Sean Heritage

Connecting The Dots

Premortems, Hindsight & Regret

When it comes to making important decisions, I have grown to see great value in writing a premortem. The below excerpt comes courtesy of the Harvard Business Review: “A premortem is the hypothetical opposite of a postmortem. A postmortem in a… Continue Reading →

I Wanna Rock!

I recently stumbled across the music video for Twisted Sister’s song, “I Wanna Rock”. It had been quite some time since I had seen it and watching the preamble to the song where the teacher asks one of the students,… Continue Reading →

Choices and Decisions

I enjoy eating at In-N-Out Burger. The service is efficient, the food is high quality, and the menu is simple. When I eat there, it’s not difficult for me to choose what I want to eat – it’s usually a… Continue Reading →

Interim Leadership

It’s that day. It’s the end of my tenure as the Interim Leader of the team to which I am currently assigned. It’s been 201 days and for the first time in my career, I am more than good with… Continue Reading →

Intent to Scratch

I remember the first time my son participated in a swim meet that had preliminaries and finals. It was his first year swimming and the meet was held at the US Naval Academy. During preliminaries he tied for second alternate… Continue Reading →

Self-Approval

As life goes on, I find that I continue to place an increased emphasis on self-satisfaction than I do on earning the approval of others. I started life completely on the other end of the spectrum and as I spend… Continue Reading →

Parting Clouds

It is often said that we don’t appreciate what we have until it’s gone. I am certain that we have all personally experienced that feeling at one point or another in our life. I know that I have on more… Continue Reading →

Progress: More Than What You See

Last Friday, we held our monthly All Hands event. Given the distributed and constant focus on mission execution nature of our team, we commit to coming together once a month to communicate priorities, provide updates on progress, introduce new members… Continue Reading →

Glaciers, Fjords, and Teambuilding

Many of us are surrounded by dichotomies and some of us live in more than one, I find myself a uniformed military officer living in Silicon Valley – two very different cultures (at least on the surface). I also find… Continue Reading →

Last(ing) Impressions

It is said that we never get a second chance to make a first impression. Though I agree that first impressions are vitally important to the framing of a relationship, establishing rapport, and setting the tone for an experience, it’s… Continue Reading →

Psychic Income

I continue to live in a world where monetary income is predicated by a combination of one’s rank and longevity. Some might say that contributions, expertise, and commitment to the team inform one’s rank and length of service over time and… Continue Reading →

A Culture of Understanding

One of the things I find most challenging as leader of teams is developing a culture of understanding. Most of the people with whom I have served are wired to execute. They like to get things done. Some slow down… Continue Reading →

Hard Right Rudder

I sincerely appreciate mentors who have and continue to invest in me. Even more than that, I appreciate the opportunity to invest in protégés. As I continue to provide counsel to others, I have ceased being surprised when a protégé… Continue Reading →

A Gallon of Play

Three days ago, I entered the 27th year of this amazing Navy journey (31st if we were to consider my time at the US Naval Academy). That milestone, coupled with the fact that I am seeing my Shipmates retire at… Continue Reading →

Company We Keep

It is said that we are the company we keep. Recent events have given me the opportunity to truly evaluate who that makes me. My parents made the company my brother and I would keep a priority of theirs from… Continue Reading →

Documenting Reality

It is said that perception is reality. I believe it is more accurate to say that my perception is my reality, your perception is your reality, and when it comes down to it…perceptions matter more than reality. Unless, of course,… Continue Reading →

Too Busy for Me

The last few months at work have been a whirlwind of activity. Some of the activity has generated progress, much of the activity is setting the conditions for future progress, and all of the activity continues to prove to be… Continue Reading →

It’s Not About the Board

Two weeks ago, we took our first real family adventure since moving to California last August. I am not proud of the fact that it took us eight months to make it happen. Between my son’s school and commitment to… Continue Reading →

Defining Ourselves

Last month, I shared a post about an experiment that I had undertaken to crowdsource the development of the Defense Innovation Unit Experimental Strategic Guidance. I was pleased, though not surprised by the final product. What did surprise me, however,… Continue Reading →

Big Rocks, Little Rocks, and Broken Windows

Odds are that if you are reading this, you are familiar with the term Big Rocks. If you are not, I recommend you watch this video from Stephen Covey. Dr. Covey does a great job of reminding us that it’s important to… Continue Reading →

Crowdsourcing Strategy

There are many definitions of strategy. Having served in the military for 25 years and counting, I have seen strategy take many shapes. Of late, I have read the National Security Strategy and the National Defense Strategy. There is a… Continue Reading →

Bread Sunday

Our military housing community enjoys a tradition that is called Bread Sunday. Each week the same gracious volunteer gets up early Sunday morning and makes her way to a local supermarket chain where she picks up baked goods donated for… Continue Reading →

It’s Not an Act

Very few things in life go according to the script we wrote. Sometimes a reality that deviates from a plan is extremely disappointing and sometimes lady luck presents a reality that is far more amazing than any plan we could have… Continue Reading →

Process

Many a coach is known to have said, “Trust the Process.” The utterance of such a phrase is heard with greater frequency when the outcomes are not favorable. That is to say, a team can be putting forth an optimal effort,… Continue Reading →

Defaulting to Dissent

The best teams I have been on have been teams where dissent was invited, opportunities to dissent were created, and gratitude was expressed to those who cared enough to dissent. To dissent is to “hold or express opinions that are at… Continue Reading →

(It’s The) Work That Matters

I’ve had many jobs over the course of my career. I may not have enjoyed them all, but I am glad to have had the opportunity to execute the responsibilities associated with each. Each and every job made me feel… Continue Reading →

Can’t Do Lists

Our military was founded on a “Can Do” spirit. Heck, our Nation was founded on the same. We proudly find ways to do more with less and we feel a bit lesser when we fall short. At the same time,… Continue Reading →

The Worrier

Last week, my wife and I took advantage of the free time created by a lack swim practice since our son was at the Olympic Training Center with his teammates. Not having the tether that is daily trips to and… Continue Reading →

Thanks for the Lessons…

I am far from fanatical about Christmas and I have never been overly excited about ringing in the New Year at the strike of midnight. But, I do thoroughly enjoy the tradition of winding down and reconnecting with family and… Continue Reading →

Valued and Dispensable

I have found that the best leaders with whom I serve find a way to make themselves simultaneously valued and dispensable. A dichotomy indeed. The people and things we value most are not what we think of as easily replaceable… Continue Reading →

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