Be Happy, Have Fun

Thought this was funny at work. 


One person writes:

Be Happy. Have Fun. 


Another chimes in:

Ok, I will!


And finally a 3rd person writes:

Me too. 

Smiley faces and all. 


Never take yourself too seriously. 


It’s true–try to enjoy the ride!  😉


(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Alligator Govie

So this was a little surprising. 


In the courtyard (next to the cafeteria) at work, there is a nice seating area open during the Spring/Summer seasons. 


Pretty trees, flowers, and a pond. 


In the pond, next to the water lilies, there was a what?


Alligator.  


Not a full alligator.


But someone put an alligator’s head in to make things interesting. 


It’s nice at work when people are normal and have a sense of humor. 


An Alligator Govie that’s what it is. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Leave The Bad Bosses Behind

So an executive colleague reminded me of something about bad bosses:

People don’t leave jobs, they leave [bad] bosses.

It’s very interesting and so often true. 


Of course, people leave for all sorts of reasons, but one of the most important aspects of job satisfaction for employees is their boss!


When you have a good boss–someone with integrity, good communications, trustworthy, fair, and who empowers, develops, and supports you then that goes a very long way towards positive employee engagement and retention. 


However, when the boss is a bad apple and usually everyone knows it, then there is often a mass exit out the organizational door. 


Occasionally, the organizational culture is bad too, and that attracts those bad bosses, promotes their bad behavior, and keeps their bad butts in the corner office seats–this situation is even worse because bad culture and people are mutually reinforcing. 


For the good people out there, leave the bad bosses behind and never look back. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Technology and Human Capital–They Go Hand-In-Hand

So there are some mighty impressive places to work that really shine in terms of the technology they use and the constant desire to upgrade and improve their capabilities. 


Usually, these are also the places that value and respect their human capital because they view them as not just human pawns, but rather as strategic drivers of change. 


Then there are the places that are “so operationally focused” or just plain poorly run that they can’t be bothered to think about technology much at all or the people that make up the organization and its fiber. 


In many cases, the wheel may be turning, but the hamster is dead: 


There is no real enterprise architecture to speak of. 


There are no IT strategic or operational plans. 


There are no enterprise or common solutions or platforms. 


There is no IT governance or project/portfolio management. 


Even where there are some IT projects, they go nowhere–they are notions or discussion pieces, but nothing ever rolls off the IT “assembly line.”


How about buying an $800 software package to improve specific operations–that gets the thumbs down too. 


Many of these executives can’t even spell t-e-c-h-n-o-l-o-g-y!


It’s scary when technology is such an incredible enabler that some can’t see it for what it is. 


Rather to them, technology is a distraction, a threat, a burdensome cost, or something we don’t have time for.


Are they scared of technology?


Do they just not understand its criticality or capability?


Are they just plain stupid? 


Anyway, organizations need to look at their leadership and ask what are they doing not only operationally, but also in terms of technology improvement to advance the organization and its mission. 


Look to the organizations that lead technologically, as well as that treat their people well, and those are ones to ogle at and model after.  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Inspector Inspects Starbucks

Inspector.jpeg

This was the first time that I have ever seen an inspector in Starbucks…


See the lady in the white lab coat with hair cap and gloves…


Ah, she stands out like a saw thumb in contrast to the other staff person in the traditional green Starbucks apron. 


So I would imagine that she’s not a doctor moonlighting as a barista!


She was checking here, there, and everywhere. 


At this point, she was taking out the milk and looked like she had some thermometer like device to make sure it was cold enough and not spoiled. 


Honestly, I was impressed that they have this level of quality control in the stores. 


We need more of this to ensure quality standards as wPhotoell as customer service — here and everywhere in industry and government. 


There is way too much dysfunction, inefficiencies, politics, power plays, turf battles, backstabbing, bullying, lack of accountability, unprofessionalism, fraud, waste, and abuse, and mucho organizational culture issues that need to be–must be–addressed and fast!


Can the inspector that inspects do it?


Of course, that’s probably not enough–it just uncovers the defects–we still have the hard work of leadership to make things right–and not just to checklist them and say we did it.


I wonder if the Starbucks inspector will also address the annoying long lines on the other side of the counter as well? 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Integrity is Priority #1

good-name

So I was speaking with some leaders about what is most important to them in their organization. 


And what was fascinating to me is that they didn’t describe the usual things…


– Leadership 


– Innovation 


– Emotional Intelligence


– Technical skills


And so on. 


Instead and in all seriousness, they spoke with me about integrity.


Integrity is what I call, doing the right thing, always!


And I was so impressed how these leaders understood that integrity is integral to their organizational culture, and is the cornerstone to it’s ultimate success in everything else it does. 


If everyone does the right thing, then the organization will do the right thing!


In the bible, we repeatedly learn the importance of following one’s moral compass. 


– In Ecclesiastes (7:1), “A good name is better than fine perfume.” 


– In Proverbs (22:1), “A good name is more desired than great wealth.”


And as in the photo above from a local synagogue, “A good name endures forever.”


What is new here though is that a good name and the integrity it takes to build that name for yourself is not just critical to your self development, but ultimately is really congruent and even synonymous with your organization’s success. 


If unfortunately some are not doing “the right thing,” we need to know about it, so we can course correct.


What we do matters not only to ourselves, but to the larger organization and community that we live in. 


Good is contagious, and it inspires more good, and this is what we want to be successful. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Draining Our Life Force

Corporate Agenda
Here’s a photo I snapped of one of the Fantastic Four (superheroes).



He’s telling the evil Galactus, who drains planets of their life’s energy, to “Stop!”



He yells at Galactus, “You have facilitated the Corporate Fascist Agenda long enough.”



I think we all know a Galactus (or two)!



In every company and agency…there are individuals that seem to literally suck the creativity, problem solving, and life force from the bowels of the organization. 



They complain incessantly, make excuses for their lack of support and contribution, erect obstacles to progress, and needlessly put down other people’s ideas and contributions.



These Galactuses facilitate their own or a corporate agenda–to raise their stature, power, and purse.



They can be–almost G-d like figures in the organization that are feared and cowed to–but in the long term it’s counterproductive to enslave humanity to them.



You can be like the Fantastic Four, who recognizes problem people and calls them out for bad behavior–you can be part of changing the culture from a BIG VILIAN negative to a SUPERHERO positive.



It starts, like in the comic–by identifying their personal agendas and bad behaviors and telling them to stop as well as by working with or around them to facilitate progress.



Galactus, you are finished! 😉



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)