All Posts in Leadership

June 3, 2010 - No Comments!

Beyond BP

Mark Glover, President, Catalyst prc and guest blogger

By Mark Glover, Guest Blogger

After 45 days and millions of gallons of oil flowing into the Gulf of Mexico I continue to see the focus of criticism, blame, and anger directed at British Petroleum. It is my opinion that this environmental crisis goes far beyond BP. This is not a BP issue, it is an industry issue, a global issue, an environmental issue, and most importantly, a leadership issue.

Like everyone else I have followed closely the events surrounding the oil spill in the gulf, the sudden acceleration of motor vehicles, the contamination and recall of food products, the emergency landing of aircraft in the Hudson River. These events do not happen by accident; they happen because businesses and industries are not in what I call “organizational equilibrium.” By this I mean that there are not as many people or resources ensuring the safety and effective production of goods as there are people and money needed to sell and distribute them. Every industry and business within that industry has responsibilities to uphold a standard of ethics, good manufacturing practices, and to play a role in developing regulations that safeguard the public and environment from catastrophe.

What I expect to see with a catastrophe like the one in the gulf is for leaders not just from BP, but ExxonMobil, Gulf, Chevron, Texaco, Shell, and CITGO to pool their vast technical and financial resources to execute a solution. Read more

April 23, 2010 - No Comments!

Whole Foods-An Insider’s View from an Ex-Team Member. Part 1: Talent Management

The WFM apron...left behind.

Many people don’t know that I spent a year working for Whole Foods Market, first at the new store in Short Pump, Virginia (near Richmond), and then at one of their oldest stores in Charlottesville, Virginia. I was reluctant to tell people because everyone that knows me knows me as “Power Connie,” or “ABC”―All Business Connie. I didn’t think they would understand.

I had very specific reasons at the time for joining the company:

  • I was working through the graduate program in Sustainable Technology and Management at Arizona State University, and wanted to gain some experience in a company that visibly practiced sustainability values and practices.
  • Whole Foods is headquartered in Austin, Texas, and I thought if I could move through the company it would be easy to transfer back to my home state.
  • I love the store, and thought it would be a healthy, cool place to work.

The caveat is that in order to move up and through the company you pretty much have to start at the bottom. Read more

January 13, 2010 - No Comments!

Simply Forward.

Connie Glover, Principal, CMarie Marketing Group

I must give my husband credit for the title of this blog, Simply Forward. But I am using it to make my plea to our corporate leaders, our government, small businesses, and individuals: Take a step forward...right now! Stop blaming the economy for standing still, and be the one to make a move so that the wheels will be set back in motion and the economy will recover. It will never do so if we’re all waiting for someone else to do something.

Hats off to Hewlett-Packard—they’re actually hiring!  “You can’t cut your way to the future,” said Mateen Greenway, a fellow at HP Enterprise Services. “You have to cut your way to survival and then rebuild your organization as you come out of the recession.” HP is currently ranked 9 in Fortune’s 500, and may rank higher next year as they take proactive measures to increase their business by hiring salespeople, among other positions.

The phrase that has contributed most to the crippling of our economic recovery is “We’re waiting for the economy to recover.” Read more

November 6, 2009 - No Comments!

Jobs vs. Work

The word “job” is on the tip of everyone’s tongue in recent months: politicians promise “the creation of jobs”; many people have “lost their job”, and now need to “find a job”; government throws money at the problem, through the issuance of stimulus money, in the attempt that it will be used to “add new jobs”; the “job boards” are flooded with applicants to the point where companies that actually have a “job to post” can’t keep up with the influx.

It’s all about the job! I propose that we gravitate away from the notion of getting a job to the idea of creating and finding meaningful work.  My husband and I have both experienced job losses in the last three years; his being the most recent, and at the height of the unemployment crisis. I advised him to not even bother going through the motions on the job boards. Instead, we agreed that he had a lot to offer companies, especially being an effective manufacturing and operations leader—something sorely lacking in our country. Instead, he spent his time contacting everyone he knew in various industries, and offered his availability as a consultant, temporary turnaround manager, special projects work, and even business partner.

This approach accomplished several things:

  • He wasn’t putting people or organizations in a position of feeling bad about not giving him a job—it was less threatening, and more comfortable for both parties.
  • It got business leaders thinking differently about how to uncover and use talent, without necessarily adding someone to their already stressed payroll.
  • Approached as a temporary situation, the business owner didn’t have to commit.
  • In a time when downsizing and layoffs are common, they could still get good work done by a talented individual, and be poised to be ahead of the competition when the economy bounces back.
  • My husband would then also have an opportunity to bring his ideas and effective leadership into an organization that may see him as then essential, and become permanent.

Years ago I read a book called “Creating You & Co.” (http://www.amazon.com/Creating-You-Co-Learn-Career/dp/0738200328) I feel like this approach is brilliant. It encourages you to figure out and embrace what you have to offer organizations and then finding an organization that will make use of your talents! Create your own “job”.  Read more