Washington's Crossing

Focusing on Ten Crucial Days in the American Revolution, the Washington’s Crossing Leadership Experience explores the leadership decisions and actions which drove the outcomes of the Battles of Trenton and Princeton in December 1776 and January 1777.

Headquartered at the historic Nassau Inn in Princeton, New Jersey, this 1 to 1.5 day program includes visits to sites at the Washington’s Crossing State Park, the Old Barracks (Hessian) in Trenton, and the environs of the Princeton Battlefield and Nassau Hall on the ground where the central characters of this pivotal drama in American history played their parts over 200 years ago.

Case Studies

Case studies will focus on controversy surrounding American Generals George Washington and Horatio Gates in the early phases of the war for independence, Colonel John Glover and the Marblehead Regiment in successfully engineering the nighttime crossing of the flood-swollen Delaware River on Christmas Eve in the most hostile conditions imaginable, British General Lord Charles Cornwallis in allocating his resources against advice based on his contempt for the capabilities of the Continentals, Hessian Colonel Johann Gottlieb Rall in overtly discounting real time intelligence and taking the competition for granted, and General George Washington in adapting quickly to changed circumstances and marshalling available resources to ensure victory against overwhelming odds.

Leadership Lessons

Leadership dynamics emphasized in the experience will include:


  • Achieving clarity on roles, responsibilities, and decision making rights

  • Meeting challenging objectives with constrained/diminishing resources

  • Setting direction and maintaining standards in fluid and ambiguous circumstances

  • Orchestrating efforts efficiently across geographically dispersed units and organizational boundaries

  • Allocating resources understanding competitive advantages

  • Influencing without direct authority

  • Adaptive leadership and facilitating organizational agility

  • Instilling a sense of urgency in executing plans and capitalizing on opportunity