Article PDF: 1.5.1 Command Leadership

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Twelve rules describing the individual decision-making characteristics that define leaders.

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This article explains how, in competitive environments where we work among people free to make their own choices, we cannot be successful simply by following directions.. When we are on the front lines, our success depends on the decisions that we make about conditions in our environment.

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This article explains Sun Tzu's basic view of the "commander" who makes decisions under competitive pressure. We do not have the luxury of good information and time to make those decisions. We must decide in an instant, with a minimum of information. In the real world, many of these decisions are subconscious and automatic responses to conditions. If we waste time before we act, we are going to get into trouble.

The first problem that we must address is the one of our personal responsibility. Where must we follow group decisions end and our individual responsibility begin? How does the "wisdom of crowds" relate to making good decisions? The second challenge is understand which characteristics make a good leader. Does leadership depend on one key characteristic or is it a complex array of characteristics. What characteristics allow us to predict which leaders will succeed and which will fail?