Sir Winston Churchill is attributed as saying in a 1941 speech “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never, in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense.”
Short, simple, to the point, Churchill’s statement concisely encapsulated the principles that guided both his thinking and his exceptional leadership as Prime Minister of his nation during the darkest days of World War II. In a few short words he powerfully conveyed a profoundly insightful message.
So how does this apply to us as members of the DoD acquisition workforce writ large, and the Life Cycle Logistics community in particular? And perhaps just as importantly, what does it mean for you and I?
Do we as a nation, as a department, and as a community face financial, budgetary, and economic challenges that are driving the need for greater efficiency, effectiveness, and mandates for affordability? You bet. However rather than responding with a “sky is falling” perspective, might I suggest that we instead embrace Churchill’s admonition in that same speech when he said “do not let us speak of darker days… these are not dark days.; these are great days – the greatest days our country has ever lived…”
Although few would argue the challenges we as a logistics community (or as a department for that matter) parallels the situation Churchill and the United Kingdom faced in the autumn of 1940 (a time in history when their nation’s survival literally hung in the balance), his rejoinder that these are the “…great days – the greatest days our country has ever lived…” indeed has direct applicability to us today.
We intuitively know that times of seemingly insurmountable challenges spur leadership, innovation, initiative, and creative solutions. It’s engrained in our DNA as Americans (not to mention as Life Cycle Logisticians!). So as I asked before, what does it mean for you and I? Personally, I believe we must first view the challenges we collectively face as opportunities rather than threats. Why? Challenges have this marvelous tendency to drive creativity, ideas, innovation, and new ways of thinking.
In addition, immerse yourself in not only the direction and guidance, but also the spirit, intent and desired outcomes of Dr Carter’s better buying power initiatives; understand, implement, and embrace them. Tackle product and process inefficiencies. Identify and seek to implement innovative ideas to address quality, life cycle cost, and readiness issues. Lead change. Seek win-win-win product support strategies. Identify and implement innovative cost saving, collaborative partnerships, interdisciplinary integration and implement initiatives. Build on the foundation of Life Cycle Management processes, practices and principles to better align and achieve essential long-term acquisition and sustainment outcomes. Mentor, motivate, encourage and professionally develop your workforce. Be a strong, positive voice for the strategic imperatives necessitated by the security and economic challenges we as a nation face, the budgetary pressures we live with, and the fiscal realities we know lie ahead. As life cycle logisticians, creatively leverage the better buying practices initiatives, the guidance, tools, and references coming from the November 2009 Product Support Assessments, and the more recent DTM 11-003 Reliability and DTM 10-015 Product Support Manager directives, processes, practices, to ensure we are collectively focused on ensuring optimized readiness and life cycle cost. Demand excellence. Mentor, encourage, and facilitate the successes of those who work for and with you. Lead by example. Bottom line: let’s get on with it!
Required fields marked with *
Please note that you should expect to receive a response from our team, regarding your inquiry, within 2 business days.