Most of us tacitly understand that winning leadership styles differ depending on circumstances, that the bloke who was great at starting a business, and getting it running is not necessarily the one to lead it into maturity.
Most commentators on leadership have watched the comings and goings of Steve Jobs at Apple, and seen the relationship between success and the near death experience that occurred concurrent with his presence, and have at least read Andy Goves’s analysis in “Only the paranoid survive”.
The literature on leadership focuses on what Ben Horowitz calls “times of peace” but the “times of war” are what kills us.
Bens short post on Wartime CEO/Peacetime CEO sets the context of leadership in war and peace, I particularly like the comparison:
“Peacetime CEO sets big, hairy audacious goals. Wartime CEO is too busy fighting the enemy to read management books written by consultants who have never managed a fruit stand”, which is just so true!