Robert Gates by Kevin Wu

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Robert Gates by Kevin Wu

  1. 1. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION ROBERT M. GATES LEADERSHIP BIO By Kevin Wu
  2. 2. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION Biography and Achievements A Life of Service Grew up in rural Kansas during 1940s and 1950s Served in U.S. Air Force Recruited to join CIA National Security Council Director of Central Intelligence Agency Dean and President of Texas A&M Secretary of Defense Chancellor of William & Mary and President of Boy Scouts of America 2
  3. 3. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION Be Real “I detest this job…” “The best part of the job is the kids…they make me cry…they are so awesome…only they could get me to stay [for another term]” 3 • “A Soldier’s Secretary of Defense” • Embodied his personal and family values in his professional life – Accountability, integrity, respecting dissenting views • A listener, solicited opinions from others – Open door policy, esp. with Aggies in uniform • Emotionally engaged in the job – Took time every day to write personal hand- written notes to the families of casualties or visit wounded soldiers in hospitals
  4. 4. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION Be Whole “I called Colin Powell, an old friend, for advice…” 4 • Involved stakeholders across his domains in major decisions: wife Becky, George H.W. Bush, Colin Powell • Very active in community and education causes – Donated $1.5 million with his wife to children’s research center at Texas A&M – Elected to lead Boy Scouts of America • Established boundaries to preserve time with family • Carried a small countdown clock
  5. 5. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION Be Innovative “I had to change the way the Pentagon prioritized funding” 5 • Agent of change at Pentagon – Reinvigorated Pentagon after Rumsfeld’s divisive, arrogant leadership, and repaired relationships with Congress and other agencies – Refocused the Pentagon on prioritizing today’s needs (MRAPs to protect soldiers from mines and explosives) over future, notional conflicts – Supported repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” – Supported women on submarines – Foresaw the end of war coming and implemented savings and spending restraint
  6. 6. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION 4 Way Win? 6 Family Work CommunityPersonal
  7. 7. KNOWLEDGE FOR ACTION Leadership Takeaways 7 • Never forget your values and where you came from – Respect others for their points of view • Servant leadership could be a powerful form of leadership – Champion the cause of those who serve you • Embodiment of a slow career, of life as an opportunity to have impact in a multitude of areas • Life is not necessarily a linear, sequential progression

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