My Thoughts About ‘Former USMC’ Marketing And Corporate BS

“A Marine explains how to lead when you’re not the boss.”

During my time I’ve seen the rise of ‘celebrity’ Navy SEALS, I.E., billy badasses who get off active duty, write books about their experiences, get movie or product endorsements, and generally milk their prior military service to expand their business interests.

Well, former Marines are no different, and in the last 10 years there’s been no shortage of autobiographies, and/or management books that capitalize on the author’s prior military service. Nothing inherently illegal about that, but unfortunately those who have experienced the worst of the Corps would question how valuable of a real world business ‘training’ experience it REALLY IS!

From my last assignment on active duty working with the finances and supply of a Marine Aircraft Group, I can positively attest to the fact that it was NOT EVEN A REMOTELY ORGANIZED OR EFFICENT BUSINESS MODEL! If it was a civilian airline, it wouldn’t stay in business for very long!

But if you get out and are seeking a new career as the next motivational speaker/ modern day Stephen Covey management guru, then I guess you can capitalize on the Corps emphasis on leadership and management.

AS LONG AS YOU DON’T DARE CRITICISE THE MILITARY, you can string together enough open ended human concepts (mixed in with historical philosophical quotes) to put together a book deal, or sell your superficial advice for a corporate consultancy contract ($$$$).

The Marine Corps has a brand logo, a corporate slogan, and a marketing strategy. It puts a huge amount of effort into marketing (propaganda), and it has a vested interest in maintaining an image to secure resources and funding. There’s also no shortage of civilian salesman who play on the ‘former Marine’ status.

Robert T. Kiyosaki– the ultimate hypocrite.

But the Corps NOT a place to learn how to run a business- especially a business or corporate model that must deliver ON TIME at low cost, generate profit, and maximize human capital.

My two cents worth- civilian corporations kiss the ass of the military because the military excels at indoctrinating people into low paid wage slaves- with emphasis on long (uncompensated) hours, blind obedience, low tolerance of individual thought or creativity, and severe penalties for any form of dissent. It really wants a CHEAP, EASILY EXPLOITABLE WORKFORCE.
All the rest is just window dressing BS.

Video: How to lead when you’re not the boss. 

Submitted by: Oldr

  • oldr

    Thanks for posting this. I’d never even heard of Angie Morgan before I came across this video on You tube the other day, but it seemed pretty obvious what she was trying to exploit to sell her books, and her ‘leadership development firm’. You live long enough, you see a lot of leadership, management, and motivational gurus come and go, each selling their own different “systems’. I also note that nowadays its popular to showcase females to sell these things- its fits with the image corporate America wants to project , and if you throw in some military ass kissing that always helps the marketing.
    Admittedly, I haven’t read the book she was trying to sell, but have read enough books of that genre back in the 80s and 90s to realize they all start saying the same thing eventually. Her main selling point is to 21st century MBA corporate women, since obviously they have $$$ to waste on outside consultants who’ll say things to make them feel better about themselves!
    Far be it for me to criticize this person who obviously knows how to repackage the same old shit, but the video reminded me so much of the irritating philosophical debates newly minted college educated Lieutenants used to have at TBS!. She doesn’t mention what she actually DID in the Marine Corps, but its highly unlikely she was in charge of say, a large number of ground side Marines. Her corporate philosophy wouldn’t work so well with grunts!
    Her selling points are obviously a reflection of her MBA education. Does OCS and TBS really prepare Officers to lead in a corporate or business environment (if they get out)? My belief is that it is purely military and government department orientated- not one for a private business.
    But with Leadership and Management, you can BS your way through it. Even if you suck at it, the rank on your shoulder will facilitate obedience regardless.
    I can rant more about corporate ‘motivational speakers’ who were former military, and how irritating its was to be forced to listen to them when I had already had too much work to do at my position,
    Here’s my tip for civilian managers ( i’ll even write this for free). Quit forcing people to go to these things if they are already busy, and FUCK OFF and leave us alone to get some work accomplished!

  • As a guy who’s written about his time in the Corps, I can certainly fall near (if not in) this category. Sure, I compared being sent to Iraq with being STEALTHED by President Bush and given AIDS, but the cover art is still a waving flag beset by an EGA, so I’ll try not to break my arm patting myself on the back here.

