Using the Warrior Ethos to Drive Business Leadership
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Using the Warrior Ethos to Drive Business Leadership

The “business is war” philosophy has been with us for nearly as long as business itself. Smart executives learn valuable lessons from The Art of War and The Book of Five Rings, sales managers admonish field personnel to “win” and “seize territory”, and executives grow accustomed to “leading the troops” and “going on the offensive”. Rarer, however, is discussion of the necessary mental conditioning and moral responsibilities of war, and too often do the terms “whatever it takes” and “at any cost” creep into our thinking and actions. As a leader, whether in business or the military, achieving victory is important, but how you attain your objectives is equally so. To truly excel as leaders, managers need to worry less about company vs. company pugilism, and focus instead on developing personal ethical frames of reference. To paraphrase Sun Tzu: Know yourself, not just your enemy. In refining this concept, I sought out some truly soldierly adv...