Turn the Ship Around!: How to Create Leadership at Every Level

Turn the Ship Around!: How to Create Leadership at Every Level


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Turn the Ship Around!: How to Create Leadership at Every Level by David Marquet

From the vantage point of the commander of the USS Santa Fe, read how the crew completely turned the ship around, going from worst to first by questioning many of our basic leadership assumptions and shifting from take-control authority to give-control empowerment.

Share the author's insights as the crew gains unprecedented decision making authority, the risks of doing so, and the reward of an exponentially more effective and more resilient organization.

Learn how to achieve astounding results by applying the author’s practical steps, such as
- Release proactivity and initiative with ''I intend to...''
- Build teamwork and minimize errors with “deliberate action”
- Enhance responsibility and ownership by eliminating top-down monitoring
- Improving morale by focusing on excellence rather than errors.

See what it’s really like to operate a nuclear submarine -- from navigation to missile launching -- and learn the mechanisms used to propel Santa Fe not only to the top but to achieve a lasting transformation, one that resulted in the ship's continued operational excellence and the highly disproportionate promotion rate among Santa Fe’s crew long after Marquet had left command.


Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781608323746
Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group, LLC
Publication date: 08/01/2012
Pages: 250
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

A top graduate from the U.S. Naval Academy, L. David Marquet led a distinguished career in the U.S. submarine force. He commanded the nuclear-powered fast-attack submarine USS Santa Fe, stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Captain Marquet completely turned around Santa Fe, where the crew went from being “worst to first.” Santa Fe earned numerous awards for being the most improved ship in the Pacific and the most combat-effective ship in the squadron. Santa Fe continued to win awards after his departure and promoted a disproportionate number of officers and enlisted men to positions of increased responsibility. After riding USS Santa Fe, noted author Stephen R. Covey said it was the most empowering organization he’d ever seen and wrote about Captain Marquet’s leadership practices in his book, The 8th Habit.

His bold and highly effective leadership can be summarized as “give control, create leaders.” He is a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and lives in Florida with his wife, Jane.

