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“Taking Leadership Lessons From The Battlefield to the Boardroom”

Design Your Own Corporate Staff Ride

One of the reasons the military has continued to utilize the staff ride is that it is highly flexible. The same is true for the Corporate Staff Ride, which can be structured to focus on the specific critical issues facing an enterprise, eg. communications, managing a franchise structure, improving competitive intelligence, or changing regulatory environment.

The selection of the Case Studies can also be tailored to the individual and changing needs of the organization.

Finally, there are many potential battlefield venues spanning our history here and abroad and suitable for a Corporate Staff Ride, thereby opening up the possibility of finding a close venue.

Virtually any organization can structure its own Corporate Staff Ride to

1) focus on a particularly important aspect of the enterprise,

2) invest in leadership development at a specific management level, or

3) explore leadership issues relevant to the entire enterprise.

This is accomplished through selection of a battlefield site appropriate to the purpose of the Corporate Staff Ride, the choice and order of the particular stops, or stands - including varying the stops on a previously visited battlefield - and the selection of the topics considered in the business case study workshops.

With internal support - and advice from APPLIED BATTLEFIELD CONCEPTS LLC - most organziations can integrate the Corporate Staff Ride into existing executive management training and development programs. The cost of a developing and implementing a customized APPLIED BATTLEFIELD CONCEPTS LLC Corporate Staff Ride is $25-$50,000 plus expenses.

Can I Do It Someplace Close?

The Army's Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) bears responsibility for most modern military staff ride efforts. It has compiled a list of more than 100 potential sites for staff rides that include battles fought during the French and Indian War, American Revolution, War of 1812, Mexican War, Indians Wars and both World Wars. The possible venues for a Corporate Staff Ride include literally hundreds of locations, in the US and abroad.

In times like these when resources are strained, it may be more practical for a company to choose staff ride sites that are local, or less well known, then to conduct a staff ride to a large or famous battlefield. The need to conduct less costly staff rides has revealed many relatively unknown gems among preserved American battlefields.

Wherever you are located, whatever the size of your organization, or the kinds of leadership challenges you face, there is probably a battlefield reasonably close that can become the focus of the most important management development program you will ever experience.


Creating and implementing an internally developed, proprietary Corporate Staff Ride training program is not cheap. It takes about 3-6 months to develop the materials for all three phases - preparation, battlefield visit, integration. The input and attention of senior management is vital from the very beginning.

The analysis of the a company, selection of the proper venue and applicable stops ("stands") that illuminate crucial management issues, preparation of training materials, esp. a proprietary Corporate Staff Ride Handbook, selection and training of instructor/guide, logistics, etc. will generally cost $25,000-$50,000 and a minimum committment of three months.

Last Update: September 7, 2013