Those of you familiar with this blog and my leadership philosophy know how strongly I feel about the importance of Intention. When working with a client company, it is one of the first things we discuss…is your Vision in alignment with your Intention? When it is, your value proposition, when properly communicated, will resonate with your target prospects. If it isn’t, prospects and customers can sense it, whether they’re conscious of it or not. When these two elements are out of alignment people feel there may be a hidden agenda…and this resonates as well. I’m also an advocate of giving back to the community. This is a fundamental facet of being a Transformational Leader, someone that leads from a perspective of service, of responsibility, and accountability to those they lead and those around us. Back in 2008, I saw the remarkable power Equine Facilitated Learning can have in support of our combat veterans and their families transitioning back to civilian life. As a veteran, I decided to act, and the award-winning Warriors in Transition program was born (the program was formally commended by General David Petraeus in 2010).
We recently had the opportunity to bring our Warriors in Transition program to Hawaii. In doing so, we also conducted demo workshops for leaders in the community. One leader that attended was Councilman Tom Berg, representing the Leeward side of Oahu. I must say, Tom doesn’t come across as a typical politician. He’s forthright, inquisitive, and remarkably energetic in the support of his constituents. He also saw how effective our approach is in cultivating presence, self-awareness, social awareness, self management, positive communications, and relationship management skills…all critical attributes for former soldiers as they navigate their way forward in the civilian job market.
In reaching out to Mr. Berg, with notable support from the Palmarie Community Transformation Alliance, a conversation began regarding the allocation of Navy property that is being transferred to state control, and its potential use in support of Warriors in Transition and the large veterans community in Hawaii (you can read more about this in the PDF press release below).
What’s exciting is that we are working together to create a plan to deliver the existing horse stables, infrastructure, and necessary acreage available at Barber’s Point over to Palmarie and Equine 808, the islands’ first and only horse rescue organization, in order to support and expand programs for our veterans and their families.
From my perspective, having co-created and facilitated Warriors in Transition since 2008, this is a remarkable and necessary development. It points to the positive impact we can make in our community if we all come together, across organizational boundaries, to make something happen. This is an example of government, nonprofits, and a for profit organization cooperating to address a critical need no single entity seems to be able to address. This is where authentic, transformational leadership comes to the fore. Of refusing to accept things as they are, and creating cross-functional teams to create the change we wish to see in the world.
For me, this represents a culmination of our approach and philosophy. Of refusing to accept the status quo when the status quo is not serving the greater need. It also stands as a metaphor for the adaptive challenges many companies are facing during these highly volatile times. Of searching out new, innovative solutions for today’s world. Of getting out of the box, and thinking creatively. Of pushing past organizational constraints to build partnerships and teams capable of creating a new reality.
And simply put, it is the right thing to do. I encourage you all to join in and help support the more than 2 million veterans that have been deployed to combat areas over the past decade. Their sacrifices enabled us to go about our lives as if nothing was happening. We owe them our gratitude and undying thanks for what they’ve done for our nation. We owe them the same chance at success back home that they’ve enabled for us these past ten years.
© 2011, Terry Murray.