November 09, 2018


Genre: Self Help 

Author: Jocko Willink & Leif Babin

Pages: 289

Year of Publish 2015

Related Books  Navy Seals: Mental Toughness, The way of the SEAL


About the Author

John Greeton “Jocko” Willink is an American podcaster & author. He retired as United States Navy SEAL and has received Silver Star & Bronze Star for his service in Iraq War. Willink was the commander of SEAL Team Three’s Task Unit Bruiser during the Battle of Ramadi. Together with his fellow SEAL Leif Babin, Willink wrote the book “Extreme Ownership” and founded consulting firm Echelon Front.

Summary of Extreme Ownership

Together we achieve more, be it in sports, academics business, or the battlefield. In every aspect of group coordination, we look around, there are a goal and constraints. And when constrains can take away your life, then the creamiest practice is required to be followed. The above practitioners can learn amply from war veterans.
In any team, in any organization, all responsibility for success and failure rests with the leader. The leader must own everything in his or her world. There is no one else to blame. The leader must acknowledge mistakes & admit failures, take ownership of them & develop a plan to win. Extreme ownership requires leaders to look at organizations' problems throughout the objective lens of reality, without emotional attachments to agents or plans.
The author says "There is no such thing as a bad team, just bad leaders". If your team is not performing as per the instructions of the leader, the latter should be blamed. Nobody joins to fail. There are very fewer chances of personality failure if one trusts their selection process. In the case of Seals Selection, the beta error is nil.
"Belief drives thinking, thinking drives action, action drives results." 
If you want to maintain the leadership of your team, never give the impression that you don't understand or disapprove of the decision from above. You must trust the decision made by higher authority. Seals training brings the culture of believing in your team and seniors.
'Ego must not be misunderstood with ownership' It can be lethal even in business. As you grow up, you tend to fall in the impression that you know everything & feel not to listen to advice. The result, you will lose credit in the eyes of subordinates, hampering the team output in the long run. Admitting you don't know everything and welcoming talks will reinforce your position as a leader.
"Keeping things simple" A plan on paper looks flowery only up to the point it reaches execution. The task of the leader is to study the situation and present the execution plan so simple that the chance of ambiguity is zero. As simple it looks it is far difficult to make it happen.
"Prioritizing objectives" is an art, and military men are masters of this. Prioritizing tasks will help in avoiding the risk, reducing the risk or if two is through then how to minimize the impact of risk.
"Decentralization of command" On real grounds, the team may face circumstances which haven't they trained for, a leader must be ready for such a situation and make every individual capable to make a decision and not wait for instructions.
"Leading downwards and upwards" In business language, it is called Top-down and bottom-up approach.  Men acting on the ground should be empowered enough to alter the commands of superior.
"Indecision and Uncertainty" Not even the entire knowledge of the world can guarantee a perfect procedure for the future. In every dimension of our life, we suffer from indecision. 
"Discipline Brings Freedom" A dedicated drill, training or course can make a team aware of the process, tools they are using and the goals. As awareness increases, creativity follows which brings freedom. 

All the readers who are looking for books in the self-help category should see the options in military authored books. It can really impact life. Worth a shot for pitching for these books.


  1. Bravo my dear son
    Your blog on this book indicates ur own mental state of leadership quality. The Naval officer of US had understood real ups and down in managing any organisation in very short span of time he spent. In ur preview of the book which is in various paragraphs touched spontaneous aspects ie "Belief drives thinking, thinking drives action and action drives result", "Keeping things simple". Indeed one should go for this book who want to learn leadership quality.
    Very good. Bless u

  2. Great going Tejashwi,

    Glad that you chose to review a book by a military veteran. One can learn a lot from soldiers who've been in battlefield. In business, a bad decision can be corrected or a backup plan activated when plan A misfires. In a battlefield though, one small misstep, and you're history. The strategy and operational plans drawn by military are, therefore, painstakingly drafted and religiously executed. As in battlefield, so in life, one can take a leaf out of this book to better one's existence. Your detailed review strengthens one's resolve to own this rich piece of writing.
    Kudos and all the best!!

  3. Nice one tejaswee...your point of view really make difference... keep it up..

  4. That's really commendable. A summary well versed and well defined. A great job done by you. Well done. And keep going in the path of moving ahead from dreamers to doers. All the best bro.

  5. Good one Tejashwi�� . This LL make any one in a fraction of second "motivate"

  6. Awesome review Tejashwi. Your view clearly throws light on the true aspects and qualities of a real leader which if implemented in real life will make huge difference. Good going


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