Monthly Archives: November 2016

THE DINER – SIX CHARACTERISTICS OF GREAT EMPLOYEES

Over the years, I’ve had the pleasure to work with many different kinds of baseball scouts, some were great. People who were not only loyal, hard-working, dedicated, talented, and outstanding employees at the places they worked; but they were great human beings as well.

The truth is that working in professional baseball provides you with an opportunity to work with some fascinating people. For instance some people are born-leaders, and you can identify them instantly. They are extroverts, and are not afraid to take charge, make a decision and put themselves out there.

Then there are people who possess sheer natural talent and God-gifted ability – these people have the natural knack to perform effortlessly, and watching them work is fascinating, to say the least. They have great instincts!

In contrast, there are people who may not possess tons of natural talent or raw ability to scout, but compensate for this through hard work, grit and determination to improve and grow in their position as a scout.

The point that I’m trying to make is that great employees possess certain characteristics that makes them “great.”  These characteristics make these employees valuable and indispensable. It is because of these individuals that organizations and companies do their best to keep top talent in their organizations.

An example of this is not in corporate america or a baseball organization; but a server in a diner. Yes, a diner!

wendy-ezell

Her name is Wendy Ezell, You see, Wendy has been a server at a local diner in my community for 30 years. Same job, same position, in the same diner – faithfully for 30 years! For many many years, Wendy has served my family when we would sit at her table. Last week, after asking her how long she had been a server at this particular diner, she replied “I have been working here for 30 years.” Wow! When I learned of this I was amazed. This truly defines the words “Loyal Employee.”

So what exactly are the characteristics that make these employees so special, so invaluable to organizations, even at a diner? I believe it is a combination of the following…

Great Employees Get The Essentials Right: While I’m no expert on this subject, from what I’ve observed, great employees have a tendency to get the basics right. For instance they get to work on time, they adhere to organizational policy during their time at the workplace, they rarely slack, they are organized, they have good time management skills, they can work their way around computers, they are individuals who get the job done, they come to the work place with the right attitude and are positive, they give energy not take it, and leave a lasting impression on their peers and customers. In short, they are thorough professionals.

Great Employees Go Above And Beyond Their Job Description: Good employees do what their job description asks them to do and they do it well. Great employees, however, go above and beyond their job description and try to do more than simply what their contract or position asks them to do, even if they’re not getting paid for it. Mind you, this does not mean they take on every single job or every task they possibly can. It simply means they are proactive people who try to do more than what they’ve been asked to do – even if it’s lending a helping hand to someone from another department, picking up small tasks, or going beyond their scope of work for the good of the organization despite having not being asked to do so.

Great Employees Form Good Working Relationships with Supervisors And Co-Workers: Great employees have great people skills. They are able to form excellent relationships with almost everyone in the organization, and can get along with all kinds of people. They understand other people, and respect everyone’s viewpoints and opinions in the workplace. They are respectful and professional towards their superiors as well as their peers. They are hence able to build successful relationships with their peers, based on trust and respect. On a similar note, they don’t talk about people behind their back, or trash and complain about them in public.

Great Employees Are Good Team Players: Great employees are also good team players, and can work with others as part of a team. A lot of jobs require people to work with others, and not everyone has the capability to do so effectively. Great employees however have a winning attitude, which means that they can properly collaborate with teammates, and create synergy to get the best out of their team.

Great Employees Love What They Do: They love their jobs, and don’t look at it as something they just do each day from 9 to 5, but something they genuinely love doing and truly believe in. They treat the company goals as their own goals. Money is not the sole motivating factor for them, and to them, their work is more than just something that earns them a paycheck. They are truly passionate about what they do and how they do it.

Great Employees Are Natural Leaders: Great employees may or may not in-body many of the qualities and attributes listed above, however if there is one quality that all great employees possess, it’s that they demonstrate natural leadership! They have a problem-solving-oriented approach to doing things and have a magnetic personality that allows them to get people to naturally follow them when they take charge of something, even if they don’t have authority. They are confident in their ability.

If you work with a great employee, count yourself lucky! If you manage one, make sure you give him or her plenty of reasons to stick around on your team or in your organization.

As for Wendy, I commend you for your 30 years of not only being a great employee, but a loyal and faithful one. Well done, Wendy…Well done!

s2s,

Kevin

This will be my last s2s leadership blog until 2017. Until then, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

Are there any additional qualities and characteristics you would include to being a loyal employee?

Comments?

THE CLOCK AND THE COMPASS

“Time waits for no man.” You’ve probably heard that saying. It’s true; time marches on, and it’s up to us to keep up with it. We need to be conscious of the clock, or we’ll never make any progress toward our goals.

However I believe there’s more to success than reaching career goals and personal goals. True success comes from significance: doing things that matter, things that last after we’re long gone.

Earlier this week while driving in the State of Georgia, I observed two gauges on my dashboard. The clock and the compass. I began thinking; as a leader, how do we know if what we’re doing really makes a difference? I concluded that we can’t just look at the clock. We need to be conscious of our compass.

For many people, the first half of life is consumed by the clock. As young adults, we’re very conscious of time. We’re impatient, eager to get started with life. Attain status. Climb the latter of success. Later, as we start achieving goals, we’re still focused on the clock: We want to measure how much we’re accomplishing compared with others.

However for many, usually sometime in our forties, we become aware of the compass. We begin to wonder why we’re doing what we’re doing? What is the impact I am making on others life?

