BTU #404 - Leading at the Highest Level (LTG Robert Caslen)
Why Listen: It is always intimidating speaking with a flag officer. And that all said General Caslen made that so easy. He's such a gracious man. He served for over 43 years in the military, including being Superintendent at West Point. He was at the Pentagon on 911. He snuck back in to assist with fighting fires and ensuring that his colleagues were safe. He has no shortage of unbelievable experiences in the military. After the military, he went on to become the president at the University of South Carolina, so continued leading at the highest level in a civilian capacity. We cover a lot of ground. We talked about mistakes he made in his transition out of the army. You've heard them before, but it's reassuring to hear them from someone at his level. We talk about the differences and similarities between military leadership, academic leadership. We talked about what it was like leading the University of South Carolina through COVID-19, and I appreciate the General's candor. We talked about his recent resignation from the school and just learning about that situation. There are some great takeaways there for anyone aspiring to lead at a high level. Then we talk about comfort zone, and I appreciate, in contrast, a lot of things we talked about previously, this sense of really being out of your comfort zone and being willing to fail, make mistakes, and to recover. About Robert: Robert Caslen is the former President of the University of South Carolina and the President of the University of South Carolina system, as well as the 59th Superintendent of the US Military Academy at West Point. He also serves as HigherEchelon Special Advisor on Executive Leadership and Character Development in his 43 years of military service in the United States Army. He has done far too much to ever encompass in a brief bio and we're going to touch on those things, including an unbelievable role in 911 and many other situations.