give necessary orders only, but —

7.     Get things done.

8.     Be fair.

9.     Work hard.

10.     Remember that a leader is a symbol. Men need to respect and trust you — don't let them down.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Monday, 26 January 2015

Leadership Qualities
Topic: Leadership

Corporal T.C. Mackenzie [Loyal Edmonton Regiment], Sergeant R.W. Williams [Calgary Highlanders], Private N.E. Smith [North Nova Scotia Highlanders] and Gunner H.D. Gingell [13 Canadian Field Regiment, Royal Canadian Artillery], who all received Military Medals, at Buckingham Palace, London, England, 27 June 1945. Photographer: Harold D. Robinson. Mikan Number: 3205673. From the Library and Archives Canada virtual exhibit "Faces of War."

Leadership Qualities

"Moral, Instruction and Leadership," Brevet Colonel J.F.C. Fuller, D.S.O., Journal of the Royal United Services Institution, Vol. LXV, February to November, 1920

Leadership presupposes two things: — A leader, and men capable of being led. A stag cannot lead an army of lions; a lion cannot persuade an army of stags to follow. What then is required? A lion leading lions. In other words, the qualities of leader and led are very similar. The chief of these qualities are: —

(1)     Knowledge.

(2)     Skill.

(3)     Determination.

(4)     Endurance.

(5)     Courage.

(6)     Cunning.

(7)     Imagination.

(8)     Confidence.

No one is greater than the other, but the first of all is knowledge.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Monday, 19 January 2015

Basic Philosophy of Soldiering
Topic: Leadership

Basic Philosophy of Soldiering

Col. Glover S. Johns Jr.
(1912 – 1976

Colonel Glover S. Johns — OBITUARY — Col. Glover S. Johns Jr.

Colonel Glover Johns

1.     Strive to do small things well.

2.     Be a doer and a self-starter-aggressiveness and initiative are two most admired qualities in a leader-but you must also put your feet up and THINK.

3.     Strive for self-improvement through constant self-evaluation.

4.     Never be satisfied. Ask of any project, How can it be done better?

5.     Don't over-inspect or over-supervise. Allow your leaders to make mistakes in training, so they can profit from the errors and not make them in combat.

6.     Keep the troops informed; telling them "what, how, and why" builds their confidence.

7.     The harder the training, the more troops will brag.

8.     Enthusiasm, fairness, and moral and physical courage - four of the most important aspects of leadership.

9.     Showmanship-a vital technique of leadership.

10.     The ability to speak and write well-two essential tools of leadership.

11.     There is a salient difference between profanity and obscenity; while a leader employs profanity (tempered with discretion), he never uses obscenities.

12.     Have consideration for others.

13.     Yelling detracts from your dignity; take men aside to counsel them.

14.     Understand and use judgement; know when to stop fighting for something you believe is right. Discuss and argue your point of view until a decision is made, and then support the decision wholeheartedly.

15.     Stay ahead of your boss.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Updated: Saturday, 10 January 2015 3:00 PM EST
Friday, 2 January 2015

The Art of Command
Topic: Leadership

The Art of Command

By; A.C.K.; published in the Sabre and spurs : the regimental journal of Lord Strathcona's Horse (R.C.) Cadets. Vol. 1, no. 1 (1933)

"Is command an art?" will perhaps be asked by some who feel that nothing can be easier than giving orders. Anyone, however, who thinks so, ignores the fact that the only man capable of command is the man who has learned to obey, and that an order is only justified, if, under the circumstances of the case, it was absolutely necessary. Even then, it can only be approved if it be unobjectionable both in matter and manner.

Every order places the subordinate to whom it is given in a position of constraint to which he willingly submits without any question if he recognizes the necessity for it, in such a case obedience is not a servile submission, but the free gift of a free man, but he complied with an order unwillingly it it is dictated merely by the pleasure of giving orders, or the desire to magnify one's own importance.

Fondness for domineering leads to tyranny and incites insubordination; it does no good but compromises discipline. We can see this in thousands of cases in the army, where there are superior officers who compel the willing obedience even of insubordinate men, while there are others to be found who make even the best men refractory.

Only the man who himself knows how to obey, who has learned from personal experience how grievous an inopportune or superfluous order can be, and how inexpressibly hard it is, in such a case, to resist the impulse to revolt, only such a man will avoid blunders when he is himself in a position of command.

