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Walking the Talk! What people really want!

Date Added: January 22, 2012 05:38:54 PM
Author: John Chappelear
Category: Blogs: Business
I heard an association leaders say to me: “5 key executives have left the association in just the last year. How could this happen? I set realistic goals and objectives why aren’t we getting any closer?” The list goes on and on. As I have traveled around the country, talking with both association and corporate executives, I have found this type of problem it is usually because staff has lost it’s sense of value to the organization, or the people don’t see any new opportunities for personal or professional growth. Do you know why the comic strip “Dilbert” is so funny, because many times it’s spot on? It may be an exaggerated characterization, but I have talked to too many people and know it’s not far off target. But sometimes it can be frighteningly close to home. Tom Peters said: “As we become managers and executives we give up the real work for the rest of our lives”. We stop being producers and become observers of producers. Yes, we do create and produce reports and evaluations, but that’s not what the front line people are dealing with everyday, they see real world problems, they see our products and services both their failings and successes. We need to reconnect with our people, and our customers. Visit the front line staff or the customer’s offices; find out what the real issues are. If we are going to be leaders, then lead, we can’t do it from behind a desk. I have seen time and time again, happy motivated people delivering, happy motivated clients, co-workers and the desired bottom line much more quickly than people driven toward those same goal by threats or mindless rhetoric and “upbeat slogans” that everyone knows are just hype. So how do we get there from here? I’ve discovered that we can all change our lives dramatically, for the better--and right now. It just takes a new sense of focus. § Start each day with an awareness that you are here for a purpose other than to satisfy demands to add stuff to your life. I do this with a few morning minutes of meditation and prayer. Other people read a book or take a walk. After a while, you’ll find your own path to peace and self-awareness. § Make serving others a primary focus. Start a mentoring program, be a big brother or sister, call a local volunteering program like Greater DC Cares. § Slow down. I was always so busy pushing for the next big break that sometimes I ran right past it. So take a breath, enjoy life a bit, and you’ll be surprised how many opportunities just show up. § Start now. You don’t have to remake your whole life overnight. Remember, you’re choosing to act--before desperation is forced on you. If you keep at it, when you look back you’ll be amazed how far you’ve come, and so will your loved ones. And while I may believe in deathbed conversions, acting ahead of time is a whole lot more satisfying. There’s nothing magical about these actions. The results, however, can be phenomenal, because not only will you feel better about yourself, but your organization will take off, too. Instead of following the crowd, think what kind of positive public attention you can get by increasing your community awareness. Recessions don’t last forever, but the public’s memory of a good corporate citizen often does. Sometimes it doesn’t even take money, just the willingness to show up and help. Positively motivated people will deliver to the bottom line faster than new technology and a slick mission statement, and nothing will motive people faster than feeling the company they work for sees them and their community as significant. Sometimes we just need to Change Our Focus.
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