Leadership / Coordination / Communication

Leadership Moment — 24 May 23

Yeah, you know. But do you really?

Mark McMillion
3 min readMay 25


Photo by Anna Tarazevich via Pexels.com

Have you ever planned to meet someone and they didn’t show? Then later you found out they were just around the corner, out of sight, or on the other side of the building? Yeah, me too.

I’ve learned to be more precise over time, sometimes to the amusement of others. One of my sons is in his high school’s Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps (JROTC). After school today, they were to meet at a cemetery and put flags on the graves of veterans. It’s a great thing for the community and for the kids as well.

They were to meet at 4:00 at the cemetery. Of course, the cemetery is pretty large and [gasp] hilly. Flat land is unusual here in West Virginia. This graveyard has three entrances / exits and all the roads eventually come together but at different points.

We arrived right on time (of course!) and saw the colonel standing by his truck just ahead but no one else. We talked for a minute and he said he was pretty sure this was the right place but no one else had shown up yet.

I left my son and went on up the road. Up over a small rise and a curve. Where everyone else was. I rolled up, rolled down my window, and told them the colonel was over the hill and jerked my thumb behind me. The first sergeant said, “Sir, he’s not that old . . .” I grinned and left.

They connected and it was no big deal. Did a great service for the community and veterans. Nice.

Leaders give guidance and direction all the time. But so many times, they broadstroke it and people walk away only thinking they know what to do, where to go, or whatever. I’ve been on both the giving and receiving end of this.

This is one of the reasons I still use military time, at least for myself and the family. When you say let’s be there at 0730, everyone knows it’s in the morning. If you say 1930, they know it’s in the evening. No confusion.

I’ve had many business lunches where the other person or I went inside and the other was waiting outside. I’ve wasted a good bit of time like that.



Mark McMillion

Retired Army officer with two tours in Baghdad, married with four kids. Proud West Virginian and West Point grad. Works available on Amazon.