We should always keep this fact before out eyes; we want a cheery and willing, nor a slavish servile obedience. It is the first alone which conduces to happiness in the regiment, ensures a firm unshaken discipline and inspires men to heroic deeds in action. It is the first kind of obedience alone, which acts educationally and forms the character.

Another serious drawback involved in a mania for giving orders is that all independence, all initiative, and all love of responsibility on the pay of subordinates are killed. Modern conditions require thoughtful leaders trained to be independent, and self-restrained men, capable, from devotion to their officers and their regiment, of proving their firm will to conquer even when their leaders are absent.

Good leaders and good men are not produced by orders, superfluous in themselves, and beside the mark; but we undoubtedly do get them if we give no more orders than are absolutely essential, and if we praise every independent action, even if it be not altogether apt or appropriate. In such a case what is wrong must be reproved, but not severely, not sharply, not in the form of censure, but only in the way of kindly instruction.

No man likes to be found fault with, but everyone is willing to accept instructions, and does better another time. The man who has cause to fear fault finding, forswears initiative. With regard to the form of an order, it should be borne in mind that only a definite distinct order, as short as possible, in which not a needless word is said, and which cannot be misunderstood. Every superior who finds that he has been misunderstood should first look for the fault in himself; if after careful consideration, he finds that it was not his fault, then, and not till then, he may take his subordinates to task.

We learn most from mistakes and misunderstandings, and it is therefore well to let them run their course. Untimely interference, repeated orders and such like, produce instead of trustworthiness, independence, and initiative which should be our aim, a feeling of insecurity and uncertainly which destroys all willing ness to accept responsibility.

This much is certain, that superior officers who give their subordinates…everywhere it is possible to do so…the independence which is their due, and even demand such power of initiative from them, will never be left in the lurch.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Command Characteristics
Topic: Leadership

Command Characteristics

Men against Fire; the Problem of Battle Command in Future War, S.L.A. Marshall, Colonel, AUS, 1947

The characteristics which are required in the minor commander if he is to prove capable of preparing men for and leading them through the shock of combat with high credit may therefore be briefly described:

(1)     Diligence in the care of men.

(2)     Administration of all organizational affairs such as punishments and promotions according to a standard of resolute justice.

(3)     Military bearing.

(4)     A basic understanding of the simple fact that soldiers wish to think of themselves as soldiers and that all military information is nourishing to their spirits and their lives.

(5)     Courage, creative intelligence, and physical fitness.

(6)     Innate respect for the dignity of the position and the work of other men.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Sunday, 16 November 2014

Three Kinds of Integrity
Topic: Leadership

A Leader Needs Three Kinds of Integrity

Self-Care, Psychological Integrity, and Auftragstaktik, Faris R. Kirkland, Ph.D., LTC, USA-ret., 1996

To be fully effective, a leader needs three kinds of integrity: ethical, physical, and psychological. Each kind of integrity has an impact on the others, and all require self-care. Ethical integrity has to do with behaving in ways defined as good—telling the truth, taking care of one's troops, not ordering subordinates to do things one is not willing to do oneself. …

Physical integrity has to do with the physiological and bodily ability of a leader to function. The Army has held leaders responsible, in a punitive sense, for their own physical fitness for more than 30 years. But holding them responsible for getting enough food, water, and sleep for themselves is a new idea. During Desert Storm all soldiers were accountable for consuming adequate amounts of water to preserve their physical integrity. Some units organized sleep plans for continuous operations to assure that people on duty, particularly those in positions of leadership, would be capable of coherent thought. This was the operational birth of leader self-care. But it was not universal, and it was fortunate that the ground war only lasted four days. Self-care is still ethically suspect in the Army, and at the end of the ground war, a good many leaders were exhausted.

Psychological integrity is a new and possibly unwelcome concept. There is an emerging awareness that psychologically secure leaders perform more efficiently than those who are insecure. Military operations are fraught with uncertainty and danger, and those leaders who enter combat free of preexisting burdens of fear, anxiety, and doubt are best able to take the risks of trusting and empowering subordinates, bringing their initiative to bear to take decisive action, and making ethical judgments in the midst of the chaos of war. By preexisting burdens I do not mean neuroses that arose in childhood, but nonessential anxieties generated by maladaptive aspects of the psycho-social context of the Army—particularly the ways in which commanders treat their subordinates.

