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NEWS | April 10, 2020

Leaning In For A Culture of Excellence

By Reserve Force Master Chief Chris Kotz

SLIDESHOW | 1 images | Reserve Force Master Chief Message To The Force FORCE Message to the Force

In February, U.S. Fleet Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet and U.S. Naval Forces Europe/Africa commanders and fleet master chiefs published “Signature Behaviors of the 21st Century Sailor (2.O),” answering our CNO’s call to action as outlined in NAVADMIN 254/19. This is a vital instrument for all Sailors across our Navy team to carefully examine. It is fundamental to how we lean in and go after curbing destructive behaviors and promoting the types of actions proven to build and sustain effective teams who are tough and ready to do the harsh and demanding missions our nation calls upon us to do.

The call to action in espousing signature behaviors centers on one core theme:


The order of terms is very intentional. To be a part of a team, an individual must agree to be dedicated to the identity of the organization (SAILOR). A collection of Sailors (WE) must have mutual respect and accountability to each other. The team must be committed to the organizational (OUR NAVY) core values, mission and vision.

Without a doubt, our Navy and Marine Corps team is extraordinarily complex, and we have many thousands of missions contributing to the overall success of the Navy. One constant across all of these missions is the necessity for each unit and command’s high performing teams to have a cohesive bond. And that leaders continually develop and hone their teams. Our teams will need to perform periodic self-assessments to ensure toughness, trust and connectedness remain high.  

Leaders at any level in the organization should not assume this is easy stuff. It requires hard work, an in-depth study of team dynamics, focused energy, honest and constructive feedback, and often a set of outside eyes to evaluate effectiveness.  

 I charge every Sailor in our Navy Reserve to download and read this important document. I encourage you ato consider it required reading and a topic for your next professional development. Whether you are the team leader or a leader within the team, assess your own signature behaviors in action.

The stakes are real! All teams, units and commands across our Navy achieving and sustaining peak performance is a decisive edge for our nation in this era of Great Power Competition.