Retaining Your Best Is EVERYONE’S Job!


Do you know why the US Navy works hard to retain their best and brightest?  It’s because they can’t hire senior leadership from the outside.  They have to grow their own leaders  The Navy, as with any multi-cultural global entity, is in fierce competition for high quality, talented people who want to make a difference […]

Deckplate Leadership

My first two years in the Navy were less than productive. As a young 18 year old, I was loud, obnoxious, and thought many things were funny that my supervisors didn’t. On the opposite end, I was also smart, eager and enthusiastic – but I asked a lot of questions and wanted to know the […]


Military Transition

I stood there in complete amazement as the man yelled, “Hey!!  You can’t cut!!  There’s a line here!  What are you doing!?”   No, he wasn’t yelling at me…he was yelling at a another man who was trying to board our 5 hour flight to San Francisco ahead of him.  It was like, somehow, we had […]

Show Your Ass and Laugh!

Chip Lutz

RIP!!!  The seam in the back of my dress uniform pants completely gave out.  Admittedly, I had packed on some serious pounds.  I had quit smoking and substituted the smokes for anything sweet around. (Okay, that’s just an excuse…I love donuts and had had a continual stream of them going into my mouth.) That morning […]

Voices In My Head

Voices In My head

“Hey, I saw you walking up the street talking to someone…but no one was there” the Major said. Yup, he was correct.  You see, I have this really bad habit of going through potentially contentious conversations in my head prior to having them. The bad part is that I get so into the conversation that […]

Listen To Your Gut!


Personally and professionally, we all face challenges. My greatest professional challenge came when I was put in charge of the Navy’s Security Forces in Washington, DC. There, I was responsible for the safety and security of 25K people on 9 different Naval Installations in the National Capital Region during the September 11, 2001 crisis. It […]

4 “No Fail” Motivation Strategies

Money is great! It makes the world go around. It motivates some to perform better for a while (in it’s pursuit) but that “superior” performance is usually short lived. In the same respect, threats, barking orders and intimidation have never moved any team that I was on to surpassing goals and moving to new levels […]


I was a little nervous.  It was, after all, my first periodic evaluation as a new officer.  I knew that I had been working hard, taking care of my people and working to move the mission forward but, in the back of my head, questioned if I had done enough.  I walked into my Commanding […]

The Cement of Good Relationships

Relationships parallel houses in the way they are built. Daily, we add (or detract) from the foundation of our relationships – at work and at home. Daily, we lay bricks, reinforce walls, put up barriers, and cover open spaces. How much reflection and planning are you investing into the building of your house? It takes […]

How To Change Your Attitude

Big Cup O' Joe!

I reached my hotel room at 1AM and wondered what the next day was going to hold for me. It had been the end of an extremely long day. I had left Milwaukee that morning on (what I thought) was going to be a short flight to Oklahoma City to work with veterans that had […]