Push To Exceed Standards

One of the quotes I admire: “Talent that does not manifest itself in creative works does not exist.” – Sydney Harris I copied that quote down at a time when I believed that I was not living up to my potential. The honest conversation I was having with myself was that I knew that I was coasting. I was doing “as much as necessary and as little as possible” to get by in the world. […]

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Contributing to a Culture Change

I got a chance recently to speak to a group of students. I was describing my thoughts on converting a culture like we’ve been working on at our company as we become “leaner.” One of those listening sought me out after I finished. “Those ideas sound good but you don’t understand the place where I work. They would never allow it.” My answer to that is be the best you can be at controlling what […]

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Uncertainty Impacts a Willingness to Change

I like to think I embrace change. For the most part I do. But, hanging with my wife at the hospital last week reminded me about a dynamic that inhibits one’s willingness to change. Uncertainty impacts a willingness to change. Jenny had been in the hospital for six days. Despite a rocky start, we had gotten comfortable with the nursing team serving her. Rapport had been established. We liked them. They liked us. It was […]

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Characteristics of a Strong Mind

LaRae Quy, a former undercover FBI agent, recently wrote a book breaking down the factors that constitute a strong mind. She identifies five factors: Confidence – speaks for itself. For instance, people admire that I’m not shy about giving a speech. I can assure you that I was not born with it. I had opportunities to speak early in life. Small speeches before small groups. The more I did it, the more my nervousness subsided. […]

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Hyatt’s “10 Benefits of a Recession”

Michael Hyatt is a leadership thought leader that I read often. He had a particularly insightful blog last week. I am sharing the link below. It ratifies a notion that I have that our enterprise has become stronger as a result of the recession. I believe that we have accessed each of these benefits. In addition to a business application, I’ve seen the same impact on the personal side of my life. I wonder if […]

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Saban’s “Process Focus”

We are only a few weeks into the college football season and the University of Alabama Crimson Tide has fans shaking their heads with awe. While they are the defending National Champs, many of the pundits thought they would be good but not great this year. The Tide lost many players to the NFL this year and their lineup at the beginning of the year was untested and inexperienced. Nevertheless, the Tide has rolled up […]

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Consistently Seek To Do Good

“What makes greatness is someone who consistently seeks to do good.” – Isaac Hunter A strong point in “lean” is consistency.  In the 6S posters, it is referred to as “sustaining.” “Consistent” means it is common, daily, intentional.  Effort doesn’t come in fits and spurts.  You can count on it like clockwork.  There is not a good hour then a bad one.  There isn’t a good day then a bad one.  There isn’t a good […]

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Butner Shares Lean Successes

We are in Butner today for a tour highlighting the advantages and opportunities of embracing “lean” in our operations. When I say “we” I mean a group of more than 60. A combination of plant managers, maintenance managers and plant supervisors. We cross over almost every plant and every region. The Butner team did us all a phenomenal service by showing us the successes they have claimed over the last year and a half. There […]

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Continue Learning to Keep Pace with Change

The concept of “lifelong learning” was introduced a number of decades ago. The “futurists” of the time were predicting that the rate of change would accelerate. Thus, an education that was received at 20 may well eventually become obsolete in one’s lifetime and a need for further learning would become necessary. You think? Beloit College in Wisconsin creates a sociology study for professors each year to keep them in touch with the mindset of incoming […]

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Gaining Share

Yesterday, I wrote about the idea of “gaining share” or “losing share” when it came to relationships. Several of you wondered about my use of “share.” Let me explain: In the example, “share” is a CEO talking about market share. He’s using a business term to speak about getting better or getting worse. If we sell all the pallets a customer buys, we have 100% market share. If we sell half, we have 50 %. […]

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