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I came across this list of leadership observations from Raytheon CEO Bill Swanson and couldn’t resist sharing them. You’ll nod your head at many, chuckle at a couple, and find inspiration in a few.
- It is easier to get into something than to get out of it.
- If you are not criticized, you may not be doing much
- Look for what is missing. Many know how to improve what’s there; few can see what isn’t there.
- However menial and trivial your early assignments may appear, give them your best effort.
- Persistence or tenacity is the disposition to persevere in spite of difficulties, discouragement or indifference. Don’t be known as a good starter but a poor finisher!
- In doing your project, don’t wait for others; go after them and make sure it gets done.
- Confirm the instructions you give others, and their commitments, in writing. Don’t assume it will get done.
- Don’t be timid: Speak up, express yourself and promote your ideas.
- Practice shows that those who speak the most knowingly and confidently often end up with the assignment to get the job done.
- Strive for brevity and clarity in oral and written reports.
- Be extremely careful in the accuracy of your statements.
- Don’t overlook the fact that you are working for a boss. Keep him or her informed. Whatever the boss wants, within the bounds of integrity, takes top priority.
- When interacting with people outside the company, remember that you are always representing the company. Be especially careful of your commitments.
- Cultivate the habit of boiling matters down to the simplest terms: the proverbial
"elevator speech" is the best way.
- Don’t get excited in engineering emergencies: Keep your feet on the ground.
- Cultivate the habit of making quick, clean-cut decisions.
- When making decisions, the "pros" are much easier to deal with than the "cons." Your boss wants to see both.
- Don’t ever lose your sense of humor.
- Have fun at what you do. It will be reflected in you work. No one likes a grump except another grump!
- Treat the name of your company as if it were your own.
- Beg for the bad news.
- You remember 1/3 of what you read, 1/2 of what people tell you, but 100% of what you feel.
- You can’t polish a sneaker.
- When facing issues or problems that are becoming drawn-out, "short them to the ground."
- When faced with decisions, try to look at them as if you were one level up in the organization. Your perspective will change quickly.
- A person who is nice to you but rude to the waiter, or to others, is not a nice person. (This rule never fails).
- Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, an amateur built an ark that survived a flood while a large group of professionals built the Titanic!