The purposes of this paper are twofold: (a) to determine factors of character or situation determine failure in military leadership, and (b) to provide one quality or group of qualities in an individual that contributes to military failure.
In military, the success of operations depends highly of the form of leadership applied. In addition, military members depend on leaders to enforce group and organization norms and enforce rules. Nonetheless, failure to execute such a leadership responsibility may result into demotivate and disparate behavior, affecting the entire team or organization (Aubrey, 2012, p. 4). Subsequently, bad leadership can create toxic leaders and failure (Lewis, 2014, p. 238). For instance, during the Civil War, failure in military leadership is portrayed by how the Great Britain (GB) was defeated by the American Colonies (Millet, Maslowski, &Feis, 2012, p. 258). For example, poor judgment, toxic leadership, and lack of innovative skills are some of leadership characters that prevented the GB from winning. When the GB went into war with the colonies, its leadership was not aware of the 3000-mile Atlantic Ocean stretch between the American continent and the British Isles and the local terrain and territory (Millet et al., 2012, p. 234). Such poor judgment and failure to listen to Edmund Burke’s strategy or General John Burgoyne’s strategy to reduce the colonies’ power by invading America from Canada GB resulted to the defeat.
There is a unique blend of character traits of a leader related to personality that determine effective leadership style and influences they have on the quality of their leadership ability. Moraski (2001, p.10) identified some of these personality traits that promoted success, and their absence resulted into military failure. They included enthusiasm, knowledge and intelligence, personal courage, vision, and good judgment. Absence of these qualities in an individual may result into military failure.
Aubrey, D. W. (2012). The effect of toxic leadership. Retrieved from http://www.au.af.mil/au/awc/awcgate/army-usawc/aubrey_toxic_leadership.pdf.
Lewis, A. R. (2014). The American culture of war: A history of US Military force from World War II to operation enduring freedom. New York, NY: Routledge
Millet, A. R., Maslowski, P., & Feis, W. B. (2012). For the common defense: A military history of the United States from 1607 to 2012. New York, NY: Free Press.
Moraski, J. M. (2001). Leadership: The personality factor. Retrieved from http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a401567.pdf