How Marines communicate

Let Me Get Right to the Point


The Marine Corps values clear, direct, and accurate communication. Senior officers have little tolerance for meandering around your point, and they have zero tolerance for trivial or deceptive nonsense. Junior Marines are similar, except they can perceive this better than most field grade officers. I’ve learned that in civilian life many people want to banter about nothing for about 90 seconds before discussing anything of substance. I don’t necessarily like it, but now I can handle it.

Before learning this I would initiate a conversation with a standard greeting and then jump right into my point. When the information transfer was complete I would say “thanks” and jet off to the next stop on my itinerary. I eventually learned that this offends and confuses many people, which was equally confusing to me, because I thought we were communicating about business, not knitting sweaters.


The Marine Corps contributed immensely to my persona: building new qualities, reinforcing some exiting traits, and hammering others into oblivion. I’ll always view it as one of the greatest molding experiences of my life. However, not everybody wants to be a Marine, so perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised when they don’t interact like one.

Comment: For my son (USMC vet - 6 years including service in Iraq - now out of the USMC for 2 years)

1 comment:

  1. hahaha I thought this was just male/female issues...


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