Adopting these principles will guide your actions with your Marines and your unit, and provide direction throughout your career. The skills you learn now will stay with you long after you've finished training.
The principles are also an important tool for self-evaluation. As you progress, you can use them to identify your own strengths and weaknesses, and seek self-improvement.
Know yourself and seek self-improvement
Use the leadership traits to evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. An accurate and clear understanding of yourself and a comprehension of group behavior will help you determine the best way to deal with any given situation.
Be technically and tactically proficient
Maintain a high level of competence in your Military Occupational Specialty. Your proficiency will earn the respect of your Marines.
Know your Marines and look out for their welfare
You should know your Marines and how they react to different situations. This knowledge can save lives. Knowledge of your Marines' personalities will enable you, as the leader, to decide how best to employ each Marine.
Set the example
Set the standards for your Marines by personal example. The Marines in your unit all watch your appearance, attitude, physical fitness and personal example. If your personal standards are high, then you can rightfully demand the same of your Marines.
Keep your Marines informed
Informed Marines perform better and, if knowledgeable of the situation, can carry on without your personal supervision. Providing information can inspire initiative.
Ensure the task is understood, supervised and accomplished
Before you can expect your Marines to perform, they need to know what is expected from them. Communicate your instructions in a clear, concise manner, and allow your Marines a chance to ask questions. Check progress periodically to confirm the assigned task is properly accomplished.
Make sound and timely decisions
Rapidly estimate a situation and make a sound decision based on that estimation. There's no room for reluctance to make a decision, revise it. Marines respect the leader who corrects mistakes immediately.
Train your Marines as a team
Train your Marines with a purpose and emphasize the essential elements of teamwork and realism. Teach your unit to train, play and operate as a team. Be sure that all Marines know their positions and responsibilities within the team framework.
Develop a sense of responsibility in your subordinates
Show your Marines you are interested in their welfare by giving them the opportunity for professional development. Assigning tasks and delegating authority promotes mutual confidence and respect between the leader and the team.
Seek responsibility and take responsibility for your actions
Actively seek out challenging assignments for your professional development. Seeking responsibilities also means that you take the responsibility for your actions. You are responsible for all your unit does or fails to do. Stick by your convictions and be willing to accept justified and constructive criticism.
Employ your unit in accordance with its capabilities
Successful completion of a task depends upon how well you know your unit's capabilities. Seek out challenging tasks for your unit, but be sure your unit is prepared for and has the ability to successfully complete the mission.