Reading List: Turn the Ship Around
Several weeks ago I stumbled upon an article on Fast Company’s site about David Marquet’s book Turn the Ship Around!: How to Create Leadership at Every Level. Marquet is a retired Captain in the Navy, and is best known for engineering the remarkable turn around of the USS Santa Fe. Upon taking over the boat, David became the captain of one of the worst performers in the fleet and was given very clear instructions: turn the ship around.
Over the course of the two and a half years, Marquet changed the entire culture of the Santa Fe, turning it into one of the best ships in the entire fleet. What is even more remarkable is that he did this in a way that flies in the face of the stereotypical military leadership model of leader-follower, implementing a leader-leader strategy that encourages team members at every level of an organization to make decisions and lead where they are.
While some may glance at the cover of the book and cast it aside as a military book with little application to church leadership, Marquet’s book is an excellent resource for those who are trying to increase the level of engagement within their congregation, and reproduce leaders throughout their ministry. One passage in particular has had me thinking long and hard about my leadership:
When the performance of a unit goes down after an officer leaves, it is taken as a sign that he was a good leader… not that he was ineffective in training his people properly.
Instilling a healthy leadership culture while developing an outstanding team should be a priority of everyone in church leadership. I can think of no higher honor in ministry than seeing a church I served with being healthy for years after I have left (not because I left, mind you). I am convinced that this is something that are not only called to do, but are completely able to do… if we are intentional about developing a healthy culture.
After reading Turn the Ship Around, David Marquet and I had a conversation about the book, and about leading healthy organizations. Here is that conversation:
If you can’t tell, I am a fan of this book (I am having one of our Coaching Cohorts read it together), and I believe it could be a fantastic resource for your team… I will even give you a copy! (details below)
Is YOUR church embracing a leader-follower or leader-leader style of leadership?
I have two copies of Turn the Ship Around to give away to Church Thought readers. Want one? Here’s what you need to do:
- Leave a comment on this post
- Share this post via twitter or facebook.
- Promise to review the book on Amazon after you read it.
I will select two winners at random on Sunday, August 19, 2012 at noon eastern.