A simple motto say. Yet much harder to follow.
I was meeting with a friend the other day and he mentioned these three simple words. He had heard these from an admiral while he was serving the US Navy. I thought about these three words for a while and can see why the US Navy and the admiral use them to set priorities.
Priorities are there for a reason.
If all three aren’t in balance you have a problem. However, if the ship is not taken care of first there will be no shipmates or self. Of course, self-preservation has it’s place too. Yet, self-preservation takes a back seat to the duty and honor of supporting your shipmates and the ship itself.
Applying these three words to your daily life
When interviewing or thinking about extending your career these three words can help define and describe what you should be thinking about as you seek to build your career, the careers of your colleagues and that of your business. Where self, shipmates and ship can be used in reverse order to set priorities. This is true in entrepreneurial environments and large companies.
Reality Check: The US Navy is a huge organization with thousands of men and women serving all over the world and supporting hundreds of ships…and these three words seem to work quite well for them.
The next time you are planning and thinking about what you should be doing next take a few minutes to think about these three words. Think about how you can make sure all is right with the ship first. Then make sure all is right with your shipmates. Then think about your self.
Seek to find a balance across all three. Make sure you have your priorities right so that all three can succeed.
Jeff is a veteran in the Enterprise Content Management industry. Over the past 20 years he has worked with customers and partners to design, develop and deploy solutions around the world. Jeff is currently the Director of Strategic Alliances at Winshuttle. He has worked for Microsoft, FileNet (IBM), K2, Captaris, Open Text, Kofax and Kodak. He speaks and blogs about ECM and the Intersection between Social, Mobile and Cloud Computing.