Monday Motivation – September 5, 2022

Leaders shape organizational culture.

There is an old Marine saying that a unit takes on the personality of its commander. It was a good company when I took command of the Security Force Company in Keflavik, Iceland. Still, everyone seemed to have taken on the climate of Iceland. We had too many people committed to menial tasks and working long hours without purpose, busy work. Despite the fantastic natural wonders outside the base, a Marine might never leave the barracks with its gym and bar, except for duty and meals next door at the chow hall. As the days shortened quickly, I resisted the dark and started greeting Marines, saying, “It’s a great day to be an Iceland Marine.” The Marines likely thought I was crazy, but I also began eliminating menial tasks, improving training, and facilitating excursions off the base. Our leaders were on board as we assessed our mission and organization, adjusted the leadership, and set goals and priorities. I knew things had changed when the Marines began saying it was a great day to be an Iceland Marine. Everything you say or do shapes your organization’s culture, so consider what you want that culture to be when you’re assigned a new position.

This week, take a conscious look at what you are doing and how you do it. Are you doing important work, are your people doing important work, have you told them?

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Remember, “all things are possible through prayer and heavy deadlifts.”™


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