Introduction to My new book: The First Principles–Unlocking your Unstoppable Leadership

Welcome to Day one of your Unstoppable Leadership!!

The First Principles of Unstoppable Leadership is not a leadership development book as much as it is recognition of leadership qualities needed to lead using the Unstoppable Model. The 18 First Principles listed in the book can stand-alone as separate but powerful leadership fundamentals; However, when combined together as a whole, they make-up The First Principles of Unstoppable Leadership.

This book is my concerted effort to express the individualistic and holistic nature of the first principles of Unstoppable Leadership. This book is my third book in the L.I.F.E. Series of books and represents 30 years of discovering life and leadership.

My First book “F(X) Leadership Unleashed” is about how I used many of the principles to grow and develop myself, my teams, and an organization during my Air Force Career. My second Book “You are Unstoppable” was a further refinement of my self-development principles and development processes and the development of the Unstoppable Model.

“The 18 First Principles of Unstoppable Leadership” is a further refinement of what I believe about leadership. One thing I am assured of is this will not be my final book concerning personal growth and leadership development. One is never finished growing and developing in life or in their leadership.

The original intent of this book was to create a companion leadership development book to the “You Are Unstoppable” personal development book. However, as I began writing the book began to take shape on what I consider the fundamenta inconcussa of Unstoppable Leadership.

Fundamenta inconcussa is Latin for unshakable foundation. Aristotle called this his first principles or his self-evident truths. In order to lead your life and be unstoppable you need to know your first principles or your self-evident truths of Leadership. You need to know who you are, what you stand for, what you believe in, what your values are, and what you will stand firm for in your life and in your leadership.

Once you know your first principles, you create an unshakable leadership foundation and you can create your unshakeable leadership purpose. Your purpose is the Why of your leadership. Why you are driven in a certain direction, why you act in the way you do, why you believe what you believe, and why you lead. You must be committed to your own leadership path, stand firm in your convictions, and live each day on purpose.

Being an unstoppable leader is hard because you are holding yourself accountable and responsible to a standard. After serving 28 years in the Air Force living by a standard each day is still a difficult task to accomplish. It is a constant challenge each day to hold myself accountable to maintain the first principles of this book.

As you read this book, you will quickly notice that my Air Force and Joint Service influenced my thought and concepts on leadership. In the military, we start teaching leadership principles during basic training. The motto for the 3701st Basic Military Training Squadron, “Lead, Follow or Get the Hell out of the Way.” This inspiring motto has stuck with me my entire career and it has kept me focused as a leader.

Teaching young men and women about leadership, personal responsibility, and accountability is a military service imperative. The military expects each individual to learn and practice leadership throughout their career. Each Service uses a phased approach to developing leaders and teaching leadership. Below is the Air Force approach.

The Air Force deliberately develops its leaders through a phased approach to create leaders in a systematic, organized manner best configured to meet the needs of the Service. There are three levels of leadership in the force development model—tactical, operational, and strategic levels. A phased force development approach to leadership at the tactical, operational, and strategic levels provides the framework for focusing development of institutional competencies supported by occupational skill sets. Force development is the method the Air Force uses to grow experienced, inspirational leaders who have the necessary technical competencies and professional values, framed by a common culture, regardless of career specialty. (AFDD 1-1, 2008, p. 38)

It will be evident as you read the book that my military service influenced my thoughts and ideas about leadership and shaped what I feel are the first principles in this book. The subject and practice of leadership is something I have critically studied since I attended my first military leadership school in 1988. Today, I continue to study, develop, and grow my leadership skills through daily application and a regime of continuous learning and development. Some of my favorite authors are Jack Welch, Stephen Covey, Ken Blanchard, James C. Hunter, Donald T. Phillips and John Maxwell. This book represents those concepts and ideas I have learned and practice.

One of the main things I learned while during my travels in military and more so since leaving the military is people are hungry for real and authentic leadership. The hunger for leaders they can believe in. This hunger for real and authentic leadership is pervasive in every part of the world. People want real leadership.

They are looking for leaders who lead with respect, integrity, and clarity. They are looking for leaders who take responsibility, hold themselves accountable, and take control of their lives. They are looking for leaders that serve to lead and do not have an attitude that “ITS ALL ABOUT ME!”

People are tired of false leaders. They are tired of lying leaders. They are tired of dishonest leaders. They want a leader they can trust. They want a leader who will help them grow and develop. They want a leader the can respect

Take the Leadership Risk

             Leadership is a risk. You need to embrace the risk that will create the leadership you want. You cannot live your life in fear or lead with fear. Risk is what you perceive it to be. You can perceive it to be uncertainty and ambiguity and or you can perceive it as an adventure waiting for you.

You need to take the risk and face your fears in order to become a fearless leader and lead with unstoppable leadership. In everything, you do, set your leadership on the foundation your character and competence to move forward. Take the risk to conquer your fears. Take the risk to lead in the great adventure called leadership. It is your leadership; take the risk and become an unstoppable leader.

This book is designed for you to think, mull, and reflect on the First Principles. The First Principles are a must to be an Unstoppable Leader. As you read each chapter reflect and consume each Principles in this book. Take the time to see how each applies to your life and how you can use them in your daily leadership.

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