The sketchiest thing I've ever done...
There was a compound near our base in Afghanistan that we were pretty sure was home to some bad guys.
We needed intel so we decided to be ninjas for a night.
The plan was simple... sneak over the wall into their courtyard, look around for bad guy stuff, snap some pictures and then leave.
We were reasonably sure the compound would be vacant from the imagery we had, but the reality was we wouldn't know for sure until somebody jumped over the wall and saw for themselves.
"John Allen, you and M. are going over first."
Special operators are known for their ability to stay calm during stressful situations. Without a clear head, situations like this one can go sideways quickly.
When we jumped over the wall, we landed in an empty courtyard. Turns out our imagery was accurate this time.
The truth is we were prepared for whatever was on the other side of the wall due to the fact that we trusted our leadership completely, and our leadership trusted us to handle whatever was on the other side of the wall.
Key Takeaway: Leaders need to take the time to mitigate the risks, but ultimately must trust their team's ability to handle adversity if/when the plan doesn't go to plan.