Seven characteristics of role model leadership

By Tim Strickler, chief financial officer of Communications Electronics

As I reflect on the 25 years of my career path and experiences of my colleagues, I’m struck by the influence leaders exert simply by way of their leadership example — or role modeling.

In my case, years of being around leaders and absorbing their example has influenced my style more than any mentoring sessions ever could. Part consciously, part subconsciously we form our internal sense of leadership norms and standards from the leaders we work with. That’s something all leaders should pause to consider: We’d better be setting a good example.

What follows is what I hope others see in our leadership example as we model it daily.

Competence. We have a healthy awareness of what we do and don’t know, and won’t accept a role beyond our competency. We understand the role and are willing to do all of it, not just the parts we like. Our confidence is authentic — grounded in the substance of effort and truth, not inflated hubristic pride. We are committed to fact-based decision making and understand that bringing thoughtful, honest clarity to challenges is more effective than control. We bring powerful optimism, but not by ignoring realities. We are intellectually curious, and know that the best solutions often lie in creativity and collaboration.

Wisdom. We reflect wisdom, which is neither intellect nor competency but more highly evolved and hard-earned through the trials and bumps of experience. Wisdom gives us the ability to display poise, and foster calmness in the face of chaos. It allows us to rise above it all with perspective, revealing the true picture and sense of trajectory of things. Because of wisdom, we know people are imperfect and the path is rarely linear. And wisdom guides us in seeking authentic power (influence) credibly earned daily and for the sake of doing good, not positional authority.

Service. We live by a standard of service by putting others first. We passionately seek to support purpose in goals transcending ourselves. We authentically care about people, and recognize that adding value to people is the success mattering most in the end. We are willing to share, teach and mentor — not for our glory but in service of others. We don’t cling to what we know for personal gain, but rather share in a spirit of abundance and service. We walk with patience, and extend grace where possible.

Integrity. We are honest with ourselves, even when the truth is disappointing or harsh. We are a truth seeker, not a defender of self. We cultivate intellectual honesty, and welcome thoughtful disagreement. We hold others accountable, and ourselves too. We are authentically ourselves — personally and professionally, easy and rough seas, and regardless of who we are talking to. And we know the importance of presentation optics, but don’t let it degrade into disingenuous spin.

Humility. We recognize the truth that we are all on a journey of self-growth, and we aim to steadily pursue the best possible version of ourselves while helping others with their journey. We care far more about what is right than who is right. We work hard to be self-aware and a good listener. We have a good sense of humor, including being able to laugh at ourselves, as we know humor is a universal joy. And we aim to respond to challenging situations with thoughtfulness, wisdom and self-control.

Courage. We are realistic, but keep fear in check. We operate from a spirit of abundance, not scarcity, which gives us depth and perspective to be courageous. When duty calls, we are willing to have the difficult conversations and make the tough decisions — even when it’s professionally risky for us. We are willing to stand against injustices and call out professional bullies and manipulators, and when necessary part ways with them.

Gratitude. We are perpetually thankful for blessings in our personal and professional lives, and savor the small joys during the journey. We have high standards for our team, but reasonable ones, and authentically feel and show appreciation for team successes. We recognize that all great accomplishments rest on something far greater than ourselves and are the result of team effort, and we never forget this. We show caring interest in our team members, and give back in encouragement and mentoring. And we always say thank you.

Why is role modeling leadership important? Because our leadership example has exponential power via shaping internal norms and expectations of all rising leaders in our organization who will later influence others with their leadership example. Because guiding and developing others is a fundamental responsibility of all leaders and role modeling is a powerful tool to do so. And because cultivating fine leadership is central to organizational success and crucial to our society at large.


Give us a call, or Send a note!

We’re ready to put a custom
solution together for your specific needs.

Simply provide us your contact information and details regarding your requirements and one of our system
professionals will contact you as soon as possible to discuss your needs.

COVID-19 Update & Our Commitment to You

*Last Updated 3/26/20

CE continues operations as an essential service provider

To our valued customers and partners, 

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread in the United States and across the globe, we want to reinforce that Communications Electronics’ number one priority is keeping our employees, partners, and customers safe. Our team has been working hard behind the scenes to ensure we can continue to deliver uninterrupted, high quality service while remaining focused on the health and safety of our staff and clients. We are fortunate to have ample technology and significant experience with working remotely.

In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, Motorola Solutions is providing recommended cleaning and disinfecting guidelines for our radios, body-worn cameras and accessories based on our current and best understanding of radio hygiene. You can review their recommended equipment cleaning guidelines here.

Communications Electronics provides a critical service as defined by the Department of Homeland Security. Our business supplies crucial equipment and vital services to fill the urgent needs of telecommunications companies, service providers, emergency responders, law enforcement, and a multitude of private entities throughout the nation. Therefore, we will continue operations at this time and are fully available to serve you.

If you have any questions during this time, please contact your CE representative. We are here to help you.

We thank you for your continued patronage. Communications Electronics will strive to maintain exceptional service to our customers during this difficult time. Wishing you good health.

Roger Cassell
President & CEO



As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread in the United States and across the globe, we want to let everyone know that Communications Electronics’number one priority is to keep our employees, partners, and customers safe. Here is an update on preparations and steps we have taken to date. Two weeks ago, CE assembled a cross-disciplinary COVID-19 Management Team to actively monitor the situation and make recommendations to leadership. We have been assessing the situation daily, remaining vigilant, and following recommendations from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and local authorities. We’ve assembled guidance for our employee teams, pursuant to these recommendations.

As you know, the situation is evolving rapidly, and COVID-19 is affecting people differently, depending on their location and situation. As a result, flexible solutions are needed. CE Senior Management is considering all options, including the possibility of asking staff to work remotely.

While we remain focused on the health and safety of our staff and those around us, we also remain committed to serving our customers. Fortunately, we have technology in place and significant experience with working remotely. We have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure we can continue to deliver uninterrupted, high quality service. Operational teams have been working to identify potential needs and strategies associated with full-virtual delivery of services. Project managers and supervisors are actively having preparedness discussions with our teams. Our IT team has been reviewing and testing systems and protocols, to ensure necessary tools and support for staff to operate virtually. Everyone has a role to play.

If you have questions or feedback, you can reach the COVID-19 Management Team at

Being flexible and able to overcome big challenges is part of what makes us who we are. We have the infrastructure, skills, and desire to support each other, while providing the highest level of service to our customers. Obviously, this is a fast moving, fluid situation affecting our country and the world. We will update our guidance and decisions as the situation changes. Please continue to monitor the CDC Website for updates.

We hope that you and your family are well,

Glenn Lesley
Chief Operations Officer
Communications Electronics