Sunday, March 22, 2015
Mr. Ron, don’t stress yourself out. We will find it. We always do. You will get a call within 24 hours,the policeman assured me.
I live and work in Dubai, and I had jumped in a taxi at the end of the day and headed to the mall to pick up an item. When I jumped out of the taxi, being consumed as we all are from time to time (talking on cell phone, writing a note, etc.), I was distracted. I paid the driver and jumped out.
Problem was, I left my wallet on the seat in the cab.
Multi-tasking? It should be banned
When I got to the bank and reached for my wallet, what I had done thought sunk in. I realized that because I had been multi-tasking with the phone to my ear, I had left my wallet in the cab.
In a panic, I found a security guard who “walked” me to Lost & Found. Once there I was asked a bunch of questions and they repeatedly said “Mr. Ron, we will find it; you need not worry.”
Posted by Ron Thomas at 7:28 AM
Sunday, March 15, 2015
“They have a common goal and they have to get there together.”
That was a recent comment made by the coach of an NFL team, Chip Kelly of the Philadelphia Eagles. His comment that “culture beats scheme” was made in reference to trading one of his star players, who from all indications, was known as a prima donna and high maintenance.
“When he talks about culture, he’s talking about a 360-degree approach,” says David Carter, executive director of the University of Southern California Sports Business Institute.
He added, “A scheme might be limited to perfection on the field. Look at him as a CEO. Take that perspective. He’s not a team president in a player-personnel sense, but he’s president of the team itself. He has to understand every facet of the business. He has to communicate what his goals are to every player all the time, like a businessman has to with every employee.”
I love the 360 degree approach to culture. Are you buying into all facets of the organizations existence, or only your favorite parts?
Message sent and delivered
We have all at some times worked with difficult people. You know the kind: People that were brilliant in various phases of their professional lives, but overall, were a handful to deal with. In lots of organizations, we looked the other way while under our breath we whispered what we would like to do.
However, this NFL coach sent a strong message — either you buy into the 360 degree culture he is trying to create, or, you can pull out the suitcase.
For any leader trying to craft a message and build the culture of a winner, you sometimes have to make drastic decisions, because in the end, “no decision IS a decision.”
At one time I worked in an organization where we had one of the “big shots” who went through administrative assistants like Kleenex. There was always the flare-up, and her poor administrative person would bear the brunt of it. In fact, we had one situation where this young person went out to lunch and never returned. That was a first for me, but I was incredulous when hearing the response from the leader to this situation.
The talk from her was all laughter about how this person, fresh out of college, had just up and quit. There was never an ounce of conversation about how this woman had caused this unfortunate set of circumstances. In her mind, the onus was on the person that had just walked out.
Making excuses that were sickening
“You know how she is, she just gets upset sometimes but deep down she is a good person.”
“She is our top business development person; she generates a lot of business.”
“She would have arrived at the office the next day and bought that young lady flowers; she always buys flowers after those blow-ups.”
As I heard all those excuses being made about this supervisor, I knew that I would not be a long-termer in that organization. How these people could let this tyrant [now they are called bullies] run rampant was beyond belief.
However, all this calamity came to an end when a new CEO arrived. The bully, finally, had met her match.
Strike while the iron is hot
The CEO had been briefed about her star pupil, however, she did not deal with it on her arrival. She bided her time until another blow-up happened. The fact is that people like this supervisor cannot help themselves unless the seek professional help. Self-therapy will not create a better person, so it was only a matter of time before there would be another flare-up.
When it happened, the CEO pounced. She immediately called her in and discussed the situation, letting her know that she would not tolerate this type of behavior from ANYONE. That should have settled, it but for most chronic bullies, they can’t help themselves.
A few weeks later, another screaming match ensued. Within an hour, the prima donna supervisor was escorted out of the building. There was a “wave” of emotion from the workforce spread over the various floors. Yes, the bully had finally met her match, and now she was history.
It spreads like wildfire
That sent a resounding message that reverberated throughout, and it was simply this: Behavior like this will not be tolerated.
That message jolted a lot of mini-bullies that had begun emulating that supervisor’s horrible behavior. When this type of outlandish behavior manifests itself, people notice and they feel that they too can get away with it. That is why it is so important to stamp it out immediately.
We have to take these situations head on. If your organization is crafting or tweaking your culture, you have to push it in a mad frenzy to make sure that not 90 or 180, but 360 degrees of effort are pumping at all times. If you want to get it right, no stone should go unturned in trying to create that atmosphere.
So whatever your “scheme” is let your culture be in the driver’s seat. That is the navigator, or your North Star for your destination. It is paramount that each of us hold each other accountable because in the end, it will take all of our efforts, working as seamless as a crew team, to make it happen.
So, give your people the keys to your culture, then sit back and marvel at the results.
Posted by Ron Thomas at 4:53 AM
Thursday, March 5, 2015
This pay initiative is an important part of our strategies to continue attracting and retaining the best TJX Chief Executive Carol Meyrowitz said in a statement.talent in order to deliver a great shopping experience, remain competitive on wages in our U.S. markets and stay focused on our value mission,”
Having noticed from afar the recent groundbreaking announcements that have come from major retailers in the U.S., that decision has given me cause for hope.
First Wal-Mart and now Target has, on their own initiative, decided to raise the wages of their workers. That is a good sign. I particularly liked the above statement, tying it to “attracting and retaining.”
Doing what is right
Cumulatively this may sound like a big drag on company earnings, but I see it more as a stimulus to their bottom line.
Posted by Ron Thomas at 9:52 AM
Wednesday, February 25, 2015
That has been a foundational statement for me during my career.
My first job out of college was working in the sales division for IBM. I always tell people that IBM was the Google of its day. As part of the role of becoming a sales associate we were all sent to “sales school” where we had to learn to sell the products, sell the benefits of those products, and extend the brand into the client organization.
It is more comfortable being you
Posted by Ron Thomas at 5:56 AM