We begin to question the value of what we’ve achieved. We examine whether we’re fulfilled. And then we get concerned that we’re not making a difference in this world. We begin to think about the legacy we will leave. If you’re not there yet, you soon will be.

Ideally, as we age, we start trying to achieve balance between the Clock and the Compass. We try to be conscious of both, which makes us more strategic. We ask, “What can I do that will make the most difference in the time that I have”?  We start thinking in terms of legacy.

Ultimately, I believe that no matter what age we are, we all need to seek a balance; between the Clock and the Compass. In other words, we need to integrate a daily focus with a long-term sense of direction. This will give us a better perspective.

Here are some thoughts on the Clock and the Compass that I have concluded…

The Clock: The clock is always ticking in this life. Time passes, and it passes quickly. We either take advantage of opportunities, or we miss them. So it’s important to keep the clock in mind. However I assure you, the clock is not the only thing to focus on if you want to live a life of significance.

The Compass: The compass is what we steer life by. It gives us direction. It remains constant, and we’re wise when we align ourselves with the direction we know we should be going. But just lining up with the compass doesn’t get us anywhere if we don’t start moving.

The clock equals daily things: what we are doing. The compass equals destiny things: where we are going. The clock deals with appointments, meetings and activities. The compass points toward vision, values, morals and mission.

Together the clock and the compass provide us with both motivation and direction. Finding a balance between them means that we’re able to compound our efforts and add the most value that we can to our world.

So the next time you plan your day, week, month or year, I encourage you to be conscious of both the Clock and the Compass, and see how far it takes you. You won’t be disappointed you did.

Have a great week!

s2s,

Kevin

How do you stay balanced between the Clock and the Compass? 

Comments? 

 

CHARACTER AND HOMEPLATE

As a kid, I played the position of catcher in Little League baseball. I played catcher in Pony League baseball. I was a catcher in high school baseball. In professional baseball, I spent a lot of time hunkered down behind home plate; hundreds of hours and innings, and thousands upon thousands of pitches. During all of those games and practices, I noticed something.

The width of home plate never changed. It was always seventeen-inches wide. Its dimensions were never up for discussion. It was non-negotiable. The org, team and/or players could choose uniforms, hats, helmets, shoes, belts, bats and gloves. But when it came to home-plate, it was unchangeable and its size not up for discussion. When a pitcher couldn’t throw the ball over the seventeen-inch wide mark, the umpire didn’t offer to widen it. He never said: “Hey, partner, I’m going to get a new plate just for you. Would twenty-five inches help?”

Nope! The width of the plate was immutable.

We might even say that the width of the home-plate was a “holy grail” – That’s a bit of a stretch, I know. However in all seriousness, the same can be said about character.

Character is “who you are when no one else is looking.” 

in many ways, like the home-plate in baseball. An individual of high character sets a person a part from others. It is a quality that is much needed today. Character describes “who you are.”  Regardless if people are looking or not; you’re steady, the same, unchangeable, and your values and core beliefs are non-negotiable and drive how you live, work and lead.

The width of home-plate is not up for discussion, and neither is character. You either have it or you don’t. The choice is yours.

This week, If you haven’t, I encourage you to make a commitment to be a baseball coach, scout or leader at any level that exemplifies character in what you say and  what you do. Even when no one else is looking. You won’t regret it.

Have a great week!

s2s,

Kevin

What other definitions would you include as being a person of high character?

Comments? 

REACHING YOUR FULL POTENTIAL

As a baseball coach or scout, you know we characterize a prospect as having potential. it is one of the greatest words in any language. It looks forward with optimism. It is filled with hope. It promises success. It implies fulfillment. It hints at greatness. Potential is a word based on possibilities.

Think about your potential as an athlete, a human being, a coach, a scout, a parent and a leader and you can get excited – at least, I hope you do. Think about your children’s potential and the impact they can make in life. I believe in your potential just as much as I believe in mine. Do you have potential? Absolutely. However, what about unfulfilled potential? That phase is as negative as the word potential is positive. Unfortunately, now days it can get someone fired.

Not reaching your potential is like dying with all the tools still inside of you. Since you are reading these words, I believe you have the desire to reach your potential. The question becomes, how do you do it? I have no doubt that the answer is growth.

To reach your potential as an athlete, coach, scout and leader you must grow. And to grow, you must be highly intentional about it. This weekly blog is my effort to help you learn how to grow and develop yourself so you have the best chance of becoming the person you were created to be.

Quite honestly, my desire from day one writing this weekly blog is to help you develop the right attitudes, learn more about your strengths, tap into your passion, become more in touch with your purpose, and develop your skills so you can reach your full potential.

To discover your purpose, you need to grow in self-awareness. To become a better human being – you need to grow in character and conduct. To advance in your career – you need to grow in your skills. To be a better spouse or parent – you need to grow in relationships. To reach your financial goals – you need to grow in your knowledge about how to manage your money. To enrich your soul – you need to grow spiritually.

The specifics of growth change from person to person, however the principles are the same for every person. You will have to put in the work to actually grow. Yes, it’s work. Growth can be painful, however it can be the most rich and rewarding time in your life.

You cannot change your life until you change something you do every day. If you keep learning and growing every day over the course of many years, you will be astounded by how far it will take you. I encourage you to keep making progress as you seek to fulfill your full potential in life.

Have a great week!

s2s,

Kevin

What steps of growth have you experienced that have helped you grow and develop your full potential in life?

Comments?