BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. --
Two simple words that have come to dominate the center of my leadership philosophy.
We all have encountered no shortage of buzz words or fancy theories throughout our time to help us solve our problems and conquer our challenges. Yet, I found these two simple words a long time ago engraved in stone on something that had absolutely nothing to do with the U.S. Air Force, the Profession of Arms or a warfighting doctrine of any kind.
These words have endured the test of time and have stuck with me through all of my challenges in a leadership role. They cost nothing except for a shift in mindset.
For me, Inspire Strength is everything a leader of modern day warfighters should be. It is simple and complex all at the same time.
Inspire Strength encompasses many leadership principles, but largely rests on two main pillars: drive and reciprocity.
In terms of drive, it is more than just physical strength and endurance to keep going. It is strength and endurance in character, morality, hope and commitment.
We are all faced with ups and downs. If you have been in the military for any length of time, regardless of uniform type or classification, you have already faced a great number of trials and more will surely follow. Whether they are personal or professional, these struggles always have a purpose and a silver lining. There is always a way through.
In a sense, Inspire Strength is the embodiment of our core values. It is the strength to keep putting your best foot forward (excellence), no matter how dull or mundane the task at hand may be. It is the strength in remembering why you do what you do. Many of us may have had leaders ask us why we joined. Inspire Strength asks why you stay (service).
Most importantly, at least for me, it is the strength to continue coming back day after day without expectation of personal gain, fame or even so much as a simple thank you, but because it is the right thing to do and somebody has to do it and that somebody is you (integrity).
Inspire Strength takes the lead by example perspective to a whole new level. If you can apply this concept to your life, imagine what others would see. Imagine what you may inspire them to do in their own lives.
This is where Inspire Strength becomes reciprocal. It is an organic and evolving philosophy that continues to perpetually grow. There is more to it than I can even list here.
As I have continuously sought to inspire others by my actions through this philosophy, I am often inspired by the actions of others and potential I find in them. I assure you that you will find the same to be true if you look for it.
I believe today’s challenges are no greater than any others humankind has ever faced, they are just current. We are facing them now rather than viewing them in the past. Trials are always easier when they are behind us.
Inspire Strength has helped me lead others through countless challenges, regardless of kind. No matter your sphere of influence, you can have a positive impact on whatever you face. Find what inspires you, hold onto it.
Be a leader that Inspires Strength.