Mike Abrashoff was the most-junior officer in the Pacific Fleet when he took command of the near-worst performing ship. Twelve months later, the USS Benfold was the best ship in the entire Navy –using the same crew. The story of that stunning transformation has lessons for every organization: leadership matters –and culture is everything. Mike’s written three books –his first, It’s Your Ship, has sold over 1 million copies. His Leadership Roadmap offers clear, battle-tested, and actionable steps. Mike shows people at every level of the organization how to engage and take incremental steps toward change that can make a dramatic difference at work. Mike is clear, “I didn’t turn the ship around –my crew did that. What I did was to create an environment where they felt safe, empowered and supported. When you do that, anything is possible.”
In many ways, what Mike was able to do with the USS Benfold was an extreme example of the same problems facing many organizations today. That’s why dozens of publications including The Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, and Fast Company have cited Mike’s story as an inspiring lesson for business. Leaders especially identify with Mike’s being accountable for the results in an environment where he couldn’t make the rules.
“When my crew came to me with a problem, I’d say ‘It’s your ship –how would you fix it?’.” Mike focused on the one thing he could influence: his crew’s attitude, because culture is the ultimate competitive weapon for any organization.
Mike’s established a set of management principles that he calls The Leadership Roadmap. At the core of his leadership approach on Benfold was a process of replacing command and control with commitment and cohesion, and engaging the hearts, minds, and loyalties of workers with conviction and humility. “The most important thing that a captain can do is to see the ship through the eyes of the crew. The idea is to empower every individual to share the responsibility of achieving excellence.”
By every measure, these principles achieved breakthrough results: turnover decreased to an unprecedented 1%; the rate of promotions tripled; and the crew slashed operating expenses by 25%. Regarded as the finest ship in the Pacific Fleet, Benfold won the prestigious Spokane Trophy for having the highest degree of combat readiness. This remarkable turnaround was accomplished by the very same crew that had performed so poorly just months before.
Mike is author of three books. His first, It’s Your Ship, has a timeless message: don’t use outside forces that stand in your way as excuses –control the things you can influence and amazing results will happen. His next books, It’s Our Ship and Get Your Ship Together, showed how these principles have been put into action by business leaders in their own organizations.
A popular keynote speaker for audiences looking to ramp up organizational performance, Mike has spoken to every industry and kind of audience –from board retreats to front line personnel; from sales groups to universities; from Fortune 500s to startups. He inspires audiences to rethink their beliefs about leadership and organizational culture and tailors the message to focus on engagement, execution, change, safety, diversity, leadership, teamwork, innovation, accountability and more. Prior to commanding USS Benfold, Mike served as the Military Assistant to Secretary of Defense William J. Perry. He also helped draft the air defense plan for naval forces in the Persian Gulf in 1990, coinciding with Iraq's invasion of Kuwait; and served as the executive officer of the Cruiser Shiloh, where he deployed to the Persian Gulf in support of United Nations sanctions against Iraq.
Mike Abrashoff is the founder of Aegis Performance Group, a consulting firm which works with and supports leaders as they address leadership, talent and performance challenges within their organizations. Mike and his team prompt leaders at all levels to re-imagine their leadership thinking and create new ways to elevate individual, team and organizational performance.
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Our booking agents have successfully helped clients around the world secure talent like Mike Abrashoff for speaking engagements, personal appearances, product endorsements, or corporate entertainment for over 15 years. The team at All American Entertainment represents and listens to the needs of organizations and corporations seeking to hire keynote speakers, celebrities or entertainers. Fill out a booking request form for Mike Abrashoff, or call our office at 1.800.698.2536 to discuss your upcoming event. One of our experienced agents will be happy to help you get pricing information and check availability for Mike Abrashoff or any other celebrity of your choice.
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All American Speakers is a "buyers agent" and exclusively represents talent buyers, meeting planners and event professionals, who are looking to secure celebrities and speakers for personal appearances, speaking engagements, corporate entertainment, public relations campaigns, commercials, or endorsements. We do not exclusively represent Mike Abrashoff or claim ourselves as the exclusive booking agency, business manager, publicist, speakers bureau or management for Mike Abrashoff or any other speaker or celebrity on this website. For more information on how we work and what makes us unique, please read the AAE Advantage.
Mike Abrashoff is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics including Business, Authors and Personal Growth. The estimated speaking fee range to book Mike Abrashoff for live events is $20,000 - $30,000, and for virtual events $20,000 - $30,000. Mike Abrashoff generally travels from Lakeland, FL, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Adrian Gostick, Carey Lohrenz and Doug Lipp. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Mike Abrashoff for an upcoming event.
The whole team was excellent to work with. I appreciate the partnership. Mike was an outstanding speaker and reinforced so many points we have been developing during the last year. His humor was spot on and so enjoyable! I would highly recommend!! Well done!!
