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Do you have what it takes to succeed in any situation? According to a retired commander who ran training for Navy SEALs, true optimal performance goes beyond just skill. It’s all about THE ATTRIBUTES.
“Diviney’s incredible book explains why some people thrive—even when things get hard.”—Charles Duhigg, New York Times bestselling author of The Power of Habit
During his twenty years as a Navy officer and SEAL, Rich Diviney was intimately involved in a specialized SEAL selection process, which whittled a group of hundreds of extraordinary candidates down to a handful of the most elite performers. Diviney was often surprised by which candidates washed out and which succeeded. Some could have all the right skills and still fail, while others he might have initially dismissed would prove to be top performers. The seemingly objective criteria weren’t telling him what he most needed to know: Who would succeed in one of the world’s toughest military assignments?
It is similarly hard to predict success in the real world.
It happens often enough that underdog students accomplish exceptional achievements while highly skilled, motivated employees fail to meet expectations. Dark-horse companies pull away from the pack while dream teams flush with talent and capital go under. In working with and selecting top special operators for decades, Diviney saw that beneath obvious skills are hidden drivers of performance, surprising core attributes—including cunning, adaptability, courage, even narcissism—that determine how resilient or perseverant we are, how situationally aware and how conscientious. These attributes explain how we perform as individuals and as part of a team. The same methodology that Diviney used in the military can be applied by anyone in their personal and professional lives, and understanding these attributes can allow readers and their teams to perform optimally, at any time, in any situation.
Diviney defines the core attributes in fresh and practical ways and shares stories from the military, business, sports, relationships, and even parenting to show how understanding your own attributes and those of the people around you can create optimal performance in all areas of your life.
About the Author
Rich Diviney is a retired Navy SEAL commander. In a career spanning more than twenty years, he completed more than thirteen overseas deployments—eleven of which were to Iraq and Afghanistan. As the officer in charge of training for a specialized command, Diviney spearheaded the creation of a directorate that fused physical, mental, and emotional disciplines. He led his small team to create the first-ever “Mind Gym” that helped special operators train their brains to perform faster, longer, and better in all environments—especially high-stress ones. Since his retirement in early 2017, Diviney has worked as a speaker, facilitator, and consultant with the Chapman & Co. Leadership Institute and Simon Sinek Inc. He’s taught leadership and optimal performance to more than five thousand business, athletic, and military leaders from organizations such as American Airlines, Meijer Inc., the San Francisco 49ers, Pegasystems, Zoom, and Deloitte.
“So much of what I know about trust I learned from Rich Diviney. I’m so glad he wrote The Attributes. It’s the go-to reference for anyone looking to improve the quality of trust and performance across their team.”—Simon Sinek, optimist and New York Times bestselling author of Start with Why and The Infinite Game
“If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that things can go sideways at any moment. Diviney’s incredible book, The Attributes, explains why some people thrive—even when things get hard. It’s about where grit, mental agility, drive, and leadership come from. Mastering skills on its own doesn’t deliver success. Understanding how to cultivate your attributes is the key.”—Charles Duhigg, New York Times bestselling author of The Power of Habit
“The Attributes is terrific. Diviney has brought world-class experience and deep intelligence to one of the least understood yet crucially important aspects of human performance. If you call yourself a ‘leader,’ or if you want to call yourself a ‘leader,’ this book is a must read!”—Steven Kotler, New York Times bestselling author and Executive Director of the Flow Research Collective
“What is greatness made of? How do you grow into the best version of yourself? Many have explored these questions, and none have succeeded in answering them as brilliantly as Diviney in this terrific, perspective-shifting book. The Attributes provides a powerful new model for achieving high performance—and, even better, a tool kit for reflection, assessment, and continual improvement. If you care about getting better, you need to buy this book.”—Daniel Coyle, New York Times bestselling author of The Culture Code