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Wally Bock

The story you share about the CEO is powerful. It tells about a memorable event. But I think the most powerful part of this post is just above that story.

"When was the last time you quietly helped a hassled co-worker or direct report put the finishing touches on a project? Or maybe something as simple as pouring coffee for the participants gathered around a meeting table?"

That's the part that's in everyone's control, simple helpful actions with no request for notice or praise, or even memorability.

Mark Welch

The idea of the servant leader goes way back - about 2,000 years ago. It was someone who said, "The greatest among you is the servant of all the rest."

I suspect that the CEO in the story above - the Naval Commander - knows who said these words and lives by them, as he exemplified by organizing the team to take the food to the hungry.


Very good story. Inspirational! If all leaders would show us a little of their humanity, then perhaps thing will turn out to be a little better!

peter vajda

Would that the "leadership" of this country, right-left, red-blue, espouse such a high value and walk their talk.

Merle Ballaigues

Your story is great reminder that being a leader is definitely about what you do and what your people see in action, versus who you say you are. "Actions speak louder than words" and the CEO in your story "shouted out" who he is and what he stands for. He demonstrated inspirational leadership in action!

Steve Roesler


Point well taken. In fact, the CEO's directive fell into that category as well--it was in his control, stated matter-of-factly, and I doubt that he gave a thought to it being written up a few years later.

Steve Roesler


His is indeed a powerful testimony--and one that exemplifies the original with no less impact.

Steve Roesler


Well said.

Steve Roesler


It certainly was a "shout"--yet, as I recall, his words were actually spoken quite softly.


Steve - Without a doubt, a great leadership move and a laudable action. It's also an pointer to why "you don't have to be in a position of authority to lead" is often *not* true.

What if one of the building maintenance people had made exactly the same statement upon finding the leftover food? It is as likely that that he/she would have been fired as that he/she would be applauded, largely depending upon the leadership sense of their manager.

It's as important to recognize leadership when we see it as it is to practice it.

Thanks, as always, for the post.

Steve Roesler


Excellent point: His position allowed for the *unusual* action to be immediately legitimized.

It also allowed for other similar acts to later be seen emanating from that organization. Nothing like a powerful example. . .

genuine content

that was very inspiring.


God bless

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