Space, The Final Frontier

This happened yesterday.

PayPal, the e-commerce business that allows for online money transfers anywhere in the world, announced the launch of PayPal Galactic on Thursday. Intended to make universal space payments a reality — and help Kirk pay for that warp drive tune up — PayPal Galactic plans to bring together leaders in the scientific community to prepare and support the future of space commerce.

‘We are confident that Captain Kirk would use PayPal’s galactic payment system to pay for Enterprise’s repairs.’- Anuj Nayar, the senior director of communications and social media of PayPal

In recent years, privately-owned space tourism programs such as Virgin Galactic and SpaceX have made strides in opening the experience of space exploration to the general public.  In the hopes of being the world’s first and preferred monetary system that reaches into space, the company has partnered with the SETI Institute and other members of the scientific community to answer questions about the future of space commerce.

The need for such a payment system already exists, according to PayPal. Astronauts living aboard space stations still need to pay for life’s basic necessities. No matter how far from — or above — home they are, the astronauts are still responsible for them.

As both SETI and PayPal share the same goals of exploring space and developing an interplanetary system, the company strongly feels that partnering with the sky-watching Institute will address the critical issues and make the payment system a reality.

On another galactic note, we had a super moon this week.  Check this picture out:

Supermoon

“To the Moon Alice.”

Enjoy the weekend.

Webman

Why Trust is Critical?

“The glue that holds all relationships together – including the relationship between leader and the led is trust, and trust is based on integrity.” – Brian Tracy

It is impossible to have effective and productive working relationships without trust. Trust is critical for every business and for every team.  Today, associates work in teams on a daily basis. They rely on each other to succeed, to meet the ever changing demands of their clients, to leverage each others expertise to solve business problems in real time.  Teamwork involves trust among team members and between management and associates.  Trust is the cornerstone of success.  Without it the team will fail.  When one member of the team undermines trust, it sets the entire team back on it’s heels.

So why is it that team members undermine trust by divulging confidential information?  Why is it that team members, after being told specifically that the conversation they just had was confidential, go running immediately to others to share the information?

Do they not care about the success of the team?  Do they place their own needs above the needs of the team?  Do they believe that there is an “I” in team?  Whatever the reason, the fact remains that this type of behavior negatively impacts the teams ability to win.  Plain and simple.

Webster’s Dictionary defines trust as the “assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something.” The key to the survival of a business is trust. Trust is a critical issue in any type of relationship because a relationship without trust is not really a relationship at all.  A team that does not build a trusting relationship is not an effective team. Trust forms the foundation for effective communication, associate retention, motivation, and instills passion and commitment to exceed client expectations.

Trust, honesty, clear goals and collaboration are the keys to success on any team.  Everyone on the team plays a critical role, but these key elements are the foundation that needs to be built upon.  Team building is not always the easiest task to accomplish, but without it there is no Team, only “I’s.”

Webman

Instant Karma

A favorite song by the Plastic Ono Band, aka John Lennon and friends.

But now we have “Karma” technology, as in “peer to peer” wireless.  Cool huh!

When you switch on your tablet or laptop and the wireless Internet access you need is just there. Automatically, everywhere, every time.  Viola!

No more searching for hotspots. You’ll just get to browsing, and the days when passwords or daily- or monthly-pass payments stood in the way of productivity are no more.  So just as the song states “Instant Karma.”

Karma-Hotspot-3

Here is how it works.  Users buy a compact $79 hotspot device (the first units shipped last January) and they create an account. Switch on the hotspot and you get 1 GB of bandwidth to get you started. After that, it’s $14 per GB — no subscriptions, pay-as-you-want-it. And the access is mobile. Walk down the street with your Karma hotspot and your access goes with you.

Your Karma Wi-Fi signal is available to other people within range who are seeking a Wi-Fi connection. All they have to do is log on via your hotspot and sign up with the company. They would get a free 100 MB, and for more, they can pay as they go. Cool thing is, you would get 100 MB free as well.