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Turn The Ship Around!: How to Create Leadership at Every Level 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
BFox_5minutespisuccess More than 1 year ago
Since I served aboard a nuclear fast attack submarine and find myself getting more and more involved with and writing about leadership, I was immediately attracted to this newly released book. There is a very powerful story here. In a Tweet earlier today, I quoted from my interview with John Bernard, Author of Business at the Speed of Now, who said, "The people who do the work know it best and are the ones who should *drive* the improvements." In this book, Captain L. David Marquet reveals how leaders can release the passion, intellect, and energy to do just that. His leadership message is highly relevant to the work I do, and I'm looking forward to interviewing him for my interview series, 5 Minutes to Process Improvement Success - 5minutespisuccess dot com. I will post an update to my review following the interview.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
We had the privilege of working with David on our company processes and procedures. We adopted the Leader-Leader mechanism of pushing the decisions to where the information is at our design firm, with great success. What had taken hours of review and oversight at the management level now is handled by individual designers, who are most familiar with the material anyway. Another mechanism we have adopted is to Strive for Excellence (rather than avoid errors) in our stated company goal of “Punch-Free Installations” – we have applied stringent double-check procedures and seen our punch list items decrease significantly. Can’t wait to see how we can implement the other mechanisms!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Les32667 More than 1 year ago
Great insights on leadership. Every leader should read this book, and share it with his/her team.
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Rast More than 1 year ago
I’d like to recommend this as one of the most inspiring books on leadership that I have read. It tells the story of how a visionary captain in the US Navy bucked the system of traditional top-down (leader-follower) management by successfully implementing a leader-leader paradigm to create active leaders out of passive followers at every level on the ship he commanded, the nuclear submarine USS Santa Fe. When Captain Marquet took command, morale and performance were poor and the ship had the worst retention rate in the fleet. In less than 24 months he and the crew took the Santa Fe from worst to best, earning numerous awards and notably one for the most significant improvements in performance within the fleet. The process of change which Captain Marquet boldly initiated became a circuitous journey with some exhilarating incremental successes and some potentially fatal setbacks along the way. His candor in describing the challenges he faced and judgment calls he made in the process place the reader clearly in moment. Hardly a page goes by without some great anecdote, pearl of wisdom and actionable advice. Captain Marquet’s methods and lessons apply to every leadership challenge, not only in the military but in business, non-profits and other organizations of all sizes. Jim Stoynoff, President Synthesis Solutions, LLC, Chicago, Ill.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Now having read the book, Turn the Ship Around by David Marquet, I consider David's experience to be the epitome of the servant-leader concept, first introduced by Robert Greenleaf.. Perhaps, the most remarkable aspect has to do with the setting being the Navy, where military careers can be ruined in a twinkling of an eye. Part of my perception comes from having a career Army officer father, who was always concerned about little things that could affect his record, like my getting a ticket from an MP when driving on the base. In David's case, he had the support and encouragement of his CO, yet David was aware that others in the submarine service were hoping that he wouldn't succeed. Most likely because, like many leaders, military or otherwise, they lacked the courage to trust others within the organization because they didn't truly trust themselves. Hardly unusual in a command and control world. Having no real model as a guide, David first enlisted the Chief Petty Officers in this experiment to make leaders of each member of the crew. This was a special challenge, since by so doing the Chiefs had to give up some of their privileges in order for everyone to have equality. However, this equanimity was a critical element in changing the "have to" to the "want to." Using Covey's second habit, "Begin with the end in mind," created a situation where all focused on goals to the extent they didn't just try to avoid problems, they continually sought to achieve excellence in all that they did. Using the legacy of the US Navy as the foundation, they prepared guiding principles to whom all became dedicated. Participation in the process insured commitment and the determination to live by the mutually agreed standards. David's action to go ashore to save an AWOL sailor and return him to duty without punishment is truly unprecedented. The captain exercised control by giving it up and by so doing increased control at the level of individual responsibility. By saying, "I intend to" rather than I order you to...., those present could readily reaffirm or question proposed activity. Efficiency was enhanced by eliminating layers of bureaucracy where ever possible. Competence and clarity were mechanisms that created an environment in which learning was continuous and in which outstanding performance was recognized immediately. However, moving beyond empowerment to emancipation takes an incredible leap of faith. . As I ponder the applicability of David's experience to the leaders that I coach and the clients that I serve, it seems to me that such a concept, like leadership itself, cannot be taught, only learned. Perhaps younger, less leader-follower oriented people, will embrace the leader-leader model in an effort to differentiate themselves as they seek higher levels of responsibility.. It will behoove those of us who write and speak about servant-leadership to redouble our efforts with David's model as the validation of our philosophy as we continue to seek other examples that reinforce and add to the base of success.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
David Marquet's experiences as the captain of a nuclear submarine may not seem relevant to more mundane businesses but the management skills he utilized certainly are! Since reading his book, I have discussed it with other managers at my plant and we are utilizing the Leader-Leader methodology to try to turn our ship around. The book is easy to read and fast paced. Like texas hold 'em, it takes a few minutes to learn and a lifetime to master. I highly recommend this book!!
BradRex More than 1 year ago
I've read hundreds of leadership books and have found most of them say the same things in different words. Marquet has finally said something different that adds immense value to every leadership environment. No longer are leaders limited to "top-down" directives or "bottom-up" hopes. Instead, Marquet has found the "leader-leader" formula that frees both leaders and followers to achieve their full potential. His discovery is not an academic theory, but a breakthrough method proven in one of the most difficult leadership crucibles in the world--a nuclear powered warship. Upon taking over a failing submarine, Marquet finally had the opportunity to test new leadership ideas that he had pondered from his days at the United States Naval Academy, through nuclear power training, and as an officer with multiple tours on other ships. At great risk to his career, he challenged centuries-old conventions and led his ship and crew from "worst to first." He has set a new standard in the Navy, and for today's business world. With clear logic, fast-paced action and fascinating stories, Turn The Ship Around! will educate, inspire, provoke and enrich you on your leadership journey. If you are a C-level executive, middle manager or aspiring leader, read this book. If you are a principal, teacher or student, read this book. If you are a non-profit leader, priest, pastor, rabbi, nun or monk, read this book. If you are a parent, guardian or mentor, read this book. In short, if you have the capacity to impact anyone else's life, you should read this book. It will change your life and theirs.
Chad_Storlie More than 1 year ago
David Marquet masterfully lays out the risk and the immense reward that comes from training, inspiring, and challenging subordinates to be their best. David begins with the performance limitations that come from passive, top down leadership structures and guides readers how to implement Leader-Leader engagements that improve performance, create lasting results, and, most importantly, train subordinates to be the best leaders they can be. David's writing is honest fresh, engaging, and informative as he discusses the potentially career ending consequences of moving towards a Leader-Leader framework and away from what he was taught for years in the US Navy. Finally, David's organized style of writing provides the reader with questions to consider as well as summarizes the Leader-Leader tools. In today's business world of Big Data, Analytics, and Analysis, we need MORE leadership that results in initiative, creativity, ethical behavior, and enduing results. Turn The Ship Around! Is the book you need today to be a better leader!