So many of our After-Action Reports start out with “Many thanks…” then you have to wonder: what do you say when you want to convey even more thanks than usual?
More thanks than usual to “IRON” Mike Steadman (USNA ’10) for sharing his story with us this evening! The full video will be out in a couple of days, and those of you who attended this event will have seen for yourselves: this one Meetup ALONE is worth the price of a RINGKNOCKER Subscription. If you aren’t standing on your chair by the end of Mike’s talk, watch it again, because you weren’t paying attention.
Burn all the ships.
Worth also pointing out that I had similar things to say about another talk given a few months ago by NASCAR phenom Jesse Iwuji, who is not only a Naval Academy classmate of Mike’s, but is also another native Texan. So maybe something in the water that year, who knows. But in terms of extraordinary, it seems USNA 2010 is giving USNA 1992 a run for their money! 😊
Anyway, why all the shouting?
Mike’s a Marine Infantry officer who saw a massive problem in urban Newark, NJ: crime, drugs, and violence were laying waste to a generation of young men. So instead of crying about it on social media, Mike did something kind of unthinkable for a guy with his prospects: he moved into a dormitory at St. Benedict’s Prep and took over as in loco parentis for about 75 at-risk teenage boys.
There’s a story there—understatement of the year, right there—which you’ll see on the video and clips when they come out. Burn the ships was a phrase that featured heavily tonight. Here are some themes that came up repeatedly:
- Action is worth more than words.
- Credibility is something you earn by doing hard stuff other people won’t do.
- Leadership is the stuff you did before everybody was looking.
- It is impossible to overstate the value of a good coach.
More to come. But for now, seriously: thanks Mike for some very high-octane motivation. And, while we’re at it, a big shout-out to RINGKNOCKER Sponsor Bill Watkins of The Lions Pride 10x business accelerator, whom Mike credited tonight as his own head coach.
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