American Fighter Pilot Brigadier General Robin Olds Essay

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Brigadier General Robin Olds Throughout military history, there have been many leaders that can be considered either visionary or ethical. This paper will discuss how BG Robin Olds was a visionary leader, but not a very ethical leader. From the beginning of his career, he was a visionary in aerial combat tactics and a true believer of leading from the front. His vision of aerial combat was beyond his years, but often fell upon deaf ears due to his flamboyant nature. He never hesitated to say exactly what was on his mind, which is why his actions could be considered unethical. But, his men loved him, and would follow him to hell and back. First, this paper will discuss BG Olds’ visionary leadership abilities he displayed the Viet Nam…show more content…
Once he took command, his innovative side took over and he immediately started to make changes. He understood his weaknesses, and allowed his men to train him in order to make him a better pilot. He routinely flew in the number 2 position of the formation, until his skills were honed to perfection. During this time, pilots were assigned as flight leads based off rank. Olds’ displayed intellectual humility, as a part of his critical thinking skills, to change the current thinking of using the highest ranking individual as flight lead, versus putting the pilot with the most experience in that position…it should be based off skill, not rank. Even being the Wing Commander, Olds’ often wore a flight suit without rank, and let his lower ranking, more qualified officers lead the mission (badass, 2012). A true sign of being a visionary and transformational leader, Olds used the all of the 4 “I’s” (Individualized Consideration, Intellectual Stimulation, Inspirational Motivation, and Idealized Influence) while making these decisions, and his men loved him for it (CF02SG, 2012, pg 22-23). He fostered inclusive environments by putting the whole wing under the same 24-hour clock as the combat crews, and visited the support organizations to find out the true problems and help fix them (Boyne, 2008). Now that BG Olds’ visionary leadership traits have been discussed, let’s explore his

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