QBQ! QuickNote – The Relational Journey Never Ends

My wife, Karen, and I will hit the big 3-0 on June 21, 2010. Thirty years of bliss!

Bliss. What a funny word. The dictionary says that bliss is this: Supreme happiness; utter joy or contentment.

That’s quite a goal, eh? And a worthy one! You’d think Karen and I would’ve achieved it, since we were completely set up for lots of bliss three hours after we tied the knot. Julia, a woman in her late 80’s, attended our wedding. As Karen, age 19, and I at 22, said good-bye to her at the country church door, she shared: “You should know that my husband, Ford, and I never had an argument in 60 years!” My young bride and I stared at this sweet woman, now seeing a bar that was set pretty darn high, wondering if we could clear it.

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QBQ! QuickNote – What Could Have Happened!

Our story comes from Robb in Winnipeg, Manitoba.


Here’s a story that absolutely “wowed” me. Bottom line, it’s about people coming together to take accountability for helping strangers.

Driving home from Minneapolis to Winnipeg, the battery light on our car dashboard came on just north of Grand Forks, North Dakota. Then another warning light. Then another. Then the radio stopped working. This was followed by the lights and the speedometer failing! We were hoping to make it to Canada before the car stalled, but the car seized up and we pulled to the side of the highway. From the middle of, well, nowhere, we called Triple A and they sent Kevin, a mechanic, to help us. He said that we needed a new alternator, so he gave our battery a quick charge so we could drive ten miles to the town of Grafton. Kevin advised us that we’d probably be spending the night there since it was now evening and the local garages would all be closed.

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QBQ! QuickNote – Integrity Begins With Me!

On a December Saturday years ago, the Millers piled into our van and headed for the mall. It was lunchtime, so we stopped at McDonald’s. Waiting at a red light in front of the restaurant, we saw a man standing at the intersection. In his mid-40s with a full beard, he was wearing a well-worn army jacket, ripped jeans, tennis shoes, a skimpy wool hat, and gloves with holes in their fingers. He looked cold.

He was also holding a sign that said, “Food for work.” Our kids had a lot of questions. Karen and I did our best to answer them. “Yes, kids, he’s probably hungry. Yeah, I guess he’d work for food, not just money. No, he probably has no place to go tonight. Yes, I’m sure he’s poor. No, he probably does not have a home. I’m sure he’s cold. You’re right, it’s very sad.”

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QBQ! QuickNote – Outstanding Happens in Moments

Our QuickNote story is from Antonio in Indiana, an Outstanding! reader.

John, I ordered Outstanding! the minute it was released, and have applied the principles to my personal and professional life. My staff has done the same—and we have seen our business move in an outstanding direction. So, I want to share an “outstanding” story with you that I experienced!

I phoned in a “carry out” lunch order to our local McAlister’s Deli for two grilled chicken salads. The gal on the phone told me they would be ready in five minutes. When I arrived ten minutes later the place was packed with a line of customers reaching the sidewalk.

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Leadership and Mentoring

Ben Franklin said; tell me and I’ll forget, teach me, and I may remember, involve me and I’ll learn.

I mention that to say rather than simply give the answers, the Leader’s role should be to help their people find the answers for themselves. While giving the answers is better than giving no help at all, helping people to find the answers for themselves provides far more effective mentoring. This process enables so much more for the people in terms of their learning experience.

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Leadership Traits

One of the most important contributions psychology has made to the field of business has been in determining the key traits of acknowledged leaders. Psychological tests have been used to determine what characteristics are most commonly noted among successful leaders. This list of characteristics can be used for developmental purposes to help managers gain insight and develop their leadership skills.

The increasing rate of change in the business environment is a major factor in this emphasis on leadership. Whereas in the past, managers were expected to maintain the status quo in order to move ahead, new forces in the marketplace have made it necessary to expand this narrow focus. The new leaders of tomorrow are visionary. They are both learners and teachers. Not only do they foresee paradigm changes in society, but they also have a strong sense of ethics and work to build integrity in their organizations.

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More ideas about Leadership

Explaining and understanding the nature of good leadership is probably easier than practicing it. Good leadership requires deep human qualities, beyond conventional notions of authority.

In the modern age good leaders are an enabling force, helping people and organizations to perform and develop, which implies that a sophisticated alignment be achieved – of people’s needs, and the aims of the organization.

The traditional concept of a leader being the directing chief at the top of a hierarchy is nowadays a very incomplete appreciation of what true leadership must be.

Effective leadership does not necessarily require great technical or intellectual capacity. These attributes might help, but they are not pivotal.

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Leadership Tips

Different leaders have different ideas about leadership. For example, below you will see Jack Welch’s perspective which even though quite modern compared to many leaders, is nevertheless based on quite traditional leadership principles.

First here is a deeper more philosophical view of effective modern leadership which addresses the foundations of effective leadership.

A British government initiative surfaced in March 2008, which suggested that young people should swear an oath of allegiance to ‘Queen and Country’, seemingly as a means of improving national loyalty, identity, and allegiance.

While packaged as a suggestion to address ‘disaffection’ among young people, the idea was essentially concerned with leadership – or more precisely a failing leadership.

The idea was rightly and unanimously dismissed by all sensible commentators as foolhardy nonsense, but it does provide a wonderful perspective by which to examine and illustrate the actual important principles of leadership:

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I read this and wanted to share it with you because it makes a lot of sense.

First don’t confuse how much money one has as to his or her success!

These keys will not unlock any opportunities of success without first having a strong and unfailing Belief in yourself.

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So, now you’re A Leader

There are some times in life when everything changes. For families, it’s the birth of the first child. For people in business, it’s moving from individual contributor to the Leader. Here are a dozen things to think about.

Being a Leader is a different kind of work, more like changing a career than changing jobs.

You may have been a leader before, but now being a leader is part of your job.

The team is now your destiny and you’re accountable for the way they accomplish the mission.

You will do better if you work to help your team members succeed.

You’re the default decider.

It can to take you more than a year to get effective and comfortable with the basics of the job.

It can take you a decade to master the job, without an effective development course.

You are responsible for your own development, no matter what programs your company has.

Some people who used to think you were competent now assume you’re a jerk.

Some people will laugh at your jokes who never used to think you were funny.

Conversations are your primary tool for getting your job done.

You will almost certainly not be ready for your new work, hardly anyone is, but you will be expected to perform right away.

Leader’s Bottom Line

When you become a Leader, your job is to help the team and the team members succeed. It can be the most rewarding job in the world, or a living hell. You make the choice.

As always, I hope that what I have shared helps you be more effective in Leadership. To learn more about this and many other areas of effective leadership, please explore our “Leadership in Action” multimedia training systems and the process we use to implement it into your organization.

To receive a pdf overview of this course, please email at [email protected] and request it


Jim Strutton, CEO

Accountability Plus, Inc.

[email protected]


© 2012 Accountability Plus, Inc.

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