Saturday, August 27, 2005

Increasingly impressed

Babble on.

I'm a bit late with this story, but it arrived at an e-mail address I rarely check anymore. Thanks to JMH for passing it along.

The Ceremonial Guard (CG) welcomed two new recruits July 20.

Admittedly a little green, it had been years—a lot of years—since they had performed drill, nonetheless both beamed beneath their bearskin hats even in the beating sun.

Guardsmen Rick Hillier and Daniel Gilbert—known on any other day as the Chief of the Defence Staff and the CF Chief Warrant Officer respectively—paraded with the Old Guard one day later on Parliament Hill.

In fact, just moments before leaving Cartier Square Drill Hall for the Hill, General Hillier says he had chills down his spine. Describing the CG as a Canadian institution, encompassing teamwork, fitness, cohesion and leadership, he says it reflects superbly on the men and women in uniform. “To be part of it, if only for one day,” says Gen Hillier, “was phenomenal. I’m thrilled.”

Some folks see this sort of event as more of a gimmick than real leadership. I say if showing the troops you're willing to do what they do - even for only a day - is a gimmick, then I'm all for gimmicks.

When I worked for a credit union out west years ago, we used to have all the bigwigs from Head Office, including the CEO, take a day as tellers, and it was always well received.

Civilian or military, much of leadership is about making your people want to follow you, and hokey or not, exercises like this help. It's yet another positive sign that Rick Hillier is the right man for the job.

Babble off.


At 3:16 p.m., Blogger Chimera said...

The mark of a true leader is that he is also one of the troops. He doesn’t demand that his people do things he won’t (sometimes can’t) do. Your example of the credit union bosses is excellent.

Our politicians could take a lesson, here. Most of the time, once they get elected, they seems to forget that they used to be one of the electorate. Breathing the rarified air of Parliament of the Legislature does funny things to the synapses...

At 4:31 p.m., Blogger deaner said...

North Shore Credit Union? That was either the place, or they adopted the idea from your shop (or vice versa). It is also good for customers - the service may be a bit slower, but it puts a face to a senior name and ensures that if customers are having trouble at the counter the guy they complain to will have a sniff about the problem.


At 10:21 p.m., Blogger Pat Patterson said...

I find it encouraging that Canada's military leaders are becoming less circumspect in public about the traditions and purpose of a standing army, however I would ask just one question. Of all the recent combat deployments of Canadian forces have there been promotions from the ranks of enlisted or officers that actually pulled a trigger? If the military and politicians are squeamish about promoting soldiers that have killed then Canada still has a long way to go.

At 10:15 a.m., Blogger Babbling Brooks said...

Actually Deaner, it was Pacific Coast Savings, which has since morphed into Coast Capital Savings.

The guy calling the shots at that time was Doug Enns if I recall correctly. He also used to host an open breakfast at one of the downtown hotels every month for employees who wanted to talk to him. He'd start off with a bit of an update on what we were up to, then open it up to questions. Another great idea, from a very well run company.


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