Douglas MacArthur was a famous American general who played a prominent role in leading the U.S. military and allied forces the Pacific theater of World War II. He was poised to command the invasion of Japan in November 1945 but was instead instructed to accept their surrender on September 2, 1945. MacArthur oversaw the occupation of Japan from 1945 to 1951 and is credited for making far-ranging democratic changes in that country. He led United Nations forces defending South Korea in 1950-51 against North Korea’s invasion.
MacArthur fought in three major wars (World War I, World War II, Korean War) and rose to the rank of General of the Army. MacArthur remains one of the most controversial figures in American history. While greatly admired by many for what they consider his strategic and tactical brilliance, MacArthur was also considered by some to have had questionable military judgment, and is criticized by many for his actions in command, and especially his challenge to US President Truman in 1951.
While MacArthur’s military and political decisions can and should be debated, his ability to lead thousands of young men during fierce combat while facing every obstacle imaginable is truly remarkable. Below I’ve listed the principles of leadership General MacArthur lived by. As I’m sure you’ll find, these principles will work in the battlefields of American business just as they did in the Pacific theater.
MacArthur’s Principles of Leadership
*Do I heckle my subordinates or strengthen and encourage them?
*Do I use moral courage in getting rid of subordinates who have proven themselves beyond doubt to be unfit?
*Have I done all in my power by encouragement, incentive and spur to salvage the weak and erring?
*Do I know by NAME and CHARACTER a maximum number of subordinates for whom I am responsible? Do I know them intimately?
*Am I thoroughly familiar with the technique, necessities, objectives and administration of my job?
*Do I lose my temper at individuals?
*Do I act in such a way as to make my subordinates WANT to follow me?
*Do I delegate tasks that should be mine?
*Do I arrogate everything to myself and delegate nothing?
*Do I develop my subordinates by placing on each one as much responsibility as he can stand?
*Am I interested in the personal welfare of each of my subordinates, as if he were a member of my family?
*Have I the calmness of voice and manner to inspire confidence, or am I inclined to irascibility and excitability?
*Am I a constant example to my subordinates in character, dress, deportment and courtesy?
*Am I inclined to be nice to my superiors and mean to my subordinates?
*Is my door open to my subordinates?
*Do I think more of POSITION than JOB?
*Do I correct a subordinate in front of others?