Jocko Willink and Mike Sarraille – Helping Veterans Transition into the Private Sector

Jocko Willink – – and Mike Sarraille – – served together as Navy SEALs and now work together at Echelon Front – – a company Jocko cofounded.

We met up to talk about a new initiative they’ve set up called Overwatch. Overwatch is a talent acquisition firm that matches employers with veterans from special operations forces and combat aviation. You can learn more about Overwatch at

They’re also hosting an event called the Muster in San Francisco on October 17th and 18th. You can sign up at

If you’d like to hear more from Mike and Jocko, check out Jocko Podcast Episode 134 –

The YC podcast is hosted by Craig Cannon –

We’re accepting applications from startups for the Winter 2019 funding cycle. Apply here:


00:17 – Intros

4:20 – Mike and Jocko on how they transitioned out

8:50 – How the military prepares people for the private sector

13:00 – What is Overwatch?

22:45 – Preconceptions about veterans

27:37 – Advice for companies looking to hire veterans

30:16 – Jocko’s next book, The Dichotomy of Leadership –

33:11 – Mike and Jocko’s working relationship

44:33 – How to set up your team so everyone can contribute

54:15 – What Mike and Jocko are trying to improve about themselves

57:58 – Alex Badalyan asks – What are some military tactics startups could adopt to increase team effectiveness and throughput?

1:00:00 – Allen asks – From your experience as a SEAL and in the business world, do two or more co-founders/leaders have a higher success rate? What are your thoughts on a solo leader/founder with a strong team and culture?

1:06:09 – Armando Neves asks – I liked Jocko’s episode on strategy and the way of the Samurai (The Book of Five Rings), how much of the warrior mindset is he implementing on a day to day basis?

1:10:30 – Ryan Carl Mercer asks – Favorite MRE and thank you for your service sir.

1:14:12 – Spencer Clark asks – Is culture more decided by micro or macro policies & interactions?

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