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4 Effective Leadership Lessons

By University Alliance
Four Effective Leadership Lessons

At the very foundation of our greatest war heroes lies the same invaluable trait – leadership. While many people look to war heroes for effective leadership lessons, one hero in particular stands out as personifying the characteristics that all great leaders should follow: Dwight Eisenhower. Eisenhower’s leadership skills helped him lead and win World War II, and he was eventually elected to two Presidential terms. Understanding how Eisenhower utilized his leadership skills in a time of crisis can be beneficial to everyone in a leadership position.

Pearl Harbor

Five days after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Colonel Walter Smith made a phone call to Brigadier General Dwight Eisenhower. He relayed a message from General George Marshall: Eisenhower was to report to Washington D.C. immediately. When Eisenhower’s arrived in Washington, General Marshall gave him a briefing of the U.S. military presence in the Pacific. After the briefing, General Marshall asked Eisenhower, “What should be our general line of action?” Instead of giving an immediate response, Eisenhower asks for a few hours to assess the situation. He sat down at his typewriter and typed, “Steps to Be Taken.” He was a masterful leader.

Lead Like a General

While some people are born with innate leadership qualities, many need additional leadership training to achieve maximum results. Using Eisenhower as an example, you can utilize four key qualities of effective leadership. These include:

  1. Be Prepared
    Eisenhower was only told to travel to Washington; he was not told why he was being summonsed. While he wasn’t expecting to be asked for his recommendations for a war plan, it didn’t matter. He had been preparing for that moment every day – for years. Leaders are always prepared.
  2. Be Courageous and Confident
    Leaders are confident, but not over-confident. When he was asked his opinion by General Marshall, Eisenhower was already well-known and respected within the military. If he had been over-confident, he might have blurted out an answer immediately. Conversely, if he had not had courage, he might not have asked for additional time (fearing he would be judged for not answering immediately). His request for time demonstrated he was both courageous and confident.
  3. Have Perseverance
    A good leader perseveres. Earlier in his career in the peacetime army, Major Eisenhower was held in the same position for 16 years before getting promoted from Major to Lieutenant Colonel. Most of his friends had left the army to pursue business careers. Because Major Eisenhower chose to continue his military service, history was forever altered.
  4. Be Prepared to Modify Plans
    D-Day was a tremendous military victory. It opened the door for Americans to fight in Europe, but at the cost of many lives on both sides. What is not widely known is that Eisenhower had actually prepared a speech just in case the Allied invasion was not successful. Leaders are always prepared to change plans with very little notice.

Eisenhower is among the top U.S. leaders in history. By using these leadership techniques and obtaining professional leadership training, you’ll have the right knowledge and tools to help you become well-respected, self-assured commander-in-chief.

Get Leadership and Management Training - 100% Online!

If you’re seeking leadership skills training from a proven leader, consider the Executive Certificate in Leadership and Management program from the University of Notre Dame. Offered 100% online by Notre Dame’s acclaimed Mendoza College of Business, the executive certificate program is delivered via a flexible, video-based e-learning platform that allows you to complete your courses anytime and anywhere. Through Notre Dame’s Executive Certificate in Leadership and Management program, you’ll learn how to effectively handle real-world leadership challenges. Upon completion of each 8-week course and the entire executive certificate program, you’ll receive a framed certificate of achievement from world-renowned Notre Dame, which is regionally accredited and consistently ranked a Best National University by U.S. News & World Report.

With the advanced skills and powerful credentials you’ll gain through Notre Dame’s Executive Certificate in Leadership and Management, you’ll be able to positively engage people, teams and organizations by responding to challenges with greater sophistication and confidence, and you’ll have the necessary leadership skills to grow and excel in any executive role.


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Category: Leadership and Management