Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level

Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain's Guide to Creating Leadership at Every LevelA few months ago, I introduced you to David Marquet, in a post entitled “Good to Great (A Submariner’s Profile in Empowerment)” (if you haven’t read that post, I highly recommend that you do).  David is now the author of the forthcoming book, “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every level, which is being released on August 1, 2012, and is presently in its pre-release promotion.  I have been in regular contact with David, in lieu of the book’s publication.  I have asked David to provide an excerpt to be shared with the audience of this blog.  David has graciously accepted my invitation, and today I am starting a series of posts featuring David, his philosophies on empowerment and his new book.  Today’s post features details about David and the book.  Forthcoming posts will feature excerpts from the book.

About David Marquet –

A proven practitioner and innovative thinker, David graduated with distinction from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1981, and led a distinguished 28 year career in the United States Navy’s Submarine Force, serving on submarines in both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.  He commanded the nuclear-powered fast-attack submarine USS Santa Fe (SSN 763), stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, and completely turned around the boat.  Under David’s leadership, the crew went from being “worst to first.”  The USS Santa Fe earned numerous awards, such as the Arleigh Burke Award for being the most improved ship in the Pacific, as well as the Battle “E” award for most combat effective ship in Submarine Squadron Seven, and for retention excellence.  David’s bold and highly effective leadership techniques emphasize process over personality and empowerment over ego.  Noted author Dr. Stephen Covey rode USS Santa Fe and discusses one of Captain Marquet’s leadership practices in his book, The 8th Habit.[i] [ii]  David’s message inspires the empowerment of engaged people and leadership at all levels.  He encourages leaders to release energy, intellect, and passion in everyone around them; to develop leaders not followers.

David is also the founder and President of the consulting firm Practicum, Inc., and creator of the blog Leader – Leader (Leader to Leader).

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Overview of the Book “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level”

Written by the commander of a nuclear submarine. When he assumed command of the USS Santa Fe (SSN-763), a nuclear submarine plagued by poor morale and even poorer performance, the author accepted the greatest management challenge of his career. Adapting business leadership techniques for the close confines of the huge underwater craft, Marquet dared to break the U.S. Navy’s traditional leader-follower model and instead created his own leader-leader model among the crew. Readers share the commander’s insights and risks as he revolutionizes standard operating procedures by allowing his subordinates to assume responsibility for everything from clerical tasks to crucial war-gaming decisions.

Practical steps to astounding results. The exceptional naval officer explains how to adapt the leader-leader model for any organization, including specific mechanisms such as these:

•    Use guiding principles to enhance clarity
•    Repeat the message continuously and consistently
•    Eliminate top-down monitoring systems
•    Begin with the end in mind

True stories from the high-tech military.
In the tradition of Tom Clancy, the author takes the reader on board a nuclear submarine for a detailed look at the latest in arms and warfare technology. Readers ride along with the sub commander on crucial practice runs, nerve-racking inspection tours, and simulated encounters with the enemy. From navigation to rocket launching, Marquet reveals what it is really like to operate one of the most sophisticated machines in the American naval arsenal and the personnel obstacles he overcame to make his fast attack Los Angeles-class sub one of the best in the U.S. Navy.[iii]

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If you would like to order the book “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level”, please visit THIS link at Barnes & Noble (BN.com).

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Excerpts of “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level” –

Up Scope! (commandperformanceleadership.wordpress.com)

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Recommended Reading –

Good to Great (A Submariner’s Profile in Empowerment) (commandperformanceleadership.wordpress.com)

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[i] http://www.afcea.org/events/west/09/documents/MarquetDavid.pdf – The Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association – West 2009 – Documents: David Marquet – Accessed 24 April 2012 – http://www.afcea.org/

[ii]Practicum Inc. – About Us”http://www.practicuminc.com/about-us/ – Accessed 24 April 2012 – Practicum, Inc. – http://www.practicuminc.com/

[iii] “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level”http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/turn-the-ship-around-david-marquet/1109601391?ean=9781608323746 – Accessed 24 April 2012 – Barnes & Noble (BN.com) – http://www.barnesandnoble.com/

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17 Responses to “Turn The Ship Around!: A Captain’s Guide to Creating Leadership at Every Level”

  1. Dale, thanks for the great coverage. It’s an honor to be up on your blog.

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    • Your welcome, David. Your message of employee empowerment to give control and create leaders must get to those leaders who are struggling with time and effort. Thank you for graciously sharing your book with us.

      Dale

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    • David and Dale: can’t wait to read the book! David: Simon Sinek was just here at RAF Mildenhall and raved about you…after a discussion he commented that we might have a good deal in common. Dale pointed me to you after posting Simon’s article on you and I failed in the follow up. Would love to talk when you have a moment…email is great. Departing command this summer and heading to Air University. All the best and thank you to the both of you,
      Bill

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  2. Excellent post and book. HMCS(SS) Richard T. MacDonald, USN Retired. Captain Marquet is a fine example of why the U.S. Submarine Force is considered the elite force in the fleet. It all starts and ends with training and purpose driven leadership.

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  3. Reblogged this on Let's Get Political and commented:
    This story points to a great book and website on the subject of leadership as it is understood and practiced by top U.S. submarine crews worldwide. These practices are not just for sea duty, but they are practices and lessons for life in any and all environments. Give both the book and the website a try. All they can do is, perhaps, help you to change your life or dirction and turn that life around.

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  4. […] background-position: 50% 0px ; background-color:#222222; background-repeat : no-repeat; } commandperformanceleadership.wordpress.com – Today, 11:08 […]

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  5. Knowing someone who was on his boat, the story is a bit different from the inside. The wrong person is taking credit, unless motivation by abuse – physical and mental – is accepted business practice.

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    • You’re entitled to your opinion, and I appreciate your comment. But, the book isn’t about Captain Marquet taking credit. The credit is clearly going to the sailors of the boat. They were the empowered ones who were given the autonomy to run the boat, not just work on it. There will always be disenchanted people out of all situations, and the person you claim to know who was on the USS Santa Fe may be part of that minority in this case. I personally don’t believe that the motivation was through abuse, and Captain Marquet is not taking credit in his book; quite the opposite on both fronts.

      Dale

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    • Knowing David very well, I find this a little hard to accept, but then no leader ever achieves 100% buy-in from everyone in an organization, and it’s not surprising that some may have disagreed with his methods. My guess is that your friend may have been talking about command practices prior to David’s arrival. Whether or not my assumption is correct, as a former submarine captain myself, I can assure you that it is not possible to achieve the kind of success demonstrated by the USS Santa Fe through fear and intimidation.

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  8. […] This story points to a great book and website on the subject of leadership as it is understood and practiced by top U.S. submarine crews worldwide. These practices are not just for sea duty, but they are practices and lessons for life in any and all environments. Give both the book and the website a try. All they can do is, perhaps, help you to change your life or direction and, if needed, the tools to turn that life around. Share […]

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