Marc Koehler

military speaker

Marc Koehler

military speaker


Former Navy Nuclear Submarine Officer, Elite Leadership Expert, Best-Selling Leadership Author, 35+ Years Leading in Disruptive Environments

Speech Topics Include:

  • Safety From the Silent Depths: Navigating the Seas of Safety in High-Stakes Environments
  • The Elite Leader: The Principles to Develop You and Your Team to the Highest Level of Leadership
  • Fast Attack Leadership: The 5 Step Framework US Nuclear Submarine Officers Use To Create World-Class Teams
  • Lead With Purpose: The 3-Step Process to Communicating and Connecting Your Employees to Your Company’s Inspiring Story and Mission

Marc Koehler, a former U.S. Navy Nuclear Submarine Officer and turnaround CEO, is a rare blend of expertise, engagement, and 35 years of battle-tested, proven experience in elite leadership, evangelizing that what the world needs is not more management systems — it needs more leadership.

Mar Koehler captivates audiences with his approachable nature that is sprinkled with side-stitching humor while delivering battle-tested, hard-earned leadership knowledge, inevitably transforming the heart and mind of every listener. Marc draws the audience in by melding story-telling from his personal experience, both under the surface of the ocean with declassified military stories, and on land in the corporate turnaround setting, case studies, and cutting-edge researched-backed data into every keynote he gives.

He is prepared to shift the mindset of both the established business leader in addition to all other audience members to the understanding that regardless of their title or role, every team member should be viewed as a leader in their organization. Even more importantly, he communicates the steps to accomplish this transformation. Through Fast Attack Leadership and other keynotes, Marc presents the simple frameworks and consistent, daily development needed for every team member to step up, and step in, ready to be called upon.

As  the founder of the leadership development and research firm, Lead With Purpose, where Marc took the over $1M in training the Navy poured into him and distilled it into simple concepts and skills to create leaders at every level of an organization — achieving both collective readiness and personal readiness. Over 51,000 leaders have been developed through Lead With Purpose’s SHRM-accredited organizational leadership consulting, coaching, courses, and simple systems

Marc’s experience in both the nuclear submariner service, including receiving two Battle E’s over the course of his career, as well as the business world has led him to become one of the foremost experts on Elite Leadership – a needed, relevant, and achievable approach to leadership for this new, disruptive world.

He is the best-selling author of Leading With Purpose, a hands-on guide to developing engaged, empowered, and encouraged employees. He is also the host of the “Surfacing Leaders” podcast, where he tells the stories of leaders in unlikely places and the human spirit that drives us all.

Safety From the Silent Depths: Navigating the Seas of Safety in High-Stakes Environments

In Safety From the Silent Depths, Marc Koehler, former U.S. Navy Nuclear Submarine Officer and esteemed elite leadership expert, draws from a wealth of experiences that span from the depths of the ocean to the helm of Fortune 200 companies. Having spent 300 days per year under the ocean’s surface as the SUBSAFE Quality Assurance & Safety Officer, Marc understands the critical importance of safety, readiness, and swift decision-making in life-threatening situations where every moment counts. Through his journey, he has uncovered the essence of safety, transforming it from a mere organizational practice into a way of life.

In this gripping keynote, Marc delves into the core principles that, among other accomplishments, earned his submarine two coveted Battle E awards during his tenure in the U.S. Navy submarine force and reduced OSHA Safety incidents 34% for a Fortune 200 Aerospace and Automotive Manufacturer. He explores his unique framework, emphasizing the power of leading with purpose before process. Marc reveals the transformative impact of engaging and connecting every team member, addressing the three fundamental human needs that drive us all. With a focus on purpose­ driven leadership, Marc’s real-world, declassified stories, and research-backed insights extend beyond mere compliance, offering a profound perspective on how safety can become ingrained in the fabric of an organization and its people.


The Elite Leader: The Principles to Develop You and Your Team to the Highest Level of Leadership

A transformative journey into the heart of leadership excellence, Marc Koehler’s The Elite Leader keynote offers a roadmap for personal and organizational transformation, setting you and your team on the path to the Highest Level of Leadership. Marc guides the audience through the evolution of Elite Leadership, from its origins in the military to its modern-day significance in the workplace. Marc unveils why Elite Leadership was imperative for military survival and why the ever-changing work environment now demands its application. You’ll gain insights into transforming your leadership mindset and developing the skills needed to thrive amidst disruptions. Marc’s keynote empowers you to champion a culture of shared leadership, where every team member becomes an Elite Leader, prepared to tackle challenges head-on. Equip yourself with actionable strategies to instill readiness, cultivate situational awareness, and foster critical thinking within your organization. Marc’s engaging narrative draws from real-world experiences and offers practical tools to effect meaningful cultural change.


Fast Attack Leadership: The 5 Step Framework US Nuclear Submarine Officers Use To Create World-Class Teams

In the high-stakes world of submarine warfare, leadership is not a luxury; it’s a matter of life and death. Imagine standing on a nuclear submarine’s control deck, making split-second decisions that impact the lives of 110 crew members and the fate of a $1 billion vessel. Marc Koehler unveils the extraordinary parallels between submarine command and effective business leadership he found as both a U.S. Nuclear Submarine officer and a turnaround CEO. As the world grapples with unprecedented challenges, Marc’s insights illuminate the core issues plaguing modern leadership and presents the powerful solution — Fast Attack Leadership: The 5-Step Framework US Nuclear Submarine Officers Use To Create World-Class Teams. Discover how this proven methodology can revolutionize your leadership approach and drive your teams towards 9x productivity and 3x higher retention. Cutting-edge leadership data and case studies from Marc’s leadership development and research firm Lead With Purpose, combined with the simple Fast Attack framework will empower you to retool, upskill, and rejuvenate your leadership approach and team. As the next wave of change looms, you’ll be equipped with the tools to steer through challenges with confidence and emerge stronger than ever before.


Lead With Purpose: The 3-Step Process to Communicating and Connecting Your Employees to Your Company’s Inspiring Story and Mission

Research is showing us that 95% of employees don’t how what they do connects to making a difference in the world, eroding employee engagement, productivity, and retention. In Marc Koehler’s keynote Lead With Purpose, he presents The 3-Step Process to Communicating and Connecting Employees to Your Company’s Inspiring Story. He shares his transition from the U.S. Navy to the corporate world, where he learned the intricacies of big business tools and strategies. However, his early experiences as an interim CEO revealed a startling truth: despite having complex management systems, most employees lacked a genuine connection to their company’s mission and purpose. This realization ignited Marc’s pursuit of a new approach that would create engaged, empowered, and encouraged teams: an E3 Culture powered by purpose. By using images, code words, and a clear narrative derived from the Silent Service, leaders can empower their teams to understand not only their individual roles but also their collective impact on the company’s long-term success. Consider this the new Start With Why for this generation.

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