FlightSafety International - Jul 15 2021
Unified Women’s Healthcare - Apr 30 2021
“Everyone loved Mike. He got a standing ovation. First time I’ve seen a keynote receive one in my history with ADESA. Our V.P. would like to send Mike’s book, It’s Your Ship as a thank you to the attendees that came.”
ADESA - Jul 24 2014
“Mike, you were fantastic! Several of the employees came to me and told me how they were so touched by your comments, that they cried. The way you treated your crew is what Impact is trying to emulate. I read your book many years ago and it still Impacts me and the way I run Impact today. So thank you for the inspiration and thank you for coming out to Impact and sharing your thoughts.”
Impact Networking - Jul 24 2014
“We have asked Mike Abrashoff to speak to our team twice now and he is in high demand for a third appearance. His message and coaching around leadership is perfect for every level of management in our organization ranging from the general managers of our stores right up to our CEO. Our time spent with Mike has been invaluable and we look forward to working with him again.”
Five Guys - Jul 24 2014
Sometimes in our professional lives we believe we are in a battle to beat an adversary or a competitor when in actuality, we are in competition with ourselves but just haven't figured it out yet. When battling the competition, you want to come out on top, if only by one more sale or maybe a few percentage points. Sometimes, someone at a higher level gives you a goal based on some median expectation set for others. When Mike Abrashoff took command of a well below-average ship in the U.S. Navy, his goal was to get to average. He initially set average goals and expectations for himself and his crew until one day it struck him: his ship could be better than average. Mike's eureka moment was realizing they weren't in competition with anyone but themselves to be their best. They had to stop putting limits on what they believed was possible. That realization changed Mike Abrashoff's approach to leadership and led the same crew to accomplish one of the most remarkable turnarounds that was chronicled in the Harvard Business Review, Fast Company magazine and his New York Times' and Wall Street Journal bestselling book, IT'S YOUR SHIP. Many of Mike's former crew members have gone on to accomplish great things in their careers. They write to tell him their stories. One of Mike's sailors just ran for city council of one of the largest cities in the U.S. and he wrote Mike to say, "you gave us the inspiration and confidence to know that there are no limits." This presentation will challenge you to think differently on how to set expectations while realizing the only limits that you have are self-imposed.
Dive deep into the Leadership Roadmap with a half or full-day program. The 2-hourTake Action session most often used as a follow-on to Mike’s keynote to create a half-day program that provides attendees with powerful tools and strategies to apply in their work environment. Typically facilitated by a senior strategist from Mike’s firm, Aegis Performance Group, Take Action sessions create an exciting interactive atmosphere that examines the key components of high performing leaders, teams and organizations. Full-day sessions with Aegis senior strategists provide an even deeper dive into the practical application of the Leadership Roadmap for the participants and their organizations. Inquire for more details and program descriptions.
In tough economic times, it is critical that all organizations utilize every asset at their disposal to survive and thrive in the global marketplace. While corporations have done a phenomenal job of wringing inefficiencies out of their processes and procedures, everyone knows that you can't cut your way to greatness. There remains an under appreciation and investment in their top asset, people. While economic headwinds have many companies fighting for survival, it is during times like these that great companies are borne by having a relentless focus on innovation and executing new ideas that capture the imagination of the marketplace. A best-selling author of one of the most acclaimed business books of all-time and himself a successful entrepreneur, Mike Abrashoff has traveled the globe speaking to and consulting with some of the world’s most innovative companies. Leveraging his own leadership experiences and having seen up-close-and-personal what separates organizations poised for growth from companies that can’t move beyond the status-quo, Abrashoff equips organizations with the strategies, tactics and tools necessary to unleash innovation, lead meaningful change and improve operational performance. Abrashoff will walk leaders through the 4 step process necessary to create innovation-focused, adaptable, high-performance teams, giving them the takeaways and know-how that is essential to getting organizations on the path to future success.
Meant to deepen the learning from Mike Abrashoff’s keynote talk, Take Action sessions provide attendees with additional powerful tools and strategies to apply in their work environment. Facilitated by a senior strategist from Abrashoff’s firm, GLS Worldwide, and taking place immediately following the keynote, Take Action sessions create an exciting atmosphere that examines the key components of high performing leaders, teams and organizations. Participants will experience innovative, fast-paced individual and group exercises tailored to the leadership and cultural issues most relevant to the organization. They’ll learn practical application of principles outlined in the keynote and build a roadmap to achieve the personal and organizational goals they’ve outlined. Take Action sessions are customizable to meet time and resource-sensitive needs and require a minimum of 2 hours.
Former U.S. Navy Commander Mike Abrashoff to be keynote speaker for the National ... of the NDA Scholarships and the NDA Lifetime Achievement Award.
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