Leadership Lessons from the Navy with Capt. Mark Brouker


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By Marcel Schwantes. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Mark Brouker is a retired captain from the US Navy, a published author, Executive Coach at The Honor Foundation, and the founder and President of Brouker Leadership Solutions. He is also a keynote speaker and consultant dedicated to helping businesses and Fortune 500 companies using principles he learned from his time as a Navy officer. He joins Marcel Schwantes to discuss his most recent book, Lessons From the Navy: How to Earn Trust, Lead Teams, and Achieve Organizational Excellence, and leadership strategies that work.

  • After discovering inconsistencies in his motivation for work, Mark discovered that the cause was not the job itself, but his boss. “I read a lot of books and observed… when people know their boss cares for their well being, they work really hard for [them],” he remarks. [4:17]
  • The best leaders get to know their people as human beings first and employees second, build trust within their organizations and treat their people with respect, which is one of the most important behaviors a leader can convey to his or her team members. Additionally, good leaders address and acknowledge both good and bad performance. [9:52]
  • Marcel asks Mark what the pathway is to building trust in organizations. “There are different aspects of trust… you have to have some modicum of competency… keep your word… [and] care for your people,” he replies. “Of the three, caring for your people is the most important.” [14:13]
  • Marcel comments on the prevalence of fear-based management. “Cultures of fear breed bad decisions,” Mark states. The cumulative behaviors of the leaders determine whether an organization’s culture is built from fear or trust. More specifically, how a leader reacts to bad news often sets the tone for how they will be perceived. [20:20]
  • The primary job of a CEO is to create a culture, Mark points out. Half of their work is individual contribution, but the other half is supposed to be dedicated to creating the culture of their team. When leaders understand that, they are more likely to pay extra care to the way they interact with their people. [25:18]
  • Walking around inquiring about people’s well-being and being visible are important keys to establishing good relationships as leaders, as opposed to only making your presence known to inspect things. Having established relationships makes people more receptive to correction and creates high-performing teams. [28:14]
  • “Everyone's got potential,” Mark says, “and great leaders find things in people that they didn't even know they had…. What’s beautiful about leadership is [the ability to] help people maximize their potential, help them along their journey and make their day.” [31:14]


Capt. Mark Brouker on LinkedIn


106 episodes