Articles, Blogs, and Rants

Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

By MarioMay 18, 2010 gCaptain, Water Safety

So if a crew member falls overboard and every looks O.K. – don’t be too sure. Sometimes the most common indication that someone is drowning is that they don’t look like they’re drowning. They may just look like they are treading water and looking up at the deck. One way to be sure? Ask them: “Are you alright?” If they can answer at all – they probably are. If they return a blank stare – you may have less than 30 seconds to get to them. And parents: children playing in the water make noise. When they get quiet, you get to them and find out why.

Top Ten Boating Safety Tips

As a veteran helicopter rescue swimmer and now a marine safety specialist for the United States Coast Guard, I’ve seen a lot of boating trips gone wrong.  Accidents are accidents, but after twelve years on the job, I’ve noticed that most of the emergencies we respond to are easy to avoid.  With a little additional […]

Drowning Doesn’t Look Like Drowning

Translations: – العربية – Norsk 汉语 – tiếng Việt – Español – Italiano –  Français – Magyar –  Português – română – Deutsch – Suomi – Svenska –  Čeština – Русско –Íslenska – Nederlands – ελληνικά – עברית‬ –   Audio Version The new captain jumped from the deck, fully dressed, and sprinted through the water. A former lifeguard, he kept […]

We are Smarter than Me

By MarioApril 11, 2010 Coast Guard, Leadership

(With special thanks to Peter Stinson who first introduced me to the possibilities of WIKI Based knowledge management.) Of all the jobs in the Coast Guard, vessel inspections presents newcomers with the most seemingly insurmountable mountain of information to learn. Confused by the thousands of pages of regulations, NVICs, conventions, and other official guidance from […]

Leader Killers – Who to Fire, and Why

By MarioJanuary 26, 2010 General Leadership

A bad manager can be a killer of a great leader.

Women will Never be Equal to Men

By MarioNovember 23, 2009 Diversity, General Leadership, Opinion

With so many organizations competing for the women of the world, trying to get them to take notice and join up with them (instead of their competitors) I’ve noticed something disturbing: It’s not working. Though some have enjoyed moderate success at upping the numbers of female leaders on the payroll – too many (far too many) are struggling. As of April, only 15 of the Fortune 500 were led by women CEOs. That’s just .03%? – Pathetic. I think – and bear with me here – that I have identified the primary reason that so many of us long to achievie gender balance on our teams. Ready? Here it is: We keep trying to treat women as equals…..huge mistake. Now I’ve heard all the arguments: “a woman can do anything a man can do.” and, “women are just as good at men in the workplace.” But it never quite registered with me as the right approach.

The Myth of the Turnaround Employee

The unaccounted for variable in all these stories, from the “look what my caring leadership and mentoring has produced” series, are the other ten people that worked for you back in 95. What happened to them? What happened to your top three performers that you ignored while you were paying attention to your fixer-upper? Because something definitely happened to them – while you may have thought you were doing a good and noble thing, I personally believe you screwed up royal.

Vay-Ner-Chuk Gets Leadership

If Marcus Buckingham was right, that leadership is “rallying people to a better future.” – then as much as you may think of him as a marketer, as a merchant, or as a hustler (in a good way); Gary Vaynerchuk is – above all of that – a leader.  With the recent release of his […]

A Little Perspective

By MarioJuly 19, 2009 General Leadership, Opinion

Perspective changes everything. It will let you know when its time to dig in and fight, and when its alright to concede. Perspective allows you to remain calm when everyone else is frantic. Knowing what is bad and what isn’t gives you a certain coolness under what is pressure to everyone else, and that can make all the difference. When faced with a “crisis” (please) the ability to temper your reaction accordingly and face the problem makes things better. Calm beats frazzled every time.

Book Review: “Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior”

Ori and Rom Brafman’s “Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior” is another excellent read on human behavior that can add to your understanding of how people make (or don’t make) decisions. There are reasons that seasoned professionals, from all backgrounds and disciplines, make otherwise senseless decisions; and none of us are immune. A successful […]