The most important factors supporting the psychological integrity of leaders are competence, knowledge of subordinates, and belief that their superiors are on their side. All of these factors can respond to policy. Competence is the product of military schools and training in units. Knowledge of subordinates is a function of policies that bear on the permanence of personnel in units. Belief that one's chief has an interest in one's welfare has not been the subject of policy initiatives to date, and it is the essential prerequisite for a leader to feel safe engaging in self-care. Such beliefs, and self-care by commanders, are not common in the US Army today. However there is a historical precedent, Auftragstaktik, that offers a framework for the policy initiatives to make them common.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Thursday, 28 August 2014

Colin Powell's Rules
Topic: Leadership

Colin Powell's Rules

Duty, Honor, Company; West Point Fundamentals for Business Success, Gil Dorland and John Dorland, 1992

1.     It ain't as bad as you think. It will look better in the morning.

2.     Get mad, then get over it.

3.     Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it.

4.     It can be done!

5.     Be careful what you choose. You may get it.

6.     Don't let adverse facts stand in the way of a good decision.

7.     You can't make someone else's choices. You shouldn't let someone else make yours.

8.     Check small things.

9.     Share credit.

10.     Remain calm. Be kind.

11.     Have a vision. Be demanding.

12.     Don't take counsel of your fears or naysayers.

13.     Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier. [In the military, one always seeks ways to increase or multiply forces.]

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Sunday, 17 August 2014

NCO Leadership in the Army
Topic: Leadership

NCO Leadership in the Army

The Leader; A Guide to Being a Successful Non-Commissioned Officer in the Army; Land Force Central Area (Second Edition, circa 2000)

"The kind of leaders we need today are more like great jazz musicians, thoroughly schooled in the fundamentals and absolutely technically competent but able to improvise on a theme." – General Gordon Sullivan

1.     The Canadian military, through two World Wars, Korea and the Gulf War, plus numerous domestic and international operations, has and continues to be held in high regard around the world. Revered as shock troops by the German Army in the First World War, Canadian soldiers proved themselves a formidable foe. Seasoned in battle during campaigns in Italy and Northwest Europe, Canadian's demonstrated yet again the fighting spirit of their forefathers and achieved remarkable success. Today, at home and abroad our troops are called upon collectively to assist our allies in preserving peace from Bosnia to Bangui in the Central African Republic.

2.     Collectively and individually, our soldiers are amongst the best in the world. Two recent examples immediately come to mind. First Sergeant Boudreau's section won the gold medal at the 1997 Cambrian patrol competition in Wales and Master Corporal Calis received the 'William O'Darby' award for outstanding performance on the Ranger course.

3.     Collectively and individually however, success is not always easy to achieve. It takes work, determination to be the best and a strong NCO core. With a doubt a dedicated and professional NCO has always been an integral, necessary and permanent part of any good army. The past has clearly shown, and it is true today, that only a special group of soldiers are selected to be NCOs. This special status carries the weight of additional duties, responsibilities and authority.

4.     Today, NCOs are also expected to preserve traditions and develop esprit de corps in an environment of rapid social and technological change, pressure to reduce expenditures and a high operational tempo. This must be done in a world where regional conflicts require professional troops like ours to carry out a wide variety of missions. Sometimes, it often seems that change is the only certainty. In this environment, it is a challenge to retain and exercise authority especially when the public, the media and our own members scrutinize decisions.

5.     There are, as you may expect, no simple answers or insightful phrases that can remedy the present state of affairs we all live in. During these turbulent times all leaders have to learn to deal with uncertainty and ambiguity while trying very hard to impart a clear sense of mission and purpose to our soldiers. We as a group and individuals are not immune to the changes occurring all around us; we must adapt like every Canadian. Times have changed: both leaders and soldiers are well educated and come from an evolving social environment; the classical autocrat is "out"—the listening leader is "in".

6.     As a leader, you have a tough, demanding, but very rewarding job and the soldiers you lead are the heart of the army, both regular and reserve. Your work is challenging because you direct soldiers at the action level where the important, day to day, fundamental work of the army is performed. You are the key to making your soldiers more capable by sharing what you know and encouraging them to use their initiative. 7.     Because you work very closely with your soldiers, you have the best opportunity to know them as they really are. You should be the first to identify and teach them how to best use their strengths, the first to detect and train them to overcome their shortcomings. Leading by example, you are in the best position to secure their trust and confidence. You have the advantage of a deeper understanding of your soldiers' behaviour because you were promoted directly from the ranks that you now lead.

