by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

January 2, 2018

Two former Navy Seals have built a brand based on their lessons learned as commanders in wartime. The result is a book where each chapter tells how they learned a principle as commanders in wartime, a statement of the principle, and a follow-up scenario from their consulting for how the principle plays out in business. By the second or third chapter, I found myself skimming the wartime stories and business scenarios and just reading the section describing the principle.

I expected the book to be about how good leadership leads to ‘extreme ownership’ by those being led. But, it’s more about how a leader has to maintain extreme ownership of the project/business/organization they lead. I appreciated that there was a level of permission for me as a leader that came with that view, but also wondered, as I often do, if there is an expectation of leadership here that fits in wartime or a start-up culture but is less sustainable for long-term leadership in a maturing and developing organization.