T.E Lawrence - Leader Report

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“T.E Lawrence” – Leader Report

images.jpgPart one: Leader Profile

Thomas Edward Lawrence, (1888–1935) opened his eyes on 16th August 1888, in Tremadoc situated in Caerarvonshire, that is in (North Wales) United Kingdom. Thomas Edward Lawrence was born out of marriage, being one of the five illegitimate sons of Thomas Chapman and Sarah Lawrence. At that time, this was very uncommon in Victoria Britain. He was an intelligent boy and was able to read at the age of four years old. He attained his primary education from the City of Oxford High School for Boys. He also gained scholarship from the Oxford University.

North-Wales-Old-Map-Postcard-A477.jpgBy profession he was a British archaeological scholar, a dictator, a military leader and a strategist. He gained his nick name of “Lawrence of Arabia” through the efforts for what he had done for the Arabs in the Great Arab Revolt”. He found his most of the fame for his brilliant services in the World War one and for his sincerity towards Middle East. For his devotion, the Arabs gave him the title of “Al- Auruns”. Later in his life, he also wrote two books under the title of “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom”and Lawrence of Arabia”. Before graduating with a distinction in honors he went to a study trip to Syria, where he had the opportunity of walking over a 1000 miles in order to study the Crusaders castles, he finally decided to be an archaeologist (MacLean & Walker, 1962). Finally, after working on an important excavation from the year 1910 to 1914 in Carchemish, (the Northern Syria) he returned back to Middle East, where he was in love with everything that was related to Saudi Arabia and Arabic (MacLean & Walker, 1962). He recognized a natural sympathy for the Arabs, that he met (Lawrence, 1927). With the passage of time he learned the Arabic language and their traditions as well. He also spent his leisure time in studying the Arab history (Lawrence, 1927). At that time he became close friends with a fine Arab worker, named Dahoum, who later became his assistant and his work companion as well (MacLean & Walker, 1962).

welsh-flag-broadband-internet-web.jpgLawrence departure back to England at the time when World War One was declared, he had the heartily intention of contributing his services (Korda, 2010). By the British Army, he was allocated in Cairo (Anderson, n.d.). There, while interviewing the Turkish prisoners he mostly used his knowledge that he had about Arabic and led him to know more about the Turkish Army strengths, warfare tactics, strategic locations and weaknesses as well (Korda, 2010).

He was invited to take part in the Great Arab Revolt by Prince Faisal hence in the year 1916, as a liaison officer he joined the Arab army (Schneider, 2011). Through ammunition and financial resources he played a major role in keeping the revolt successful and alive (Anderson, n.d.). By the effective use of guerilla tactics, the Arab army successfully targeted the Turkish lines of communication but did not went for a direct confrontation (Schneider, 2011). In the next year, Prince Faisal was able to capture Aqaba that was a valuable Turkish fort. T.E Lawrence was an active soldier and with the Arab soldiers he rode across 100 of miles in the vast desert in order to strike the Turkish at their weakest points (Schneider, 2011).

However the whole mission was kept secret from London as he declared very firmly that he had a duty to his heart and would not take any orders (Murphy, 2008). It was surly a break – through victory for the Arab Army (Murphy, 2008). After the successful victory T.E Lawrence went back to Cairo to report all the details about the war to his English commander General Allenby, who on hearing all the events, gave him his word for complete support and providing every supply of resources that he could possibly spare (Anderson, n.d.). Due to the current situation at that time, Arabs became a part of a general Allied push towards Damascus (Murphy, 2008).

Lawrence of Arabia was able to leave a remarkable legacy of his own, when he was authorized to design several stamps for Mecca’s Grand Sharif (Pbs.org, 2015). After the end of the Arab Revolt, the Grand Sharif Hussein of Makah required individualistic Arab Postal services in order to establish his legitimacy (Pbs.org, 2015). A long period of time was spent by the Lawrence in search of arabesque oriented designs mostly in museums of Cairo (Pbs.org, 2015). He eventually drafted and printed the stamps as a result of open resistance towards the Turkish government in Constantinople (Pbs.org, 2015).

220px-Thomas_Edward_Lawrence-London_Barton_St.JPGLater, in the year 1917, Lawrence of Arabia was unfortunately captured at the place of Dar’a, located at North- Western Syria (MacLean & Walker, 1962). There he was mentally, physically and was sexually abused leaving long term psychological scars which were perhaps never healed (MacLean & Walker, 1962).

As the Allied victory towards Turkey, became a disappointment and a failure for the Arabs, T.E Lawrence immediately departure back to London in order to state the Arab’s Point of view regarding their independence to the British Government (Murphy, 2008).

By the next year Lawrence was promoted to the post of lieutenant colonel ('Lawrence of Arabia medal', 1972). Furthermore, he was awarded with the Distinguished Service Order and the Order of Bath by the great highness of King George the fifth. But he never accepted these medals in the favor of the independence of Arab and in an act of protest ('Lawrence of Arabia medal', 1972). He repeatedly wrote to several newspapers for promoting the Arab Independence.

