Tactical Leadership: Navigating the Way to Victory Through the Fog and Friction of War

Tactical Leadership: Navigating the Way to Victory Through the Fog and Friction of War

by Paul D Lefavor
Tactical Leadership: Navigating the Way to Victory Through the Fog and Friction of War

Tactical Leadership: Navigating the Way to Victory Through the Fog and Friction of War

by Paul D Lefavor


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This book is for warrior leaders. Those who have been given the great privilege of leading our nation's Armed Forces. This book is an attempt to not only define the essence of leadership, especially the kind that is required in a tactical setting, but to enable us as leaders to become decisive and make a positive impact. To that end, this book draws from numerous battles and engagements in an effort to gain theoretical experience - præmonitus præmunitus.

While it's true that no book can reduce leadership to a set of learnable skills, we may gain an understanding of everything leadership entails by surveying various leaders throughout history who shaped events, examine their personalities, and along with a look at their critical decisions and actions, encapsulate the essence of leadership. While avoiding concepts merely in the abstract, this book will attempt to make ready use of the cogency and profundity of such great military minds as Sun Tzu, Vegetius, Saxe, Frederick the Great, Napoleon, Jomini, Clausewitz, Patton, Marshall, MacArthur, etc., as well as various classical and modern philosophers.

The purpose of any profession is to serve society by effectively delivering a necessary and useful specialized service. Most professions serve individual clients. The military serves a collective client, the Nation.

With this in mind, using various examples drawn from history, this volume is designed to apportion practical tools of leadership to the leaders of America's Armed Forces. One might ask: What benefit does a study of historical figures afford to the study of leadership? In a word, much in every way, as John Jessup observes, "Despite vast changes in technology since World War II, the combat leader may still learn much from the study of past battles and campaigns. Weather, terrain, and intelligence of friendly and enemy dispositions, for instance, are as important today as in the days of Alexander, Frederick the Great, and Napoleon; human reactions in combat remain relatively constant.

This book consists of seven chapters. Chapter one introduces the definition of leadership, surveying its various aspects. Chapter two examines the leader as planner. Chapter three explores the leader as example. Chapter four investigates the leader as warrior. Chapter five ponders the leader as instructor. Chapter six takes stock of the leader as counselor. Lastly, chapter seven considers the leader as a disciple of war, that is, one who delves into military history and develops himself professionally, thus obtaining theoretical experience. Finally, several appendices provide the leader with creeds and principles for which to guide action.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780997743401
Publisher: Blacksmith Publishing
Publication date: 01/01/2018
Pages: 524
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.17(d)

Table of Contents




Part 1: The Fundamentals of Leadership

Chapter 1 – Philosophy of Leadership

Nature or Nurture

The Definition of Leadership

The Core Values of Leadership

Man’s Constitution

Ethos, Logos, Pathos

The Four Factors of Leadership

Leadership and Management

Styles of Leadership

Pitfalls of Leadership

The Seven Guiding Presuppositions of Leadership

Chapter 2 – Foundations of Leadership

The Twelve Traits of Effective Leadership

The Twelve Principles of Leadership

Chapter 3 – War and Tactics

The Nature of War

Part 2: The Leader as Tactician

Chapter 4 – Intellect

Gallipoli – Autopsy of a Débâcle

Lawrence of Arabia

Chapter 5 – Imagination

Julius Caesar at Alesia

The Lion of the North

Chapter 6 – Judgment

Market Garden – A Bridge Too Far

Desert One

Chapter 7 – Initiative

The Swamp Fox

Fire in the Jungle

Chapter 8 – Decisiveness

Napoleon at Toulon

Chapter 9 – Flexibility

Stonewall’s Valley Campaign

Part 3: The Leader as Example

Chapter 10 – Determination

Ulysses S. Grant

Operation Jubilee

Chapter 11 – Courage

Sergeant York

Gunnery Sergeant Basilone

Chapter 12 – Perseverance

Judas Maccabaeus

Louis Botha

Part 4: The Leader as Warrior

Chapter 13 – Tenacity

The Gray Ghost


Chapter 14 – Self-Control

Oliver P. Smith

Chapter 15 – Presence

Robert Howard

Part 5: The Leader as Instructor

Chapter 16 – Approaches to Training

The Four Basic Temperaments

Chapter 17 – Principles of Effective Instruction

After Action Reviews

Part 6: The Leader as Counselor

Chapter 18 – Counseling

Part 7: The Leader as Disciple of War

Chapter 19 – How to Study History

The Threads of Continuity

Chapter 20 – How to Use History

Chapter 21 – Conclusion

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