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The U.S. Marine guide to leadership

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

From the U.S. Marine Corps— leaders by definition, as its members are often the first combatants in a military offensive—here’s a checklist of leadership strategies:
  • Make sure that every one of your people feels entitled to lead.

  • Ensure that managers can never distance themselves from a subordinate’s failure.

  • Understand that the wider his or her perspective, the more effective the leader.

  • Lead by example.

  • Put the concerns of your people before any task.

  • Keep them fully informed.

  • Exemplify mental and physical readiness.

  • Encourage and empower your people to find solutions.

  • Prepare direct reports for two jobs: theirs and yours.

  • Encourage questions, even in urgent situations.

  • Be prepared to withhold guidance and praise occasionally.

  • Avoid close personal relationships with anyone under your authority.

  • Be especially motivating to people unhappy in their jobs.

  • Ask for an oral or written confirmation of your instructions.

  • Create a team culture of self-sacrifice.

  • Use peer evaluations at all levels.

  • Be a teacher, not a boss.
— Adapted from Semper Fi: Business Leadership the Marine Corps Way, Dan Carrison and Rod Walsh, Amacom.

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