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My Share of the Task Hardcover – 25 Apr 2013
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General McChrystal is a legendary warrior with a fine eye for enduring lessons about leadership, courage, and consequence. He took me inside the command bunker, on nighttime raids, and through the fog of war, political and military. "My Share of the Task "is an important, riveting, and instructive account of the triumphs and trials of America s two longest wars. TOM BROKAW, author of "The Greatest Generation " Written in the tradition of Ulysses S. Grant, "My Share of the Task "is a clear, compelling, self-critical, and utterly unpretentious memoir. I know of no better book on the nature of modern military command. JOHN LEWIS GADDIS, author of "George F. Kennan: An American Life " This is a brilliant book about leadership wrapped inside a fascinating personal narrative. By describing his own life, and especially his command in Afghanistan, General McChrystal helps us understand the modern missions of the military. More than that, he provides lessons about leadership and values that are indispensable in our daily lives. It s a deeply inspiring tale. WALTER ISAACSON, author of "Steve Jobs "and "Benjamin Franklin " Stanley McChrystal has written the finest military memoir of his generation. Lucid, thoughtful, and steeped in military and strategic history, "My Share of the Task "is not just the story of one man s service; it is the story of the development of a new way of war. This book is not just for aficionados of military history or for students of American foreign policy; it s for anyone who wants to understand the challenges of leadership in America today. WALTER RUSSELL MEAD, author of "Special Providence "and "God and Gold " A remarkable memoir by one of the most exceptional and thoughtful leaders of his generation. RORY STEWART, author of "The Places in Between""
About the Author
Stanley McChrystal retired in July 2010 as a four-star general in the US Army. His last assignment was as the commander of the International Security Assistance Force and as the commander of the US forces in Afghanistan. He is currently a senior fellow at Yale University's Jackson Institute for Global Affairs and the cofounder of the McChrystal Group, a leadership consulting firm. Tantum Collins and Chris Fussell are his colleagues at the McChrystal Group, while David Silverman is the founder and CEO of CrossLead. He is the author of Team of Teams.
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The formation of the man as a leader, learning from the examples of good and poor leaders he encountered on his journey. I thought his explanantion of how the older supply sergeant gave him some really sage advice to be most instructive to a young officer. Similarly how he encountered his new commanding officer at Ft Stewart who taught him adherence to personal and professional standards. Great lessons.
It was good to read that he also set high personal and professional standards for special forces soldiers on dress and personal grooming challenging the shaggy unkempt "im off to my war fighting" dress code comment. And how detainees were to be properly treated. Absolutely right. Its an affective domain thing.
The articulation of the processes he went through in fighting and learning in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are instructive in any field. Humility, adherence to standards, listening to your good people (The Intel sergeant chasing Zarqawi...... he knew and McChrystal backed him; even aginst his own judgment, a sergeant's assessment against the general.......and the sergeant was right) ability to think, move and communicate across geographical boundaries. Fabulous lessons.
Overall, an unmissable read.
The world owes a great debt to people like Stanley McChrystal. I am saying thank you for what you did.
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If you want to get to the essence of what true leadership is, it's in this book.
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