Honour, Integrity and Dignity

8.     Good leaders conduct themselves with honour and integrity and treat their superiors, peers and subordinates with respect and dignity. This leads to willing and cohesive teams. Everyone knows their job, is proud of it and proud of their place on the team. The team breaks down completely when there is a lack of understanding, incompetence and/or abuse. You have a principle obligation to be technically competent for your rank and position. You have a legal and moral obligation to ensure that your troops perform their duties to the required standard. None of this is attainable when soldiers mistrust each other or their commanders.

9.     It is imperative that your actions in relation to your troops are not inherently offensive, demeaning, belittling or humiliating to them. This is considered harassment. It is illegal, unprofessional and forbidden. You have a positive obligation to ensure that no other military person treats anyone else in such a manner. It must be reported immediately.

10.     There are two important concepts that must be understood – Ethics and Morale. They are more complex than you might think and there are no hard and fast rules that govern these concepts. Nevertheless they are integral to everything you do both on and off the job.

a.     Ethics. Essentially, if you follow the guidance in this handbook it is fair to say that you will be acting in an ethical manner. In many ways, ethics are just good common sense—simply doing the right thing with the people you deal with every day. Ethics are based on the respect for the dignity of all persons. We will not injure, bully, deceive, manipulate, discriminate against, harass, sexually harass, or unjustly treat any person. Ethics embodies qualities such as honesty, accountability, competence, diligence, courage, loyalty, obedience, fairness, discretion and most importantly, care of subordinates.

b.     Morale. Morale is the term used to describe the complex relationship between people and the environment in which they live and work. It could be described in terms of the attitudes or feelings possessed by an individual as he or she relates to the group. For the group, it is the commitment to pull together towards goals the members accept. High morale energizes and motivates troops to perform their tasks with greater effort and eagerness. To achieve high morale, leaders must be competent, goals must be clear, cohesiveness must be evident and there must be open communications up and down the chain of command.

Lead by Example

11.     This is the fundamental leadership secret for success. The army requires NCOs who have earned the respect of their superiors by demonstrating the ability to accomplish all assigned tasks. You will also win the respect of your soldiers by considering the effects of your actions on them and by placing their well being above your own. As you spend more time with your subordinates than your officers, your personal example must extend beyond normal duty and into your personal life. If not, can you demand a high standard of performance and behaviour from yGeraldour troops at all times? Therefore, set a good example both on duty and off.

Build Teamwork

12.     A team can be described as a small number of people with complementary skills who are committed to a common purpose, shared performance goals, and an organized approach for which they hold themselves accountable. As a NCO your job is to optimize the performance of each member of your group. You must develop team spirit based on the fact that, on your team each person depends on the other, and all depend on well maintained and properly working equipment. Teamwork is learned by training, practice and experience.

Know Your People

13.     We are all volunteers who have offered our service to Canada. We place service before self. Our soldiers possess a spark of patriotism and love for adventure that needs constant attention and development. Operational situations have proven that Canadian soldiers will fight as willingly and as well as anyone on earth, when led with courage and wisdom. They are resourceful and imaginative, and the best results will be obtained by encouraging them to use their initiative. They are more likely to respond to a leader who has the will and intelligence to give a clear, sensible order than to obey one who has little in his or her favour but rank. They will display loyalty and discipline most readily when they are aware you trust them.

14.     Integrity, a sense of humour, pride in the service. Your demonstration of these qualities will impress your soldiers to a far greater extent than mere talk. We all love to complain but you must be able to distinguish between semi-humorous complaining and the sullen undertones of genuine unrest that result from favouritism or injustice.

Know Your Job

15.     To be a good NCO you must know your job—know it exceptionally well. This means being proficient in the employment, care and maintenance of equipment assigned to you. If you are a really good NCO you will at least be as good as, or better at all those things than any of your soldiers. This is the first step in leading by example. You are the coach, the team is the vital component; high performance is the payoff. In addition you need to think ahead to the day when you may have to be replaced. Your soldiers must be able to pick up, carry on, and get the job done in your absence.

