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Mike Abrashoff

Mike Abrashoff was the most-junior officer in the Pacific Fleet when he took command of the near-worst performing ship. Twelve months later, the USS Benfold was the best ship in the entire Navy – using the same crew. The story of that stunning transformation has lessons for every organisation: leadership matters – and culture is everything.


About Mike Abrashoff

At the age of 36, Mike Abrashoff was selected to become commander of USS Benfold. At the time he was the most junior commanding officer in the Pacific Fleet. The challenges aboard this underachieving destroyer were staggering, with extremely low morale and the highest turnover rate in the navy.

His solution was a system of beliefs that he called the Leadership Roadmap: a process of re-imagining leadership and replacing command and control with commitment and cohesion. By engaging the hearts, minds, and loyalties of his sailors, he achieved a level of operational success never before seen in the navy. Through conviction and humility, Mike engaged his young crew through empowerment. He believed “the most important thing that a captain can do is to see the ship through the eyes of the crew.”

Since leaving the navy, Mike has founded the Aegis Performance Group and has worked with over 1,200 organisations – from non-profits to fortune ten companies – instilling leadership initiatives at every level. By teaching the value of empowering every individual to share the responsibility of achieving excellence, he has affected phenomenal change in some of the most unexpected places.

As well as being a renowned speaker on the circuit, Mike is a reputable author. He has written four books – his first, It’s Your Ship, has sold over 1.4 million copies. His Leadership Roadmap offers clear, battle-tested, and actionable steps.

Mike shows people at every level of an organisation how to engage and take incremental steps toward change that can make a dramatic difference at work. Mike is clear, “I didn’t turn the ship around – my crew did that.  What I did was to create an environment where they felt safe, empowered and supported. When you do that, anything is possible.”

To book Keynote Speaker Mike Abrashoff, contact The Speakers Agency on +44(0)1332 810481 or email

Speech Topics

Mike’s speech topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Leading Organisational Change
  • Leading Hybrid/Virtual Organisations
  • Innovation
  • Building Accountable Teams
  • Successful Diversity Initiatives
  • Creating a Culture of Trust
  • Execution
  • Authentic Leadership
  • Overcoming Obstacles
  • Attracting & Retaining Talent
  • Achieving Breakthrough Performance
  • Increasing Employee Engagement
  • Safety
  • Coaching & Mentoring

Here you can find links to books by Mike Abrashoff. For bulk book orders for your event please speak with a member of the team.

it's our ship mike abrahsoffit's your ship by keynote speaker Mike Abrashoff


Booking Information



"Thank YOU so much Mike! As I walked with a guest to the next session, he told me that the conference was already more than worth it because of the value he got from your session! Your session was an inspiring start to the day and I appreciated your efforts to target it to the theme of our conference."


"Mike was fantastic!! Another successful event. We appreciate him so very much as he really makes an impact with our teams."

FlightSafety International

"Mike Abrashoff’s address to our group in Denver was spot-on. It was quite evident that he had worked to include information regarding our company, our markets and in particular, our Project Managers Forum objectives and attendee backgrounds into the content of his presentation. Several people commented to me that they found his story inspiring and relevant. As I mentioned earlier, this was the third time I heard Mike tell his story. It seems that each time I pull something more from the information he shares."


"Captain Abrashoff delivered a powerful message to our team at our leadership conference. His leadership lessons are timeless and a call to action for any organization with a desire to be great company and the Employer of Choice. I highly recommend Captain Mike."

Chief Executive Officer, TurnPoint Services

"Mike Abrashoff's remarkable story regarding the transformation of USS Benfold was extremely well received and appreciated by our event participants, who found great inspiration and practicality in his remarks. These are challenging times for many and his perspective on leadership and leading during difficult times is timely as well as thought-provoking."

California Bankers Association

"Your talk was spot on. Your message resonated with the audience and their comments were lighting up the app!! Thank you for focusing in on the retention theme as it is top of mind for all the leaders in the room. Now I know why Fidelity has invited you to speak so many times!"

Fidelity Investments

"It was a pleasure working with you – and it’s always the best news when our audience responds so well to a speaker. Your average score over 9 meetings was 4.9 out of 5.0 – wow!"


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