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Jena McGregor

Jena McGregor

Staff writer Jena McGregor teases out the leadership issues in the day’s news.

Tom Fox

Tom Fox

Guest contributor Tom Fox, of the Partnership for Public Service, writes weekly about issues in the federal workplace.

Lillian Cunningham

Lillian Cunningham

Lillian Cunningham is the editor of On Leadership and writes features for the section.

The Question

The Osama bin Laden mission, and the art of persistence

Finding and killing Osama bin Laden has required focus, patience and persistence from presidents and top government officials over a decade of repeated setbacks--qualities that are in short supply in a world where time horizons are becoming increasingly short. How can leaders resist the natural temptation to move on to other priorities when goals begin to look like they might be out of reach?  

Posted by On Leadership  on May 2, 2011 6:05 PM
Views from the Panel

Recognizing a transcendently important goal

“How do leaders avoid the temptation to move on to other priorities when it appears that some of their goals are out of reach? Well, sometimes they shouldn’t resist that temptation...”

Posted by Paul R. Portney on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

The archaic notion of delayed gratification

“The amount of time in which leaders operate hasn’t changed; the expectations of the time for response have...”

Posted by xxxx on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

A future-focused approach

“If your strategy is sound and the mission valid, there’s no substitute for sticking to it...”

Posted by John Ryan on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Leadership through resolve, not achievements

“Resolve implies patience, and the bringing of justice to Osama Bin Laden is an excellent and tangible example of...”

Posted by West Point Cadets on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Reflections from the US Army War College

“The assorted conversations here did not focus on the punitive action, but rather the corporate need to bring the man to justice in the name of...”

Posted by Col. Charles D. Allen on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Leading for the future

“Whether or not one agrees with the president’s strategy, his persistence in the face of strong resistance shows even more courage than the risky action that did away with Osama bin Laden...”

Posted by Michael Maccoby on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

What sustained commitment looks like

“I have heard a number of people say that government is a business. Perhaps there is merit to...”

Posted by Coro Fellows on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Our nation’s ‘short term’-itis

“This is so widespread a problem that now we have many companies with nothing in the pipeline because of their reluctance to invest in R&D...”

Posted by Yash Gupta on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

The next great U.S threat

“Now that Osama has been held accountable, it's time for U.S. policymakers to focus on an even greater threat to our collective future--our own fiscal irresponsibility...”

Posted by David Walker on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

In bin Laden mission, delegating responsibility

“I don’t believe that finding bin Laden should have been the president’s top priority, even in the current war, but telling CIA director Leon Panetta that it...”

Posted by Bob Schoultz on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Avoiding distracted leadership

“In an environment rife with diversions, political posturing and deliberately implemented forms of distraction (think Donald Trump and the birther issue), it’s a daily challenge for any committed political leader to stay on purpose...”

Posted by Alaina Love on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Justice is worth the wait

“I often assert that in the public sector, geology is the appropriate metaphor for organizational change...”

Posted by George Reed on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Getting a job done

“What leaders can learn from our government’s pursuit of bin Laden is that leaders need to multi-task...”

Posted by John Baldoni on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM

Getting near-sighted teams behind long-term goals

“The term “attention density” refers to the amount of attention paid to a particular mental experience over a specific time. The greater the concentration on...”

Posted by Carol Kinsey Goman on May 2, 2011 6:15 PM
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