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Archive for June 2016

Executive Presence: 4 Leadership Lessons of Muhammad Ali

Executive Presence:  4 Leadership Lessons of Muhammad Ali

by Terri L. Williams

He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.
-Muhammad Ali


Over the past week, there have been hundreds of articles, news shows, and television commentary about the life of Muhammad Ali. From inspiring quotes to personal recollections of his amazing personality, one thing remains constant, he was simply, “The Greatest.” His professional boxing record of 56 wins and 5 losses, continues to be unmatched. He has inspired the world from a global perspective and influenced social change in an unparamount way.


I’m the greatest thing that ever lived! I’m the king of the world! I’m a bad man. I’m the prettiest thing that ever lived.

-Muhammad Ali









From an Executive Presence perspective, Ali’s presence is dominated by his unique skill in these areas:

1. FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Muhammad Ali always displayed warmth, credibility, and likability. We are constantly judging others and being judged. It is that first meeting with a new client, a new team member, a new boss, the first call, the first voice mail message or the first visit to your LinkedIn profile, and many other situations. Ali’s first impressions were always impactful and memorable.

2. COMMUNICATIONS: He was a master at public speaking, speaking authentically, diversity through social change, and body language. Communication encompasses a variety of verbal and non-verbal ways you express authority, convey your confidence, and synthesize and articulate your expertise in both formal occasions and casual situations.

3. GRAVITAS: Ali’s leadership, inclusive of his vision, confidence, decisiveness, emotional intelligence, integrity, reputation, and vision, always stood out. His integrity for social change made him the most influential and significant athlete in history.

4. APPEARANCE: Award winning Sportscaster Bob Costas stated that Muhammad Ali was a good looking man,coatas with a beautiful physique that was groomed immaculately at all times.










During Ali’s memorial service, Comedian Billy Crystal’s remarks provide insight on why Muhammad Ali was an amazing leader. Please see remarks at the following website


President Obama’s Statement on Muhammad Ali

Muhammad Ali was The Greatest. Period. If you just asked him, he’d tell you. He’d tell you he was the double greatest; that he’d “handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder into jail.”

But what made The Champ the greatest – what truly separated him from everyone else – is that everyone else would tell you pretty much the same thing.

Like everyone else on the planet, Michelle and I mourn his passing. But we’re also grateful to God for how fortunate we are to have known him, if just for a while; for how fortunate we all are that The Greatest chose to grace our time.




Corporate Class, Inc.

All Images courtesy of Google images

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by Terri. L. Williams

On D-Day, the Allies landed around 156,000 troops in Normandy. The American forces landed numbered 73,000: 23,250 on Utah Beach, 34,250 on Omaha Beach, and 15,500 airborne troops. In the British and Canadian sector, 83,115 troops were landed (61,715 of them British): 24,970 on Gold Beach, 21,400 on Juno Beach, 28,845 on Sword Beach, and 7900 airborne troops. 11,590 aircraft were available to support the landings. On D-Day, Allied aircraft flew 14,674 sorties, and 127 were lost.
-D Day Museum, United Kingdom

June 6, 1944, D-Day was the Normandy landings, which were codenamed Operation Neptune.  During these landing the World War II, Allied invasion of Normandy in Operation Overlord began. The operation began the liberation of German-occupied Europe from Nazi control.  This was the largest seaborne invasion in history.

D day


D day-2

General Marshall focused on strategic efforts such as his selection of the tactical leaders for the Normandy landings, such as General Dwight Eisenhower as supreme commander, Lieutenant General Omar Bradley, Commander,  Twelfth Army Group, Major General Leonard Gerow, Commander V Corps, Major General Joe Collins, Commander VII Corps and Major General Raymond Barton heading the Fourth Infantry Division. Later, Lieutenant General George Patton took over the Third Army.  Zach leader was hand selected by General George C. Marshall.


George Catlett Marshall Jr., a revered soldier and statesman, served as US Army chief of staff during World War II and later as secretary of state and secretary of defense. A born leader, Marshall was, as Sir Winston Churchill described him, “the noblest Roman of them all.” He stood resolute for what he believed and, as authors H. Paul Jeffers and Alan Axelrod make clear, the world is a better place because he did. Indeed, Europe would not exist in its present state if not for the Marshall Plan that rebuilt its shattered nations after World War II.











George C. Marshall’s was the vision, the skill and the force behind the American victory in World War II.
-General Wesley K. Clark, Retired


  1. 1.  BE THE BEST. Virginia Military Institute (VMI), Class of 1901 Top Cadet was George C. Marshall..
  2. 2.  DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK/CONFIDENCE. In order to receive a commission in the United states Army, Marshall asked President William McKinley by sneaking into his office in the White House.
  3. 3.  LEARN TO BRING YOUR TALENT TO THE TABLE. Marshall played a key role in preparing American combat troops for World War I. For Marshall… war was a set of problems, and the only way to solve problems was to work the problems, one by one.
  4. 4.  TO WHOM MUCH IS GIVEN, MUCH MORE IS EXPECTED. After the war, Marshall became the de facto head of the United States Army.
  5. 5.  EDUCATION IS KEY. At Fort Benning, he developed the infantry tactics that would help win World War II. Fifty instructors and 150 students of Marshall’s Infantry School became generals in the next world war.
  6. LEADERSHIP RESPONSIBILITIES USUALLY EXPAND. Under Marshall, the US Army expanded from less than 200,000 soldiers to more than five million.
  7. IDENTIFY AND UTILIZE TALENT. The hallmark of Marshall as a military executive had always been the genius that guided him to put the right man in the right spot. 7. Marshall had a genius for placing military leaders in ideal, individualized assignments.
  8. OTHERS SEE OUR TALENT IN A WAY WE CANNOT SEE. Marshall wanted the post of supreme allied commander for the Normandy Invasion, but President Franklin D. Roosevelt kept him in Washington, DC. Marshall…was in command of the largest army in American history, with more than five million soldiers and more than 1,000 generals
  9. PRIORITIZING IS IMPORTANT. Whatever the identity of the enemy in the field, for Marshall, the deadliest was confusion, therefore, the first objective was to defeat it.
  10. VISION. After the war, Marshall instituted the Marshall Plan for successfully rebuilding Europe.
  11. EXECUTIVE LEVEL BEHAVIOR REQUIRES DIPLOMACY. Marshall is the only military leader ever to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. Marshall was the prototype of the new kind of American military executive. The complex Allied endeavor…called for a top soldier who could straddle the realms of diplomacy and military science.

Marshall Lessons in Leadership, H. Paul Jeffers with Alan Axelrod

All photographs courtesy of Google Images.

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