Iowa Coach and Olympian speaks to First Army leaders
November 10, 2011
ROCK ISLAND, ILL.--Success requires an attitude -- it's a passion for some. As an athlete, Gold Medal Olympian, coach and mentor, Iowa native and legend Dan Gable spoke about some of the very same traits and characteristics inherent in his passion -- wrestling -- and how they relate to traits and characteristics we practice and cherish in the Army.
As part of the First Army Commander's Conference at the Jumer's Hotel conference center here, Gable spent the evening with First Army Senior leaders, spouses, and Family Support Group members to talk about his life's experiences as a disciplined world-class athlete and coach.
"And when adversity hits, it's usually not by choice," he said. "When it hits, you've got to take it on. If you wait for the 'or', you may not survive -- and that's where leadership steps in."
"Leadership is all about being motivated and applying and executing based on the passions you have built around and within you," said Gable.
"Leadership is being the first one at work, the hardest worker, and staying until the last person has left. It's about staying current and having the vision to create a great future. It's preventing adversity through discipline and preparation. Leadership is the ability to positively affect the masses so they become successful and do the same."
Being a leader means you know how to take care of people. "You've got to treat each and every team member in their own way," he said.
One athletic process that Gable feels is most essential and the building block of what's to come is recovery. He talked about how as a young athlete it was always easy to pick up from where one left off, without allowing one's body proper recovery. But now that he is older and wiser, and has incorporated science into this process, he's more in tune with the need for recovery--physically, mentally and emotionally.
"Go to the sauna, the spa, get a massage or swim. Think about what took place today during your recovery process and then think about what you need to do tomorrow."
"The bottom line is the future," he said. "There are good coaches and really good coaches, and there's some really, really good senior leadership and really, really great senior leadership. And hopefully that's what you all are, but you just don't realize it, and thank you for what you do," he said.
Senior leaders from First Army units across the United States attended the first ever First Army Commander's Conference here in Rock Island, Ill., Nov. 8. One of the purposes of the conference was to synchronize First Army efforts in reserve component training, mobilization, deployment and demobilization, all responsibilities as assigned by U.S. Forces Command.
The two-day event started with a physical training session of broomball on ice and soccer at Davenport's River's Edge sports complex.
A Family Leadership Conference attended by First Army Readiness and Support representatives was conducted simultaneously and provide information on military installation and community support systems for Soldiers and Family members.