One Marine’s 3 Keys To a Successful Team

There are any number of books on leadership and influence (a recent favorite is It’s Not About You) , team building, management and achieving objectives. I have shelves full of them and I’m certain many of you do as well. I recently heard what is, perhaps, the most succinct and effective messaging for all of these.

These three concepts are something I heard from a friend of mine who is a Major in the United States Marine Corp. He  has been a leader of Marines both domestically and in combat. Each time he gets a new command, he addresses his troops in virtually the same way. After introducing himself he lists three expectations that he has of his Marines…concepts which he knows will achieve the greatest team, get the most from each individual and yes,  save lives.

Here they are:

Leadership by example

Regardless of your rank or position, think and act like a leader. Do what you know is right and needed. Walk the talk.

Sacrifice for the greater good

It is often said that there is no “I” in team. Replace personal consideration with what’s best for everyone.

One man or woman can make a difference

Do your part. Do what you can. Your efforts can, and will, make a difference. The role you play may be the key to success for all.

These concepts are quite simple and yet are tremendously powerful. Importantly, they translate to any group or team and you don’t need to enlist. You do need to believe and convey these concepts to your entire team.  The results will speak for themselves.


Coach, International Speaker and Thought Partner - Bill’s mission is to add value to the world – one brand at a time. Bill guides individuals and companies alike in building what he refers to as a ‘fearless brand’. This is the process of discovering, embracing and delivering their greatest value – which allows them to realize greater profit. Read More

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