[February 25, 2018] Today’s blog post will stray a little but is still about leadership and those things that make for great leaders. For those who are unaware of the man Richard Marcinko, he is the founder of the U.S. Navy SEAL Team 6 and Red Cell. Often known by the name, Rogue Warrior,1 some ask the basic question whether he is truly a tough warrior or just a crazy man.
Personally, I find the man fascinating. I think I’ve read all his books (fiction but based on real life of his time in the Navy); each with the basic theme of killing those who threaten America and democracy. Terrorists are a favorite enemy in his books and his career. He kills them with extreme prejudice. Read his books for good entertainment and learning about the warrior creed.
Leadership! Throughout his fictional writings, including his autobiography Rogue Warrior,2 he pushes the idea that the secret to military success on and off the battlefield is “unit integrity.” The concept group cohesiveness is similar. Marcinko gives us an in-depth look at how he created unit integrity and how it enabled his teams to accomplish what was thought to be impossible.
A few years ago, a group of us traveling out of Kuwait into Iraq put together a list of 20 qualities of a “warrior.” After reading Marcinko’s Rogue Warrior, I will add one more … 21. The willingness to buck the system, destroy bureaucracy, and not let anybody get in the way of quality training for the team or accomplishing its mission.
If there is ever a war, men like Marcinko are those I would send. Give him a mission, a little guidance (not too much or too restrictive), and let him and his team do their work. The result will be to the betterment of this nation. He will get the job done. He will not fail.
By the way, for those thinking Marcinko is simply a knuckle-dragging ape, you may have it all wrong. He emphasizes practical leadership, caring for his men, realistic training, aversion to unnecessary risk, and unit integrity. Doing all this intelligently and with sage thinking is one of his secrets and how he is often underestimated. Those are, of course, the basics of good leadership. He is certainly no crazy man but he is the type of rogue warrior you want around when the going gets tough.
If you want to know more about leadership, perhaps from a different angle, then read about Richard Marcinko. He will tell you in his own words and give examples. If you are a college “snowflake” or are prone to being “triggered,” then I suggest you avoid the book and go play with your crayons.