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Publisher's Summary

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:

  • See the ship through the eyes of the crew: By soliciting a sailor's suggestions, Abrashoff drastically reduced tedious chores that provided little additional value.
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate: The more Abrashoff communicated the plan, the better the crew's performance. His crew would eventually call him "Megaphone Mike", since they heard from him so often.
  • Create discipline by focusing on purpose: Discipline skyrocketed when Abrashoff's crew believed that what they were doing was important.
  • Listen aggressively: After learning that many sailors wanted to use the GI Bill, Abrashoff brought a test official aboard the ship-and held the SATs forty miles off the Iraqi coast.

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

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great story

if more businesses follow these principles, business would run a lot smoother. The statement, it's just business, does not have to be acceptable

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Very Inspirational

I was very surprised, I really thought this book was going to very Millitary and corporate. Totally the opposite. What a great and inspiration story.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A good read for leaders who haven't lead in awhile

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.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Great leadership booked

A true leader that every manager should emulate. If it can be done in the military it can be done in any setting.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Awesome & Inspiring

This book truly breakdowns the basic concepts of leadership! The tips obtained in the first 3 chapters were put to immediate use at work.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Exceptional

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.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Empowering and Full of Good Advice

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.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Trust your crew to do their best

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.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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A Must Read For All Leaders

Outstanding practical, tactical leadership advice here. Mike's story is awesome. Loved it. Highly recommend you listen.

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Practical Leadership Insights

Engaging story with practical leadership insights. Would recommend to those who lead small groups, large organizations, or even for parenting ideas.