Monday, September 15, 2008

Discipline & command...ADM Arleigh Burke

Burke’s comprehensive approach to leadership was articulated in a study of discipline and command he conducted for the Chief of the Bureau of Naval Personnel in early 1950. In his report he championed the continuing need for loyalty to and interest in subordinates, tightness in command, and stability in personnel assignments and operations. He also championed the widest dissemination of information about Sailors' jobs, their command and the service, to ensure that all hands understood what the service stood for and was doing. Burke believed that only in this way would “a dignified pride and self-respect” in the Navy and oneself and willingness to make personal sacrifices for the group good be achieved.”

He argued that: "We have to maintain in ourselves, and imbue our juniors with an ardor to keep our Navy in front. We must pass along a willingness to think hard--to seek new answers --to chance mistakes--and to 'mix it up' freely in the forums and activities around us to promote knowledge. From that knowledge we can inspire our country to have faith in us--not because the organization of the military forces is the only place to put our national faith, but because we have discharged our responsibilities in such a manner that we have justified confidence in the effective manner in which we operate.”

From an essay:
Admiral Arleigh Burke: Instinct
by David Alan Rosenberg

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