The Fifth Factor

Ok, what’s the “Fifth Factor?” That is the question I frequently get when I tell people I named my company “Fifth Factor Leadership.” This simple question seems to deserve a simple answer, but I don’t have a simple answer, except my standard wise-guy response: It comes right after the fourth factor. Which of course leads…

The Fighter, the Family, the Fleet – a Fragile “Ménage a Trois”

The below is an essay recently published in the Naval Special Warfare Magazine Ethos, available on-line.  They had asked me to write something about ‘The Family’ and this is what I came up with.   I heard Radm Dixon Smith, Commander Naval Region Southwest, use the “Fighter, Family, Fleet” alliteration in a speech, and he tells me it is being…

In Praise of Mediocrity

I use this title partly in jest.   ‘Mediocrity’ is, almost by definition, that which is not ‘praiseworthy.’  And yet in my comments that follow, I hope to point out that what appears to us as mediocre does not automatically warrant derision or embarrassment.  There is an important place for mediocrity in this world, and often there…