Month: March, 2009
L.J. Smith (former Philadelphia Eagles tight end) criticized Coach Andy Reid during a radio interview today. One of his quotes was similar to the following…
“There were a lot of things that I felt should have been handled differently… You know, there were a couple of times where Coach (Andy Reid) should have came up to me and told me what was going on and how he was looking at things and how he was handling situations and what direction he wanted to go, but it didn’t happen like that.”
Football fans may recall that Andy also got some flack during the season for not even telling 10 year veteran, Donovan McNabb (or anyone else on the team for that matter) that he was being benched. He let his assistant do the dirty work.
I came across a Philadelphia sports blog that talked about the interview. It was interesting to read the comments on the post. Many had a similar theme – that L.J. should stop his whining because the NFL is just a business. The implication, of course, is that there is no room for communication in business.
Thoughts Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: I’m not Dr. Phil. I’m a business man. I say something when there is a need to do so. My people care about their jobs. They don’t want to be bothered with the other stuff. I keep them informed on a need-to-know basis.
My company actually has an open door policy, which is so silly. I don’t recall anyone ever making use of it. My guys just know that no news is good news.
Wanda B. Goode: It’s tough for managers to overcome the fear of communicating. We fear the difficult conversations. What makes matters worse is that during trying times, instead of communicating more, we tend to communicated less. When will we learn? Almost every problem in the business, or in life for that matter, is caused by a lack of communication or miscommunication of some sort. We need to suck it up and just do it, and we need to do it better.
This post nets it out well – Poor Communication = Risky Business
Here’s another – The Impact of Communication on Performance
In his book, Hit the Ground Running, Jason Jennings shares advice that Tim and Richard Smucker, co-chairs and co-CEOs of the J.M. Smucker Company, received from their father on how to “make sure employees stayed motivated and proud to work for the company.”
- Say thank you for a job well done
- Listen with your full attention
- Look for the good in others
- Have a good sense of humor
We did a ten minute Management Tips podcast with Jason Jennings recently. In it, he relays another tip from the Smuckers. To listen, click here.
Here is another post that reiterates the above – What Makes a Company a Great Company.
In his book, Enough, Jack Bogle, founder of The Vanguard Mutual Fund Group paraphrases Scottish author W.H. Murray on Boldness, Commitment, and Providence
Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative and creation, there is one elementary truth, the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too.
A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. Whatever you do, or dream you can begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now.
Any thoughts Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: Amen brother! It’s like when I committed to winning the basketball tournament at work this year. Once I made up my mind, everything just seemed to fall into place. I squeezed the T-Shirt guy and got our uniforms for a song. In our first game, Jerry went down like a sack of potatoes. He sprained his ankle. That led me to recruit Ted Bonelli (aka T-Bone), former semi pro ball player from accounting. I’ll tell you, it’s amazing what a little bonus money will do to generate interest! Even providence can use a little nudge sometimes. Before I knew it the trophy was on display in a brand new case in my office. Begin it baby!
Wanda B. Goode: Sounds a bit like the Be Good Ventures motto – Believe, Begin, Be Good! Makes me want to just get out there and do something!
Here is an inspirational post entitled The Power of Commitment.
In his book, Enough, Jack Bogle, founder of The Vanguard Mutual Fund Group lists his 10 Rules for Building a Great Organization…
Rule 1: Make caring the soul of the organization
Rule 2: Forget about employees (i.e. eliminate the word employee)
Rule 3: Set high standards and values – and stick to them
Rule 4: Talk the talk – repeat the values endlessly
Rule 5: Walk the walk – actions speak louder than words
Rule 6: Don’t overmanage
Rule 7: Recognize individual achievement
Rule 8: A reminder – loyalty is a two-way street
Rule 9: Lead and manage for the long term
Rule 10: Press on, regardless
Not a bad list huh Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy!
Wanda B. Goode: Good stuff and a fine book. In today’s culture of excess, Jack is a welcome voice of reason.
Here’s a brief review of Enough – It’s Time to Say When
This post includes an interview with Jack (both written and audio versions). Jack Bogle on the Big Question for Investors
In his book, Developing the Leader Within You, John Maxwell writes, “Successful people do things unsuccessful people will not do… One of the things that makes a difference is this issue of being character driven instead of emotion driven. This is the difference.”
|Character Driven People||Emotion Driven People|
|Do right, then feel good||Feel good, then do right|
|Are commitment driven||Are convenience driven|
|Make principle based decisions||Make popular based decisions|
|Actions control attitude||Attitude controls action|
|Believe it, then see it||See it, then believe it|
|Create momentum||Wait for momentum|
|Ask: “What are my Responsibilities?”||Ask: “What are my rights?”|
|Continue when problems arise||Quit when problems arise|
|Are steady||Are moody|
|Are leaders||Are followers|
Joe and Wanda, which are you?
Joe Kerr: It’s really not what I think that matters. It’s what others think that is the key, and I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been told that I’m a character. The people have spoken!
Wanda B. Goode: I certainly strive to be character driven, but I don’t always succeed. Unfortunately, I believe the character driven people are in the minority.
Here’s another post on Character – Character Matters
In his book, Developing the Leader Within You, John Maxwell mentions that according to 1,300 senior executives who responded to a survey, integrity was the quality identified as most necessary for business success. Maxwell goes on to say that integrity must be demonstrated daily in tangible ways. These are the ways that he strives to do so…
I will live what I teach
I will do what I say
I will be honest with others
I will put what is best for others ahead of what is best for me
I will be transparent and vulnerable
Joe and Wanda, any thoughts?
Joe Kerr: As my mom used to say, “Always wear clean underwear!”
Wanda B. Goode: One thing is for certain. If we don’t have integrity, we don’t have trust. If we don’t have trust, we can’t lead. We may think we’re leading, but we’re not. Maxwell’s list is a good one. It’s certainly not easy to adhere to, but it something to continue to strive toward daily.
Here’s another post on integrity – Credibility is the Coin of the Realm