Business Lessons From the British Military with Chris Paton



May 27, 2020

Quirk Solutions’ Chris Paton was interviewed by Michael Leadbetter, host of The Pivot Factory Podcast. The Pivot Factory sheds light on how leaders face disruption in interesting ways.

On the show, Chris outlined how he applies his military experience in the corporate world and what each can learn from the other; including leadership lessons from McDonald’s, the prescient need for diversity of thought during the Covid-19 pandemic and how the Quirk Solutions team are responding to challenges during the crisis.

It may sound counterintuitive, but the military is very good at vulnerable leadership. Leaders constantly ask for help when trying to develop and implement plans. They have no problem saying ‘I don’t have the answer. I need your input on this.’ This allows for teams to be empowered and delegated at every level.

In the corporate sphere, Chris helps organisations develop the same mindset and culture through fine-tuned facilitation. He helps leaders divorce themselves from their emotional attachment to their plan, allowing for it to be challenged by the team. He also creates a safe space for team members, so they are each given freedom to speak openly without fear of retribution.

As mentioned in the podcast, Chris’ recommended reading includes:

  • Team of Teams – Stanley McChrystal
  • The Art of Action – Stephen Bungay
  • Black Box Thinking – Matthew Syed
  • Rebel Ideas – Matthew Syed
  • Turn The Ship Around – David Marquet
  • The Art of Thinking Clearly – Ralph Dobelli
  • Man’s Search For Meaning – Viktor Frankl

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