Be Honest

16.     "Tell it like it is" - not what you think someone wants to hear. If something goes wrong, be willing to say so; do so in an objective straightforward way; present facts. If you make a mistake, admit it. Never sacrifice integrity. You may be able to fool those you work for; chances are that you will never be able to fool those who work for you—your soldiers. Remember, as a group, Canadian soldiers have an almost unerring ability to ferret out the truth. Any attempt to fool them is a serious gamble that is seldom worth the risks involved. If the team does a good job, share the credit; it is the team effort that was successful with you as the leader.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Friday, 9 May 2014

Character and Leadership
Topic: Leadership

Infantrymen of Lieutenant D.S. Barrie's platoon of The Highland Light Infantry of Canada relaxing during a rest period, France, 20 June 1944. Location: France. Date: June 20, 1944.
Photographer: Ken Bell. Mikan Number: 3205673.
From the Library and Archives Canada virtual exhibit "Faces of War."

Character and Leadership

Canadian Army Training Memorandum, No 32, November 1943

1.     Leadership is a combination of qualities, inherent and acquired, which evoke respect, confidence, and a "will to do" from one's fellow men. A leader must know his work, be self-confident, determined and forceful display initiative, and think rapidly in critical and unexpected situations.

2.     Your men must instinctively look to you. To achieve this end, you must earn their respect, for your knowledge, for your assumption of responsibility, and for your decisiveness of action. If you know what you are doing, your self confidence will inspire the confidence and respect of your men and be mirrored in their actions.

3.     The strength of our army depends upon the calibre of its officers - they must be true Leaders. Assume the role of leader. Be definite, forceful, direct, be self-confident, resourceful, assume responsibility at all times, Look, Act, and be the Leader.

4.     An officer sets the example for his troops to follow; his clothes fit are neat and clean; his shoes are shined; his hair cut and combed; he is shaved; and in general, he presents an appearance which can well provide an example for others.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Tuesday, 29 April 2014

a poor broken-down commissariat mule
Topic: Leadership

a poor broken-down commissariat mule

Voice from the Ranks; A Personal Narrative of the Crimean Campaign by a Sergeant of the Royal Fusiliers, Sergeant-Major Timothy Gowing, edited by Kenneth Fenwick, 1954

One day in March I was one of the sergeants with a party of men that had been sent to Balaclava to bring up supplies in the way of biscuit and pork, or salt junk (salt beef). We had a young officer with us, well mounted, who had but little compassion for poor fellows who were doing their best, trudging through the mud up to their ankles, with a heavy load upon their backs. The party were not going fast enough to suit the whim of our young and inexperienced commander, who called out to the writer.

The unfortunate man was doing his best to keep up, and he gave our young officer such a contemptuous look as I shall not forget as long as I live. Throwing his load of biscuit down in the mud, he exclaimed: 'Man indade! Soger indade! I'm only a poor broken-down commissariat mule!'

Here a light-hearted fellow burst out with 'There's a good time coming, boys !'

The poor fellow was made a prisoner of at once, for insubordination. But when I explained the case to our Colonel he took quite a different view of the matter, forgave the man, and presented him with a pair of good warm socks and a pair of new boots; for the poor fellow had nothing but uppers and no soles for his old ones. And in order to teach our smart young officer how to respect men who were trying to do their duty sentenced him to three extra fatigues to Balaclava—and to walk it, the same as any other man.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Thursday, 24 April 2014

Characteristics which are Required in the Minor Commander
Topic: Leadership

Characteristics which are Required in the Minor Commander

Men Against Fire, S.L.A. Marshall, 1947

The characteristics which are required in the minor commander if he is to prove capable of preparing men for and leading them through the shock of combat with high credit may therefore be briefly described:

(1)     Diligence in the care of men.

(2)     Administration of all organizational affairs such as punishments and promotions according to a standard of resolute justice.

(3)     Military bearing.

(4)     A basic understanding of the simple fact that soldiers wish to think of themselves as soldiers and that all military information is nourishing to their spirits and their lives.

(5)     Courage, creative intelligence, and physical fitness.

(6)     Innate respect for the dignity of the position and the work of other men.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Tuesday, 22 April 2014

The gift of leadership
Topic: Leadership

The gift of leadership

An Open Letter to the Very Young Officer, by C.N.W. (From the Journal of the Royal United Services Institution, Vol. LXII., February to November, 1917)

In the Old Army the great majority of the officers were drawn from the class, or genus, which in the bird world is represented by the gallinaceous, or combative, fowls, you who read this may belong to that' genus, or you may come of a more peaceful and dove-like stock, but if from the latter you show an amazing pugnacity which, dropping the bird metaphor, goes to prove that the Germans and our own ante bellum croakers were a bit out in their prognostications that the British race was decadent, and that the British lower middle class was so steeped in commercialism and the labouring classes in Trade Unionism—relieved by striking and watching professional football matches—as to be of no account as fighting men.

