Fundamentals of Strategic Advising in Reform Environments

Step 7 of 10: Lesson Four - Functioning in a Complex Environment
Slide 17 of 18

Case Study: Jay Hawk

In this podcast, US Department of Defense representative Jay Hawk shares his perspective on effective advising. Hawk served as a senior advisor for parliamentary affairs in the Afghan Ministry of Defense and Ministry of Interior.

In this position Hawk was tasked with building the ministries’ institutional capacities. Hawk worked to unite ministry staff while navigating the government’s unique hierarchy. Internal divisions and a lack of civilian leadership made the project particularly difficult.

As a result of Hawk’s efforts, the ministry began to recognise that their effectiveness hinged upon an ability to coalesce around a shared purpose. Importantly, although Hawk was assigned a direct counterpart, he sought to forge connections between his staff and the staff of his advisee.

During this time humility became critically important. Hawk has found hubris continues to plague the international community, and that too many advisors speak before listening. He believes that a humble approach was a key to his success.

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