TO BUSINESS addresses how
the author applied the lessons learned during his military career
to leadership situations as a leader in the corporate world.
Joseph Medina is a retired senior U.S. Marine Corps Officer who
commanded at every level. As a General Officer, he was the
Commander for Expeditionary Strike Group THREE, he commanded all
Marine Corps bases and air stations in Asia, and later was the
Commanding General of 3rd MEB and led the effort for several
humanitarian and disaster relief operations in the Asia Pacific
Region. After leaving active duty for the private sector, he
had a successful corporate career leading large, diverse teams
overseeing technical engineering field services worldwide. This
included leading large multi-million dollar projects in India,
China, Thailand, Singapore, Japan, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the
United Arab Emirates, as well as across Europe and the United
States. This book includes several vignettes that illustrate
the lessons learned in the military environment and their
application to the private sector business community to address
potential ethical dilemmas your may face as a business
TRUE ETHICAL LEADER:
Master the art of leadership while staying true to your
Are you looking for a
way to hone your leadership skills?
Do you find ethical
concerns troubling when dealing with challenging
Do you want to build
a healthy, productive work community?
Written by a former
Marine General Officer and successful entrepreneur, this book will
help you achieve your goals and become a modern
You'll learn about
all the essential skills required to lead your company to success
while maintaining a productive relationship with your customers and
The corporate world is a battlefield of its own.
It requires a solid organizational structure with experienced,
transformational leaders. Sometimes you need to act quickly to stay
ahead of your opponent (competitor). Other times, everyone will
look for you in a crisis for calm, rational direction and
Teach and Mentor
"When you’re the bull elephant, teach the
youngins to waltz!"
The Marine Expeditionary Brigade (MEB) Landing
Mindoro Island, Philippines
I was aboard the MEB (Marine Expeditionary Brigade) flagship USS
Tarawa in the South China Sea. The rest of the battalion was
scattered around other amphibious ships. My company alone was on
the flagship separated from the rest of the battalion.
This sizable gathering of ships was ready to commence a large
MEB exercise with the entire Fourth Marine Regiment afloat, which
included Battlefield to Business 145 multiple battalions and a
Marine air group. (An interesting epilogue to this story is that
two decades later, I commanded this same MEB and conducted multiple
exercises and humanitarian disaster relief operations throughout
The exercise kickoff was the amphibious assault. The reason my
company was separated from our battalion and aboard the flagship
instead was because we were designated to conduct a prelanding
heliborne assault to secure two critical areas. They would serve as
“choke points,” preventing any enemy reinforcement. In turn, this
would allow the MEB assault forces to land on the beach safely.
The day before, we rehearsed the exercise. The timing and the
sequence were both perfect—two waves, no issues.
On the day of the actual landing and at the designated time, I
climbed into the helicopter along with my command and
communications team. The engines started, and I could see the other
aircraft lifting off and departing the flight deck, all on
All except one.
On my helicopter, the rotors stopped, and the engine shut down.
My entire company was heading straight to the beach, except the
command team on my helicopter. We were still on the flight deck but
clearly not departing anytime soon. My company was now headed to
the objective, on time but without me and the command team. Not
We had completed our study of the area predominantly through map
studies. We did not have current satellite imagery, and no recon
teams were reporting from that specific area. So, I expected
adjustments based on the actual ground would be required.
Every passing minute was a disadvantage. I knew that this helo
was out and that any possible repairs would take hours. I had to
think fast. 146 Joseph V. Medina All the helos had launched except
the regimental commander’s command and control (C&C) bird.
I started running.
Interrupting the Elephants
I ran up three decks into the Landing Force Operations Center’s
(LFOC) briefing area. The regimental commander, the MEB commanding
general, and several lieutenant colonels and majors were grouped
around the main map display board. I moved rapidly toward them
despite my lower rank (remember that even though I was a company
commander, I was still a first lieutenant).
I still had my combat gear and full camo paint on.
One of the majors stopped me immediately.
“Whoa, now! The CO and CG are in discussion and can’t be
interrupted,” he told me.
“This is urgent, and I will speak to the Colonel now,” I said
loudly as I brushed his hand aside and pushed my way through.
As I walked in, the regimental commander looked my way with
visible annoyance. But when he recognized me, his expression
“What the f* are you doing here and not on your way ashore?” he
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