Training table for the Big Red Car today — looking forward to a nice steak with a 10W40 mushroom sauce. We are talking training today for both the Rangers and the startup.
So, in the continuum of crawl, walk, run — somewhere about the walk to run transformation, the startup should start thinking about training.
If you look at this picture of these sharp Rangers, the difference between them and the rest of the straight leg Army is the quality of their training. They train to their mission.
Couple of tidbits to allow you to understand this picture:
1. The Rangers are wearing Corcoran jump boots because they are paratroopers. We talked about Corcoran Jump Boots right here:
2. The blue rifle with the silver oak leaves on their left chest above their ribbons is the CIB (combat infantryman’s badge) signifying the recipient has been in infantry combat with America’s enemies.
3. The orange arc with the word “RANGER” on it means they graduated from the US Army’s Ranger School at Fort Benning, the toughest training the Army has to offer.
4. The colored ribbons are “been there badges” — campaign ribbons — and awards for valor, heroism.
5. The green flashes on the epaulets of some of the men mean they are combat leaders — squad leaders, platoon sergeants, platoon leaders, and the Captain in front is likely a company commander. Being a Ranger company commander is akin to being a Chinese feudal war lord.
To become a Ranger these men had to graduate basic training, graduate advanced individual training (infantry), serve with an infantry unit to learn their trade, graduate Airborne School (death from the skies), and graduate Ranger School (50% attrition rate). Only then did they get to apply for and serve with the Ranger Regiment. The black and gold patch on their left shoulders is that of the 75th Ranger Regiment.
What led them to the 75th Ranger Regiment? TRAINING and performance.
When they got to the Ranger Regiment, they underwent more and more training as the Rangers constantly trained to their missions. Constantly.
Training in your company
In your company, dear startup CEO, you can attain the same level of expertise by utilizing the same methodology — an organized, documented training program.
The Rangers train to their mission — such as parachuting into enemy territory, humping 20 miles to their objective, killing everybody there, and making it back to friendly lines. Rangers are prepared to fight behind enemy lines, win, and come home.
What is the process that you should be training to in your company? Identify the process — sales, production, marketing, whatever it is — and train for success in that process.
The first step is to identify and document the process. Once you do that, develop a training program to support excellence.
The difference between the Rangers and the rest of the straight leg Army is TRAINING.
The impediment to your company being a category killer may also be TRAINING.
What are we supposed to do, Big Red Car?
Dear reader, you are supposed to first THINK about training then decide whether your company might benefit from some training.
Then, you should identify which processes might be able to be “trained to.”
Then, you should sketch out a training program for one of the processes and take a long nap. You can, alternatively, float in a pool for a couple of hours.
Then, you should brainstorm it with the department which is going to undertake the training.
Then, you should actually do the training and get some feedback.
Then, you should perfect the program and make it part of your company’s ecosystem.
Then, you should conduct spaced repetition training — do it at a regular interval.
This is an experiment. You like experiments. You are good at experiments. Training will advance the cause, y’all.
Training is the first step on the pathway to mastery. Think about that.
You’ll wake up one day and say, “Hell, my company reminds me of those badass Rangers. Cause when you train, you get real good at stuff.”