Month: June, 2010
It seems persistence has been the theme of quite a few posts lately. Everywhere I turn examples seem to jump out at me. I guess it has been on my mind lately, creating a heightened awareness – like when you buy a new car and all of the sudden start seeing the same make and model all over the roads. In any event, there was an article in this past Sunday’s Philadelphia Inquirer about a commencement address given by one of my favorite former CEOs, Jack Bogle at Trinity College.
Bogle references a story about Winston Churchill returning to his alma mater, the Harrow School,
As the story goes, Churchill was well into his 80s – frail, wizened, and stooped – when he attended the annual opening of school. At the event’s conclusion, Churchill was asked if he’d say a few words. He rose, paused, and then spoke. “Never give up. Never. Never. Never. Never. Never.” He then sat down to thunderous applause.
Bogle explains that he especially loves the fifth never… “because it’s a wonderful metaphor for the numerous times in our lives when, faced with defeat, we have had to draw on our deepest resources to fight back and defend our principles, honor, and character.”
After mentioning the many challenges that the graduates now face, he gives the same advice to them adding, “And don’t forget that fifth never. Sooner or later, we all need it.”
Thoughts Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: Never underestimate your opponent. Never negotiate out of fear. Never let them see you sweat, and by all means, never say never. That’s what I always say!
Wanda B. Goode: This message is applicable on so many levels. When Jack speaks, it makes a whole lot of sense to listen.
Here’s another Jack Bogle post
Vanguard’s Jack Bogle: Investors Take Heed… A Financial Crisis is Imminent
In her book, The Power of Pause, Nance Guilmartin references a checklist of priorities that she culled from a conversation with Office Depot’s executive vice president of e-commerce and direct marketing, Monica Luechtefeld. Nance refers to them as effectiveness benchmarks.
1) Put customers at the center of whatever you do
2) Work simultaneously from the top down and the bottom up
3) Integrate support systems; don’t build silos
4) Align compensation with strategy
5) Provide training, training, and more training
6) Be patient, but be an evangelist!
7) Leverage what you know and learn what you don’t
Thoughts Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: I’m on board 150%!
Wanda B. Goode: Simple but not easy. There is no doubt that abiding by the 7 principles will make an organization more effective.
Here’s a post with more on Monica Luechtefeld.
Monica Luechtefeld Believes Women Small Business Owners are Key to the Future
Chris Young hosts this month’s Leadership Development Carnival at The Rainmaker Group. Get on over to the site to view over 30 posts on a variety of management and leadership topics.
In her book, The Power of Pause, Nance Guilmartin references the phrase “continuous partial attention,” coined by Linda Stone, a former Microsoft and Apple Computer Executive. It refers to how technology can influence users to continuously “want to effectively scan for opportunity and optimize for the best opportunities, activities, and contacts, in any given moment.” Nance also quotes an article in the Scientific American Mind that explains the impact on people’s abilities to make decisions – “They no longer have time to reflect, contemplate or make thoughtful decisions. Instead they exist in a sense of constant crisis-on alert for a new contact or bit of exciting news or information at any moment. Once people get used to this state, they tend to thrive on perpetual connectivity.”
Thoughts Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: Boston’s up 2-0 on Cleveland in the top of the 7th.
Wanda B. Goode: Treating everything as a crisis means everything has the same priority. Tough to get anything meaningful done under those conditions. I love technology, but I think many of us could use a forced break every once in a while.
Here are some related posts
In the May edition of the Be Good News just mailed out yesterday, the theme was persistence. Coincidentally I just ran across this quote on expanding democracy by Vaclav Havel, former Czech president in Sunday’s Philadelphia Inquirer…
You must never expect instant success. You mustn’t allow yourself to be upset if people around you say “why do you keep beating your head against the wall when you know the wall won’t fall?” I tell them they shouldn’t take that into account. You should do things because you consider them to be right and because your conscience tells you to do it. You never know how things will turn out.
Joe and Wanda?
Joe Kerr: Mr. Havel, tear down that wall! You can bang your head on it all you want, I say blow it up! Ready, fire, aim!
Wanda B. Goode: Nice quote. We all need a little kick once in a while to keep us going in the right direction. Thanks for that.
Here are a couple of related posts…
The Wonderful and Vexing Quality of Sitcktoitiveness
Persistence – a Necessary Leadership Tool