That’s an underlying idea worth noting. The more you share, the more free bandwidth you accumulate. Peer-to-peer wi-fi, the next big thing?

Enjoy the day.

Webman

Toxic Leadership

We have focused on leadership and the key attributes of great leaders so far this week.  Today we will look at the worst type of leader and raise your awareness to the behaviors of insecure leaders.

For many of us that have been in the workforce for a few years, we have experienced many different types of leaders.  There are those that are inspirational, motivating, thoughtful, mentors and unafraid to build great teams with people that are more skilled then them in many areas.  Then there are leaders that do not belong in a position of leadership – Insecure leaders.

Insecure leaders are dangers. Dictionary.com shows the reason why these leaders can be dangerous. Insecurity is defined as being, “subject to fear & doubt, anxious, a risk & danger, and not firmly or reliably placed.” When insecurity is present in a leaders life it becomes a cap to their influence and effectiveness. It hurts the people around them, and the organization.

Insecure leaders are highly threatened by the truth, by facts, by transparency and by honesty.  In order to protect their lofty, undeserved positions of power, they campaign against talented people that pose a threat to their positions.  They lie, they commit to tasks that they never deliver upon, they mislead co-workers, they fail to communicate, they miss deadlines, they undermine all positive things and worst of all, they are toxic to the companies they work for, creating environments of distrust and ineffectiveness.  They make excuses about every deadline they miss or every project they fail to do because they say “I was too  busy”, “I have too many other things to do”, “I did not understand the process”, or “I don’t care about the process, I just needed to get something done”.  Of course, all that means is that the people that know how to get it done right will now have to fix it, wasting much more time and creating both employee and client dissatisfaction.

Insecure leaders like to distract employees and business partners by focusing on tasks that are not important or do not create customer or employee benefit/value.  They want to find that one nugget of information that substantiates their beliefs so they can use it to their advantage and create a hostile environment.  This is how they maintain control.  This “rope a dope” technique of focusing people on unimportant, irrelevant topics is part of their modus operandi to distract their co-workers from focusing on their leadership and managerial inadequacies.  They are the masters of publicly agreeing to key strategies in meetings with their bosses, only to undermine these decisions in conversations with their subordinates.  You might hear a statement like, “Although this was the agreed to decision, it will never work”, or “This is what I committed to, but let’s do it this way.” Have you heard any of these before?

A leader who is insecure cannot successfully lead those around them. This is because their actions, attitude, and motives are controlled and driven by their personal insecurity. Below are some negative characteristics and unhealthy aspects of an insecure leader:

  • They control people, systems, polices, and are micro managers.
  • They avoid partnering or hiring smart, talented, and people better then themselves.
  • They create an insecure work environment.
  • They avoid moving outside of their comfort zone.
  • They resist personal, organizational, or team growth or change.
  • They avoid calculated risks because of the fear of failure.
  • They don’t encourage or empower their people.
  • They guard against building open and strong relationships.
  • They see others through their insecurity.

Great leaders and great companies identify this type of leader immediately and take action.  The behaviors are painfully obvious.  Great companies rid themselves of these insecure leaders and more importantly, stop hiring people with these traits.  Great leaders do not listen to these insecure leaders, they do not fall for their unhealthy charm or their “opinions” of other co-workers that are threatening to their existence.  Insecure leaders do not care about the company or their co-workers.  They only care about themselves, their careers and feeding their egos at the expense of others.

No person or leader, however good they might be, is exempt from potentially becoming or being insecure. This is why it’s essential to be able to identify and eliminate insecurity from our life. To do this I suggest:

Lead yourself – The most important person you can lead is yourself.  An important aspect to leading is to become self aware. This mean you are aware and comfortable with your strengths, weaknesses, personality, temperament, and emotions. You know you have been uniquely made and you accept it. A powerful way to avoid insecurity is to be aware and have control of your inwards thoughts and dialog.