Events have proved that the race can fight as well as ever it did—all classes and sections of it, "Duke's son, cook's son, or son of a belted earl"; but don't run away with the idea that because you possess the national courage, and your name has appeared in the London Gazette as a Temporary Second Lieutenant, you are by mere virtue of being a commissioned officer also a leader of men, to be that you must possess, or set to work to acquire if you want to be a good officer and not a useless—and therefore in war a dangerous—slacker, the qualities which make for leadership.

I don't suppose you have had time, recently, to indulge in light literature such as Blackwood's Magazine, or the Journal of the Royal Artillery Institution, in which case you will have missed reading in the former the description—under the title "Fallen Angels"—of the gradual, and at times painful, process of forming the young, New Army, officer in a cadet corps, and, in the latter, the very excellent open letter by "Esterel" to the Junior (Artillery) Subaltern.

This is what the author of "Fallen Angels" has to say-and it is worth considering-about the qualities which make for leadership:—

"The obvious qualities that an officer must possess … are …

"(1)     The gift of leadership.

"(2)     A personality and a character that will command the respect of the men committed to his care.

"(3)     A smart personal appearance combined with cleanly and temperate habits, for no man can be expected to respect a leader who never washes, or is seen to be tight, or wandering about in a public place arm in arm with ladies of slight reputation."

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Monday, 7 April 2014

Now that's soldiering
Topic: Leadership

Now that's soldiering

Sandhurst Academy Sergeant-Major J.C. Lord, MVO, MBE, in a speech to the British Staff College

"I am going to relate to you something that happened to me which I think highlights this business. In my parachute battalion we had a Corporal Sheriff. He was a good corporal but he had his share of rockets and so on. He didn't make sergeant when there was plenty of promotion flying about but he was a good battalion and a good company man. He joined us in 41, fought with us in North Africa, Sicily and Italy and finally at Arnhem, and it was at Arnhem that he was wounded. We had been in the prison camp for I should think about three months with no knowledge of him at all when I was told that he was in the reception hut, and so I scrounged a few cigarettes which were available, because I was told he was in bad shape, and went up to the hut.

"I shall never forget it. As I opened the door everything stopped: there was a deathly silence and everybody looked round as they do under those circumstances. The hut was full of foreigners of various nationalities, a smell of unwashed bodies and a strange atmosphere. I looked around and saw Corporal Sheriff in some strange uniform — if you could call it a uniform — which had been supplied to him. He was sitting cross-legged on the floor, head hanging down, looking very dejected.

"I walked across towards him and you could have heard a pin drop. I went up to him and I said something to the effect, "Hello Corporal Sheriff, how are you getting on?" And in front of all those foreigners he stood up. It was three months since we had seen one another and he had no particular cause to love me. In front of all those foreiegners he stood up and he stood to attention and you could almost hear their astonishment.

"He turned his head towards me and said, "Hello Sir, it's good to hear your voice." He was blind. Even in those circumstances he was a member of the family, he felt he belonged again and he was back in the bosom of the family. Now that's soldiering, that's spirit, that's understanding. That's all the things I've been trying to say."

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Ten Points of Leadership
Topic: Leadership

Ten Points of Leadership

By Col. J. B. Ladd in The Army Officer—Extracted from U.S. Military Review
Canadian Army Training Memorandum, No 61, April 1946

1.     Be a vigilant leader. Know your men. Use good judgment and common sense.

2.     Be a competent leader. Know your "stuff." Make quick, sound, definite decisions. Use simple plans. Issue clear, complete, and concise orders.

3.     Be an efficient leader. Maintain unity of command, co- operation, and teamwork. Develop mutual trust, confidence, cohesion, and initiative in your unit. Follow up your decisions, plans, and orders with clear-cut, vigorous action.

Keep Faith

4.     Be a loyal leader. Keep the "soldier's faith," in service, fidelity, and duty. Take a vital, sincere interest in the welfare of your men and officers. Build esprit de corps.

