Be Like Humble Servant, Captain Terry!

One of our favorite stories ever. Enjoy, share! John and Kristin

servant, servant leadership, leadership, qbq, accountability

I arrived at the Cleveland airport for my flight feeling dread. I had to get to Portland, Oregon that night, and I was taking the last flight west. On top of that, I had to connect through the always chaotic O’Hare International Airport.

We pulled away from the gate on time, but then a “ground hold” happened. Going nowhere, my worry meter kicked in.

Meanwhile, I was sitting next to a United Airlines pilot — Captain Terry Callaghan — who was catching a ride to O’Hare to pilot a flight to Germany. Airline pilots operate in a hierarchical, seniority-based system, and only the most senior pilots fly the foreign routes. Add that to his captain’s hat and distinguished gray hair, and I knew he was an experienced professional. He was able to explain the reasons behind our delay, which helped a little, but I still needed to be in Portland that night — and we were losing precious minutes fast.

We finally took off …

8 CommentsLeadership

Never Forget: Learning Equals Change

enneagram, myers briggs, mbti, qbqThere’s a movement toward greater self-awareness by understanding one’s personality. In general, this is healthy and good — but is it making a difference?

My wife, Karen, and I have been reading The Road Back to You to learn about the Enneagram, a personality-type system that can lead to self-discovery and greater understanding. Doing so has generated a lot of conversation. From these chats, I have a thought to share that I’ll set up with a key passage from the QBQ! book.

Excerpted from Ch. 37 titled, “We Buy Too Many Books”

We attend too many seminars. We take too many classes. We buy too many books. We listen to too many podcasts. We engage in too much training.

Yes, it’s all a waste! A waste, that is, if we’re unclear on what learning really is. Learning is not attending, listening, or reading. Nor is it merely gaining knowledge. Learning is really about translating knowing what to do into doing what we know. In other words, it’s about changing.

Never forget: Learning equals change. If we haven’t changed we haven’t learned.

Now that thought …

14 CommentsLeadership, Lifestyle, Personal Accountability

5 Ways to Evaluate Your Openness to Feedback

feedback-growth-management-leadership

Feedback is good. Without it, how do I improve?

“So, all I have to do, Beth, is push this button to evaluate you?” I asked incredulously.

“Yep. That’s right,” said Beth, an outstanding Colorado State government team member. Smiling, she handed me new license plates for a car we’d just bought.

My first thought as I pressed the EXCELLENT button: Glad my wife doesn’t have one of these for me at home!

My next thought:

19 CommentsLeadership, Management

Teamwork: No Cool Kids, Every Player Counts

I’ve always loved this question: “What’s the most important leg of a 3-legged stool?” The answer is, of course, obvious.

How about this question, though: “Who’s the most important member of a team?” Isn’t the answer also—all of them?

I’ve had some Big Bad Voodoo Daddy music for years and often jump right into it when exercising. Today, though, I decided to watch this terrific group here:

Leave a commentLeadership, Management

Skip The Fads—Invest In Training That Achieves 3 Crucial Results

Looking for training that works? Click here.

“Dad, I didn’t know you could do that!” declared thirtysomething daughter, Tara, grinning ear-to-ear.

Little 4-year-old McKenna loved what she was seeing, too.

What were they so amazed by?

The QBQ! Grandpa efficiently spinning a Hula Hoop around his waist and hips—and keeping it going!

Hula Hoops, what a fad they were.

From pet rocks to PEZ dispensers to parachute pants to spinners, fads can be fun for kids and adults. However, here’s a truth:

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Busting the Blame: It’s Not Complicated

blame, costs of blame, team, team building, accountability training

The Conversation

Prospect: “John, we have a problem.”

Me: “Uh oh. What happened?”

Prospect: “You know I believe QBQ! training is needed at Lockheed Martin, but after our SVP read the QBQ! book, she decided it’s ‘too simple.’”

Me: ”Well, yeah, it’s not rocket science!”

Pause …

Me: ”Um, what’s her background?”

Prospect: ”She’s a rocket scientist.”

I’ll never forget that conversation. Yes, I missed that sale but the SVP was right: The QBQ! message of PERSONAL ACCOUNTABILITY is simple.

But not too simple. Eradicating the cancer of blame from our world, not to mention our organizations, politics, and families, is exactly what’s needed—and not complicated.

Blame Is Spelled “b-lame”

Have you witnessed blame? If so, you’ve not only seen blame, you’ve seen lame. I mean, what could be more lame than when …

9 CommentsLeadership, Personal Accountability