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Leading Forward: Successful Public Leadership Amidst Complexity, Chaos and Change (With Online Assessment) by John S. Lybarger, Tim A. Flanagan

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Chapter Five

Ambitious Drive to Execute

In art the hand can never execute anything higher than the heart can inspire.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

Execute every act of thy life as if it were thy last.

—Marcus Aurelius

We often turn to history for lessons of leadership greatness. So far in this book we’ve referred to several revered historical figures and numerous incidents of historic significance to illustrate the themes we propose. As we considered examples that would showcase an ambitious drive to execute, we did not have to look far into the past. On May 2, 2011, the operation to locate, apprehend, and/or eliminate Osama bin Laden culminated in the raid on his Pakistani compound. One key figure in this mission embodies many of the characteristics ...

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