Three D’s of Effective Leadership

Today, while performing a reduction and splinting, I decided it was time to enlighten my nurse and tech with some leadership education: Specifically, the Three D’s of Effective Leadership.  (I didn’t spend all those years in uniform for nothing).

I elected to share them with you when, on going back to the patient’s room, the patient’s family member asked me to recount them so he had them right (he wasn’t asleep during the reduction, like the patient).  Smart fellow, and attentive.  He has them and it’s only fair you do, too.

So, here they are, the Three D’s of Effective Leadership: Decide, Delegate, and Disappear

Decide: you cannot lead without making a decision.
Delegate: Leadership is different from management.  Delegate so you can Lead.
Disappear: Nobody goes to the delegate when the leader is around.  Let the delegate work.

So, there you are.  Use your new powers for good, and not evil.


  1. The “Disappear” is interesting.
    As the attending physician on a rehabilitation unit, one of the functions of the unit is a “Family Conference”, where the therapists and nurses sit down and talk about how the patient on the unit is doing, and answer questions the family might have.

    I attended one or a few of these, and found that the therapist would give an explanation of what was happening, then the family would look at me for my acknowledgement that this was true. I felt that my presence undermined the confidence in the therapists as a source of information, so now I don’t attend these. My discussions with the patient/family occur separately.

  2. Jim in Texas says:

    As a retired NCO I can stated that Allen got it dead right….except for the order.

    “Disappear” is generally regarded by Senior NCOs to be the FIRST thing junior offices should do….but I’m probably a cynic

  3. Jim in Texas says:


    “officers” not “offices”