Leadership is the art of accomplishing more than the science of management says is possible.
If you are going to achieve excellence in big things, you develop the habit in little matters. Excellence is not an exception, it is a prevailing attitude.
War should be the politics of last resort. And when we go to war, we should have a purpose that our people understand and support.
Politics is not bean bags. It's serious, tough stuff.
The commander in the field is always right and the rear echelon is wrong, unless proved otherwise.
The commander in the field is always right and the rear echelon is wrong, unless proved otherwise. In my experience, the people closest to the problems are often in the best position to see the solutions. The key here is to empower and not be the bottleneck.
There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning form failure.
There are no secrets to success: don’t waste time looking for them. Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty to those for whom you work, and persistence.
Our strategy in going after this army is very simple. First we are going to cut it off, and then we are going to kill it.
In the last several years, I have been troubled by the right shift of the Republican party too far to the right.
President Assad, I worked with. I know him reasonably well, met with him a few times, and he's a liar.
You're not just voting for an individual, in my judgment, you're voting for an agenda. You're voting for a platform. You're voting for a political philosophy.
Standing in support of children is something we should all be able to get behind, regardless of party affiliation.
First you train the followers to accomplish the mission. Second, you resource them: Make sure that they have the tools to do the job. Third, you reward them: You give them medals or bonuses.
The most effective means of ensuring the government's accountability to the people is an aggressive, free, challenging, untrusting press.
You have to make sure you know why you are going to war and then use decisive force to end it as soon as possible.
Pissing people off doesn't mean you're doing the right things, but doing the right things will almost inevitably piss people off.
I was taught to think about mission and people. Mission. What are you trying to accomplish? Don't do anything until you know what the mission is. Drilled into our hearts and into our heads.
I think you can improve on that natural ability with training and exposure to great leaders of the past and to management theories.
I happen to hold a bachelor of science degree in geology... And my greatest contribution to the field of science is that I never entered it.
The United Nations will spearhead our efforts to manage the new conflicts (that afflict our world)... Yes the principles of the United Nations Charter are worth our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.
People have asked me, 'What would you have done if you hadn't gone into the Army?' I'd say I'd probably be a bus driver. I don't know.
What we have to find is the right level of regulation of our financial system so that it has the incentive to invest in things, but at the same time, it is sufficiently regulated so it can't get in the kind of trouble that we have seen in the past and we have seen recently.
One of the most worrisome things that emerges from the thick intelligence file we have on Iraq's biological weapons is the existence of mobile production facilities used to make biological agents.
There are a lot of bigger issues we have to be worrying about with respect to our relationship to China, and the longer they drag out the situation, the more difficult it is to get this relationship back on track.
All values are important, everyone who has ever touched my life in some way was a mentor for good or bad. Life is a blend, and a person is a blend of all the influences that have touched their lives.
Keep looking below surface appearances. Don't shrink from doing so just because you might not like what you find.
When I was Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I would still have junior officers brief me. Usually these people knew more about the subject we were discussing than I did. I had to make sure that they felt confident enough to tell me everything they believed.
All nations that are civilized and do not accept this kind of action as representing any sort of legitimate political cause are coming together to fight these terrorists.
Foe means enemy. Now, will we have differences of opinion with the Russians? Yes. Will they get mad at us from time to time, and we get mad at them? That's part of the normal diplomatic relations.
Don't just show kindness in passing or to be courteous. Show it in depth, show it with passion, and expect nothing in return. Kindness is not just about being nice; it's about recognizing another human being who deserves care and respect.
You have to create circumstances where your first-tier leader knows what you are trying to accomplish, because he is the one who's going to get it done.
Leadership is all about people. It is not about organizations. It is not about plans. It is not about strategies. It is all about people-motivating people to get the job done. You have to be people-centered.
When you help the poorest in the world, you start to move them up an economic and social ladder, and they're not going to be moving toward violence or terrorism of the kind that we worry about.
You have to comply, you have to obey -- or you'd better resign and leave. But that is also the mark of a great leader -- somebody who, in the presence of inner conflict, will do the right thing.
No matter how significant or life-changing your greatest hit or miss might be, neither even begins to define who you are. Each of us is a product of all our experiences and all our interactions with other people. To cite calculus, we are the area under the curve.
My responsibility, our responsibility as lucky Americans, is to try to give back to this country as much as it has given us, as we continue our American journey together.
Use the formula P=40 to 70, in which P stands for the probability of success and the numbers indicate the percentage of information acquired. Once the information is in the 40 to 70 range, go with your gut.
We are not sure to what extent Saddam's Hussein own people were conveying an incorrect picture to him. But this body of evidence was believed not only by President George W. Bush. President Bill Clinton used that same body of intelligence before bombing Iraq in 1998.
