A “Leadership Primer” attributed to Colin Powell has been circulating on the web for a while. A lot of writings have attributed to different celebrities in this way, but my research indicates that this one is legitimate. Regardless, the points made is worthy of further dissemination:
Being responsible sometimes means pissing people off.
Good leadership involves responsibility to the welfare of the group, which means that some people will get angry at your actions and decisions. It’s inevitable, if you’re honorable. Trying to get everyone to like you is a sign of mediocrity: you’ll avoid the tough decisions, you’ll avoid confronting the people who need to be confronted, and you’ll avoid offering differential rewards based on differential performance because some people might get upset. Ironically, by procrastinating on the difficult choices, by trying not to get anyone mad, and by treating everyone equally “nicely” regardless of their contributions, you’ll simply ensure that the only people you’ll wind up angering are the most creative and productive people in the organization.
Have you seen groups get lost in the weeds trying to make everyone happy? Have you had to make a decision that was best for your group, knowing that it would piss a lot of people off? Are there ways to piss people off without causing divisiveness?
I know that a good leader should do her/his best to avoid giving offense, while not worrying about the small number who all-too-frequently take offense.
I didn’t think it would be difficult to write this. After all John led a full life. Football player, race car driver, etc. and at 71 he was having health problems.
Regardless, here I am shocked he’s really gone.
Mr. John H. Osgood was one of those people that I can say I was glad to have in my life. He was one of those people that you either liked or hated…rarely were there people in between. I believe this was because that was how he looked at people…he either liked you or he didn’t. Simple as that.
John, as one of the owners of DataFlow/Alaska, was my boss…yet I managed him in his position as an employee of the company. We used to joke a lot about the fact that while I could fire him…he’d have the ultimate revenge of firing me for it afterward!
John’s humor was one of his best qualities. He’d keep you smiling and laughing. Hie regular antics as the Pope of ‘The Church of Our Convenience’ (“Mass will be held when it’s convenient for everyone”) would bring smiles to everyone’s faces. If you called him an asshole, he’d thank you and remind you he’s working toward grand asshole and appreciated the encouragement!
When it came to his marriage, he would proudly talk about how he was the perfect husband. His wife, Deidre, is a divorce lawyer so he would conclude “after she dealt with all the wife beating, child abusing, cheating scumbags…she’d come home to a great guy like me!” The looks Deidre would give if she was in ear shot said that wasn’t always the case.
Once we all went to the Corsair Restaurant to celebrate some serious litigation for the company. DataFlow had won and we were celebrating. I’ll remember John’s description of the restaurant…he called it the “You’re going to get laid restaurant”. When asked why (as I had never dined there before) he said “Look…the food’s good, the prices are outrageous and they have a chocolate mousse to die for. Trust me, taking a gal to a place like that get’s you LAID!”
I won’t say if taking anyone there has gotten me that…but my dates have certainly enjoyed the place.
He was also one of those people who genuinely cared for you.
I was in the middle of my divorce and things were not doing well for me and the company. When I left DataFlow, things were not on a good footing. John called me to do lunch, and I was concerned about what it was for. However, John fixed that before anything else. What he said to me is seared in my consciousness and told me how he felt about me. He leaned and said “Look, we fucked up. YOU fucked up. Doesn’t matter. I’m here to tell you we’re still fucking friends!”
To this day, I can’t find the words that describe what that meant to me.
Even after DataFlow changed hands and the contract was over, many of us would meet for lunch. Thursday afternoon at ‘Wings-N-Things’ became a staple for the week. A way for us who were working together to keep in touch. Lots of laughs having lunch with the old crew.
Yesterday we had our lunch, but there were very few smiles. We did get a few laughs in, but for most of us it was somber knowing The Oz was not longer coming. Even the people at Wings-N-Things were saddened by the news.
John had that affect on people.
