Phil Hauck's TEC Blog

Monday, April 11, 2011

On Servant Learning

Festival Foods has spent ten years on its Servant Leadership journey, and exposed guru James Hunter to a free community presentation recently. Its hope is to create a Servant Learning organization mentality throughout our area, and will hold quarterly sessions to bring together people interested in implementing the concept in their companies. Very proactive and community-minded! (What else might a local company champion?)
Among Hunter's points:
• Back in the day: Henry Ford said, "I kept hiring the whole person when all I wanted were his hands."
• "You already know how to be a leader. The elements are already a part of you. You just have to use them where you have passion."
• "Be the Boss you'd want your Boss to be."
• Servant Leadership: "Make a list of what people need, and then go help them get it."
• "Everyone has a deep, human need to be appreciated."
• "Where we aren't getting leadership, and it's many places nationally and around us, people are beginning to say, 'Enough!' They're starting to take action into their own hands."
• Max DePree: "Leadership is serious meddling in other people's lives!"
• Karl Menninger, asked what he would do if he knew someone was about to have a nervous breakdown: "Tell him to go help someone. Stop the fixation on yourself. Get the attention off of yourself."
• On Setting Expectations: Southwest Air attendants sometimes say to you when getting on the plane, "Welcome to my Living Room." It sets an expectation of how you are going to treat your experience ... orderliness, courtesy, friendliness.
• "In a nutshell, Leadership is Results Plus Relationships ... Spanking and Hugging."
• Bottom Line: Culture eats Strategy for breakfast. People make the difference. Build your people.
• Lombardi to his players: "My love for you will be relentless."

From a panelist, Ken Coppens, a Barry-Wehmiller leadership instructor:
• When we acquire a company, our first initiative is to spend time with the front line people who interact with the customers and learn what's successful and what the problems are.
• We're experimenting with how to ingrain the S/L concepts after our training. Right now, we have a 12-week touchbase program that creates discussion after the training; at the end of training, people commit to do certain things. We then create S/L Groups of 5-6 people each to meet and work with each other on accomplishing the commitments.

On Progressive Income Taxes: The Rich Already Pay Much More

I'm finding that many aren't informed about the degree of progressivity of our federal income tax structure. Many complainers feel that companies shouldn't get tax breaks and the rich should pay more. Maybe so, but it's useful to know what already exists. Some thoughts ...

1. On companies and "tax breaks": Private companies/businesses are who create value that results in more jobs, and more taxable income. NO OTHER ORGANIZATIONS DO THIS. ALL TAXES DERIVE FROM THE SUCCESS OF PRIVATE COMPANIES. When we tax those companies, we take away dollars that can be used to develop new products that lead to new jobs. Yes, charge businesses for "use taxes," their use of sewer, water, and protection ... but not for making money. Instead, tax the people on the money they received ... when they receive it.

2. On Progressivity, here are the 2009 income tax figures, provided by the Tax Policy Center:
The top 5% of earners (Over $212,000) paid 40% of all federal taxes.
The next 15% (Over $106,000) paid 28%.
THUS, the Top 20% paid 68% of all federal taxes.

The next 20% (Over $65,000) paid 19% of all federal taxes.
The next 20% (Over $35,000) paid 10% of all federal taxes.
The bottom 40% paid 3% of all federal taxes.

On Rewards Within Fitness/Wellness Programs: Less is More

Recently, Sonic Boom Wellness, the San Diego-based organization that our Healthy Lifestyles Cooperative works with to provide the Daily Fitness Incentive we think is key to engagement and changing behaviors, had a webinar that included these points:
• Studies are showing that rewards are effective at changing behaviors, at least for the short term ... but NOT at changing health HABITS.
• The STRONGER your FITNESS/WELLNESS program (i.e., the more people it incents effectively), the fewer and lesser rewards you need. The necessity for rewards is inversely proportional to the progress of the program. Rewards create attention, and as correct behaviors become more of a habit, they don't need external incentives.
• IF you're going to provide incentives ...
• CASH is the LEAST effective ... creates a sense of entitlement rather than excitement, and is the most forgettable.
• Tangible, Non-Cash rewards the next best ... symbols of recognition and accomplishment.
• Best are Recognition rewards ... given with immediacy.
• Did you know: If you work out in the morning, you are 50% more productive for the LAST TWO HOURS of the workday!

Bob DeKoch, Boldt Construction, on Leadership

Bob spoke at a March St. Norbert's CEO Breakfast & Strategy meeting on "Leadership in the New Economy: Making a Difference, with Care!" He is a very thoughtful and insightful CEO, and has authored three books on CEO issues with Phil Clampitt, a UWGB professor of communications.
Here are some interesting excerpts from his talk:
• Objectivity Requires Listening/Listening/Listening. Think about it. It's not a simple idea.
• "Don't listen in order to solve my problem. Just listen! Accept and understand what I'm trying to say. Get to understanding. Then, when you understand, you can begin thinking about my problem." That's a paraphrase from Madelyn Burley-Allen.
• Negotiations don't usually equal Listening, but they should.
• Boldt's Values: "Honesty, Fairness, Hard Work, Performance and Love of Construction are what we value." I've never seen that a value is to "love the business," but it is! Very interesting.
• The Uncertainty Pyramid:
He contends that too often we fear uncertainty, and so we avoid it, even trying to "eliminate" it. More importantly, if we are to move forward and LEARN, Uncertainty should be EMBRACED as quickly as possible so that LEARNING can begin. That's how you begin to dominate your marketplace!
• "Leadership is a means to an end, not the end itself. The 'end' is to 'move the ball forward.'"
• "Take your idea, then wait for your second thoughts about it, then bounce it off of a trusted adviser, and then off your team, and then off your organization. Eventually, you'll have something that everyone will embrace because it's right."
• "The Leader creates the ENVIRONMENT for engagement, and employees provide the energy. When they meet, all things are possible." The Environment, he says, includes having the right people, a great cause, resources to remove barriers, and more.
• Bill Gates: "Develop people who make mistakes, and can make the most from them."
• Some of Bob's Advice for the Road:
Spend time in places and situations that inspire you.
Take time to think, away from the day-to-day.
Create balance in your life. Schedule it.