What happened to the Golden Rule?

Back in the 60’s and 70’s, sports figures, politicians etc. were revered and protected by the media. They traveled with them and wrote about how people were “doing their job” not their personal lives.  They all knew about the personal challenges, the indiscretions, the failures, the bad decisions, their families, the late nights and all of their imperfections.  They were people, just like the writers and the writers respected their privacy.

Those days are long gone.

Today the media and our society is constantly searching for any nugget of information they can find to identify any and all flaws in a person, pass judgement without all of the facts and then work 24/7 to pull on every thread of a persons life to validate their perspective and point of view. We see this everyday in political reporting and we most certainly see this in sports reporting.  Reporting and news is no longer about truth, it is about humiliating, degrading and tearing down people and publicly sharing that in as many ways, as many times and through as many media channels as possible. When did our society lose respect for the rest of society?

We are bombarded by shows that call themselves “news shows”, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and all other forms of social media that have enabled every person on the planet to become “reporters.”  For real breaking news, these media channels are a godsend as action can be taken faster and in many cases lives can be saved.  For this we can be grateful.

But more than 90% of the “news” reported is not news at all.  It is about sharing a person’s mistake or error for entertainment purposes, regardless of the embarrassment and personal suffering that the person will have to go through after it all goes public. The collective society that I am referring to uses no discretion or common sense, nor do they treat others as they would want to be treated; the “golden rule.”  Apparently the golden rule is dead.

Why does our society delight in the misery of others?  Why is it OK for the media to put aside any discretion and insist on reporting everything about a person’s life?  Why do “news” stories such as Deflategate consume us to the point where we are now questioning everything ever accomplished by the quarterback?  Because it is unfortunately what our society has become – one that basks in the glow of others failures for their own personal or business benefit.

It is no longer about the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.  It is about tearing down people’s lives whenever possible because this is now how we define the “news”. Well here is a headline for you – treat people with the respect and dignity that you expect. Listen don’t judge. Help don’t hurt. Maybe we can make the world just a little better today.

We will close today with a tribute to the great BB King, because now the Thrill is Gone 😦

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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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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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The Gift of Feedback

I hope everyone enjoyed the holidays.  Time to get back to work 🙂

As the new year begins, I am looking for your feedback to help guide the content for the blog in 2014.  Thanks in advance for your participation!

During the last month I have become a huge fan of Songza.  Check it out at http://www.songza.com.  The Music Concierge will guide your listening based on your mood, time of day and style that you are interested in.  If you have not used it, give it a try.  As a big fan of 80’s music, I stumbled across one of my favorite songs from that era, Images of Heaven by Peter Godwin.  Tried to buy it on iTunes but no luck.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Take a listen and enjoy 🙂

Happy New Year!  All the best in 2014.

Webman

Will the government raise your debt limit?

So let’s see how this one works.

Our government makes commitments to spend money it does not have.  Then it has to go out and borrow the money.  All of this spending has led to a boatload of debt; more like a cruise ship or a fleet of cruise ships.  Our national debt is now $16.7 trillion.  Interesting to note that in 2006, then-Senator Obama called a proposed increase in the debt ceiling at the time a “failure of leadership,” when Republican President George W. Bush was in office. The borrowing limit has since been increased seven times during Obama’s term in the White House, from $11.3 trillion to the current $16.7 trillion, for a net increase of $5.4 trillion.  That is a lot of zeroes and an awful lot of spending, don’t you think.

The U.S. has started using final extraordinary measures to avoid a breach of the nation’s debt limit, Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew said as he pressed Congress to increase borrowing authority “immediately.”  Lew, in a letter addressed to House Speaker John Boehner dated yesterday, repeated that the measures will be exhausted no later than Oct. 17.  When that happens, “we will be left to meet our country’s commitments at that time with only approximately $30 billion,” he said, “far short of net expenditures on certain days, which can be as high as $60 billion.”  So on some days we spend upwards of $60 billion.  That’s some big bucks.

I think the way it works for most of us is that we actually make a budget.  We calculate our monthly income, estimate our planned and unplanned expenses, what we want to save or invest and then we see what type of other discretionary income we have.  I am quite sure this is how the majority of those 800,000 furloughed government workers manage their budgets and also how many of you manage your budgets.  Oh that’s right, our government does not have a budget.  The last time that we had a full-on, real-life federal budget that was signed into law was 1997. Bill Clinton was president, and Newt Gingrich was speaker of the House.  By my calculations that was 16 years ago.  16 years, no budget.  We don’t need no stinking budget!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nsdZKCh6RsU

No budget, no restraints on spending, government is shut down, government workers are not getting paid and the solution is to figure out a way to raise the debt ceiling so we can borrow more money.  And this resolution may or may not result in getting the government open again.  How it is that or leaders can continue to get away with this?

Meet with your wife, husband, domestic partner or significant other this weekend and ask them to just raise the debt ceiling on the family finances.  Tell them this is what the government does and they work for us.  If they can do it, we can do it.  Let’s see how far that conversation will get you.

Webman