Friday, April 28, 2006

10 Leaders Share Their Views On Leadership – Some Closing Thoughts

I would like to take the opportunity to publicly thank all those who were involved with the recently completed series on transition from military leadership to business leadership:

10 Leaders Share Their Views On Leadership

Let me begin by thanking Kelly Perdew. It was Kelly’s fine book, “Take Command,” that gave me the idea to take the ten attributes of leadership that make up the structure of his book, and then to ask ten friends of mine to flesh out these components of leadership by sharing their ideas and experiences.

I would like to thank each of these ten writers who contributed their articles and themselves to this series:

Duty - Bill Reagan
Impeccability - Drew Clarke
Passion - Scott St. Germain
Perseverance - Chris Squier
Planning - Chris Crane
Teamwork - John Byington
Loyalty - Phil Anderson
Flexibility - Mark Dahl
Selfless Service - Terry Schwalier
Integrity - Mark Thaller

Response to the series has been very encouraging. I have heard from a number of readers who have shared their own thoughts and experiences. Several people have asked for permission to further disseminate the series – in whole or in part – to their own constituencies and circles of friends.

We have given permission for the series to be made available to the participants at the upcoming National Company Grade Officer (CGO) Professional Development Conference at Nellis Air Force Base near Las Vegas. This year’s theme will be “Selfless Service.”

Through the encouragement of those who have been impacted by the series, I have become convinced that the project can be expanded into a book that will be a useful resource to officers who are contemplating making the transition from the military to the business world. There are already many fine resources available, but I sense that there is a real gap in addressing from a case and narrative approach the choices that people face when they leave the military at four discrete points: after an initial 5 year commitment, after 10 years, after 20 years, and at retirement after a full career.

I am envisioning a book that would be developed in four sections - one section to address each of the time frames outlined above. We will gather stories from people who have been faced with the choice to leave or stay at each point along the way, and who have had to confront what a next career would look like and how best to pursue that second career. I envision a healthy balance of stories representing people from all four branches - and maybe a Coast Guard story or two for good measure!

Across the four sections of the book, we will tie it all together by addressing five global questions that everyone must wrestle with as they prepare to transition from the military. These questions and examples of how to answer them will be illustrated through personal stories and cases of men and women who have made the transition at each stage along the way.

We will also address the issues that impact the spouse of the leader in transition.

* * * *

I would like to enlist the help of readers of The White Rhino Report in moving this project forward. For those of you who have made the transition from military leadership to a second career, or who anticipate making that transition in the future, I would welcome your responses to the following questions:

1) If you were to choose 5 key questions that should be addressed globally in each section of the book, what would be your five top questions that individuals facing transition from military leadership should be asking themselves?

2) What suggestions and ideas do you have for moving this book project forward?

Please e-mail your responses and ideas to me at:



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