Tired and exhausted, he came back to England and started writing. Shortly after his book “the seven pillars of Wisdom”, he gained immense popularity due to the accounts that he mentioned in the book in context to his activities in Saudi Arabia (Schneider, 2011). In 1935, as he was discharged from the Royal Air Force, T.E Lawrence came back to Clouds Hill to have a retirement at the age of 46, but the same year on May 13, he met an unfortunate accident while motor- cycling. He eventually died without gaining any consciousness after six days (Schneider, 2011).

Part two: Leadership Characteristics and Skills

Leadership is a quite vast and an impressive concept. The process stems up from lower levels of the management to top level of an organization. It is a complex process that is interrelated with various aspects such as behavioral, coordination, and situational perspectives as applications of leadership styles differ within the context and content of changing situations (Robbins & Coulter, n.d.). In the previous two decades, the US Army has launched a new concept of leadership that is a “pentathlete” (Committee on Armed Services, 2006). These types of leaders are competent in their main warrior skills and are strategic thinkers. Moreover they are scholars as well and can build teams through effective leadership. They are confident, risk takers, innovative, cultural competent (U.S. Army, 2009) and are very skill- full in the administration of war, peace, politics and civil issues (Loftus, 2012). In short, it can be stated that in the contemporary era of warfare, army requires of such leaders that are able to excel in Fourth Generation Warfare (Department of the Army, 2009). And in true meanings Lawrence of Arabia lived up to such leadership qualities and skills (Doss, 2014).

In the first part of the paper, it has been clearly described that how T.E Lawrence offered his brilliant warfare tactics towards Middle East in the arena of World War one (Korda, 2010). We examined some aspects of his personality and came to the conclusion that, he consisted of an eccentric character and possessed several attributes to be a successful and brilliant counter in- surgent of the twenty first century. The thing that matters the most is to establish the “will power” to be the very best, the leader can be at whatever the task is. It can be seen here that Lawrence has a very strong will of power to take part in the Great Arab Revolt (Korda, 2010). He kept the whole mission secret from London as he declared very firmly that he had a duty to his heart and would not take any orders from others (Murphy, 2008).

Effective leadership demands to have a clear vision and sense of purpose, such leaders are able to win the trust and respect of their teams. Through Lawrence of Arabia, the British Army found the Prince Faisal to be the most effective and right person who could influence the Revolt (Schneider, 2011). He was ambitious and malleable as well who that the full capacity of fulfilling his dreams (Schneider, 2011).

It is mandatory for the deployment of effective leadership that the leader promotes the idea of motivation, creativity and innovation. Thus the leader’s ideologies and judgments are accepted without any objection by the followers and they support willingly because they “trust” their leader due to an effective leadership. This trust is also developed by the extent to which a leader creates a sense of common goals and a sense of belonging among junior officers. T.E Lawrence always faced a clash between him and his officers, who lived together in the peacetime military because of the reason that they were un- imaginative and were rigid in context to change (MacLean & Walker, 1962). However Lawrence believed that the in- flexible discipline suppressed the innovation and motivation (MacLean & Walker, 1962).

Besides being a pentathlete leader, he was visionary. He always had a sense of looking at things with a different perspective that ultimately led him to access to more alternatives and choices. His leadership style also had some part of democratic style as it led him and his junior officers to create wisdom and enthusiasm. Moreover it developed motivation so that made the battles against the Turks very successful.

Part three: Leadership reflection

Leadership is considered to be a perspective for determining every plan’s success. It significantly carves out the passage way to success in every discipline and field. Even soldiers and warriors use their effective leadership skills to conquer and win battles. Therefore it is very compulsory to understand the concept of leadership for its effectiveness and its various styles too that are applicable in context to our subject. It can be concluded that Lawrence of Arabia displayed effective leadership because he implemented all styles of leadership, as they were submerged and deployed by him.

I believe he was a true leader. His success serves as a marvelous example to all of the Army officers in how to conduct counter in-surgency. By the means of this vignette, Army officers attain higher education, are innovative, un- conventional thinking, and effective skills to handle civil administration and have cultural competence, all of which is necessary to succeed.

Through his leadership qualities he became a mythic personality even before he wrote his memoirs in his book “The Seven Pillars of Wisdom” (MacLean & Walker, 1962). There was nothing to prove as his breakthrough accomplishments were enough to make people realize of his true talents. More than being a Military Leader, he was an inspiration behind the Great Arab Revolt which helped Arabs to gain substantial independence from the Turks (Murphy, 2008). He was also a strategy planner and was competent in the guerrilla warfare (Murphy, 2008).

All this time he was completely aware of the fact that effective leadership was the basic requirement of the changing scenarios of the countries and their mutual relations. It led to stable environment for his various journeys; he conducted and promoted cherished innovative ideas by him that he communicated to others. It is a shame that the World has never heard of what Thomas E. Lawrence of capable of. Besides being a pentathlete leader, he was a marvelous strategy planner, innovative, a brilliant writer, an adventurer, an archeologist and a philosopher as well (Murphy, 2008). Indeed he was a man of extra- ordinary qualities and capabilities (Murphy, 2008). While if the super powers want to retain the success of their armies they may not have the same war scenario that was in Iraq and Middle East, but still they need soldiers that are just similar to T.E Lawrence.


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