The story of Captain D. Michael Abrashoff and his command of USS Benfold has become legendary inside and outside the Navy. Now Abrashoff offers this fascinating tale of top-down change for anyone trying to navigate today's uncertain business seas. When Captain Abrashoff took over as commander of the Benfold, a ship armed with every cutting-edge system available, it was like a business that had all the latest technology but only some of the productivity.
Knowing that responsibility for improving performance rested with him, he realized he had to improve his own leadership skills before he could improve his ship. Within months he created a crew of confident and inspired problem-solvers eager to take the initiative and take responsibility for their actions. The slogan on board became "It's your ship," and Benfold was soon recognized far and wide as a model of naval efficiency. How did Abrashoff do it?
Against the backdrop of today's United States Navy - Benfold was a key player in our Persian Gulf fleet - Abrashoff shares his secrets of successful management including:
From achieving amazing cost savings to winning the highest gunnery score in the Pacific Fleet, Captain Abrashoff's extraordinary campaign sent shock waves through the U.S. Navy. It can help you change the course of your ship, no matter where your business battles are fought.
©2006 D. Michael Abrashoff; 2012 Hachette Audio
I found the Captain's narrative to be thorough and thought provoking. Certainly striving to be the best is paramount for any organization and helping employees find strengths within themselves is the best path for achieving goals.
Capt. Abrashoff's experiences aboard his naval vessel parallel a lot of what I have seen in my business career so I found his advice to be applicable to what I am trying to accomplish in my own company.
I will say, though, that towards the end of his book more and more of his stories involved breaking rules, throwing parties and spending money on extravagances. While this technique will most assuredly foster a fun environment, and maybe even better performance, I don't think that is a prescription for success across the board.
I would suggest caution when following some of this advice. Not a great fit in all industries.
Despite that caveat, I definitely recommend the read.
Well written and captured your attention. For leaders with modern degrees or leadership training, the author does well to reinforce what you've learned recently. For leaders with old training or haven't lead in awhile, it provides insight into modern leadership philosophies more aligned to today's workforce.
A true leader that every manager should emulate. If it can be done in the military it can be done in any setting.
This book truly breakdowns the basic concepts of leadership! The tips obtained in the first 3 chapters were put to immediate use at work.
I have enjoyed this book so much. Great stories and leadership lessons that I forget about with time and career growth. Take notes, observe what you do and make changes. This book is not only change some of my approaches, it's going to help make a difference in other people lives. Definitely worth reading.
My reading and listening tastes are eclectic.
I really enjoyed listening to this, and I have started incorporating what I learned into where I work. And it is working, much to my boss's surprise. You might be surprised if you try it too. I may not work on the best damn ship in the Navy, but I definitely now work at the best damn store in the chain.
Whether commanding a ship or leading a company, the reasons that sailors or employees leave an organization are similar:
1. Not being treated with respect or dignity
2. Being prevented in making an impact
3. Not being listened to
4. Not being rewarded with more responsibilities
5. Low pay
The top four reasons are controllable by the leaders of the organization, which is what Captain Abrashoff set off to do. The book isn't the result of years of research and studying business operations. Captain Abrashoff worked with his crew to come up with ideas to make it the best damn ship in the Navy. Particularly admirable was that Captain Abrashoff gave his crew the responsibilities they were willing to take on and trusted they would do it well. Many leaders would be unwilling to give up what they perceive as their source of power - the ability to tell people how to do their jobs.
I've read my share of leadership books, but this was the first one I've read/listened and enjoyed every minute. Great story, filled with great info. I'd recommend it to everyone.
"Best leadership book by far!"
This has to be one of the best leadership books I've ever listened to or read. I've already introduced as many of these ideas as possible and seen great results already! I urge you to listen and take on the challenge of these amazing ideas. Stay humble but effective in whatever leadership role you have.
"one of the most fantastic books about leadership"
I really love this book. very inspiring and loads of to learn. it has change a lit in my life and work. Thank you Captain!!!
"just need a ship now"
this book gives very good advice for people in a or trying to get into a position of command/authority. it dose it's best to try to get it in your head to trust in others and to make those who can't be trusted to a point where they can be. it also encourages you to take the initiative in solving problems.
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