First Order Blog

Heroes in Action

A stranger stopping in the road to assist someone in a car wreck….or doing the Heimlich in a restaurant? How about Daniel Hernandez, the 20 year old intern to U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords who ran through gunfire to apply first aid to the congresswoman until paramedics could arrive? Heroes do not have to be leaders.

A global recession, tsunami and nuclear issues in Japan, revolutions in Libya and many other countries…who are our global leaders handling these events? Do we even know who they are or what they are doing (via media) for us - the global community?

Leading With a Healthy Heart

A while back, I had breakfast with the CEO of the Heart Hospital of Austin, David Laird. His hospital has increased their employee engagement and customer satisfaction to top levels, as well as improved their performance [rated #1 hospital to have a heart attack, due to the superb care].

He shared his leadership philosophies with me:
* WIN (What's Important Now): Do not dwell on the past or focus on the future
* Lead with a Pure Heart: Be transparent and keep followers' best interests in mind

Corporate Tracking

When discussing employee engagement and morale, results need to be considered, too. If you empower employees, provide flexible work schedules, or create a strong brand – what is the financial impact?

As a consultant, I prefer results-based contracts….selling a deliverable instead of an hourly rate. I’ve always been amazed that lawyers bill this way. I provide a cost / deliverable to a client during the sales process – and they decide if that is of enough value to invest in.

Olympic Oath

I have enjoyed the last 1.5 weeks of watching the Olympics, starting with the opening ceremonies featuring the Queen’s sky diving! A representative of the athletes takes the Olympic Oath, which is a formal pledge/promise binding them to a conventional standard.

What if we did this for our company? With today’s ethical challenges (both corporate and the Olympics’ badminton teams throwing matches), an oath sets a standard that should provide a guidepost. Below is the Olympic and possible company oath.

Performance Management

One of my clients just left her company after being told that she dressed too flirtatious during her annual performance management review – she quickly found a better job at a nearby company. Another colleague is preparing to leave his company after his three mentors were promoted, resulting in a sponsorship vacuum and halt to his career track.