Eric, the point of contact for all the news said yesterday “John has a LOT of friends! This is real work to keep everyone updated.” When I asked if it was too much, he gave the best answer, “Nope. John’s worth it.”
To Deidre, the girls, grandkids and family my heartfelt condolences. The good thing is a guy like John will be remembered fondly by manypeople.
Gonna miss you, you OLD FART!
If there is a heaven, I can see him talking to an angel like he does to us. He’s nose to nose saying in his low tone “Look you little son of a bitch! When I tell you what I want, I expect it to be here pronto! So get going.”
Rest well John. You will be missed by lots of people.
A woman visited a psychic of some local repute. In a dark and gloomy room, gazing at the Tarot cards laid out before her, the Tarot reader delivered the bad news: “There is no easy way to say this so I’ll just be blunt: Prepare yourself to be a widow. Your husband will die a violent death this year.”
Visibly shaken, the woman stared at the psychic’s lined face, then at the single flickering candle, then down at her hands. She took a few deep breaths to compose herself. She simply had to know.
She met the Tarot reader’s gaze, steadied her voice and asked, “Will I get away with it?”
I had been recently listening to the song ‘Like A G6‘ by the Far East Movement. Thanks to my friend, Shannon (OK…my daughter’s best friend, but she’s my friend too!) I now know of this geektastic version of the song!
Memorial Day weekend has become the one time of the year where it can said that the whole nation is united in the gratitude that’s shown to those that have fallen and those who still bear the pain of wars that are being fought now and in the past.
The toll that’s taken of the soldier can be overwhelming and the loss of a comrade only further shows the alarming severity of the task they must endure.
All the emotion shown during this time gives evidence to the pain suffered by veterans & family members alike.
I know I’ve talked about the difference between Veteran’s Day & Memorial Day, but I’d like to take the time to remind everyone that the men and women of our armed services deserve our gratitude and a great deal more. The depth of that gratitude though celebrated once a year can be repaid in so many different & simple ways year round. From a random act of kindness to just saying “thank you for your service” to a soldier or veteran. The appreciation that it brings is immeasurable for the person concerned.
If nothing else, it shows the respect and esteem we have for these fine individuals who gave so much and those we remember this weekend that gave allto ensure we have the freedoms this great land offers us.
There are only two words to describe this day -- THANK YOU!
1. The sport of choice for the urban poor is BASKETBALL.
2. The sport of choice for maintenance level employees is BOWLING.
3. The sport of choice for front-line workers is FOOTBALL.
4. The sport of choice for supervisors is BASEBALL.
5. The sport of choice for middle management is TENNIS.
6. The sport of choice for corporate executives and officers is GOLF.
THE AMAZING CONCLUSION:
The higher you go in the corporate structure, the smaller your balls become.
There must be a ton of people in Washington playing marbles!
A man and a woman who had never met before, but who were both married to other people, found themselves assigned to the same sleeping room on a trans-continental train. Though initially embarrassed and uneasy over sharing a room, they were both very tired and fell asleep quickly, he in the upper berth and she in the lower.
At 1:00 AM, the man leaned down and gently woke the woman saying,………. ‘Ma’am, I’m sorry to bother you, but would you be willing to reach into the closet to get me a second blanket? I’m awfully cold.’
‘I have a better idea,’ she replied ‘Just for tonight,…… let’s pretend that we’re married.’
‘Wow!…………………. That’s a great idea!’, he exclaimed.
‘Good,’ she replied. ………….’Get your own f*ing blanket.’
A father asks his 10-yr old son if he knew about the birds and the bees.
I don’t want to know, said the child, bursting into tears. Promise me you won’t tell me!
The confused father asked what was wrong.
The boy sobbed, When I was six, I got the ‘There’s no Easter Bunny’ speech. At seven, you gave me the ‘There’s no Tooth Fairy” speech. When I was eight, you hit me with the ‘There’s no Santa’ speech. If you’re gonna tell me that grown-ups don’t really get laid, I’ll have nothing left to live for!