I don't know who all of his advisers are, but I've seen some of the names and some of them are quite far to the right. And sometimes they might be in a position to make judgments or recommendations to the candidate that should get a second thought.
Finding the Russian scientists may be a problem being that Russia does not have a Social Security System, as here in America, that allows us to monitor, track down and capture an American citizen.
I went to graduate school as a lieutenant colonel after I had been in the army for 12 or 13 years. I learned so much from all the great management theorists. It gave me a greater understanding of my army experience and showed me the gaps in my knowledge.
Another rule I have is: Don't let your ego get tied up in a policy dispute. Otherwise, if things don't go your way, you can end up breaking a relationship with somebody with whom you can't afford to break.
There is a war on terror that must be fought. Nobody's immune... And so rather than finding fault with what Spain has done by being aggressive in the war on terror, this should redouble everyone's efforts to go after terrorist organizations of any kind... Terror has to be brought to an end.
We have to be on guard that we don't spend so much time worrying about terrorism and guarding ourselves that we start to lose the essence of who we are as an open, freedom-loving people, welcoming to the rest of the world.
Saddam Hussein has not developed any significant capability with respect to weapons of mass destruction. He is unable to project conventional power against his neighbours.
I'm absolutely sure that there are weapons of mass destruction there and the evidence will be forthcoming. We're just getting it just now.
I think all of the attention of the world, to include the attention of the Arab world, should be on Saddam Hussein and whether or not he is prepared to give up the weapons of mass destruction that he has used to terrorise the region.
Policies that emanate from ivory towers often have an adverse impact on the people out in the field who are fighting the wars or bringing in the revenues.
The Court is perhaps one of the last citadels of jealously preserved individualism. For the most part, we function as nine, small independent law firms.
As I've thought about gay marriage, I don't see any reason not to say that couples should be able to get married.
Failure is a part of life and you have to learn to deal with it. Failure is something that is part of life's cycle and it's from failure that you gain life experience.
The claims made about Iraq's WMD capabilities before the invasion were inaccurate, wrong, and in some cases, deliberately misleading.
What could be more important than equipping the next generation with the character and competence they need to become successful.
The United States-Israeli relationship is based on the broadest conception of American national interest in which our two nations are bound forever together by common democratic values and traditions. This will never change.
It isn't enough just to scream at the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations. We need our political system to start reflecting this anger back into, 'How do we fix it? How do we get the economy going again?'
President Kennedy didn't negotiate out of the Cuban missile crisis simply because he and Khrushchev got along well. Khrushchev didn't have the cards.
We have practiced diplomacy since the very beginning of the nation. Sometimes it has not worked, and we've had to go to war. I always believe you should try to find peace and reconciliation before conflict. That has been the approach I've taken.
Russia isn't going to start a war. They can't afford it. I think Mr. Putin can be dealt with if we stop screaming at him. You can work with the guy. You just have to know who he is.
Engineering didn't take to me. And what saved me and kept me in college was I ran into ROTC cadets who were in a fraternity called The Pershing Rifles. And I found my place. I found discipline. I found structure. I found people that were like me and I liked.
You need to understand, if you take out a government, take out a regime, guess who becomes the government and regime and is responsible for the country? You are. So if you break it, you own it.
It was President Bill Clinton and the United States congress in 1998 which said that the regime has to be changed because the regime would not give up its weapons of mass destruction. We came into office in 2001 and kept that policy because Saddam Hussein had not changed.
It is not our place to decide who should lead the Iraqi people. If Saddam Hussein leaves or has to be forced out of power and a new regime brought in, a new leadership brought in, I am confident it will be some combination of people inside the country and outside the country.
It's not just a matter of whether you support Obama or Romney. It's who they have coming with them. I always keep my powder dry, as they say in the military.
Leadership is solving problems.
Leadership is solving problems. The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help or concluded you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.
The country would be a lot better off if we stopped having comment sections. And if we got rid of Twitter.
We want to approach this in a multilateral way, talking with our friends, consulting with our security council colleagues in the United Nations, hoping to find a way to solve this peacefully, but at the same time recognising that unless the threat of military force is there, Iraq will not disarm.
Throughout my career, I learned plenty about war on the battlefield, but I learned even more about the importance of finding peace. And that is what the State Department and U.S.A.I.D. do: prevent the wars that we can avoid so that we fight only the ones we must.
For all the hardship, I was still excited to be on the trail, testing my endurance, feeling especially alive as strength and fatigue flowed alternately through my limbs.
No one has done more to prevent conflict -- no one has made a greater sacrifice for the cause for Peace -- than you, America's proud missile submarine family. You stand tall among our heroes of the Cold War.
Nobody has ever said in the United States government that we are going to war next month. No decision has been made by the president because, as he said to the United Nations, he wants the United Nations to live up to its responsibilities and he wants Saddam Hussein to cooperate.
