Turn the Ship Around! by L. David Marquet

Turn the Ship Around!

"Leadership should mean giving control rather than taking control and creating leaders rather than forging followers." David Marquet, an experienced Navy officer, was used to giving orders. As newly appointed captain of the USS Santa Fe, a nuclear-powered submarine, he was responsible for more than a hundred sailors, deep in the sea. In this high-stress environment, where there is no margin for error, it was crucial his men did their job and did ...

Details Turn the Ship Around!

TitleTurn the Ship Around!
Release DateMay 16th, 2013
GenreLeadership, Business, Nonfiction, Management, War, Military Fiction

Reviews Turn the Ship Around!

  • Peter
    The rating is for the book, not the content. The ideas and concepts the book brings up are quite interesting and sound like they would be quite useful to many organisations. However, it's written in a simplistic structure that came off cheesy and often annoying. The writing, in general, was amateurish and the narrator for the audiobook (who happened to be the author as well) did a pretty horrible job. The feeling I got from the whole experience w...
  • Gordon
    6-stars! The best leadership book I have read in years. After having read different books that referenced USN Captain David Marquet's "Leader-Leader" approach (Steven R. Covey, Simon Sinek), I decided I just might learn something from a sailor. Once I started the read, I devoured the book. I recognized good leadership practices I had adopted or experienced and I found myself deepening my understanding of why they work or had worked. This is a boo...
  • Sergey Shishkin
    If a nuclear submarine could gain leadership at all levels by giving control, building competence and achieving organizational clarity, your enterprise has no excuse to continue exploit people in a command & control environment like it's still 1900's.Great book with inspiring stories, illustrating the leader-leader model step by step. Highly recommended to read for people who are in charge of other people, as well as people who have other people ...
  • Nathan Farley
    This is one of those books that is hard to put down. Easy to read (even though I don't know anything about the Navy or submarines) while it is PACKED with so much leadership truth. My favorite part? It's not a "this is the way things must be done" kind of book. He raises serious problems and tells you how he attacked them. He shows his strengths and weaknesses in leadership. I greatly appreciated this read.
  • Jenn
    To be honest - I have never had a strong interest in military-oriented reading material, fiction or non-fiction. Aside from my interest in pre 20th century piracy on the high seas (more of social class/mobility angle here) - I haven't really read any books about life on boats or submarines.David Marquet has written an incredibly clear and easy to understand book - that happens to be about submarines and their crews. The details about life on the ...
  • Katie
  • Justin Cramer
    As a former Navy “Nuke” I am a bit biased towards this book as it spoke of situations I am familiar with in a language I was fluent in. One of the advantages of a small command is the abutting completely affect change. This gave the author an advantage as he and his crew made changes, evaluated the results, and made further changes. They also had the advantage of a built in set of measurements. To me the above does not diminish what they achi...
  • Craig Childs
    Captain Marquet translates his experiences as a nuclear submarine commander into a book of highly readable and applicable leadership techniques. He discusses his ‘leader-leader’ model (as opposed to the traditional leader-follower) and the three pillars upon which it is built – 1) Control, 2) Competency, 3) Clarity.The book is a fast read, but the approaches he described are not simple or necessarily easy to apply. He sprinkles anecdotes li...
  • Liudas Belickas
    I liked the book, found little to none repetitions and typical management crap. The principles mentioned were somewhat new to me and seem of great value. I’d sum it up as one big team transformation story that acts as a tip book on how to reveal people’s talents via trusting them with owning stuff and creating a culture where continuous self development is a core value and side prerequisites to make it all work. Recommend!
  • Diego
    Executive recommendation. Great advice for how to improve an undisciplined team; give them control of their purpose. Simple quick book.
  • Jacques Bezuidenhout
    Did the AudioBook narrated by the author.From an Audiobook perspective, he wasn't the best narrator. However you kind off got used to his militaristic reading style as the book progressed. Definitely wasn't the worst narrator ever.I do think the book over simplifies how easy it is to change a leadership model or company culture.However, it does have some very valid points in slowly changing some aspects of both management and employees to move in...
  • Anton
    This book has some insightful advice aimed at executives and managers-of-managers, but it all kind of boils down to, "be a genuinely good, humble person who cares about others, thinks about the long term, and has no demons holding them back from doing the right thing."It's the equivalent of going to the doctor to ask about your ailment only to find out that the solution is to eat well and exercise regularly. I guess even if I already knew that, a...
  • Derek Neighbors
    Marquet takes us on his journey at the helm of the USS Santa Fe submarine and a transformation from Leader-Follower to Leader-Leader management. Having read quite a bit on empowering management styles there was a lot here that you can find elsewhere, though David does so in a very story friendly format. Noticeably different is the attention to detail around communication. Specifically around the words of "intention" for empowerment. I "intend to,...
  • Terry Dicken
    It is all about collaboration. Usually this should not be difficult to implement, but for some reason it is usually hindered by the prevailing culture. I spent 17 years in the military and to implement the brand of leadership is extraordinary. Please take note that he uses an itterative approach to implementation. That is you cannot implement this new approach with all aspects of your operations accounted for. When implementing a collaborative ap...
