Tiny Leadership Tales: ‘Elegantly Simple Words’

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Bite sized leadership lessons, featuring reader-submitted stories of no more than 100 words

Priming is a phenomenon where introduction to a certain stimulus impacts how a person will respond to future stimuli. Numerous stimuli impact our teams during COVID. Leave is cancelled, partners separated, and lockdowns stop hobbies; however, leaders can impose stimuli too. I asked the team two good things that had happened to them that day. I asked every day thereafter. They caught on. Knowing the requirement, they looked for the good each day. They started excitedly sharing their things. It didn’t negate the chaos, but it did prime them to look for the good, big or small, that happened daily.
Darby Nelson

Bloke’s an absolute nightmare. Apparently.

As IC HUSKEY in an intense equipment support role, I faced a high turnover of mechanical engineers. One JNCO had impressed me; full of character, a morale boost, committed to the job, and, importantly, highlighted issues to me before they became a problem. 
“How’s LCPL Grey doing?”, his Sergeant asked. 
“He’s epic”, and I explained why.
His Sergeant looked at me like I had a chicken on my head. Curious, I asked “…what’s up?”.
“He’s an absolute nightmare.”
“Ah,” I replied, “Maybe he’s subjected to a different culture in your department?” 
An awkward silence ensued…
Phil Mitten

“Come on, let’s go, follow me!”

These are the elegantly simple words that a leader need only fall back on when that moment comes where leadership is required. No more, no less. A rallying call, an action, and a direction. A phrase that will energise people whose circumstances find them in fear, paralysis, hurt or indecision. As leaders, we all wonder, and at times worry, about whether we will have what it takes when the time comes. We are educated, trained, and practiced, but when that moment comes, will we respond? Yes, you will!
“Come on, let’s go, follow me!
Jim Hutton

Lead-self moment. Regaining consciousness on the road in the Bulchi Valley, debris strewn everywhere and the genesis of chaos. We had struck our 3rd IED in a month and 2nd in a week. The moment of detonation, the feeling of feet travelling over my head and a soft brownout, then I woke up…. 9.0 for dismount, 1.0 for landing. Internal system check: I was hurt but not injured. So started the post blast clearance and some dark thoughts: the locals knew, but no warning. They were stuck too. Refused medivac, I was more use there, deal with it later.
Isaac Williams

What is Tiny Leadership Tales? Find out here.

Cover Image Credit: LSIS Ernesto Sanchez, Defence Images