Take Command!: Leadership Lessons from the Civil War

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Currency Doubleday, Jun 1, 2001 - Business & Economics - 233 pages
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"War is capitalism with the gloves off", Tom Stoppard smartly notes in his play Travesties. The comparison between business and war is a sentiment expressed not only onstage, of course, but in corporate boardrooms and private offices, at company sales conferences and industry gatherings. Focusing on America's greatest conflict, Tom Wheeler analyzes the decisions of leaders on both sides and offers insights that can make the difference between victory and defeat for people at the front lines of today's highly competitive business world.

A business veteran, Tom Wheeler organizes the command strategies of the Civil War into nine specific lessons and illustrates each of them with in-depth descriptions of actual battles. The story of General George McClellan's three devastating encounters with General Robert E. Lee, for example, highlights two very different leadership styles. Had McClellan been courageous enough to employ his advantage in troop size and position, Wheeler argues, he could have handily defeated his opponent. Ready to risk all, Lee achieved stunning victories in every engagement. The results of other battles provide corporate leaders with such pragmatic insights as:
-- Never fight today's battles with yesterday's tactics
-- The greatest campaigns are often decided by the smallest skirmishes
-- If you can't win, change the results

In the tradition of books like Jesus CEO; Leadership Lessons of Attila the Hun; and Cigars, Whiskey, and Winning: Leadership Lessons of Ulysses S. Grant, "Leadership Lessons from the Civil War" turns to great men in history to reveal the qualities that distinguish successful leaders in any field.

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Contents

Lesson Two If at First You Dont Succeed So What?
25
Lesson Three Yesterdays Tactics Make Todays Defeats
53
Lesson Four Its the Next Hill
75
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