Archive for real leader
Today’s Denver Post, highlighted the courage of two heroes:
one, U. S. Airways Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger who
successfully landed his plane on the Hudson River after the
engines became disabled; two, Captain Richard Phillips of the
Maersk Alabama, who allowed himself to be taken by pirates
to save his crew. Both of these men demonstrated courage and
skill, while taking total responsibility for their people in a situation
that could have been beyond their control. These men are not
captains in the military. They are civilians. They are managers.
Like managers everywhere they are in charge of capital
equipment, employees, customers, safety and goals.
Contrast them with the story earlier this week of ex-Qwest CEO
Joe Nacchio beginning to serve his 6-year prison sentence for
nsider trading. His name, adds to the list of wealthy CEO’s of
huge companies sentenced to prison for fraud and other crimes,
executives such as Bernard Ebber of WorldCom and Jeffrey
Skilling of Enron.
These CEO’s and the captains each faced extraordinarily difficult
situations—the CEO’s faced (helped create?) the financial
meltdown of their companies. The captains faced imminent,
perhaps catastrophic danger. The CEO’s acted like emperors,
grabbing riches and surrounding themselves with lawyers. The
captains assessed the situation, behaved as heroes, and in the
case of Captain Phillips, put his own life in danger to protect
As managers we each decide daily if we have the true grit to
behave as these captains did, taking full and complete
responsibility for the situation and their charge. We can take
seminars in accountability or we can read the newspapers and
decide who are the real leaders and who we want to be.
by Jonette Crowley, Enlightened Leadership Solutions, Inc.