5.     Be a trustworthy, dependable leader. Never let your men or officers down. Deserve their trust. Drive hard to accomplish your missions on time.

6.     Be a firm, friendly leader. Cultivate character, respect, courtesy, good will, good manners, tolerance, dignity, and tact. Treat your men as you would wish to be treated.

7.     Be a resolute leader. Set the examples of force, courage, valor, esprit, honor, and high morale of your command.

Disciplined Leader

8.     Be a disciplined leader. Remember, hard work and iron discipline doubles victories and halves losses.

9.     Be an alert leader. Always be on guard. Protect and take care of your men. No man is fit to command who neglects his "all- around securities."

10.     Be an aggressive leader. Pay strict, prompt attention to duty, justice, and responsibility. Practice what you preach. Set the high example in the cardinal virtues of command. At all times, teach your officers and men battlefield leadership.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EST
Thursday, 31 October 2013

Corporal Dunphy's War
Topic: Leadership

Corporal Dunphy's War

2PPCLI in Korea

From: Pierre Berton, Corporal Dunphy's War, June 1, 1951, reprinted in Canada at War; from the archives of MacLean's, 1997

A section, normally ten men, is the smallest infantry unit in the army and a section leader the most common casualty. A corporal gets only four dollars a month more than a private but his chances of going for the long sleep are infinitely greater (the Canadians had seven killed and wounded in the first three weeks of action). He has some of the responsibility of a commissioned officer but none of the privileges. In action, the lives of nine men depend to a great degree on what he does.

Section leaders are chosen for a variety of qualities: ability to lead, efficiency, general savvy. Cpl. Karry Dunphy, leader of No. 1 Section, No. 4 Platoon, Baker Company, 2nd Battalion, Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, was given his chance because he has a knack of keeping up morale. Although he is not yet considered a truly first-rate NCO, men will listen to him and follow him because of his personality.

Dunphy is the kind of man who emcees all battalion parties, writes a column in the battalion paper, can sing all the old army songs to the fiftieth verse and make up new ones on the spur of the moment. After taking over his section he dubbed it the Leper Colony—a steal from the movie Twelve O'Clock High, and his slogan, "Once a Leper Always a Leper," worries his officers because it tends to make Dunphy's section a tight clique within the platoon.

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Sunday, 20 October 2013

Walking Wounded, North Africa 1943
Topic: Leadership

Walking Wounded, North Africa 1943

[North Africa, 1943] "The fighting here was very heavy and many casualties occurred. My Sergeant was Allen Watson and he would often ask me to accompany him on patrols, these were extremely dangerous and I would not have been with anyone else. Later when I was positioned about two hundred feet up on the side of Green Hill, the Germans had launched their usual dawn attack causing many wounded, and I received a chest wound. The medical orderlies were unable to evacuate the wounded quickly as the ground was so precarious when hauling stretchers. The Company Commander therefore ordered all walking wounded to make their own way to a gully below, where they would be collected and taken to headquarters situated about a quarter of a mile away. I was bleeding rather badly so holding a field dressing to my chest I decided to make my way down to the gully. I rolled and staggered to the bottom of the hill, and then after a pause to readjust the dressing and check direction, went on my way. My progress was rather a stoop—stagger—and rest. Moving towards the headquarters I had not been mobile for long when I was abruptly halted by a roar, "Corporal Sheriff—if you can't walk in a soldierly manner—lay down!" Naturally I quickly obliged and I saw RSM Lord standing over me. As he was carrying a sten gun in his right hand I thought he might just shoot me. "What's your trouble Corporal?" he asked. I replied that I had a chest wound, hoping vainly for some show of sympathy. John Lord glanced me up and down for a brief moment then said "You haven't shaved this morning Corporal", "No sir, I admitted, "I didn't have time as the Germans attacked at dawn." There was a pause as 'J.C.' [Lord] growled that this was no excuse, but he then softened, suddenly stooped and made me comfortable and handed me a cigarette. He then went away to find a couple of men to carry me in, and still affected by the confrontation, I was laying in a position of attention and smoking by numbers when he returned. As we waited he spoke of the days gone by and of the many men of the battalion who were now missing." – Corporal Ray Sheriff, 3rdBattalion, The Parachute Regiment; quoted in To Revel in God's Sunshine; The story of the Army career of the late [Sandhurst] Academy Sergeant Major J.C. Lord, MVO, MBE, compiled by Richard Alford

