Extreme ownership 1 – Own your world

Principle One. The leader must own everything in his or her world.

No excuses. No dodging. No equivocations.

The mission comes first. Always. And the mission is owned by leaders at every level of the organization.

The difference between a senior leader and a junior leader is the scope of their influence in executing the mission.

A Vice President leads a division. A manager leads a team.

A Colonel leads a regiment and a Corporal or Lance Corporal leads a fire team.

Same mission. Different scope.

And both leaders need to be responsible and accountable for their world:

The best leaders don’t just take responsibility for their job. They take extreme ownership of everything that impacts their mission.

Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, Extreme Ownership, 30.

More than that, being mission-focused is incompatible with ego:

Extreme ownership requires leaders to look at an organization’s problems through the objective lens of reality, without emotional attachments to agendas or plans. It mandates that a leader set aside ego, accept responsibility for failure, attack weaknesses, and consistently work to build a better and more effective team.

Willink and Babin, 31.

The mission-focused leader owns mistakes, accepts responsibility, and works to correct errors and stop them from happening again.

End of story.

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