Robert E. Lee on Leadership : Executive Lessons in Character, Courage, and Vision
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Robert E. Lee was a leader for the ages. The man heralded by Winston Churchill as "one of the noblest Americans who ever lived" inspired an out-manned, out-gunned army to achieve greatness on the battlefield. He was a brilliant strategist and a man of unyielding courage who, in the face of insurmountable odds, nearly changed forever the course of history.
"A masterpiece—the best work of its kind I have ever read. Crocker's Lee is a Lee for all leaders to study; and to work, quite deliberately, to emulate." — Major General Josiah Bunting III, superintendent of the Virginia Military Institute
In this remarkable book, you'll learn the keys to Lee's greatness as a man and a leader. You'll find a general whose standards for personal excellence was second to none, whose leadership was founded on the highest moral principles, and whose character was made of steel. You'll see how he remade a rag-tag bunch of men into one of the most impressive fighting forces history has ever known. You'll also discover other sides of Lee—the businessman who inherited the debt-ridden Arlington plantation and streamlined its operations, the teacher who took a backwater college and made it into a prestigious university, and the motivator who inspired those he led to achieve more than they ever dreamed possible. Each chapter concludes with the extraordinary lessons learned, which can be applied not only to your professional life, but also to your private life as well.
Today's business world requires leaders of uncommon excellence who can overcome the cold brutality of constant change. Robert E. Lee was such a leader. He triumphed over challenges people in business face every day. Guided by his magnificent example, so can you.
exactly when and where the Confederates needed him most, on Burnside’s flank. Despite the rigors of his march, Hill’s men tore into the Federals, scattering the Union assault. The day was over. But the danger, of course, was not. Lee could have skedaddled, as McClellan had done before Richmond. But he ordered no retreat. His men made camp and rested. The next day, when the sun rose over a grim battlefield littered with grotesque rows of swollen corpses, Lee’s army was still in place, bloody but
he told a junior officer. “Thank God it is no worse.” And again: “I know all about it and do not wish to hear any more—it is too painful a subject.” Lee was always able to focus his attention on what he could do to improve a situation. That was his role as a leader. There was nothing he could do for Jackson personally, but he could still try to make the most of Jackson’s victory, and it was to that end that he devoted his energies. Command of the attacking Confederate forces had fallen to Jeb
divisions who shifted the tide, driving the Federals back across the Rappahannock River. With that Federal threat cleared away, Lee looked to renew his offensive against Hooker, only to find that the Union commander had also sought the safety of the north bank of the river. As one Union officer confessed: “They have beaten us fairly; beaten us all to pieces; beaten us so easily.” In New York, in the newspaper offices of Horace Greeley, the reaction was worse: “My God, it is horrible—horrible! And
instructed his future leaders to slash red tape, noting that paper regulations—and their embodiment in a bureaucracy—are an enemy of effective leadership and a promoter of collective irresponsibility. A leader should work to have as few rules encumbering his administration as possible, and stick to them. To quote Lee, “We must make no heedless rules. We must never make a rule that we cannot enforce.” Just as Lee was opposed to rules becoming meaningless by there being too many of them, so should
private to go to the rear “before you cause good men to run.” Hill, like many of his Virginian brethren, was intent on maintaining the chivalry of arms. While he would surge passionately with the blood-dimmed tide of battle, he was protective of the lives of captured officers. When in the midst of combat Union Brigadier General Henry Prince presented himself to Hill, saying, “General, the fortunes of war have thrown me into your hands,” Hill replied: “Damn the fortunes of war, General! Get to