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Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win Hardcover – October 20, 2015

4.7 out of 5 stars 759 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“This is the SEAL Leadership book we have been waiting for. Poignant, powerful, practical. A must read for every leader.” ―Roger Ailes, Chairman and CEO, Fox News Channel and Fox Business Network, and chairman, Fox Television Stations

“Leif and Jocko are the real deal. I’m honored to have served with them. They led SEALs in the fight through the hell that was the Battle of Ramadi. This book shows how they did it.” ―Marcus Luttrell, U.S. Navy SEAL and #1 national bestselling author of Lone Survivor

“The smartest, most revolutionary management approach since Jack Welch's Six Sigma.” ―Don Imus, radio host, Imus in the Morning

“Finally, a leadership book that actually demonstrates how to truly lead. Riveting, engaging, and free from the usual cliché platitudes, this book is strikingly impactful and will dramatically improve leaders of all types.” ―Amy Brandt Schumacher, entrepreneur, executive, and philanthropist

Extreme Ownership provides huge value for leaders at all levels. An inspiring and page-turning read, the leadership lessons are easy to digest and implement. It provides a powerful SEAL framework for action to lead teams in high-stakes environments. This book made me a better leader and enabled my entire team step up our game!” ―Jared Hamilton, founder and CEO, DrivingSales

About the Author

JOCKO WILLINK is author of Extreme Ownership, a decorated retired Navy SEAL officer, and co-founder of Echelon Front, where he is a leadership instructor, speaker, and executive coach. Jocko spent 20 years in the U.S. Navy SEAL Teams, starting as an enlisted SEAL and rising through the ranks to become a SEAL officer. As commander of SEAL Team Three's Task Unit Bruiser during the battle of Ramadi, he orchestrated SEAL operations that helped the "Ready First" Brigade of the US Army's First Armored Division bring stability to the violent, war-torn city. Task Unit Bruiser became the most highly decorated Special Operations Unit of the Iraq War. Jocko returned from Iraq to serve as Officer-in-Charge of training for all West Coast SEAL Teams. There, he spearheaded the development of leadership training and personally instructed and mentored the next generation of SEAL leaders who have continued to perform with great success on the battlefield. During his career, Jocko was awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and numerous other personal and unit awards. In 2010, Jocko retired from the Navy and launched Echelon Front where he teaches the leadership principles he learned on the battlefield to help others lead and win. Clients include individuals, teams, companies, and organizations across a wide-range of industries and fields.

LEIF BABIN is author of Extreme Ownership, a decorated former Navy SEAL officer, and co-founder of Echelon Front, where he serves as leadership instructor, speaker, and executive coach. A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Leif served thirteen years in the Navy, including nine as a Navy SEAL. As a SEAL platoon commander in SEAL Team Three's Task Unit Bruiser, he planned and led major combat operations in the Battle of Ramadi that helped the "Ready First" Brigade of the US Army's 1st Armored Division bring stability to the violent, war-torn city. Task Unit Bruiser became the most highly decorated special operations unit of the Iraq War. Leif returned from combat as the primary leadership instructor for all officers graduating from the SEAL training pipeline. There, he reshaped SEAL leadership training to better prepare SEAL officers for the immense challenges of combat. During his last tour, Leif served as Operations Officer and Executive Officer at a SEAL Team where he again deployed to Iraq with a Special Operations Task Force. He is the recipient of the Silver Star, two Bronze Stars, and a Purple Heart. In 2011, Leif left active duty and co-founded Echelon Front, a leadership consulting company that helps others build their own high-performance winning teams. Clients include individuals, companies, and organizations across a wide-range of industries. Leif speaks on leadership, U.S. military strategy, and foreign policy matters. His editorials have been published in the Wall Street Journal and he has appeared on a variety of national television news and radio programs.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press; First Edition edition (October 20, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250067057
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250067050
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (759 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #343 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Ladybug TOP 500 REVIEWER on August 25, 2015
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Extreme Ownership is written by two former Navy SEALs, Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, who now head a leadership training company. Both men are pretty hardcore, I must admit. The experiences they share in this book are intense and eye-opening--not to mention unique. There aren't many books out there that give such detailed glimpses into the lives of SEALs in action.

