Joe and Wanda on Management

Joe Kerr and Wanda B. Goode, two characters from Nick McCormick’s book, “Lead Well and Prosper,” dispense their management wisdom

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Category: Servant Leadersip

Managers, Lead from Behind

29 May, 2013 (22:01) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

In his book Tipping Sacred Cows, Jake Breeden provides some leadership advice…

Perhaps you were attracted to leadership because you wanted to stand and deliver inspiration to a room full of people. That may be your need. But true leaders put the needs of their people and their organizations above their own. Before you give that fiery speech to your team, ask if they need it. If you feel the need to motivate some people, maybe you can volunteer to coach a youth sports team. Sometimes leaders are better leading from the back of the room. As Nelson Mandela said, “Put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.”

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: I must admit, that I am a reluctant leader. I wasn’t so much attracted to leadership as leadership was attracted to me.

Wanda B. Goode: I’m with Mandela, although leading from behind has gotten a bad rap recently with President Obama’s adopting the strategy as part of his foreign policy. It is being characterized as weakness. Not sure if this is a fair assessment or not, but in general, it does appear we mistakenly favor bold, brash leaders that tend to be more bluster than substance.

Here are a couple of related posts

First Time Manager? Put the Spotlight on Others
Leadership: Courage, Attitude, and Behavior
Leadership in Action: Putting Others First

Manager’s Scorecard

29 August, 2011 (22:38) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

In his book, Monday Morning Leadership, David Cottrell indicates that a manager’s scorecard is the result of what the team does. “You get paid for what your subordinates do, not necessarily what you do.”

He also makes the point in another way… “You need your team more than your team needs you.”

Thoughts, Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: That’s debatable, but I‘ll tell you what, I need a vacation much more than they do!

Wanda B. Goode:Too often managers are really individual performers that manage team members on the side. That’s not the way to maximize team productivity. It can be difficult to let go of the tasks that have defined you for years. As a manager, though, your time is much better spent tending to your team members. They are the ones that do the work.

Here are a couple of related posts…

Great Leaders Serve and Support Their Organizations
Leaders Need to be Teachers

Managers: Lift Them Up

29 December, 2010 (15:12) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Personal Development, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

Here’s another one from Chester Elton’s latest book, The Orange Revolution.

“A leader’s greatest success comes by lifting someone else into the spotlight. It’s a truth too few managers ever learn.”

Why is that Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Because they are very heavy, and they ain’t my brothers!

Wanda B. Goode: I think it’s because it’s a bit counterintuitive. It’s similar to, “the more you give, the more you get.” It seems one has to experience it first hand before it is believed. Getting over the hump is not easy.

A couple of related posts…

Ten Things for Sure about Building a Business
The Mentor Leader

The Invisible Man-ager

15 March, 2010 (21:45) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

I wanted to expand on a post we did last week. It was about a quote from Rob Waldman on the importance of not losing sight of your team. He talked about managers that rarely interact with their team members. What do you suppose these managers do with their time?

Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Mainly manager stuff – Strategizing, budgeting, and cleaning up after all the screw-ups. It’s exhausting work, but someone’s got to do it.

Wanda B. Goode: Not what they’re supposed to be doing. Manager should be helping their team members. The more they can remove obstacles, help solve problems, obtain the necessary training for team members, etc. the better the team will perform – to the benefit of everyone. Lots of managers are really individual performers with management responsibilities on the side – a model that doesn’t work out very well.

Here are a couple of related posts.

This first one is about the importance of servant leadership.
Why Should Your Organization be Servant Led?

This one explains that just going through the motions or cherry picking problems to solve for your team can make things worse.
The Dangerous Game Played by ‘Walking Around’ Managers

Farber’s Challenge

2 March, 2010 (21:59) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

Just listened to a podcast over at Inside Personal Growth. Host Greg Voisen interviewed Steve Farber. Steve talked about his new book entitled, Greater Than Yourself. In it, he recommends amp’ing up the traditional mentor roll – challenging readers to not just help, but to give all they’ve got to allow someone else to achieve far greater success than they ever have.

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: I am a molder of minds, but as I’ve said before, even I can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

Wanda B. Goode: I applaud Steve’s efforts. He takes the concepts of “giving of oneself” and “paying it forward” to a whole new level. I hope people take him up on his challenge. He’s engaged in an uphill battle, but certainly one worth fighting.

If you don’t have time to listen to the podcast, here’s a brief blog post from Steve
Your Greater Than Yourself Project

Fake Leaders

5 February, 2010 (20:13) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

Here’s a quote from Timothy Clark’s book, The Leadership Test.

Most leaders start out honest. They want to do the right thing but they get sucked into a vortex of compromise that can turn them into fake leaders. Even small acts of entitlement can suck you in.

Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: You’re barking up the wrong tree if you think I’m giving up my parking space.

