Monday Motivation – February 14, 2022

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If you stay in the military very long, you take charge of multiple organizations. In my 30 years as a Marine Officer, I took control of 20 different organizations from 5 to 3500 personnel across various endeavors, many of which I had little or no experience. I was responsible for large quantities of equipment, a budget, and people in most of these jobs. I was responsible for executing a mission, training the unit, and the growth and training of the people. Of course, responsibility and authority grew with the size of the organization. While leading these organizations was a complex challenge, with each experience, I became more capable of the challenge.

The Key was a good assessment of the organization, its strengths and weaknesses, and its ability to accomplish the Mission. Then it came down to figuring out what 20% of the activity created 80% of the value and prioritizing those efforts. Trying to get rid of tasks in a bureaucracy of any kind is a challenge, and the military is a bureaucracy inside a bureaucracy, but that’s a separate topic. Leaders must do this for the organization and in their own roles. Without that assessment, you risk getting crushed by trivial urgencies and your organization losing its direction.

So, look at your organization and decide the 20% of activities that give 80% of your return. Then look at your job and do the same. Now start figuring out how to get rid of the 80% that isn’t giving you high returns.

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