I am a daughter of a US Army Veteran. I am a sister of a US Navy Veteran. There is no one group of people I respect more than the men and women who served our country. We, as civilians, can not even start to understand what it’s like to go to war. The skills and discipline it takes to be a soldier are out of this world. Below I am attaching a short clip from one of the writers of Extreme Ownership so that you can get a taste of what I have been reading this semester.
Chapter 11 was titled Decisivess amid Uncertainty, and this chapter was a real eye-opener. Coming from a family of having a service member in every generation dating back to the American Revolution, military talk is typical. This chapter was different. This chapter spoke on the importance of making the right decision even if you have extreme pressure to hurry and decide. To give you a short update on what they were dealing with, Jocko worked with one of the best snipers in US history Chris Kyle. Many of us know him from American Sniper. Kyle had his eye on a target that they believed to be an enemy, but he could not id the target. Kyle did not want to take the shot until he was 100% sure who he would be taking out. Long story short, Jocko was getting extreme pressure to command Kyle to make the kill, but Jocko stood his ground and refused. Later it was revealed that, indeed, that was not an enemy soldier but a US solider looking guard. Thank god Jocko and Kyle stood their ground in this position and did not take the life of one of their own.
Taking those lessons learned and applying them to civilian life or the business world, at a point a leader knows in their gut what they need to do, the question is whether they will stand their ground and do what it’s telling them. I am lucky to work for an organization that allows me to speak on those gut feelings openly, and it is encouraged. If I see my boss missing something or overlooking a step, I feel comfortable enough to call it out, and I also welcome those situations for myself. Human error is so easy, we are so busy nowadays, and everyone has so much on our plates. We are just lucky that our wrong decisions don’t cost people their lives.
Extreme Ownership | Jocko Willink | TEDxUniversityofNevada. (2017, February 2). [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljqra3BcqWM&feature=youtu.be
Willink, J., & Babin, L. (2017). Extreme ownership: how U.S. Navy SEALs lead and win. Second edition. New York: St. Martin’s Press.