Abrashoff to headline convention
Author and former Navy commander Mike Abrashoff will give the keynote address at IFB’s annual convention.
“He ran his ship his way and not the historical way most Navy ships were governed, giving his crew the confidence and freedom to become great,” said Chris Fenner, field services director for IFB. “There are many lessons we in Farm Bureau can learn and apply from a leader like Mike Abrashoff. His attitude of empowerment and equality amongst his crew made morale soar and allowed common sailors to achieve uncommon results while saving taxpayer dollars.”
Abrashoff was commander of the USS Benfold, a destroyer in the Pacific Fleet. At the time of his selection, he was the youngest person to command a ship in the fleet. The Benfold was suffering from low morale, high turnover and unacceptably low performance evaluations. Few thought that this ship could improve.
To solve these issues, Abrashoff created the “Leadership Roadmap.” At the core of his leadership approach on the Benfold was a process of replacing command and control with commitment and cohesion, and by engaging the hearts, minds, and loyalties of workers with conviction and humility.
Abrashoff’s principles reaped rewards. Personnel turnover decreased to an unprecedented 1 percent. The rate of military promotions tripled, and the crew slashed operating expenses by 25 percent. Regarded as the finest ship in the Pacific Fleet, the Benfold won the prestigious Spokane Trophy for having the highest degree of combat readiness. Most importantly, all of this was achieved with the same crew he started with.
In It’s Your Ship, his New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, Abrashoff recounted the leadership lessons from the turnaround of the Benfold. He followed with Get Your Ship Together and It’s Our Ship, two books that look at how business leaders put Abrashoff’s principles into action.
Abrashoff is the founder of GLS Worldwide, a consulting firm that works with and supports leaders as they address leadership, talent and business challenges within their organization. The firm challenges leaders at all levels to re-imagine their leadership thinking and create new ways to elevate individual, team and organizational performance.
The IFB state convention takes place Dec. 13-14 at the Grand Wayne Convention Center in Fort Wayne. Registration will be available online after Sept. 1. Keep reading The Hoosier Farmer for more details.