Colin Powell Leadership
Colin Powell is an American statesman and a retired four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State serving under President George W. Bush. He also served as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the Gulf War.
A Quick History
Colin Powell was born in 1937 in New York City. He is the son of two Jamaican parents with Scottish descent as well. While he received his degree from the City college of New York for geology, he was never really a good student, obtaining a C-average.
Colin Powell describes his first entrance into the military, the ROTC, to be the happiest experience of his life. He was a professional soldier for 35 years of his life, with his rank rising all the way to general.
During his military career, he was involved in the Vietnam war as a military adviser in 1962. Much later, he would be involved in the invasion of Grenada in 1983 and the air strike in Libya in 1986.
In April 1989, Powell was promoted to General and briefly served as the Commander in Chief, Forces Command, and later that year, he would be promoted to be the Joint Chief of Staff by George H. W Bush.
In 2000, he would become the 65th Secretary of State for the US as George W Bush won the Presidential Election. As Secretary of State, he would have a huge influence in the Senate with his oratorical skills, notably convincing the invasion of Iraq, which later led to huge controversies and embarrassment.
After his retirement in 2005, he went around the world in various speaking engagements, becoming a speaker at motivational events and a spokesperson for National Mentoring Month, a campaign held each January to recruit volunteer mentors for at-risk youth.
Awards and Honours
Colin Powell has won countless civilian awards in his life, and a few of his latest honors are:
• Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George H. W. Bush in 1991
Colin Powell Leadership Lessons
1. Leadership by experience
The best thing you can do as a leader is to walk the walk; and people trust a man or a woman who has proven and achieved in the arena he/she is leading in.
In your organization, what have you done in the past to have shown your credibility and competency in your industry as a leader?
2. Convey a sense of purpose
This is often because of bad leadership and the wrong focus.
Most organizations we see nowadays are formed for purely profits and dollars, or that the leader forgets the purpose for which the organization exists.
A strong powerful organization cannot be built on this basis.
A leadership needs to convey and remind his followers the sense of purpose. It gives them the reason to work and the reason to come together.
3.Give your followers resources
Most people can thrive if a leader creates the environment in work where the gifts and abilities of each individual are maximized and everyone is equipped for what they have to do.
You’re not going to know exactly what everyone needs to do his/her job; this is a process that you go through as a leader through practicing active listening and observation skills.
Don't bother people for help without first trying to solve the problem yourself.
Experts often possess more data than judgment.
If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude.
Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.
Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistence.
Fit no stereotypes. Don't chase the latest management fads. The situation dictates which approach best accomplishes the team's mission.
Get mad, then get over it.
Giving back involves a certain amount of giving up.
90 percent of my time is spent on 10 percent of the world.
A dream doesn't become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.
Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it.
Don't be afraid to challenge the pros, even in their own backyard.
Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers, who can cut through argument, debate and doubt, to offer a solution everybody can understand.
Leadership is solving problems. The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help or concluded you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.
Never neglect details. When everyone's mind is dulled or distracted the leader must be doubly vigilant.
Have fun in your command. Don't always run at a breakneck pace. Take leave when you've earned it, spend time with your families.
Surround yourself with people who take their work seriously, but not themselves, those who work hard and play hard.
No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.
The chief condition on which, life, health and vigor depend on, is action. It is by action that an organism develops its faculties, increases its energy, and attains the fulfillment of its destiny.
The healthiest competition occurs when average people win by putting above average effort.
This is Colin Powell speaking about leadership in Sanford Field House to an audience of about 4,500 people.
Lee Kuan Yew was the first and longest serving Prime Minister of Singapore; and it was his leadership that brought Third World Singapore into a thriving metropolitan city in a stunning 3 decades.
» Nelson Mandela
» Martin Luther King Junior
» Abraham Lincoln
» George Washington
» Adolf Hitler
» Barack Obama
» Colin Powell
» Tony Blair
On a monthly basis, I write to you to share with you about my thoughts, some great articles and resources on leadership as well and I know it will greatly benefit you.
Sign up today and download a free leadership ebook worth USD 9.95!
Here are just a few of the pages that offer useful leadership resources for you. You will become a more equipped leader with these:
Great Quotes on leadership that you can use or be inspired by!
Movies: A collection on awesome leadership movies to teach leadership
Team Exercises: Some team building game ideas for you
Books: Some great books you can buy to enrich yourself
Let me begin by saying my deepest thanks to you for visiting this website. Your words of encouragement never fail to inspire and push me further to build this website to be a blessing to more people.
I have only skimmed over the website and the e-book so far, but what I've read was surprisingly deep for a non-commercial and easily accessible product.
Hello Yihan, I am very grateful for your book about leadership. It is very exciting and amazing. It's encouraging and it gives us all hope.
I was inspired by your writing and i have started putting those principles into practice.
I am compelled to write you personally and say how excited I was to discover your website. Even though I have found many websites on leadership, yours stand out because of your Leadership Movies section.
Thank you for the article that you have been sending on true leadership; I really appreciate that. I aspire to be a good leader but it starts with me first. Thank you very much. - Eagles Audacity
I have stumbled across your website a few times in my research and I wanted to commend you for the work you are doing. Your site is a great resource for leaders!
This site is amazing...thank you. I have been exploring today, and found so many great resources!
Dear Yihan, thank you for your leadership website. I am digging into visionary leadership. Thanks for your insightful summary. There are lots of valuable resources around.
I like your website a lot. In fact, I’m undertaking Masters in Construction Management and your articles help a lot.
Excellent site! Thank you so much for the time and effort you've put into compiling some of the best materials on leadership.
Hi Yihan, Thank you so much for your generosity sharing us about Leadership awareness, skills and development. God Bless.
Thanks a lot for wonderful articles on your site.it gave a lot of information in undertaking my management studies. Keep it up; good work. Thanks.
Yihan, your dedication to this site is very obvious and well done dear. Blessings be upon you; I shall in turn do my best to make a difference and be a part of this journey of true leadership with you.
To be honest, I don’t find a correct lexical to describe, how effectively I am using your site for my personal /surroundings development. Hats off to you!!!
Very helpful website really :) sometimes it’s better to be simple than complex. You give example which helps people like me understand what you want to asay.
I am grateful to God for giving us a great mind like you. You are an extraordinary individual with the wisdom & understanding to teach others to lead. You open our eyes and reveal the answers for our everyday lives with remedies we can use to enhance our lives and that of others. Way to GO! I pray God's continuous blessings on your family, friends and for the great work you is doing!
If you have feedback you would like to give, please visit Contact Me and I would love to hear from you. Really.