  • Michael Robinson
    Hello, Reader! Welcome to my review of Turn The Ship Around! My name is Mike and I intend to give you a very short review of this great book. If you read the book you will realize what I just did there, I used the three name rule and told you my intention rather than exactly what I wanted to do. I would have given this book 5 Stars but I honestly do NOT agree with Mr. Marquet that this type of leadership can be applied within any organization. I ...
  • Tigran Mamikonian
    Pretty good read explaining the story of turning leadership style from traditional Leader-follower scheme to Leader - Leader... The book is full of details about situations on submarine, I liked the most idea of the captain who insisted that every member of crew started their communication with "I intend to..." So that he would be left with just saying "Very well, do it"... Otherwise subordinates are becoming just followers if directly instructed...
  • Nick Frolov
    Very inspirationalThe book is a step by step guide of changes from top-down management approach in organisation like US Navy. Story starts with Cpt. Marquet assigned in charge of submarine with worst results in the fleet, and turns it around within a year to the best one, by changing the top-down (leader-follower) approach to the empowerment (leader-leader) approach.This book is great addition to the book "team of teams", written by US General St...
  • James
    This book follows Marquet's efforts to improve the morale, performance, and retention of the USS Santa Fe, which was the worst-performing submarine in the nuclear fleet when he got there (spoiler: he succeeded). As with William Oncken's excellent _Managing Manager Time_, Marquet focuses on granting power, authority, and freedom outward to his team to the extent that he can afford to do so.
  • Christopher Jefferson
    An amazing book. I loved the ideas and practices that were discussed and the case studies that were given. I used these ideas throughout my job and institute the Leader-Leader model with my team members. My direct reports have started to read the book and I am breaching the boundaries of emancipation with them. My boss has even approached me about getting this book for himself.
  • Bjoern Rochel
    Update 28.12.2017: still a great, inspiring read -–-Resonates a lot with me. A perfect description of how I think modern organisations should work. Build leaders, not followers. Somewhat funny and unexpected that this originated in the military
  • Michal
    Great insights about leader-leader structureI really like the examples about how the captain transformed Santa Fe's crew. Eye opening in many ways. I'd appreciate more examples from business environment (i.e. add "Application to business" section at the end of each chapter)
  • Sicofonia
    This book proposes a new paradigm for leadership, the so called Leader-Leader model. This is a model that David Marquet developed and implemented as a commander of the nuclear submarine USS Santa Fe.The construct that David Marquet proposes, Leader-Leader, is explained in three main parts. That is control, competence and clarity.Each part is then subdivided in short chapters where Marquet borrows from his experience commanding the submarine, espe...
  • Manny Johnson
    Leadership turned aroundLeadership as many of us are taught is systematically challenged one by one with a deeper understanding of what leadership really is and tries to achieve. The author provides refreshing, clear stories that hide nothing to show you his journey in becoming a better leader which is ultimately supporting everyone to become leaders. If you are frustrated with your teams or companies and wished there was a better way to manage, ...
  • sumo
    I’ve read a few leadership books, and this one was way more fun to read than the other. The author ties in his leadership lessons and experiences to a gripping story about commanding a submarine. I can’t remember the exact quote and I borrowed it so I can’t look it up, but he said something along the line of “motivating your people to not make mistakes vs motivating them for some higher goal.” This is challenge!
  • Mike Arvela
    3,3 stars or so.Solid-sounding ideas, yet less enthusiastically communicated as in the very similar book ”It’s Your Ship.” Often I felt like the book told the ”what”, but not the ”why” or ”how”.Continues the tradition of military books that could make good drinking games: ”the SUBGRU (submarine group) WEPS (weapons officer) took us FFVs (fresh fruits and vegetables) on his RHIB (rigid hull inflatable boat).”
  • Fred
    Usually I don't get much out of management books that promise to have it all figured out (organizations are complex beasts) but this one outlined a bunch of principles the author applied to push competent control deep into the organization, to great success. Some of the principles I already apply to my teams, others I can learn from or more intentionally employ.Overall a great read for all who want to lead, not command.
  • Cliff Hazell
    Great story, easy read, pragmatic succinct advice.Highly recommend for all leaders and aspiring leaders.My favorite quote:“You know you have an emancipated team, when you no longer need to empower them. In fact you no longer have the ability to. Because they’re no longer relying on you as a source of power”- David Marquet Great story, easy read, pragmatic succinct advice.Highly recommend for all leaders and aspiring leaders.My favorite q...
  • Eliatan
    This a military memoir about changing team habits around following orders and developing a culture of responsibility. I both enjoyed the story of David’s career progression and the nuggets of wisdom in relation to leadership and culture change.  
  • Dave
    More military detail than I was looking for, including usage (without explanation) of many navy terms. Some interesting leadership ideas, but few that weren't covered better in Good to Great, which this book refers to.
  • Cristen Boorman
    This book was recommended to me by a change manager as a good way to understand how teams can change to self-organising/leader-leader rather than the traditional leader-follower, as part of transitioning into Agile.