Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Mike Stevens visited Berga Naval base, homeport of the 4th Naval Warfare Flotilla, to discuss the importance of enlisted leadership development Aug. 18.
“Leadership development has been, is, and continues to be my number one priority,” said Stevens. “I truly believe that no organization can rise above the quality of its leaders.
Stevens began his day with the Swedish Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Rear Adm. Jan Thornqvist. They shared ideas, lessons learned, and advice about what has been successful when it comes to military leadership training.
“What I recognize is how the Swedish navy prioritizes and places great value on leadership development,” said Stevens.
This was Stevens’ first visit to the area and was unique, as the Swedish navy does not have a Senior Enlisted Leader. The Swedish navy is redesigning their rank structure, and is looking for ways to improve the development of their leaders.
“It’s great to speak with MCPON and compare our new rank system with someone who has trained Chiefs for many years,” said Thornqvist.
He also talked about the importance of diversity among the ranks.
“Leadership should be affected by our rich diversity of different backgrounds, races, and knowledge within the organization,” said Thornqvist.
Following the office call, MCPON toured the base facilities, including a visit to the marine regiment, the hovercraft squadron and also visited with Sailors aboard one of the Swedish navy’s newest stealth ships, the corvette class ship HSwMS Visby (K31).
Stevens took note of the commonality between both organizations.
“What you come to appreciate, no matter what country you come from is that Sailors are Sailors, and we will continue to train our reliefs with good, solid leadership.”