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“The purpose of a team is not goal attainment but goal alignment.” ~ Tom DeMarco, Author, Teacher & Speaker Recently, I read about an outdoor supervisor who started the morning by setting the expectations for the day in front of his entire crew. The supervisor’s expectations were in line with previous workdays – in fact, they were fully staffed for the first time in a while which was a big advantage for production expectations. But immediately he got...

“To lead the people, walk behind them.” ~ Lao Tzu Every morning my mom would get up before anyone else in our house in order to get ready to go to school where she taught high school chemistry for some 30 plus years. Each morning she made breakfast for herself, my dad, brother, sister and me. I can still see those scrambled eggs, grits, bacon, toast or biscuits waiting for me on a plate or bowl covered in...

With Thanksgiving a few days away, it may be a great time to exercise the practice of gratitude. Some people seem to be naturally grateful for the things around them, circumstances and whatever is in their life. Many view this attitude as a positive personality trait. Others seem to struggle with gratitude and instead feel that something is owed to them and all expressions of gratitude their due. If you have worked in an organization that...

Several years ago, I had the opportunity to tour Tomb of the Unknown Solider with my family, in a small tour group. At the last minute, a decorated soldier, an Iraq War Veteran, joined our group in his wheelchair. His war injuries were permanent. I remember thinking, “He is so young.” The soldiers guarding the tomb immediately accepted him and took him down into their sanctioned private chamber near the Tomb of the Unknown Solider. Our tour...

Many of us can barely remember online purchasing before PayPal or mass marketplaces such as EBay or Amazon. Recently I was reminded of that long-ago era when a rare individual would sell directly to the consumer. Derek Sivers is one of those rare individuals, and he writes about it in his book Anything You Want. This short 40-lesson book tells his story beginning in the early 2000’s in the days before Amazon Music, iMusic, Spotify and...

According to the American Management Journal, researchers found that employees' moods when they clocked in tended to affect how they felt the rest of the day. Their mood had a clear impact on performance, including both how much work they did and how well they did it. This research doesn’t come as a great surprise to most of us, but most of us do little to improve our own mood, let alone the mood of others. But...

As I walked into our break room at quitting time, I couldn’t help but recognize the unique aroma of hard work. That smell is one of the greatest gifts a team can give one another when working outdoors, because it represents the effort, achievement, hustle, and hard grind they perform when accomplishing their goals. Some might call it body perfume, or odor, but not me. I call it the smell of success. Sometimes as customers, if we...

“Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” ~Albert Einstein Recently I attended an online workshop with Joe Schmit through Professional Grounds Management Society (PGMS). A leadership program that launched just this year by PGMS, Joe Schmit was the first speaker. He laid the groundwork for ways each of us can be an impactful person. Joe reminded us that it is not the big things we do in life that are so impactful, but all...

Recently I spoke at the 2022 Tennessee SHRM Convention and Expo. They were an engaged group of Human Resource (HR) professionals representing many top organizations across the southeast. Speaking there reminded me that HR does so much behind the scenes for organizations. HR tasks include legal matters, maintaining forms reflecting government compliance, organizing/executing the hiring of qualified people, designing benefits packages, people development, counseling, and so much more. Lee Cockerell, former executive vice president, operations, Walt Disney...

Is our work about the paycheck or is it more? Paychecks are important. At different points along life’s journey, a paycheck’s value is much more important because it meets a need or want in life. If we don’t pay people well, they have no basic desire or reason to come work with us. So where does passion come in at work? As leaders is it our responsibility to find it and grow it in our employees? Should...

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