At Echelon Front, we know that leadership is the solution to every problem. But we recognize that there is a daunting amount of leadership content and material generated each week through virtual training sessions, in-person leadership events, and podcasts. Our Commander’s Intent for the Extreme Ownership Rundown is to provide you just the highlights in simple, clear and concise form so that—despite your busy schedule—you can learn the skills necessary to solve your problems through leadership.
Who Is A Leader?
When we use the term “leader,” people usually think of the CEO, the senior executive team, or those at the very top of an organization. Many people don’t see themselves as leaders—particularly if they don’t have a title, a position of authority, or a team that reports to them. But at Echelon Front, we believe that if you interact with other human beings in any capacity, you are a leader.
Often, leaders we work with demand more accountability for people with whom they work. “We need to start holding people accountable,” they tell us. Such comments are often accompanied by complaints of individuals or teams within the organization who are underperforming or falling short of the perceived standard. Accountability is a tool to get people to comply. It carries the idea that there will be consequences for underperformance: punishment; counseling; loss of pay or privileges; maybe someone will even get fired. In the military, this might be a “stern talking-to behind the milvan [shipping container].” Accountability is a tool, but it should be used only as a last resort.
Check The Ego
Ego drives us to do extraordinary things. It makes people want to win; strive to be the best in their field or industry. But ego can also be the most destructive force imaginable. In Extreme Ownership, Jocko wrote: “Ego clouds and disrupts everything: the planning process, the ability to take good advice, and the ability to accept constructive criticism. It can even stifle someone’s sense of self-preservation.” When you can’t control your ego, it can become the greatest instrument of your own destruction.
Think of the amount of influence you have on the people around you as a bank account. Leadership capital represents the funds available in that account. In every interaction with others, you are either depositing funds and acquiring more leadership capital, or you are debiting the account and spending your leadership capital. This applies to every interaction with anyone: both up and down the chain of command, peer to peer, and those outside of your immediate organization. It also applies in your personal life, with family members and friends. Every interaction with others either earns you leadership capital or expends it.
THE POWER OF DETACHMENT
How do you handle multiple problems at the same time? The answer is DETACH. When you detach—when you pull yourself out of the details, it gives you a better perspective on the strategic goals and what is most important. Learn how.
What makes a good team member?
What makes a good team member?
“What makes a good SEAL?” Jocko asked a group of leaders at one of Echelon Front’s Field Training Exercises. Having worked closely with Jocko since 2005, I often know the answer to the questions he poses. But I wasn’t exactly sure which direction he was going with this one.
“It’s not the best shooter, or the best diver, or the best jumper, or the best in any other skillset required in the SEAL Teams,” Jocko explained. “The best SEAL is the person that puts the team before themselves.”
As soon as I heard Jocko’s answer, I knew that was exactly right. I worked with SEALs who were highly skilled individuals in particular skillsets. But if they didn’t put the team first—if they only looked out for themselves—they were not the ones hand-selected for a critical mission. The SEALs that put self-interest ahead of the team or the mission never achieved the respect and admiration of their peers. But the SEALs who put the team first were highly respected, admired among their peers, as well as by their chain of command.
A good team member puts the team before themselves.
Great content, terrible audio
I love all of Echelon Front’s content but I can not hear any of these shows without turning the volume all the way up. The signal strength is awful and then the next podcast I play is blaring to the point of violating my eardrums. Let’s get it fixed!