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 8 October 2013 4:36 PM EDT
Friday, 19 July 2013

Art of Leadership (JADEX)
Topic: Leadership

Extracted from The Art of Leadership, from the Chief of Defence Staff, General J.A. Dextraze, CBE, CMM, DSO, CD; June 1973

Leadership is self-perpetuating—at least is should be. This means that you, as a leader, have a solmn responsibility to develop leadership in your subordinates. Remember that all of them sooner or later will have to lead others. The best way for you to teach them, of course, is by example, hopefully by good example. 

elipsis graphic

Let me now list some of the basic rules of leadership that I have found useful in my career, and which I commend to you. The list is not all-inclusive, and it is random, but when considered together with the four principles [Loyalty, Knowledge, Integrity, Courage] mentioned earlier it summarizes my approach to good leadership.

• Don't coax subordinates into obeying orders. On the other hand, do not club them into it.

• Don't flatter your subordinates. It is unnecessary and tends to degrade you in their eyes.

• Don't be sarcastic towards subordinates.

• Display confidence and pride in those under your command.

• Always support your superiors, and make it clear to your subordinates that you do.

• Accept full responsibility in the eyes of your superiors for the mistakes and failures of your subordinates. If they fail, it is your fault, and your job to make whatever corrections are necessary. Don't try to shift the blame downwards.

• Never end an order with a threat. Your rank carries with it all the power, explicit or implicit, that you need.

• If a reprimand becomes necessary, administer it privately unless there is some compelling reason to do it publicly.

• Always be concerned for the well-being of your subordinates, and let them know that you are.

• Never take things for granted. Check and double-check.

• Don't abuse the privileges of your rank. be austere in the granting and accepting of privileges.

• Work hard and don't waste time.

• Be meticulous and correct about your conduct, bearing, dress and personal relationships.

• Recognize that leadership and popularity are not synonymous.

elipsis graphic

The important thing is that you adopt a leadership style that matches your own innate personality. Don't become artificial in an attempt to copy a style that doesn't suit you. Be yourself, and conduct yourself according to the guidelines given here, and you will find that leadership comes naturally. But you must work at it.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT
Friday, 5 July 2013

Topic: Leadership

Extract from Canadian Army Training Memorandum, No. 30, September 1943

Major General Worthington—4 Cdn Div once said "What I want is some good FOLLOW-ship, not so much LEADER-ship."

Here is the same idea, given by the 2 Bn Lincoln and Wellands:

What a Follower Seeks in a Leader

1.     He wants to follow a leader who is not afraid … not afraid of his position, not afraid of his own boss, not afraid of a tough job, not afraid of the people who work for him, not afraid of honest mistakes—either theirs of his.

2.     He wants a leader who believes his work is important, and all those who are in it with him.

3.     He wants a leader who gets a kick out of his work and helps his followers to get a kick out of theirs.

4.     He wants a leader who gets a kick out of seeing a man do what that man thought he would never be able to do.

5.     He wants a leader who will fight for him until hell freezes over, if the leader believes him to be in the right.

6.     He wants a leader who will tell him what's what when he knows darn well it's coming to him, and a leader who will do it without losing his temper.

7.     He wants a leader who who recognizes him as a person, regardless of his experience, school or training, and regardless of his religion, race, station in life or the lodge he belongs to.

8.     He wants a leader who most of the answers but who will admit it if he doesn't know, and go get the answer.

9.     He wants a leader who is predictable—that is, one he can depend upon to be the same all the time.

10.     He wants a leader he can't pull anything over on but who is human enough to look the other way when he occasionally makes an ass of himself.

11.     He wants a leader who he knows understands him, to whom he is not afraid to go when he has been a fool, when he's ashamed, when he's about washed up, or when he's proud and happy.

12.     He wants a leader who he can get to when he really needs him and can get away from when he's through with him.

13.     He wants a leader who can show him how to do a job without showing off or showing him up.

14.     He wants a leader who will give him a chance to try something hard he has never done.

15.     He wants a leader who he believes sincerely wants him to succeed and who will be proud of him when he does.

16.     He wants a leader who respects his pride and never corrects him in the presence of others or gossips about him.

17.     He wants a leader with the authority to promote, demote or let him go, as he knows he deserves.

The Senior Subaltern

Posted by regimentalrogue at 12:01 AM EDT

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