My all time favourite TV series is M*A*S*H, a comedy/drama centred around the doctors and nurses of the 4077th M*A*S*H unit during the Korean War. The series was so popular that it outlasted the duration of the 3 year war, spanning 11 seasons and 251 episodes.

The strong characterisation and story lines presented thought provoking themes that provide an ideal platform for lessons on life and leadership. Whether you are a fan of the show or not, I'm sure you will connect with my leadership insights from M*A*S*H.

LEADING FROM THE TRENCHES features bite-sized, candid insights that speak into the gritty space of leadership through the eyes of a fellow leader seeking to "lead with all diligence" (Romans 12:8).

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

A Question of Character

Episode 10:  I Hate A Mystery

Hawkeye:     Lieutenant, I’ve always admired your analytical  
             mind.  You’re one of the few people who can see  
             things without emotion or prejudice. Let me ask you…
Lieutenant:  I think you did it.
Hawkeye:     Let me rephrase the question.  How would you assess
             my general character?
Lieutenant:  You’re cynical and selfish. When you’re not in the 
             operating room, all you ever think about is 
             your own pleasure.
Hawkeye:     Don’t sugar-coat it. Give it to me straight.

A spate of thefts at the 4077 sparks a search of all personnel’s belongings by Colonel Blake, revealing the stolen goods hidden in Hawkeye’s foot-locker.  In an attempt to prove his innocence, Hawkeye lays a trap to reveal the identity of the real thief.

In leadership, character is everything!   We can all think of competent leaders who have compromised their position of influence because of character issues.  Our character is a window into our true selves and provides the foundation upon which our leadership is built.  In his book “Uprising,” Erwin McManus describes “Character [as] the mark that defines who we really are when you get to the core.”  It is this core of who we are that will withstand the challenges and expectations of leadership more than what we are able to do.  When dealing with conflict and facing criticism, character “is both developed and revealed” (Rick Warren), exposing the true nature and quality of the leader. 

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