U.S. Army Leadership Field Manual

This compact book (about 200 pages) from the Center for Army Leadership is the public version of the U.S. Army Leadership Field Manual. The framework is simple but nicely encompasses the spectrum of hard and soft dimensions of leadership that are transferrable, for the most part, outside the context of the military.

Their leadership framework consists of four elements:

  1. Values (What the Leader must “Be”)
    • Loyalty
    • Duty
    • Respect
    • Selfless service
    • Honor
    • Integrity
    • Personal Courage
  2. Attributes (What the Leader must “Be”)
    • Mental
    • Physical
    • Emotional
  3. Skills (What the Leader must “Know”)
    • Interpersonal
    • Conceptual
    • Technical
    • Tactical
  4. Actions (What the Leader must “Do”)
    • Influencing
      • Communicating
      • Decision making
      • Motivating
    • Operating
      • Plan/Prep
      • Executing
      • Assessing
    • Improving
      • Developing
      • Building
      • Learning

Levels of leadership

The book also provides a cogent depiction of the U.S. Army framework for levels of leadership. Specifically:

  • Direct: the individual/small group task-oriented perspective. This is face-to-face, first-line leadership. In the army this corresponds to teams, squads, platoons, companies, squadrons etc. The span of influence ranges from a handful to several hundred people. In the business world this is the project leader, shift supervisor, plant manager, department head etc.
  • Organizational: Organizational/systems and processes perspective. This encompasses systemic, cross-cutting processes and policies that influence several hundred to several thousand people. This corresponds to leaders at the brigade and army corp level and working on issues with time horizon of 5 to 10 years. In the business world this aligns with heads of businesses.
  • Strategic: Global/regional national/societal perspective. These leaders are responsible for and influence several thousand to hundreds of thousands of people, and perhaps more. In the army this is best represented by theatre commanders in chief (CINC) for a region such as USCENTCOM which encompasses the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia.

One Comment on “U.S. Army Leadership Field Manual”

  1. […] leadership looks like, for the U.S. Army, at the front line, middle and senior levels. Here is a summary I wrote on the book awhile […]

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