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Dealing With Your Team Without Punishment – Jocko Willink

Dealing With Your Team Without Punishment – Jocko Willink


I’m a sergeant and I want to know how to
deal with my men in a way without punishment but still make them better
for next time okay here’s something for you
punishment is actually the last straw in how you deal with people that you’re in
charge of in fact I will tell you this if I ever had to punish someone when I
had to administer punishment on my troops I always felt that I had done
somewhere I’d done something wrong mmm right like even if a guy got in trouble
out in town got drunk got in a fight did something stupid I would still look at
that and think to myself how could I have allowed this guy to not realize
what a disaster it is how much trouble he’s gonna get in
what kind of international incident he’s gonna cause how that’s gonna hurt us in
the team strategically are all those things how did I let that happen
so doling out punishment is not optimum I mean you’ve pretty much you’ve pretty
much made a mistake if you have to punish people because if you’re doing if
you’re being a good leader people are doing what you want them to do there’s
no reason for punishment so that’s what you should not be looking to punish and
just like I just said you should be looking to build relationships you
should be looking to show people a better way of doing things a way that’s
more smooth and more efficient it doesn’t disrupt what the team efforts
are you got to explain to people why they’re doing what they’re doing this is
all stuff right this is you explain why if things are done a certain way explain
how it impacts the team explain how it impacts them that’s also important
you’ve got to have people rehearse and in retrain because now now I’m talking
about how do you get people to do the right thing right without punishing them
so we’re trying to avoid punishment how do we avoid punishment by training how
do we avoid punishment by people understanding what they’re doing why
they’re doing what they’re doing how do we avoid punishment by setting goals
that make sense that are small enough for them to get to and then have fun
with the goals and get in the game yourself and show them that you’re not
perfect and that is what you need to do you need
to make every effort to make people understand why they’re doing what
they’re doing how they fit into the big picture and when they figure all that
stuff out and they’re on board you shouldn’t have to punish people you
shouldn’t have to punish people so I know it’s yeah that’s what it is
your sergeant and you want to deal with your men away without punishment well
think of what the mistakes you’re making when you’re when you’re when your fire
team or your your your platoon does something wrong why did they make that
mistake they make the mistake as they wanted to mmm no they made it because
you were a bad leader at that point in time you what could you do better hey
guys where what didn’t you understand oh you guys messed up this training
operation I’m gonna restrict your weekend duty I’m gonna restrict you to
weekend duty meaning you can’t go out in town what good did I just do mmm right
are they gonna try harder now mmm right now but if you say hey listen guys we
did a bad job I know I must have made a mistake in trying to explain this
information to you all because we didn’t do what we were supposed to do let’s
look let’s dissect this thing as a matter of fact let’s spend Friday night
dissecting this thing I’m buying pizza and we’ll sit around the the sand table
and we’ll figure out what we did wrong hmm
that’s not punishment mmm that has the opposite effect of punishment that has
hey I’m gonna bringing everyone in because I want to win I want us all the
wind so that’s what you got to do don’t the punishment should be punishment
should be I mean do you have to punish people sometime yes yes you do when
they’re blatantly out of line when they do something that’s blatantly wrong yeah
you got to drop the hammer on them you got to set the example sometimes hey
you’re not gonna get away with this sometimes that happened in the teens you
know somebody would do something stupid and the command would just drop the
hammer and everyone goes man that guy got a DUI and they you know docked him
they busted him in rank and they pulled him out of his platoon and they’re
sending him to a to a fleet billet for two years but oh my god
I might make someone think right you know maybe I won’t step behind the wheel
yeah so sometimes you do have to punish if people do something stupid especially
after the being warned a couple times yeah but I always look if I have to
deliver punishment on to my team I made a mistake somewhere I don’t like it yeah
don’t they say that the like reward and encouragement is like way more powerful
and punished definitely way more powerful sure I’ve almost never punished
people yeah yeah but the reason is why did I punish people because people were
doing weren’t doing stupid things they were doing what they were supposed to be
doing they were doing yeah I mean I probably I don’t even know if I I
probably I think I had like one or two captains mask where I had to bring
somebody in and drop the hammer on them that’s because they did dumb stuff yeah
like yeah you know what you can’t do that I didn’t think of it I’m sorry
but you can’t do that discussions yeah

Comments (18)

  1. Hey I’m first to comment, I’m in Tennessee from the campfire in paradise, ca. After we lost everything, I’ve been watching for inspiration. Thank you for being here!

