Cowpens Leadership Experience

Cowpens, South Carolina

The Cowpens battlefield, located in northwest South Carolina, offers a rich metaphor for leadership development in the contemporary business world. Set against a backdrop of continuous defeats at the hands of the British Army, the American victory at the Battle of Cowpens is often portrayed as the pivotal battle of the Revolutionary War in the South. The story of how an adaptive commander of a small and under-resourced American army of volunteers, regulars, and militia engineered a brilliant tactical victory against superior British forces is a compelling vignette which addresses many leadership dynamics of contemporary relevance. These include setting direction and establishing order in a complex and highly fluid environment, using situational awareness to improvise in the face of unexpected developments, harnessing diversity for agility in performance, engaging and motivating associates, and building trust and respect.

Who Should Attend

The leadership training principles and concepts presented through the Cowpens Leadership Experience can be tailored to meet the needs of the most senior leaders or geared to the less-experienced, rising leaders within an organization. Any leader who is positioned to have a measurable effect on the performance of the overall organization or the effectiveness of his or her own department would gain valuable insights and strategies for improvement.

Key Leadership Lessons:

Communicating AbiguityInstilling InnovationLateral & Vertical AlignmentReinforcing Mission Focus
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Selected Case Studies

  • Maj. Gen. Nathanael Greene
  • Maj. Gen. Charles, Earl Cornwallis
  • Brig. Gen. Daniel Morgan

Key Leadership Lessons

  • The importance of creating alignment
  • Instilling initiative and innovation
  • Communicating effectively in a rapidly evolving situation
  • Reinforcing mission focus through clear communication


The Battle of Cowpens Leadership Experience is a one-day program with a strategic overview over breakfast the day of the training, or the evening prior. The experiential leadership training consists of approximately six hours on the battlefield with a catered lunch on-site, followed by a 1.5-hour After- Action Review (AAR) at the preferred meeting facility. The leadership program will be complete no later than 5:00 PM. Customization is possible.


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