Develop trusted relationships- The people in your inner circle will either lead you forward or hold you back. This is why it’s essential to build friendships with secure, positive, and confident people. When you have trusted relationships, those people can help you spot areas you need to change (Insecurity is one area) and be a support for you.

Do you know any leaders like this?  If you do, call your CEO now and tell them.

Webman

Bill Belichick on Leadership

Bill Belichick, head coach for the New England Patriots, is an interesting guy.  William Stephen “Bill” Belichick (/ˈbɛlɨɪk/; born April 16, 1952) is an American football head coach for the New England Patriots of the National Football League. He also has extensive authority over the Patriots’ football operations, effectively making him the team’s general manager as well. Coaching continuously in various roles in the NFL since 1975, Belichick earned his first head coaching job with the Cleveland Browns in 1991. Following his firing in 1995, he did not serve as a head coach again until 2000 with the Patriots. Since then, Belichick has coached the Patriots to five Super Bowl appearances: victories in Super Bowls XXXVI, XXXVIII, and XXXIX, and subsequent losses in Super Bowl XLII and Super Bowl XLVI. He was named the AP NFL Coach of the Year for the 2003, 2007 and 2010 seasons. Belichick is the NFL’s longest tenured active head coach.

And of course he is a master manipulator of the media.  His personality is just effervescent 🙂

But he is an awesome leader.  Here is what Belichick said on leadership while delivering the keynote address at a sports medicine symposium in May.

“What I’ve always told our team, and what I thoroughly believe in, is that every member of our team — players, coaches, support staff and so forth – is a shareholder. They have a share in the team. Are they all exactly equal? Of course not, but they’re all shareholders. Every member of the team has an opportunity to show positive leadership or negative leadership. That’s really what it comes to. The question for that person is ‘How are they going to do that? How are they going to control that?’”

A winning approach I would say 🙂

And now some tuneage from The Killers in honor of Mr. Brightside, Bill Belichick 🙂

Enjoy the day.

Webman

Leadership Made Simple

One of the greatest leaders of our time was Peter Drucker.  Peter Ferdinand Drucker (November 19, 1909 – November 11, 2005) was an Austrian-born American management consultant, educator, and author, whose writings contributed to the philosophical and practical foundations of the modern business corporation. He was also a leader in the development of management education, and he invented the concept known as management by objectives.

Drucker’s books and scholarly and popular articles explored how humans are organized across the business, government, and nonprofit sectors of societyHe is one of the best-known and most widely influential thinkers and writers on the subject of management theory and practice. His writings have predicted many of the major developments of the late twentieth century, including privatization and decentralization; the rise of Japan to economic world power; the decisive importance of marketing; and the emergence of the information society with its necessity of lifelong learningIn 1959, Drucker coined the term “knowledge worker” and later in his life considered knowledge worker productivity to be the next frontier of management.

Here is what Peter Drucker believed about leadership:

  • A leader is someone who has followers
  • Popularity is not leadership, results are
  • Leaders are highly visible, they set examples
  • Leadership is not rank, privilege, titles or money; it is responsibility

Leaders do not hide behind issues; they confront and resolve them.  Leaders do not avoid conflict; they embrace it and learn from it.  Leaders don’t sit in their offices all day; they interact and work closely with their co-workers.  Leaders don’t need control; they know how to get things done by understanding the business issues clearly and resolving them through collaboration.  Leaders listen.  Leaders change and embrace change.  Leaders lead change.

Do you work for a great leader?  Are you a great leader?  Do you have what it takes?

Don’t follow, lead.

A classic tune from the 80’s to begin your day today.

Thanks to Wikipedia www.wikipedia.org for the brief overview of Mr. Drucker.

Webman

Ah, Fresh Air!

Been raining this week.  Makes me long for taking the top off the jeep and rolling the windows down.  Dogs really like it when the windows are down.  The smell of the road, the wind through their  hair, the joy of freedom.

And with the windows down, you can just crank the music up really loud, rest your arm on the window, put your sunglasses on and sing.  Works for me because no one can hear me 🙂

Enjoy the weekend.

Webman