Elizabeth II – A life of service, and a lesson in leadership
The world is in mourning following the death of Queen Elizabeth II, who has died aged 96 at her beloved Balmoral Castle. All our thoughts are with the King, the royal family and all those friends and staff who have worked with the monarch for many decades.
I have had the honour to see the Queen in person and, on one occasion, be part of a royal visit to my local city by her Majesty – a project I will forever remember. I recall seeing her at Royal Ascot many years ago, where it was obvious how much she genuinely loved horse racing and being around the horses. Through my time in the NHS ambulance service, I also proudly wore a uniform baring the crown and, like almost every citizen, have never experienced a Christmas without her message.
We each have our own memories and the world will certainly be a different place without our Queen.
As a constant in the lives of almost the entirety of the population, and with 70 years of public service, The Queen has been the epitome of exceptional leadership. As Richard Branson wrote in his blog, The Queen has fundamentally redefined leadership and sets an example for us all.
Unlike most of us, the Queen was never on a mission to find her purpose in life. She was acutely aware of her purpose ever since the abdication of her uncle, Edward VIII, in 1936 – right until the very end, appointing her 15th Prime Minister just days before her death. This commitment of unwavering duty and leadership was remarkable and something I do not think we will see again.
The Queen brought the world together with her smile, she led confidently through war and peace, boom times and recessions, and even a global pandemic. Amongst the sense of loss felt by the world, we are left with many great memories and very many lessons.
King Charles III has spent his life in training for this role, one which he takes at a time of great sadness and our thoughts are with him as he adapts to such a significant loss and change in his life.
Thank you for your service and your leadership, ma’am.
Chris is the Founder & Managing Director of CJPI and a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership.
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