    Angie Morgan: She was a Public Affairs officer for 8 years, so she definitely knows about branding and incorporating the marines into the message.

    Robert Kiyosaki: The truth about Kiyosaki’s businesses is disappointing, but I’ll give him credit for not wearing the USMC like a face-tattoo, and he’s yet to write something called “The 14 Leadership Traits: How Marines Can Win the Global Business War” with an introduction by J.J Did Tie Buckle. [now that could be a hilarious EBook]

    1 more thing on my own bullshit: About 18 months ago I was in grad school applying for a scholarship (my GI Bill ran out) that asked for an essay on leadership. I used the Corps, referencing “know yourself and seek self-improvement.” I got $5,000, and didn’t have to take out a student loan.

    • Wavenstein

      Don’t feel bad. The Corps used you so you use them. Nothing wrong with that

    • Idris

      Dam. nice 5,000 I wouldn’t apologize neither. oh well.

    • oldr

      Angie Morgan- a Public Affairs Officer for 8 years.
      Now that explains a lot! The Corps always wants ‘Poster Child’ females to sell their bullshit, and a female Lieutenant always has the rank on the shoulder to get what she wants- or go crying to a male Officer (whose probably trying to get into her pants) when things don’t go her way! Maybe she got on her knees for the right General.
      And how much of the Corps ‘dirty work’ do Public Affairs Officers really do? Its always the ones who had easy MOS’s in the Corps that sprout this OHH RAH BS far more than say- Infantry. Also, I bet it was a far better MOS in terms of promotion- otherwise she wouldn’t have hung around for 8 years. The Corps probably made sure that females were promoted a lot quicker to project the image of being ‘female friendly’.
      Is her advice in the video bad? No, but I could tell upon watching it it had NOTHING to do with how Marine Corps leadership REALLY WORKS, and even in civilian companies you see some incredibly SELF SERVING people who only give a damn about their own interests.
      Bottom line- I guess there will be companies who buy into her image and pay for her repackaged and branded BS. Maybe I’ll borrow her book from the library one day, but I sure as hell wouldn’t pay money for her advice!

  • Charles A. McCall

    With all due respect to the author of this post, there is no such thing as a “former Marine, or an “ex-Marine”.

    • freeatlastfreeatlast

      “The Marine Corps has a brand logo, a corporate slogan, and a marketing
      strategy. It puts a huge amount of effort into marketing (propaganda),
      and it has a vested interest in maintaining an image to secure resources
      and funding.”

      https://img.memesuper.com/a1b00190ab488314394af95a84e3c552_-of-unintentional-irony-irony-meme_603-452.jpeg

    • Master LCpl

      I would have to disagree. Once a marine, once is enough.

      • Charles A. McCall

        Once a Marine, always a Marine.
        Whether you like it or not.
        At least you can say you’re not actually in the Marines anymore, but I still believe no matter how negative anyone’s experience was in the Marine Corps, they will still be Marines.

        • Master LCpl

          You are entitled to your opinion. I am sticking with mine.

          • Charles A. McCall

            We will have to agree to disagree.

          • Charles A. McCall

            I would not expect anything less from you and I am not trying to persuade you to change your opinion of the Marines at all.
            My experiences in the Marine Corps also were less than pleasant, and just like any other similar organization, the USMC is not perfection personified of any military institution.
            Perfection in this world is unattainable, as is with anything.
            Nothing is without some gross deficiencies and there is always room for improvement and a constant willingness to gain operational excellence, but unfortunately ours is not a perfect world and the Marine Corps is no exception.

        • JP

          i always liked that no matter how little someone is going to accomplish in life they can never have it taken from them that they’re a marine. had a guy in my platoon who was not going to have a good life after he got out. he wasn’t educated, had no foundation of decent upbringing, smoked like a chimney, etc. etc. etc.

          but he’s a marine. at least he has that.

          i mean this. not being a dick.

          • Charles A. McCall

            Absolutely correct JP.

            Sent from my T-Mobile 4G LTE Device
            ——– Original message ——–From: Disqus Date: 5/12/17 17:13 (GMT-05:00) To: mccallusmc@gmail.com Subject: Re: Comment on My Thoughts About ‘ Former USMC’ Marketing And Corporate BS
            “i always liked that no matter how little someone is going to accomplish in life they can never have it taken from them that they’re a marine. had a guy in my platoon who was not going to have a good life after he got out. he wasn’t educated, had no foundation of decent upbringing, smoked like a chimney, etc. etc. etc.
            but he’s a marine. at least he has that.

            i mean this. not being a dick.”

