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Rommel on leadership

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

German Gen. Erwin Rommel earned a reputation during World War II as a brilliant field tactician whose aggressive strikes often dazed and confused larger enemy forces.

But Rommel alienated junior officers by expecting perfection without keeping them apprised of his thinking. He also angered his supervisors by ignoring orders, including orders to kill captured civilians and enemies of Jewish descent.

To this day, Rommel is the only World War II Nazi general to have a memorial at his grave.

The lesson: Leadership is not a black-and-white proposition; it includes shades of gray.

— Adapted from Rommel: Leadership Lessons From the Desert Fox, Charles Messenger, Klaus Naumann & Wesley Clark, Palgrave Macmillan.

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