Daily Joys and Simple Pleasures

Daily Joys and Simple Pleasures


A LIFELONG Leadership Story

Taken from LEAN FORWARD INTO YOUR LIFE, Conari Press, 2007, Mary Anne Radmacher

From early in my childhood I heard my father recount a story which typified his management and leadership style. The building in which he was a graveyard-shift foreman had sheet metal for a roof.  It was a good thing in the hot summer,   somehow  serving to help cool the building. In the winter, however, it was a liability. The snow  piled and worked to invert the sheet metal, causing serious concern about a roof collapse.  The roof had to be cleared of its snow. It was a dangerous job. Climbing a ladder to a warehouse roof in a snow storm to shovel snow off sheet metal wasn’t anyone’s idea of a good time. But it was necessary for everyone’s safety that four people subject themselves to this danger. All were grateful that Oregon was not long subjected to seasonal  snow storms.

In advance of the effort my father did two things. He placed enough equipment and outdoor gear for four people in the corner by the door. Then, when it was time he left his desk, went to the corner, and started suiting up. He assured me, each time he told me the story, that he was willing to go on the roof and get the job done alone. Although he never had to do the job by himself. He was  always joined by three other men. Each time, it was a different group, but by the time my dad was suited up and put his hand to one of the four snow shovels, there were three men in line behind, read to grab the other shovels.

When I was older he elaborated on the story just a little.  He explained to me why he would never accept offered promotions into management, off the production-facility floor.

“In a suit, you tell four men that they have to climb on the roof and put themselves at risk for the greater good. On the production floor, you climb on the roof for the greater good, putting yourself at risk, and there are people who follow. Not because you told them to, but because you led the way.”

In the first couple of years of operating myown business, I kept a shovel in the corner of the space in which I worked to remind me of the kind of leader I wanted to be.



Advertisement
Comments Post the First Comment »
post a comment

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the beliefnet.com terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to beliefnet.com and may be used by beliefnet.com in accordance with the agreements.



Previous Posts

Do You Dread Your Monday?
Maybe this is the week you ask a little of your employer. Or a lot! Mondays come with a sense of dread for a lot of people. Numbers of people haul their hips to a job they hate, and do work that holds little meaning

posted 1:25:14pm Sep. 22, 2014 | read full post »

REMEMBER AND DO WHAT MATTERS

posted 2:54:50pm Jul. 20, 2014 | read full post »

Upset About the Hobby Lobby / Supreme Court Decision
Or, are you celebratory of the decision?  In any event, people often inquire what can one person do about such large matters? I offer a sixty word summary first and then in 1051 words I explore more deeply.  My perspective is one of chagrin at the Constitutional compromise that the decision repres

posted 2:31:51pm Jul. 02, 2014 | read full post »

Is There Such A Thing as an Ordinary Day?
I found myself looking about the tasks of my day and I casually assessed, "Well, this is just an ordinary day." I immediately countered that observation.  June 25, 2014.  Unrepeatable.  Never to be seen again. These seconds,as they sweep past, will never whooosh in precisely the same configura

posted 1:25:23pm Jun. 25, 2014 | read full post »

What Can You Do to Stop Gun Violence?
Pay attention to what the Brady Bill people are doing on June 21: ASK the question.  Share with your neighbors, family and school.  And then, ask the question and DO something about the answer.  

posted 1:26:49pm Jun. 10, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.