Recently, U.S. Army Colonel Everett Spain coauthored an article in Parameters titled, The Battalion Commander Effect. Spain and his coauthors found that evidence suggests Army battalion commanders are a major factor in whether or not high-potential lieutenants stay in the Army. In this episode, Joe and Everett discuss the research and dive into why self-awareness and humility are important traits for military leaders.
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About Everett Spain
Colonel Everett Spain, U.S. Army, is a Professor, USMA and Head of the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at West Point. From 2015-2016, Everett served in the HQ, US Army Special Operations Command at Fort Bragg and in Iraq. Previously, he served at West Point as an Academy Professor and the Director of the Eisenhower Leadership Development Program, a joint-USMA/Columbia University master’s degree program. From 2009-2011, Everett was the commanding officer of the U.S. Army Garrison-Schweinfurt (Germany), responsible for a community of over 10,000 Americans. Prior to that, he was a White House Fellow during the Bush and Obama Administration’s transition year, where he served as the acting Deputy Chief Operating Officer of the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Financial Stability, “the TARP.” During 2007-2008, Everett was the aide-de-camp for the Commander, Multi-National Force-Iraq, for “the Surge.”
At the start of his career, Everett was a platoon leader and staff officer at Fort Bragg, where he was a member of the winning team of the 82nd Airborne Division’s Best Ranger Competition, and placed 6th in the Army-wide competition. As a captain in Germany, Everett led his company on the initial NATO deployment into Kosovo, after which they were recognized with the Itschner Award, given annually to the outstanding engineer company in the US Army. Everett received a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA) in management from Harvard Business School (Dean’s Award), a Master of Business Administration from Duke University’s Fuqua School (Spaulding Award), and a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Engineering from West Point (Association of Graduates Award). He is the author of several articles on leadership and talent management, one of which received the US Army Command and General Staff College’s MacArthur Leadership Writing Award. Everett is also a licensed professional engineer (PE) and a Holocaust Legacy Partner.
Everett is a graduate of U.S. Army Ranger and Sapper Schools, and is a Master Parachutist. He is a recipient of the Soldiers’ Medal, Bronze Star, Purple Heart, Combat Action Badge, Defense Meritorious Service Medal, and Secretary of the Treasury’s Honor Award. Additionally, Everett has received three honorary medallions, the Bronze deFluery Medal (Engineers), the Honorary Order of Saint Barbara (Field Artillery), and the Order of Saint Michael (Aviation). (Bio Courtesy of USMA)