David Marquet, a top graduate from the US Naval Academy, led a distinguished career in the United States’ Submarine Force, serving on submarines in both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, and culminating in command of the nuclear-powered fast-attack submarine USS Santa Fe, stationed in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In command of Santa Fe, Captain Marquet completely turned around the submarine, which went from being “worst to first.” Santa Fe earned the coveted Arleigh Burke Award, as the most improved ship or squadron in the Pacific, as well as the Battle “E” award for Submarine Squadron Seven. His bold and highly effective leadership techniques emphasize process over personality and empowerment over ego.
Noted author Dr. Stephen Covey rode USS Santa Fe and discusses one of Captain Marquet’s leadership practices in his book, The 8th Habit. USS Santa Fe has produced a highly disproportionate number of subsequent leaders including two Major Commanders, three Submarine Commanders, and ten Submarine Executive Officers. Captain Marquet went on to command Submarine Squadron Three, a front-line submarine squadron in Pearl Harbor. Captain Marquet completed his Navy career running the Navy’s internal think tank, Deep Blue, where his insightful and provocative analysis is being used to transform the Navy.
With his Turn this Ship Around! leadership program, Captain Marquet focuses on the people- side of today’s highly technological and complex organizations – providing mechanisms and practices that foster empowerment and initiative; minimize errors and rework; develop leaders at all levels; and embed continuous learning and improvement in the work environment. The result is dramatically improved and enduring operational excellence.