How Special Operations and
Great Organizations Win on Talent

Hear From the Authors About the Talent War

Listen to an in-depth review of The Talent War on the top-rated business podcast –
Jocko Podcast

Talent War Group

A small to mid-size business leaders guide to building high-performing teams and human capital management.

A Different Source of Exceptional Leaders

An Executive Search Firm
and Talent Advisory

The topic of TALENT has been and will continue to be so relevant to every highly successful organization. It is the foundation of every success story from Silicon Valley to Wall Street to the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan.


Any business that leads or dominates its competition in attracting, hiring, developing, and retaining the best TALENT is and will likely continue to be highly successful. It’s the hidden asset that never shows up on the balance sheet, despite being the driver for a company’s true value.


When it comes to winning on TALENT, no one does it better or more consistently than the U.S. Special Operations community. Their success comes down to their people and a widely held foundational belief:

Talent + Leadership = Victory

Forward by Jocko Willink,
New York Times Bestseller

In this hypercompetitive business environment, the war for talent has never been more important, nor more complex than ever. Of 800 CEOs and 600 other C-suite executives polled in 2019, the overwhelming majority cited the ability to attract and retain top talent as their number one concern.

You need to attract and retain the best talent for your organization to win, but without the right strategy or mindset, you won’t be able to compete. After all, your PEOPLE— not your product or service—are your strongest competitive advantage.

The Talent War explores how U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF) assess, select, and develop their world-class talent. You’ll learn how to adopt a talent mindset, the single greatest weapon you can possess in the war for talent. When your organization reflects this mindset, you will hire, train, and develop the right people, and put them in the best positions to make decisions that allow you to retake the advantage and win the war.

Amazon #1 Best Seller Business Consulting


“As CEO of a cybersecurity company, I fight The Talent War every day. Fortunately, I’ve had a front row seat to the principles of The Talent War applied in real-time. They just work and could shift the momentum in your favor.”


“As a third-generation family business, finding and retaining talent is the key factor to our long-term success. Quality of character is hard to identify on a resume; let The Talent War give you invaluable insight to find and create winning teams.”

TWYLAH BLOTSKY, President & CEO, Butler Machinery Company

“As a nominating committee member for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year, I assess hundreds of companies and their leaders. The differentiator between those that are selected and those that are not, comes down to TALENT. Every winner and finalist over the last 34 years has a talent mindset. Mike and George lay the groundwork on how to select and retain the best talent.”

DAVID COCHRAN, Executive Vice President, Colliers International

“The Talent War provides critical insights into what it actually takes to recruit and retain the best talent in this VUCA environment.”

JOE DEPINTO, President & CEO, 7-Eleven, Inc.

“Anyone who hires and leads people knows that excellent teams don’t happen by accident. The Talent War shows how the hiring practices used by our Special Operations community can be used by any business to build and retain exceptional teams.”

EVAN LOOMIS, Co-Founder, ICON and Author of Get Backed

“Having worked in two industries, where the product of the business is the talent you field, it begins with a great hiring process. The Talent War draws upon the lessons learned from over 50 years of selecting and developing high performing teams to provide actionable insights for any business competing for talent.”

BRIAN DECKER, Director of Player Development, Indianapolis Colts,
and former U.S. Army Special Forces Officer

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About the Authors

Michael Sarraille

Mike Sarraille is the CEO of EF Overwatch, an executive search firm and talent advisory, and senior leadership consultant with Echelon Front. He is a former Recon Marine, Scout-sniper, and retired US Navy SEAL officer with twenty years of experience in Special Operations, including the elite Joint Special Operations Command.

George Randle

George Randle is a Strategic Advisor to EF Overwatch, former US Army officer, and Vice President of Global Talent Acquisition at Forcepoint, a human-centric cybersecurity company. George has more than two decades of experience in talent acquisition at Fortune 100 and Fortune 1000 firms.

Dr. Joshua Cotton

Dr. Josh Cotton is an expert in talent assessment and employee effectiveness. He has designed scientifically valid candidate selection practices for the US Navy SEALs and Fortune 100 companies, and has advised leaders at DuPont, Omnicom, CSX, and Flowserve.

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