Wanda B. Goode: True enough. It’s easy to get caught up in the perks. According to Tim, when faced with decisions, there is a tendency to weigh the potential personal gain against the risk of personal loss. Entitlement wins the day.

What’s the solution? Take the leadership oath. “If a course of actions is at odds with stewardship, you don’t take it, regardless of what’s at stake. If you do not stand on principle, you do not stand. There is nothing left to stand on.”

Easier said than done, no doubt, but certainly worth striving to achieve.

Here’s a related post
Leader Privilege Isn’t = Think of Others Before Yourself

Timothy Clark on Leadership

11 January, 2010 (22:38) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

I just read Timothy Clark’s book, The Leadership Test. I enjoyed it right from the get-go. Here’s a blurb from the introduction…

Leadership is about stewardship, not self-interest. It’s about moral responsibility for your life, other people, and the resources we share. Too often, this is not the pattern. What we see instead are leaders intoxicated with power, thirsting for adulation, vaunting themselves as if we were lucky to have them. And what do they leave? The littered remains of indulgence, greed, and corruption. How sad it is to leave a landfill when you could leave a legacy.

The universal temptation of leadership is to use position for personal gain. The culminating test of leadership is to resist that temptation. But as we all observe, many succumb. In far too many instances, leaders become lords of entitlement.

What do you think Joe/Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Obviously this fellow didn’t get the promotion he wanted.

I’m going to offer up yet another golden nugget to our impoverished audience. You’ve heard the expression, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. Well, heed it. Get off your high horse, and stop whining long enough to grab your piece of the pie.

Wanda B. Goode: The author’s words certainly jibe with my observations. I think it’s important to point out that it is not easy to be a good leader. As Timothy mentions, the temptation is always there, and it’s very strong. If it weren’t we wouldn’t have so very many “fake leaders” as he calls them.

Here’s a related post.

Leadership is Stewardship

Enough Bull

4 January, 2010 (23:01) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

In one of his recent weekly newsletters, Dr. Alan Zimmerman cites a quote from Will Rogers

After eating an entire bull, a mountain lion felt so good he started roaring. He kept it up until a hunter came along and shot him. The moral: When you’re full of bull, keep your mouth shut.

Joe/Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Lord it’s hard to be humble when your perfect in every way!

Wanda B. Goode: I think we could all use a break from talking. Let’s commit to more listening and more action in 2010.

Here are a few related posts.

Humility as a Leadership Trait
Leadership for Lean – Humility
Top Level Leadership: The Triumph of Humility Over Arrogance

Flock or Fleece?

28 October, 2009 (21:19) | Leadership, Management, Productivity, Servant Leadersip, Team Building | By: Administrator

Just started reading the book, Instant Turnaround, by Harry Paul and Ross Reck. Chapter 3 references an email that they received containing the following quote:

“There are two types of leaders: those interested in the flock and those interested in the fleece.”

The authors go on to say…

Effective leaders are those interested in the flock – the people they are leading. They see their role as that of a giver – to get behind their people and support them in ways that bring out their best. Ineffective leaders are interested only in the fleece and couldn’t care less about their flock – they’re takers… The lesson here is to be a giver and show an interest in your flock. If you do, your flock will respond in ways that will guarantee your success as a leader.

Joe and Wanda? Where do your interests lie?

Joe Kerr: I got fleeced at the ball game the other day. Paid $8.25 for a Budweiser. That’s insanity! I was a giver that night, I’ll tell you!

Wanda B. Goode: I like the comparison. If you don’t care about the people, but merely what the people can do for you, team members will quickly see through your act. For some reason, that message gets lost on so many. As the authors write, “Executives and managers can be very slow learners.” The unfortunate result: too many bald sheep roaming aimlessly in the pastures, and a lot of unproductive farms.

A couple of Related posts…

Understanding Leadership: Good to Great

Authentic Leadership and Your “Crucible Story”

The New Role of Manager

1 September, 2009 (21:46) | Leadership, Management, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

In his book, Management Rewired, Charles Jacobs refers to the new role of the manager as “virtually opposite of the old one”

She doesn’t order; she asks. He doesn’t set objectives; he provides information to enable the employees to set their own objectives. She doesn’t give feedback; she solicits self-feedback. He doesn’t dispense rewards; he puts in place systems that self-administer. Employees don’t work for her; she works for the employees.

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: I don’t often quote Bette Davis, but if the shoe fits…

“The weak are the most treacherous of us all. They come to the strong and drain them. They are bottomless. They are insatiable. They are always parched and always bitter. They are everyone’s concern and like vampires they suck our life’s blood.”

Wanda B. Goode: Jacobs makes some good points. It’s more difficult to manage that way (takes more time, more thought, more patience, etc), which leads me to believe that few will embrace his concepts fully. I think those that do can benefit.

Here’s a related post.

How to Get the Most from a Leaner Team