In this short piece in SIGNAL Magazine I make the case for the value of historical analysis as preparation for innovation. Look to history for lessons learned and approaches to problem-solving. From this approach, you can avoid common pitfalls, discover patterns for successful problem-solving, and empathy for the endurance required for success as an innovator.
When you look back at your contributions throughout your career what will matter most to you? What will be your legacy and how will you achieve it? I explore this topic on From the Green Notebook. Take a read and share your thoughts!
Recent announcements by Secretary of Defense, Ash Carter, regarding the development of Defense Innovation Units Experimental – in Silicon Valley, Boston, and now Austin, have inspired many in the Department of Defense, including myself, to consider how we too can deliver innovation. Given the need to modernize American military forces after nearly two decades of … More Creating Military Innovation Institutes
If you do not think that business continuity – disaster recovery – and continuity of operations planning matters – just refer to the latest news that Delta Airlines will likely lose $120 million due to a recent power outage at one of their core centers for enterprise services. For the military, similar failures can result … More Business Continuity – Disaster Recovery – and Continuity of Operations Planning
How many times have you seen a new leader arrive with their bag of tricks and begin to implement change either before they have fully consulted with their leadership team – or worse – despite them? Whether you are in the military, government, or civilian sector, middle managers and senior leaders often rotate in and out … More Let Bottom-up Ideas Drive Change
Many staff officers and budding leaders have been exposed to battlefield visits. Organizers of these staff rides hope that lessons learned from combat years ago may offer fresh insight and understanding. As beneficial as these opportunities may be – another form of staff ride, an old fashioned field-trip, may be even more advantageous for professional development. Site … More Beyond Staff Rides – How to Broaden Your Team With Site Visits
Remember these four rules for success – Coordinate, Anticipate, Verify, and Follow-Up. I was introduced to this mental checklist as a young Platoon Leader. My Commander at the time emphasized that if I followed these four rules I could accomplish nearly any task with the least amount of friction. He told me that whenever he looked back … More Coordinate, Anticipate, Verify, and Follow Up
If you are reading this in a meeting or between emails – you just became another victim of distraction! In most work environments we all face a continuous struggle to maintain our focus. Constant news feeds, emails, tweets, social media sites, and other digital distractions interrupt our ability to concentrate. In tactical settings we understand the need for … More Pause to Think before you Multitask
The Three Golden Rules of Great Support Behind every great operator stands many great supporters. In order for the lead agents of any organization to act effectively they must rely on others to perform a variety of ancillary support roles. Supporters provide the services essential for a primary agent to accomplish his or her mission. … More The Three Golden Rules of Great Support
Much of one’s existence consists of a continuous effort to adapt. This is a basic survival principle. We learn, we discover, we change all in an effort to adjust to our environments and our changing desires. Organizations do the same – some better than others. As varied as the daily churn of many groups may … More Three Things Every Leader Should Understand About Creativity and Innovation