It’s Your Ship – Book Summary
One of my favorite books…
Book: Management Techniques from the Best Damn Ship in the Navy – It’s Your Ship
Author: Captain D Michael Abrashoff
The book contains practical lessons from his experience of transforming the USS Benfold, previously one of the worst performing ships in the US Navy. His management techniques provide a unique collection of best practice, which can be used with as much success in the business world as they have had in the military. Whether it is Armed Forces or the Organisations, all leaders face common challenge of getting the most out of the crews (Employees). This depends upon the three variables – The Leader’s needs, The organisation’s atmosphere, and the crew’s potential competence. This is where the book provides the leadership examples of overcoming through 11 practices of leadership tested at Benfold. Leadership lies in simple things – common-sense actions that ensure high morale and increase the odds of winning. Leaders must be willing to put the ship’s performance ahead of their egos.
Chapter I – Take Command
Top reasons for people quitting the organisations | Not being treated with Respect or dignity | Prevented from making an impact on the organisation | Not being listened | Not being rewarded with more responsibility and compensation is the fifth reason for quitting.
- – The key to being a successful Leader is to see the ship through the eyes of the Employees
- – Empowering means defining the parameters in which people are allowed to operate and then setting them free. As a leader empower the people to take decision and whenever the consequence of a decision had the potential to kill or injure someone, waste taxpayers money, or damage the ship, make leader to be consulted.
Chapter II – Lead by Example
- – A leader will never accomplish what he or she wants by ordering it done.
- – It’s funny how often the problem is Leader.
- – Never forget your effect on people: Mediocre leaders don’t even take the trouble to know their people. Enthusiastic leader, will have enthusiastic workforce.
- – Leaders know how to be held accountable
- – Obey even when you disagree.
Chapter III – Listen Aggressively
- – See the ship through the crew’s eyes
- – Find round people for round holes
- – Use the power of word magic –
Chapter IV – Communicate purpose with Meaning
- – Make your crew think we can do anything
- – Open up the clogged channels
- – After creating a great band, Defend It
- – Freedom creates Discipline
Chapter V – Create a climate of Trust
- – Never pit dog against dog – Internal bickering and posturing does nothing for the bottom-line.
- – Even the worst screw-up may be redeemable
- – Welcome the bad news messenger – Mid level managers should be the one to survery the grey areas and provide directions.
- – Protect your people from lunatic bosses – Helping your boss when he or she needs you badly is a pretty good investment.
- – Trust also makes money
Chapter VI – Look for Results not Salutes
- – Help knock down the barriers
- – Let your crew feel free to speak up – Facts are facts and deserve attention not retribution.
- – Free your crew from tip down its
- – Nurture the freedom for fail
- – Innovation knows no Ranks
- – Challenge your crew beyond its reach
Chapter VII – Take Calculated Risks
- – Bet on the people who think for themselves
- – Take a chance on a promising sailor
- – If a rule doesn’t make a sense, Break it
Chapter VIII – Go beyond Standard operating Procedure
- – Keep your priorities in Focus
- – Stay ahead of the competition
- – Push the envelope for Innovation
- – Go for the obvious, it’s probabaly a winner
- – Don’t work harder, work smarter
– Innovation and progress are achieved only by those who venture beyond Standard operating procedure.
Chapter IX – Build up your people
- – Little things make big successes
- – Trust people., they usually prove you’re right
- – Expect the best form your crew. You will get it
- – Build a strong, deep bench
- – Counsel continuously and Honestly
Chapter X – Generate Unity
- – Forget diversity. Train for unity
- – Deal out punishment strictly but fairly – First take background and circumstances into consideration before passing judgement. Second help wrongdoers become better citizens.
Chapter XI – Improve your people’s Quality of Life
- – Fun with your friends makes a happy ship
- – In heavy times, lighten up