5 Ways to Empower Your People

This is the third installment in the series from JetBlue CEO, Joel Peterson.  I have once again hit the highlights for you.  Thank you to Mr Peterson for a great series!

Our best performances are nearly always spurred on by colleagues and leaders who have empowered us – that is, trusted us with the freedom and resources to excel.  Low-trust organizations have trouble giving their teams the latitude to do much. Wary ofeveryone, they often don’t trust even their most trustworthy people. Instead, they rely on thick compliance manuals for even the most trivial matters, and reward tattlers as a way to prevent rule breaking. This suspicious atmosphere kills initiative and creativity, and worst of all, it stifles any potential for trust.

Here are a few things to consider if you’re aiming to build a culture where people are empowered to do great work:

1) Bet on people. Allow people a chance to prove they can take on more responsibility. A leader who trusts others to grow inspires the best in people and can ignite trust.
2) Take action.  Try out ideas, don’t just talk about them.  Walk that talk.
3) Move On.  What worked before is not today’s answer. High-trust organizations don’t rely blindly on old rules. Instead, they trust their teams to figure out the new ones.
4) Expect mistakes. Even the best efforts can, and do, fail. Find out why quickly, learn and move forward with renewed vigor.
5) Don’t be paranoid. Giving up power is a great way to create more power.  Get everyone on the same page and make great stuff happen together.

A little Aretha Franklin to jump start your day.

Enjoy the day.

Webman

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It is Up to You!

Interviewed a great person a few years ago for a business development position.  When I asked her why she had been so successful, she responded, “If it is to be, it is up to me.”  Best answer ever!

Seems to be a lot of excuses going around these days.  In the workplace, many associates seem to blame circumstances or other people for their failure to get stuff done.  In government, does anyone take accountability for anything?  Been stuck on a bridge in New Jersey  lately?  Too many examples of people making commitments that they just do not live up to.  Does anyone just stand up and take responsibility anymore?  How about some honesty and integrity?  Pretty rare these days.  What are the drivers of this behavior?

Well, here is some great advice for you to remember and live by everyday:

  • Accountability starts with you. Grab a glove and get in the game!
  • Accountability is about being reliable. Do as you say!
  • Accountability is ownership. Own it.  If it fails, fix it.
  • Accountability creates clarity. No questions required.
  • Accountability is about trustworthiness. You deliver, maybe others will follow your lead.
  • Accountability is a partnership. Do you want your partners/teammates letting you down?  Did not think so!
  • Successful leaders always show accountability.

Stop the noise. No more excuses.  Get it done and do it with excellence.  Why would you ever do less than your best?  Original article can be found at http://www.lollydaskal.com/leadership/accountability-if-it-is-to-be-its-up-to-me/

And now for some comic relief from Bruce Springsteen and Jimmy Fallon.

Webman

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That’s A Lot of Ham for Only Two Eggs!

Google just announced that it’s buying Nest for $3.2 billion!  For a company with two products, that’s a lot of cash 🙂

But Nest is one of the current market leaders in what is being referred to as the “Internet of Things.”  What is that you ask? The Internet of Things  refers to uniquely identifiable objects, like a room thermostat or smoke detector, that are connected and accessible via the internet.  Earlier examples of these “connectors” are RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) chips, barcodes, QR codes and digital watermarking.  According to Gartner there will be nearly 26 billion devices on the Internet of Things by 2020. Now that is a lot of devices.

A bit more about Nest.  Nest is best known for its smart thermostat, which learns your habits over time and adjusts your heat settings accordingly.  They also recently launched Protect (Smoke + CO Alarm) to rave reviews.  Here are pictures of the Nest thermostat and Nest Protect alarm.

nestnest protect

The Nest thermostat is the first next generation in-home thermostat.  It learns your schedule, programs itself and can be controlled from your phone. The Nest Thermostat can lower your heating and cooling bills up to 20%.  That will save you a lot of Benjamins 🙂

Nest Protect not only has an alarm component, but also speaks to you with a human voice. It tells you what the problem is and where it is. And if you have more than one Nest Protect, they connect so they can speak up at the same time even if Wi-Fi is down. No better way to protect the home and family.

For Google, this continues a big new push to apply its machine-learning expertise to physical objects, from self-driving cars to robots and now home appliances. Google continues to broaden its focus to artificial intelligence and machine learning in myriad forms. It is now a machine-learning company.

We are moving into a time where the opportunity to track everything in real time on your phone or other internet connected device will be possible.  When will we have the time to actually accomplish anything?  🙂  George Jetson is the man!

Enjoy the day.

Webman

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50 Years Ago – The Beatles

A band named The Beatles made a bit of a splash here in the US.  Over the next month or so we will all be taken back to that time to relive the hysteria and enthusiasm created by the band that is as relevant today as they were 50 years ago.  Amazing!

On Feb. 9, 2014, CBS will mark the 50th anniversary of the Beatles‘ first appearance on ‘The Ed Sullivan Show’ in a big way.

According to ABC News Radio, the group’s milestone will be celebrated with a special, ‘The Night That Changed America: A Grammy Salute to the Beatles,’ which will feature appearances from Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr as well as John Lennon‘s and George Harrison‘s widows, Yoko Ono and Olivia Harrison. And if the latest rumors are correct, those are just a few of the famous names turning out to pay tribute.

