The Commando Way A Special Forces commander’s lessons for life, leadership and success 

Reviewed By  Janet Mawdesley       September 3, 2020


Author  Bram Connolly

Distributor:       Booktopia/Amazon 
ISBN:                 9781760528638
Publisher:         Allen & Unwin
Release Date:   August 2020  



Truth, honesty, resilience and values are just some of the things that have helped shape Bram Connolly and his life to date; a life that has been challenged on a daily basis, filled with exceptional circumstance, confrontation and many, many life lessons.

Interestingly when he set out to write The Commando Way, he considered himself and the many men he worked with as ‘ordinary blokes dealing with extraordinary circumstances’, but it was not until he had almost completed the first draft of the new work, he realised how wrong he had been; his life had been filled with anything but ordinary people and so he began again, creating an engaging, brutally honest and very personal story of lessons learned, the skill of adaptability and the skills required to become an excellent leader.

Each story, or chapter if you like, is based on personal experience, which is a gift from Bram, as many of the experiences that taught him so many valuable skills and life lessons, are those that left him smarting, doubting: often feeling terribly foolish and vulnerable.

In a modest and often humorous manner, Connelly, shares his journey from joining the Army as a raw recruit to becoming a highly trained and skilled soldier in Afghanistan, where he earned the Distinguished Service Medal for leadership in combat in 2010. As full time career soldier, his pathway to Afghanistan was not easy; it was filled with challenges, mistakes, silly errors of judgement, much hard work, long hours of study, learning to accept that life does not always go where you choose it to take you. Most importantly, he learned to understand was that each lesson learned was one more component of his skill base.

After twenty years in the Australian Defence Force he moved into the corporate world where he once again had to revisit change, learning to be a civilian, a person in his own right, not a member of a team, with the mateship and support that goes with it.  He also discovered that one thing in life, regardless of where you are or what you are doing that never changes is the fact at you always on the pathway to self-development and self-awareness.

Motivation and leadership are the underlying emphasis of the book, sharing some of life’s hard learned lessons help to draw up the plan and paint the picture. Learning the art of resilience, optimism, the danger inherent in laziness, embracing change, fear and presenting the eleven principles of leadership, surrounded by so much more, has crafted a book which is one everyone should read a least once.

Billed as book on leadership, it is far more in-depth, all-encompassing than just that: The Commando Way could be considered as a book on life, acceptance and survival, perfect for the changing, challenging and complex times in which we all live.