With vision only, you get no follow-through. With enforcers only, the vision is realized but leaves a lot of wreckage.
An organization that is not facing up to people who are not getting the job done, is going to have difficulties.
There is no question about the fact that we had very serious disagreements with my German, French, and Russian colleagues over the Iraq war. But I never stopped talking.
We are rather candid with them about the nature of their political processes and the state of development of their institutions, but they are looking to the West because they know that's where success lies.
We know that Saddam Hussein is determined to keep his weapons of mass destruction, is determined to make more.
One of the fondest expressions around is that we can't be the world's policeman. But guess who gets called when suddenly someone needs a cop.
Bahrain is moving at one pace, Morocco another, Qatar at another, Kuwait at yet another. And we are there to assist our friends.
We are not dictating. We are not telling them Saudi Arabia how they should do it or who they should look like. We are their friends. We have mutual interests and we will help them in any way that is possible.
I think our initiative with respect to education and economic development can work in Saudi Arabia and it is up to the Saudis to decide how they wish to transform their society in order to make it prepared for the challenges of the 21st century.
So has the strategic decision been made to disarm Iraq of its weapons of mass destruction by the leadership in Baghdad? I think our judgment has to be clearly not.
I don't think we handled the aftermath of the fall of Baghdad as well as we might have. But that's now history.
High-quality early-childhood programs and health coverage have expanded, and the number of mentoring relationships for at-risk youth has risen dramatically. That progress is encouraging, but it's not evenly distributed.
Indeed, we're strongest when the face of America isn't only a soldier carrying a gun but also a diplomat negotiating peace, a Peace Corps volunteer bringing clean water to a village, or a relief worker stepping off a cargo plane as floodwaters rise.
Children need to get a high-quality education, avoid violence and the criminal-justice system, and gain jobs. But they deserve more. We want them to learn not only reading and math but fairness, caring, self-respect, family commitment, and civic duty.
Poverty arises and persists where corruption is endemic and enterprise is stifled, where basic fairness provided by the rule of law is absent. In such circumstances, poverty is an assault against human dignity, and in that assault lies the natural seed of human anger.
Too often we act -- ask our schools to be truant officers, our teachers to be truant officers, because we're giving them children who have, you know, they're not ready to learn. And if they're not ready to learn by the third grade, they know they're behind.
The United States is not stingy. We are the greatest contributor to international relief efforts in the world.
I think whether you're having setbacks or not, the role of a leader is to always display a winning attitude.
In other words, don't expect to always be great. Disappointments, failures and setbacks are a normal part of the lifecycle of a unit or a company and what the leader has to do is constantly be up and say 'we have a problem, let's go and get it'.
Wouldn't it be great if we could look forward to a whole world in which no child will be left behind?
In terms of the legal matter of creating a contract between two people that's called marriage, and allowing them to live together with the protection of law, it seems to me is the way we should be moving in this country.
I respect the fact that many denominations have different points of view with respect to gay marriage and they can hold that in the sanctity in the place of their religion and not bless them or solemnize them.
It's nice to say let's be bipartisan. But we're a partisan nation. We were raised as a partisan nation.
I was born in Harlem, raised in the South Bronx, went to public school, got out of public college, went into the Army, and then I just stuck with it.
We need to understand that we as citizens and as a government in any community throughout this country have no more important obligation than to educate those who are going to replace us.
I consider myself a moderate Republican. I have very, very moderate social views, and I'm pretty strong on, on defense matters.
It's a disgrace that we have millions of people who are uninsured.
It's a disgrace that we have millions of people who are uninsured, but at the same time too -- in the eyes of the American people, in my judgment, it looked as if that somehow become more important than the main attack which was to fix the economy and get the Americans working again.
What you're seeing with Occupy Wall Street and the others are people who are unhappy and they're directing their unhappiness now toward Wall Street and toward those they think are doing too well in our society.
Don't let your ego get too close to your position, so that if your position gets shot down, your ego doesn't go with it.
Never neglect details. When everyone's mind is dulled or distracted the leader must be doubly vigilant.
Fit no stereotypes. Don't chase the latest management fads. The situation dictates which approach best accomplishes the team's mission.
Many interviewers when they come to talk to me, think they're being progressive by not mentioning in their stories any longer that I'm black. I tell them, 'Don't stop now. If I shot somebody you'd mention it.'
If a leader doesn't convey passion and intensity then there will be no passion and intensity within the organization and they'll start to fall down and get depressed.
My own experience is use the tools that are out there. Use the digital world. But never lose sight of the need to reach out and talk to other people who don't share your view. Listen to them and see if you can find a way to compromise.
But just as they did in Philadelphia when they were writing the constitution, sooner or later, you've got to compromise. You've got to start making the compromises that arrive at a consensus and move the country forward.