  2. Dude as a "boss" it's a matter of finding the right job for the guys you have. If you are assigning your team to jobs that aren't their forte, you are failing as a boss….punish yourself. If they aren't carrying out their known strengths it's your job as a boss to get down to the bottom of it. Help them get back to their peak output. It benefits both of your home and work lives.

  3. Fumes in your car drilled holes in the floor nice and confusing .

  4. Always remember from one of my first jobs, a manager saying that poor employee performance was effectively a fault of the manager. Somewhere along the line that person hasn't been properly briefed, motivated, inspired or reprimanded.

  5. Inspire them to be better, not to be afraid..

  6. Out of the bosses I have had, this is NEVER what I have seen, it’s always been max penalty!

  7. To get people to do the right thing without punishment starts when they are young. By raising children with the idea that punishment is not necessary and is actually detrimental to growth, they will desire real leaders who practice patience, teach discipline, and create balance. I think it will create a shift in how leaders will need to evolve in order to obtain the respect and attention of those that seek their guidance. There will be less individuals that desire that punishment and they will be more receptive to a positive interaction, which will ultimately lead to far superior results.

  8. I'm trying to not punish my child as much. I need to flank him more. Instead of letting my emotions get the best of me.

  9. I'm and Army Infantry NCO and I understand were you are coming from. One of the issues I'm having is I'd like to corrective train the guys and try to handle it myself so it doesn't get any further. BUT my leadership is on a "put everything on paper so we can legally punish them" kick. I always got the choice paper or pain, but in today's Army Im being told cannot give my soldiers that opportunity.

  10. How do we handle the dichotomy of resorting to punishment as a last resort and sending a clear message that poor performance will not be tolerated (“It’s not what you preach, it’s what you tolerate”)

  11. Hello Jocko and Echo

  12. When I become a military officer, I am going to lead exactly as Jocko would want. This man is my example.

  13. I not only like your podcasts I feel that you have a missing element , how do boys become men , how do we learn what is really all about ? A lot of men out there are still somehow stuck in this adolescent "machismo" this trying to be clever , look good .

    Great stuff Jocko it could be applied to all fields , punishment is a difficult one , sadly states and governments are very rarely accurate and objective when it comes to punishment , neither are organizations it is a legacy from our hierarchical past again , you could argue that perhaps the most perfect human being who ever lived was punished unfairly for showing up hypocrites , for showing the way forward.

    Also it is more of the scapegoat mentality , yes society needs protecting from sadistic psychopaths , child molesters , criminals and so forth but without rehabilitation and without a really honest look into our own pysche's what is the point .

    I will never be grateful enough that my Dad , a tough bastard very rarely raised his voice, a quiet look was enough , or never ever nor would want to hit me , thank God , having lived a riotous life he knew how easy it was to slip up , never afraid toi stand up to the ugliest bastard in the bar, I felt safe around him as a child , sadly a lot of the types you describe who go a wale have a sadistic fathers , fathers they secretly hate ! Even fathers who beat them , that was my problem with your pod caste video on Panzram although in my opinion one of your best videos , you seemed to miss the point somewhere in there was a weird childhood , something must have gone very arye early on , otherwise he wouldn't have acted the way he did , would he ?

     Other than that keep on rockin!

  14. Is there any chance you’ll make some Discipline Equals Freedom silicon wristbands and put them up for sale on your store? I’m sure a lot of us fans would love to be able to order those!

  15. But isn't enforcing discipline supreme in the military . If your subordinate does something stupid he has to bear the consequences

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