462: Extreme Ownership

11.01.2019 - By The Startup Chat with Steli and Hiten

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In today’s episode of The Startup Chat, Steli and Hiten talk about Extreme Ownership.
Extreme Ownership is a book written by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin and it talks about the leadership concepts used by US Navy SEALs to accomplishing the most difficult missions in combat. 
This book also provides readers with Jocko and Leif’s formula for success and demonstrates how to apply these directly to your business and life to likewise achieve victory.
In this week’s episode, Steli and Hiten share their thought on the book, how the concept can be applied to your startup and much more. 
Time Stamped Show Notes:
00:00 About today’s topic.
00:38 Why this topic was chosen.
00:58 What you need to know about extreme ownership.
03:33 Jocko Willink’s response to every problem.
04:32 How a leader can have extreme ownership over everything that’s going on in the company.
05:58 How ownership can be empowering.
07:54 How Hiten and Steli are very much aligned.
09:09 How getting people to take responsibility can be really difficult.
11:04 Behaviour patterns that can be associated with extreme ownership. 
3 Key Points:
Every problem is a leadership issue.If you can say the words “we have a problem”, you’re still alive.Ownership is empowering.
Steli Efti: Hey everybody, this is Steli Efti.
Hiten Shah: And this is Hiten Shah. This is one of those topics that Steli just knew we were going to do today. We do a few every time. So, the topic is about extreme ownership and I have not read any of the books on it. So, first, I'm going to say, Steli, have you read any of the books on this topic?
Steli Efti: Yeah. I've read the book, Extreme Ownership, by Jocko Willink. I have.
Hiten Shah: All right, so let's start there. What do I need to know about that, or what were your takeaways about it? Because I think that would be a good start because I know nothing.
Steli Efti: Yeah, so-
Hiten Shah: ... Sure a lot of folks who are listening are not ready yet.
Steli Efti: Yeah, so-
Hiten Shah: I do have the book though, for the record.
Steli Efti: Yeah. I'll tell you this in all honestly, this will now prove to people that constantly telling me they can't believe that we do absolutely zero prep work for almost 500 episodes that we've done so far. Here's the truth. I read the book, I would say, three or four years ago. I can't tell you much about it. I can tell you this, I am a big fan of Jocko Willink. I think the book he talks a lot about his experience of running a military team under very, very difficult circumstances and some of the principles that he applied to running that team, which is basically summarized in the title, which is like you're responsible for everything, basically. I think what I remember from the book is that everything is a leadership problem. Every problem is a leadership problem. Every issue is a leadership issue. And a core principle of being a leader is that, you own everything, you take complete responsibility and ownership over everything that's going on within your team or within your sphere of influence. And you teach your people to do the same thing. I'm sure there's a lot more awesome stuff in there that I just don't remember anymore. But I'll tell you one little tidbit on top of it. There's a video out there from Jocko Willink, one of the authors of Extreme Ownership. If you go to YouTube and you type, Jocko Willink and then the word good, G-O-O-D, good, there's a two minute video that was cut out out of a podcast recording that he made, that is one of my favorite, most motivational two minute videos on YouTube. Fucking love that. Which is basically where he describes that anytime somebody would come to him with pr...

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