Episode 1:Jon S Rennie. Being a Nuclear Sub Commander, Leadership, Writing, Elon, Twitter & more
Welcome to my first PodCast with Mr. Jon S. Rennie in which we discuss life on a nuclear submarine, commanding a nuclear submarine, manufacturing in America, Leadership, Elon Musk, Twitter, Alex Jones and cancel culture, UFO’s, Reddit, Movies, Books Food and more.
Jon is the Co-Founder, President & CEO of Peak Demand Inc., a premier manufacturer of critical components for electrical utilities. He is a former U.S. Navy Nuclear Submarine Officer who made seven deployments during the end of the Cold War.
Prior to starting Peak Demand, he led eight manufacturing businesses for three global companies. He is the author of the best-selling leadership books, I Have the Watch: Becoming a Leader Worth Following, All in the Same Boat: Lead Your Organization Like a Nuclear Submariner, You Have the Watch: A Guided Journal to Become a Leader Worth Following and is the host of the Deep Leadership podcast.
The most important lesson he’s learned in the past 30 years is that leadership matters. Leadership can make a significant difference in the performance of any organization. He shares his thoughts and insights on business and leadership with the desire to create better leaders. His hope is that his work inspires you to look at leadership in a new light.
You Have the Watch: A Guided Journal to Become a Leader Worth Following
Today I’m joined by Eddie Rice. Eddie is a professional speechwriter with over 10 years of experience in helping business leaders, keynote speakers, TED talk presenters, and everyday people, enhance the messages they tell through great storytelling and structure. He loves creating strong narrative-driven speeches that focus on balancing emotional and thought-leadership content. He is the author of a new book called TOAST: Short Speeches, Big Impact. This book provides a step-by-step approach for brainstorming and designing the perfect speech. Public speaking is an important part of leadership so I’m excited to have Eddie on the show to share some of his best practices!
One leader can make a difference in any situation and any organization.
You might have seen the news this week that Ernest Shackleton’s ship, the Endurance, was discovered in Antarctica after sinking more than 107 years ago. Searchers found the ship 9,842 feet below the surface of the Weddell Sea on the northern coast of Antarctica.
While the discovery is considered a significant historical find, I can’t help thinking about the man behind the ship, Ernest Shackleton. He was a man who faced the ultimate leadership test and came out on top. His actions demonstrate why leadership is so important, especially when things go tragically wrong.
If you know the story, Shackleton and his crew of 27 men left England in 1914 on an expedition to cross Antarctica on foot. But the mission failed.
Five months into the journey, the Endurance became hopelessly stuck in the thick, impenetrable ice in the Weddell Sea. Nine months later, the shifting ice crushed the Endurance leaving Shackleton and his crew stranded on the ice flows.
With no hope for rescue, Shackleton faced one of the most challenging leadership tests in history. His mission to transit Antarctica was over, but he had a new goal – to keep his crew alive.
He led his team in the most brutal conditions on the shrinking ice pack for six months. Eventually, they reached the uninhabited and remote Elephant Island. From there, Shackleton and five crew members set sail in a 23-foot-long open lifeboat to get help. They needed to travel more than 800 miles to reach the whaling stations on South Georgia island.
Shackleton and his men endured storms, heavy seas, 50 mph winds, and ice build-ups on the hull that threatened to capsize their vessel. One of his crew later said, “It was the most amazing suffering.”
Two weeks later, they reached South Georgia, where Shackleton arranged a rescue of his remaining crew on Elephant Island.
On August 30th, 1916, the remaining crew members were rescued more than two years after they left England. Every one of his crew of 27 men survived the ordeal.
Ernest Shackleton proved why one leader can make a difference. Consider these five leadership traits Shackleton demonstrated:
He didn’t panic. He just changed the mission. When it was clear that they would no longer be able to carry out the expedition’s mission, Shackleton pivoted to a new goal of getting his men home. He made sure everyone knew the new mission.
He provided hope. By focusing on the new mission and formulating a plan to carry it out, he sparked hope in his team. Without Shackleton’s leadership, his team might have died hopelessly on that ice pack.
He took care of morale. His men faced brutal conditions with limited supplies and food. Shackleton kept things light with humor and kept his crew occupied with assigned work. He did his best to meet the needs of everyone on his crew. He knew that if morale faltered, so would their chances of survival.
He led from the front. Shackleton suffered as much if not more than his crew during those two years. He personally led the mission to South Georgia in a small open boat in the Antarctic because it provided the best chance of rescue.
He never gave up. Despite every obstacle put in his path, he never gave up. His men were motivated by his steadfast persistence.
When Shackleton was later asked about how he overcame all the challenges he faced on that ill-fated expedition, he had the most humble answer. He said, “Difficulties are just things to overcome, after all.”
This guided journal provides daily leadership guidance and reflection for an entire year. Each week, you will learn a new leadership skill. Each day, you will explore a new facet of that skill. As you do the work and put in the reps as a leader, this journal will be your constant companion. By the end of the year, you will master fifty of the most important leadership skills.
[Photo credit: Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust and National Geographic]