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).

Sunday, March 4, 2018

Get In The Game

Episode 65:  The Consultant

Trapper:   Major, I’m John McIntyre.  This is Hawkeye Pierce
Borelli:   [shaking hands] Anthony Borelli.  The rank is  
           honorary. I’m here as a civilian medical consultant.
Trapper:   You here to tell us everything you know?
Borelli: Should take about 10 minutes.  I’m looking forward to 
           meeting you at the lectures.
Trapper: We’re not coming.
Borelli:   There are some very fine doctors who’ve come a long way 
           to discuss new surgical techniques
Hawkeye: Major, we’re from a MASH unit three to four miles from 
           the front.
Trapper: You ever been to Korea doctor? [no] You’d love it.  
Hawkeye: I’ll tell you what doc.  You wanna really be useful over 
           here?  Stop hanging out in the cosy locker room in 
           Tokyo.  If you and your pals want to really get in the 
           game, come out to a MADH unit or an aid station.

Hawkeye and Trapper attend a medical conference where they meet a civilian consult.  After challenging him to leave the comfort of Tokyo, the consultant visits the 4077th and teaches the surgeons how to do an arterial transplant.

I must confess that I have a love hate relationship with consultants.  On the one hand, I have worked in roles where I have benefitted greatly from the wisdom of professionals and practitioners in their respective fields.  On the other hand, I have sat in training sessions with consultants who have lectured with knowledge divorced from actual experience.  The consultants who have the most credibility, in my estimation, and who have brought the most value to my leadership are those who have taught from applied knowledge rather than theoretical knowledge.  When knowledge and experience converge there is a powerful synergy of success and failure that provides a grounded platform for learning.  When I can look into the eyes of a consultant and know that they too have been in the game and have emerged out of the other side with well-informed insights, I am ready and eager to learn!

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