The book is structured in a very basic and clear way. The authors convey one main point per chapter by sharing a story from their battlefield experiences, then highlighting the main principle of that story, and finally giving a concrete example of how this principle applies in business settings.

Their main points can be summarized as follows:

(*) The leader is always responsible. (This is what they call "extreme ownership." Basically, leaders must always "own" the mistakes and shortcomings of their teams.)
(*) Everyone on the team must believe in the mission.
(*) Work with other teams to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.
(*) Keep plans simple, clear, and concise.
(*) Check your ego.
(*) Figure out your priorities, and then act on them one at a time.
(*) Clarify your mission (i.e., your plan).
(*) Engage with your higher-ups; keep them in the loop--especially when they frustrate you.
(*) Act decisively, even when things are chaotic.
(*) And the last chapter is a summary of the seemingly contradictory qualities of a leader.

In my opinion, the simplicity, clarity, and structure of this book are it's greatest strengths. I knew exactly where the authors were going with their points, and I understood exactly the message they were trying to communicate. The book is incredibly easy to follow.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
There are thousands of leadership books out there, and most of them are decent, value added, and … redundant. For the most part they all regurgitate the same information. This book is better than most because it does a nice job of weaving in military leadership models that have been honed over thousands of scenarios. The book is structured well and each section contains the following: first is an interesting and detailed account of a US Navy Seals combat engagement. The story is followed by a summary of the principle the engagement is intended to teach. Finally, how that principle should be applied in a business environment. Some of my favorite ideas presented in this book counter some of the rampant trends in modern business models. For example: many business are big on the concept of a “flat organization” – they convince themselves that more direct contact with managers improves coordination and communication. Most importantly, they love that it is cheaper (fewer managers). However, this book rightfully points out the realities of “span of control” and shows how managing more than 6 people becomes unwieldy – and ultimately, the manager is spread so thin that interactions break down, grinding communication and coordination to a halt. I also especially love the application of the “laws of combat” to the business world. This is a great book for anybody that is interested in military history and wants to be a better leader.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've read this book twice already. Once from the stance of being a career driven woman with hopes of learning new leadership tatics to help me in my career endeavors. The second time through, I read from the stance of being a mom, trying to understand how these leadership principals could help me as the leader within my household and more importantly, how to raise my children to leaders. This book has had a profound impact on me in both my professional and personal life. Leaders in ANY capacity NEED to read this book.
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Format: Hardcover
I bought this book after seeing Jocko and Leif on Hannity. I felt compelled to buy the audible version to support veterans. I thought it may not speak to me as I've never held any leadership.

Boy was I wrong. It's action packed with war stories; both successful and chaotic. The way these brave and humble men apply what they learned in war to business makes me yearn to work for a company where Extreme Ownership is employed.

It's motivating and gives me hope for the future of America. Do yourself a favor. Buy and read or listen to this book. If you are not a psychopath, I would be surprised that you would anything but praise for this work.
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Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Written by ex-Navy SEAL officers Jocko Willink and Leif Babin (who now serve as corporate leadership trainers) this volume covers the fundamental principles of battlefield leadership and how these elemental qualities apply to civilian enterprises and such. The title of the book - 'Extreme Ownership' perfectly crystallizes Willink and Babin's philosophy on leadership where anyone serving in such a capacity must take full responsibility for any operational or performance shortcomings of the team. By doing so trust and respect across the team hierarchy is achieved and each member will eventually develop such an 'accountability first' mindset.

While there are other similar volumes on SEAL style leadership popping up as of late (eg - the excellent First, Fast, Fearless: How to Lead Like a Navy SEAL) this one differs slightly with its emphasis on the retelling of battlefield tales from the Iraqi theater. While each chapter articulates a specific leadership point, approximately 75% is comprised of a battle tale and the final 25% details how the lesson/experience learned is applicable in non-military situations. With this content format in mind this book is best suited for those interested in battle lore first, with business considerations following closely behind.
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