Other reports also indicate that the show will include appearances by Justin TimberlakeLady GagaAdeleBruno MarsPink and Katy Perry, who will deliver new performances of the five songs the Beatles played on their ‘Ed Sullivan Show’ debut. Annie Lennox and Dave Stewart are slated to come together and perform once again as the Eurythmics.

Here is a video from the original Ed Sullivan show to get you started.  My guess is that you will see this many places over the next few weeks, so let this be the first of many 🙂  The video also eliminates the crowd noise so you can actually hear the performance.

Break out the vinyl.

Webman

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Building a High Trust Culture

Second installment in the series from Joel Peterson, Chairman of JetBlue Airways. As we did last week, I will summarize and add some thoughts.

Some headlines for you:

  • Personal integrity is the foundation of trust in any organization. If you say you are going to do something, just do it.  Don’t make your team or your manager ask you about it.  Tell them it is done before they ask you.
  • Leadership is critical. Leaders show and encourage respect when they empower team members, celebrate their contributions, and help them learn from missteps.  Command and control leadership does not support building trust.
  • Positive always beat negative.  Going negative reveals a general lack of respect and self-control. Your culture will be better served by celebrating what your own team is doing.  Be a leader – do not go negative!
  • Respect is an investment. You want to build a great team based on trust?  Nothing gets better results in team coherence, employee satisfaction, and organizational momentum than advancing the best interests of the your people.
  • Root out disrespect. Vigilant leaders are always looking to nip disrespectful practices in the bud. That means no tolerance for talking behind people’s backs, letting problems fester, or failing to give people the feedback they need to improve.  If this is happening, you need to act quickly and put an end to it.
  • Respect isn’t the same as being nice.  Disagreement is key yo great decision making. People in high-trust organizations feel secure in their ability to disagree – because they know how to disagree with respect.

Well done Mr. Peterson! Full article can be found on LinkedIn
http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20140109080301-11846967-building-a-high-trust-culture-2-invest-in-respect?goback=%2Enmp_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1&trk=prof-post

Enjoy the weekend.

Webman

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Baby You Can Drive My Car

That is so Yesterday!  See what I did there 🙂

The modern version is that there actually is no one driving your car. Are you ready for this?

In the fall of 2010, Google announced that it developed “self-piloting” Toyota Prius Hybrids and they were loose on the streets of California. Mostly on Highway 1 between San Francisco and Los Angeles.  And they had driven 140,000 miles with no issues. The vehicles were powered by unproven artificial intelligence software.  Those Google people are pretty smart.

Fast forward to 2014 and now everyone is getting in the game to provide “driverless” cars. Audi, BMW, GM, Nissan, Toyota, and Volvo all have announced plans to “unveil” an autonomous car by 2020. Google says to watch for its public debut of its prototype in 2016. Still, a truly autonomous vehicle, one capable of dealing with any real-world situation, won’t hit showrooms coast-to-coast for years after that.

But we have the technology already. Plus there would be no accidents, less traffic, all sorts of awesome benefits.  What the heck is taking so long?

Simple answer.  People.  We are not close to relinquishing control of the steering wheel. Heck,I never let anyone else drive. You know why?  Because I like it and so do you 🙂  Great technology in search of a problem.  Wonder what generation will adopt? Wonder if we will be around to see it?

And now a classic by the Beatles for your listening pleasure.

Webman

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Attention Shoppers!

Yes you looking at the Ragu!

We have all be using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) for some time.  We started this journey with Garmins, Tom Tom’s and other devices specific to on dash installation.  They worked pretty well but you needed to continuously update the street files to get the most out of these devices.  Then the car companies started to install in dash navigation systems.  I do not know about you, but these interfaces always seemed complex and unusable to me.

Then of course, these capabilities became part of our smartphone applications.  We first had Google Maps, MapQuest, AmAze and of course Apple Maps (Much better now)  Then we were introduced to social GPS with Waze, but they were purchased fast by Google. All great apps and all free.  Are you spending any money on Garmins or Tom Tom’s anymore?  Not me 🙂 And of course our phones themselves have Location Based Services, so retailers and the like know where you are and can send you advertising and other content

Now we are moving this indoors with Apple’s iBeacon technology.  What is iBeacon?  It is an indoor positioning system; a network of devices used to wirelessly locate objects or people inside a building.  Apple has already rolled this technology out to their retail stores.  It uses Bluetooth technology, which by the way is of course enabled on all smart phones.  Now there is a coincidence 🙂 This technology will provide the retail store with your exact in-store location, enabling them to communicate directly in the moment of your purchase decisions.  Yowsa!

On Monday, iBeacons were introduced with supermarkets Safeway and Giant Eagle.  inMarket’s (The company providing the solution) iBeacon Mobile to Mortar platform sends out a variety of information to iPhone-owning store visitors, so long as they’ve opted in to use the service via one of its compatible apps, such as CheckPoints.  By enabling the service, shoppers can expect to receive notifications to their Apple handset such as discount coupons, loyalty rewards, and reminders about what to pick up.  The technology was previously introduced in Macy’s through a relationship with shopping application Shopkick.

We are no longer lost in the supermarket.  We know where you are, always.

Webman

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