Be a leader not a boss. I’ve worked with both! Leaders are there with you as part of the team, communicating, taking feedback, and being a part of the greater purpose. Bosses tend to tell others what to do and communicate their way and not take feedback well.
Dr Walton discusses many things including 5 Leadership Lessons he has learned from his experiences both in and out of the military.
1) Create a positive culture — I was very fortunate to be in a unit and have a commander that created an environment for every soldier to succeed in. Once you are able to build a culture of success everyone buys in and wants to be a part of the greater good. Even if a job was difficult there was an attitude of getting the job done together that was contagious.
2) Communication is key — I think this holds true with almost every relationship in life — personal or professional. Despite all the acronyms in the military they do a great job of clearly communicating missions, expectations, and roles. I think many businesses could benefit from doing this.
3) Helping other grow/succeed — Being the best at whatever skill or job you have is awesome, but what are you doing to make sure the people you work with are getting to that level as well? This goes back to creating a culture of success and people working for the greater good and not just personal advancement.
4) You are capable of way more than you think — I remember being in basic training and we had gotten into trouble for something. We got taken outside and dropped to start pushing (push-ups). We had been getting smoked all day and were all exhausted and most people couldn’t do more than 10 pushups without dropping to the ground. Our Drill Sergeant told us if we would all get through 100 without anyone dropping, we would get a break. Amazingly we all made it. It was that time I realized we are all capable of so much more than we think our bodies are capable of.
5) Teamwork — You can accomplish so much more if you work as a cohesive unit. A group of individuals who don’t work together trying to accomplish a task makes for chaos, confusion, and conflict. The military did a great job of helping everyone realize that some jobs can not be done by an individual and if you can work together with others (despite your differences) you can and will succeed.