Published: Oct. 16, 2019 By

Chris Fussell

Photo by Casey Cass, CU Boulder

Tomorrow’s leaders can take a page from the military playbook, former Navy SEAL Chris Fussell said Tuesday morning as he addressed a crowd of students, faculty and community members at University of Colorado Law School’s Wittemyer Courtroom.

The spread of technology and our increased inter-connectedness necessitates a shift from linear decision-making to something much broader, said Fussell, who compared the spread of technology to the introduction of the printing press. 

Fussell’s talk was part of the annual Leo Hill Leadership Speaker Series, which is supported by the Boettcher Foundation and Leo Hill Trust. Fussell is also a best-selling author and president of leadership consulting firm McChrystal Group. Next up in the speaker series is presidential historian Doris Kearns Goodwin on leadership in turbulent times on Jan. 30 at Macky Auditorium.

Breaking from the traditional lecture format, Fussell encouraged audience members to interject whenever they had questions or comments. By doing this, he created an open discussion in the room making the hourlong lecture interactive and conversational.

Fussell shared his personal experiences in the military, specifically in the Middle East, to address leadership. He focused on the systems and processes groups use to operate. 

“You will need to put in place a process that spreads mass information effectively,” said Fussell.  

He explored common leadership structures, giving in-depth explanations and looking ahead to future disruptions. With the advent of the digital age, Fussell foresees inevitable changes to present-day leadership systems. 

Fussell ended the speech by referring back to his original question and sparking students to think. 

“What’s happening with leadership?” he asked. “You guys will have to figure that out. Good luck.”