In November 2022, I introduced Zachary Green and his book, Warrior Entrepreneur: Lessons from the Battleground to the Boardroom. Zachary’s insight into business can be applied to anyone seeking the right path to be successful, all while tackling obstacles and learning the ropes. Below is a Q&A with Zachary Green and how to achieve the warrior mindset.

Zachary Green

MCS: What are your top lessons learned from the battlefield and military training? How do these lessons resonate in the boardroom?

GREEN: Every U.S. Army recruit swears to The Soldier’s Creed and Warrior Ethos when they enter the military. This includes vowing to “place the mission first,” remain mentally tough no matter the challenge and to never accept defeat, quit, or leave a fallen comrade—all in “the service of the people of the United States.”

No matter the branch, this also often includes the adoption of a warrior spirit that thrives on dedication, teamwork, purpose, adaptability, grit, and sacrifice.

As a result, there are more than 1.3 active-duty military personnel and nearly 10 million working veterans that have not only adopted these beliefs, sentiments and ideals, but also inserted them into every aspect of their lives. 

Warriors, no matter the job, battle through attacks, fight adversity, and accept challenges. For instance, the drive to overcome adversity is commonly found in warriors, who then use to it to inspire growth and transformation. Courage is another key attribute that embodies the will to face fear head on, while fighting through difficult times. 

To succeed on both the battlefield and within business, warriors embody the strength to embrace adversity and the courage to grow and learn with each new outcome. 

And this takes the time that only experience can bring. The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in battle and it is through the challenge of hardship that most people grow and thrive in new situations. 

MCS: To combat stress, having team support is essential. Could you elaborate on the support a team provides? 

GREEN: Unfortunately, very few master everything they do. That’s why the division of labor, delegation of chores, and diversity of thought and skills are so critical to the growth of organizations.

However, it’s also important to know that teamwork alone isn’t enough. Warriors succeed through their collaboration with and trust in high-performing, supportive, and diverse groups of individuals willing to dedicate themselves to a common cause.

Always hire people who are better, smarter, and more talented than you. The statistical term “regression to the mean” aptly refers to every business facet. Organizations thrive when they are filled with solutions-minded people who are not only driven to succeed, but are also committed to helping others reach their potential and fulfill their goals. This includes the ability to tackle problems from differing perspectives based on their knowledge, professional backgrounds, and experience. 

Conversely, selfish, single-minded individuals will eventually bring a team down, no matter the initial success. So, never forget the true objective of teamwork which is meant to lift others, make everyone feel that they are integral to the process, and never be in position that lets down fellow coworkers. 

MCS: In your experience, what would team support look like on a commercial construction jobsite?

GREEN: Never forget to honor and reward the individuals that regularly give their best and most to the organization. This will set the standard for success since just about everyone enjoys being recognized for their efforts, accomplishments, and achievements. 

Depending on the organization and workforce’s makeup, these incentives and motivational devices could even include enhanced training, more upward mobility, better working environments, and additional vacation and personal time for jobs well done. Other basics can include anything from regular award ceremonies and bonuses to employee of the month honors.

Plus, there’s no need to guess. Great leaders take the time to learn what incentivizes their staff and personnel. If you give them the opportunity, they will let you know what they value most and the ways to best earn their loyalty, trust, and strongest efforts.

MCS: What is your best advice to overcome and adapt to a challenging workforce (shortage of skilled labor), changing jobsites (new skills to be learned with advances in technology), and the current economic environment (inflation, higher cost of living)?

GREEN: Focus on the “why.” If you compete for money, there will always be another contractor that’s willing to do more for less. If you’re in business solely for personal gain, why would anyone sacrifice their best interests for your bottom line? Why should they invest their training, skill, and knowledge into the success of an organization that cares little, if at all, about their personal welfare, growth, and success? 

No one will work longer or consistently deliver their best efforts if the rewards are continually one-sided. Get a first-hand knowledge of your people and who they are. Recognize them as individuals and not just employees. Honor achievement, success, and above and beyond efforts at every turn. And remember that most people see through phonies and will likely abandon failing organizations as soon as they see the better opportunity elsewhere.

Teamwork, success, and loyalty are all interlinked. Be the leader who fights for his or employees and you will most likely garner the respect that helps organizations overcome obstacles, fight adversity, and thrive when others fail. 

MCS: If given the opportunity to speak in front of general contractors, knowing the struggles with labor, supply chain, inflation, slowing of construction starts, what words could motivate this group to continue the mission versus calling it quits?

GREEN: Discipline, purpose, tenacity, adaptability, grit and sacrifice are all parts of the process that generally includes lots of failures. But then, if everything was easy, then every venture would be a success. And we certainly know that’s not true. Just look at all the open spaces in nearly any strip mall.

The other hard truth is that life is filled with pitfalls, detours and disappointment. But these are the elements that essential for growth. It’s nearly impossible to recognize the paths forward without experiencing and overcoming the road bumps along the way.

What differentiates a warrior from all others is the drive to never give up. No matter the odds or the negative thoughts or advice of others, true warriors will always place the success of the mission and troop welfare above everything else. 

That said, there will always be a choice. The option to fight or surrender will always be there. But the only way to truly guarantee a loss is to quit. 

The warrior mindset encourages business leaders to achieve peak potentials by looking beyond personal limitations. Take well-calculated risks, solve problems and become the organization that never gives up. This is the business that customers and employees alike will look upon with respect, trust and loyalty. 


Franklin Roosevelt once said, “When you find yourself at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” And then there was the great Carthaginian General Hannibal, who shouted “AUT VIAM INVENIUM AUT FACIAM” or “I WILL FIND A WAY OR I WILL MAKE A WAY!” when confronted with seemingly insurmountable odds. 

For More Information:

Zachary Green is a US Marine Corps veteran, former firefighter, and founder of MN8 Foxfire-LumAware. His recent book Warrior Entrepreneur: Lessons From The Battlefield To The Boardroom is an international best seller about how to use Warrior attributes to be successful in business and life. Zachary can be reached at and

Modern Contractor Solutions, April 2023
Did you enjoy this article?
Subscribe to the FREE Digital Edition of Modern Contractor Solutions magazine.