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Ep. 47 – Leif Babin Interview: What Leadership Lessons Can Politicians Learn From Navy SEAL Teams?

In our fun interview with bestselling author and Navy SEAL Team veteran Leif Babin, he returns to the Conservative Book Club to discuss his follow-up book to his previous bestselling book, Extreme LeadershipIn his new book, The Dichotomy of Leadership: Balancing the Challenges of Extreme Ownership to Lead and Win, he reveals what leadership lessons politicians and the world of business can learn from the battlefield, while also discussing his views on conservatism.  Leif Babin is an American hero and we’re proud to honor him this Veterans Day week!


  • 4:12 Leif Babin talks about his new book and the central concept — the dichotomy of leadership.
  • 6:26 Babin explains the three sections of The Dichotomy of Leadership — balancing people, balancing the mission, and balancing yourself.
  • 8:36 Babin dives into chapter 9 of the book and the idea that being a good leader requires being a good follower as well, drawing on his experiences serving in the Iraq War.
  • 13:28 Leif Babin talks about the process he and co-author Jocko Willink take in applying their military experience to the trials and lessons of civilian life and business.
  • 17:28 Babin explores how our political leaders could use the lessons of The Dichotomy of Leadership to better themselves and solve our public crises.

OUR GUEST – Leif Babin

  • Leif Babin is a decorated former Navy SEAL officer and co-founder of Echelon Front, where he serves as leadership instructor, speaker, and executive coach. A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Babin served thirteen years in the Navy, including nine as a Navy SEAL.
  • As a SEAL platoon commander in SEAL Team Three’s Task Unit Bruiser, he planned and led major combat operations in the Battle of Ramadi that helped the “Ready First” Brigade of the US Army’s 1st Armored Division bring stability to the violent, war-torn city.  He is the recipient of the Silver Star, two Bronze Stars, and a Purple Heart.

BOOK OVERVIEW – The Dichotomy of Leadership

  • In their followup to their bestselling book Extreme Ownership, ex-SEALs Leif Babin and Jocko Willink tackle the idea that in order to be a good leader, one must also be a good follower — the titular dichotomy of leadership.
  • Babin and Willink once again apply the lessons they learned in Iraq to situations civilians face in business and in life. They reveal how the use of seemingly opposite principles―leading and following, focusing and detaching, being both aggressive and prudent―require skill, awareness, understanding and dexterity; all attributes that can be honed.



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