            Settings

            A new comment was posted on iHateTheUSMC.com

            JP (Guest):

            i always liked that no matter how little someone is going to accomplish in life they can never have it taken from them that they’re a marine. had a guy in my platoon who was not going to have a good life after he got out. he wasn’t educated, had no foundation of decent upbringing, smoked like a chimney, etc. etc. etc.but he’s a marine. at least he has that.i mean this. not being a dick.

            5:13 p.m., Friday May 12

            |

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            Reply

            JP’s comment is in reply to

            Charles A. McCall:

            Once a Marine, always a Marine.
            Whether you like it or not.
            At least you can say you’re not actually in the Marines anymore … Read more

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          • Charles A. McCall

            Great story!
            Thanks for sharing.

        • Whether I like it or not, I still ID as a marine. I had one day (my 30th birthday) where I worked at a farm stacking split wood from 7-3, then my night job at the IRS from 4:30-1AM. When I got home I had to write an 8-page paper.

          I was dragging pretty hard, but I downed two Starbucks Double Shots and said, “come on, marine, get your shit together.”

          I didn’t mean to; it’s just how my internal dialogue went.

          • Charles A. McCall

            It definitely is interesting how that works, Chris.
            I left the Marine Corps 24 years ago.
            I still identify myself as a Marine forever regardless of my positive and negative experiences in the Marines.
            Any Marine can hate the Corps as much as they want to, but the title still remains.
            I still possess the Marine Corps experience, training, characteristics, and persona of the Corps either consciously or otherwise.
            The ability to push through the rough times and survive.
            I absolutely contribute that to the training and the entire Marine Corps quasi-religious fanaticism to persevere over any challenges that I must face.
            I really can’t help it.
            It’s who I am.

    • Oldr

      I am the one who authored this post. I earned the title ‘Marine’ TWICE- at MCRD San Diego in 1992 and OCS Quantico in 199*. Have the paperwork to prove it.
      In the end, my unit (and HQMC) tried to stick a knife in my back-which failed because they couldn’t prove wrongdoing- we were getting bogged down in an occupation in Iraq which I thought was a WASTE OF TIME AND MONEY, and above all else I VALUED MY INDIVIDUAL FREEDOM AND LIBERTY FAR MORE THAN I VALUED BEING A MARINE. Call me a shit bag if you want- I’ve never regretted getting out and exploring the world without having the Corps tell me what to do 24/7!
      I’ve heard that cliché many a time- some former Marines have used it to try and sell me cars, unnecessary car maintenance, – any type of product or service in order to gain ‘rapport’ with their customer!
      Angie Morgan earned the ‘title’, but I seriously doubt she experienced the worst of what say, the Iraqi occupation could throw at a Infantry platoon! Granted, I wasn’t in the grunts either in Iraq, but I’m not the one writing corporate books and trying to use the title ‘Marine’ to SELL THEM!
      Bottom line for me- I buy something because I NEED IT, not because the salesman was in the same branch I was! And I’m always wary of those who are extreme motards who yell OHH RAH in their old age. Give me a quiet, competent, level headed professional any day!
      Lastly, I respect those who did time in the Corps, wear the Eagle Globe and anchor close to their heart, but I have met many people who never joined the Corps AT ALL and had more respectable and HARDCORE qualities than some I saw on active duty!
      For example, I was lucky to travel to the Southern Australia and saw Aboriginals who could survive extreme heat, live off grubs, walk for miles in desert heat, fish using what they could find in the bush- all that shit you see on National Geographic! Throw Angie Morgan, or an average Marine grunt into that environment (even me!) and we’d be lucky to survive!
      So forgive me if I don’t divide the entire world into ‘Marines’ and non Marines!! Because the world is a far bigger place than the Marine Corps.
      Respectfully,
      Oldr

    • Master LCpl

      Oldr and I seem to be of the same mindset and I’ll say it again, once a marine, once is enough.

      • Charles A. McCall

        No problem at all.
        I respect your opinion(s).
        I disagree but that is inconsequential.
        Can we agree to disagree?