What essential leadership lessons do we learn by distilling the actions and ideas of great military commanders such as George Washington, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and Colin Powell? That is the fundamental question underlying The Art of Command: Military Leadership from George Washington to Colin Powell. The book illustrates that great leaders become great through conscious effort - a commitment not only to develop vital skills but also to surmount personal shortcomings.
Harry S. Laver, Jeffrey J. Matthews, and the other contributing authors identify nine core characteristics of highly effective leadership, such as integrity, determination, vision, and charisma, and nine significant figures in American military history whose careers embody those qualities. The Art of Command examines each figure's strengths and weaknesses and how those attributes affected their leadership abilities, offering a unique perspective of military leadership in American history. Laver and Matthews have assembled a list of contributors from military, academic, and professional circles, which allows the book to encompass diverse approaches to the study of leadership.
"These essays form a pattern of leadership descriptions that represent the best of the art of command." (
Journal of America's Military Past)
"Art of Command excels. The reader can follow each leader from inauspicious beginnings to greatness in the course of a short story that chronicles the development of a particular quality in that leader. ( Marine Corps University Journal)
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Great essays on leadership
Outstanding Leaders and Leadership Summaries
Each leader's story was told in concise easy to listen to segments; perfect for listening to in the car. You look forward to hearing about the next leaders. The author spoke of some of the more famous leaders but also spoke of a few that you don't hear about that often but have a lot to offer. There was plenty of information to keep you interested without feeling as if you were being lectured.
All the leaders' stories were good and the time taken to present the lesson was just right to keep your interest and not be overwhelming.
The author covered some leaders that you always hear mentioned, but he also spoke about some leaders, such as Admiral Rickover and Gen. Hap Arnold, who don't get as much attention as a Patton or MacArthur. It was informative. I learned something and at the same time, was entertained.
- JAMES RHOADS