Maximum Effort. That was the original Hollywood title for the 1949 movie, Twelve O'Clock High. Even though the words "maximum effort" occur in the movie numerous times, the actual title only occurs once, and if you're not alert to the scene, you might miss it. So why did they change the title? Well, just read the two, and I think you can understand.
How do I even know this? Because the training program, Situational Leadership, uses this movie to teach and reinforce the leadership approach introduced during the first day of this course. Every time I teach Situational Leadership, I get to share the movie with a new group of people. I've taught it several times, so I know exactly when Gregory Peck says, "Twelve O'Clock High" -- an amazing in-flight battle scene, with our American bombers fighting Germany's quick agile fighter planes. The battle scenes come from actual footage shot during World War II. I can't watch those scenes without wondering about the gunners. What happened to them?
Whether you watch this movie on your own or seek the opportunity to explore the leadership techniques taught in Situational Leadership while enjoying the movie, I suggest you take the time to watch Twelve O'Clock High. History buff or not, I hope you'll find a new respect for these men, and for the men who stand in harms' way today, protecting our freedom. The people of St. Louis got it, showing up by the thousands to show their appreciation to Iraq war veterans. I hope this is a sign that our country hasn't forgotten the sacrifices made on our behalf by the young men and women serving in our armed forces.
Thanks to all who stand up and accept this responsibility!