Books, Movies, and Stuff, Uncategorized

Crisis Reveals Character

In this election year, I have read several books written by former Presidents of the United States. Their books give some insight into their leadership style and personal path to the greatest title in all the world, President of The United States of America.  Their reflections, and tiny moments revealed in the biographies and autobiographies, can reveal so much about their character and temperament.

In the book, “41, A PORTRAIT OF MY FATHER” by George W. Bush, we see the President through a very unique lens, his son’s.  George W. Bush and his father George H.W. Bush both served our great country as President of the United States, just as John Adams and his son, John Quincy Adams, did nearly 200 years prior.

The one sentence in the book that spurred this blog and my personal evaluation was, “Crisis has a way of revealing character.” WOW, so true.  I quickly think of a few personal crisis situations and ask – how did I respond?  What character did I show when the mass exodus of revenue stream occurred, when conflict arose between two siblings, or when a business partner admitted an addiction?  What was my reaction?   Did I respond in a way that aligned with my character?  What would my legacy be, if those moments were what defined me? In an honest reflection, I made mistakes in my responses and sometimes I allowed emotion to override character.

What does your character reveal about you when crisis occurs?

Do you panic?  Do you run to everyone else to solve the problem? Are you proud and unforgiving?  Do you problem solve or problem state?  Do you make problems worse or better?  Do you make knee jerk reactions and comments that require asking for forgiveness later? Or do you take a minute to jot down your initial thoughts, reflect, and then act in reverence and calmness, as Vice President Bush did when President Reagan was shot?  If you don’t know the story, the Vice President made a few key decisions in very quick manner that calmed the nation and showed loyalty to the President in a very intense time.

Republican or Democrat, man or woman, black or white – crisis reveals character.

With so many newsworthy events revealing character, do you ever ask yourself how you would respond if your child was unfairly harmed?  How would you respond?  How would your character be described if your or your spouse was running for political office?  It is so easy for us to point fingers and judge, but can we be so honest with our self?  How would you be judged?

Not only do I want you to show upstanding character, but in this election year, I hope we choose a President who will show great character in crisis situations.  I pray our future President will show strength when needed, forgiveness when requested, and a calm and clear mind in crisis. God bless the USA and don’t forget to vote!

 

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Admiration, Outward Success, Uncategorized

His Success At My Expense

What a crazy month it has been since the first post and the launch of this site.  Incredibly, each day someone has expressed what this message means to them.  Yesterday it was a seamstress, the day before it was an author, and on Monday it was a stylist. The affirmations and the personal stories are amazing – please keep them coming!

The story that ignited the greatest reflection for me was from my very own stylist in my salon.  This story personally tugs at my heart strings (and my purse strings).

In my salon I have 9 stylist who do hair, and each week they pay a booth rent for their space.  All of the stylists have done hair for decades and they are a great group.  The salon industry in our city is very competitive and we have an amazing salon.  However, stylist don’t tend to have a loyalty to me because I don’t personally cut hair.  It’s okay, I don’t apologize for that.  I try to provide the cleanest, most cost-effective, high end environment for them and then let them run their show.  I think they like it that way.

In our salon, one particular man, Michael is infamous.  To some he is infamously great with hair, infamously boisterous or just down-right interesting to watch.  People like Michael. I like Michael.  Michael’s big frame and loud laugh exudes confidence and strength, but each woman who sits in his chair knows his story and understands his tenderness.

Michael’s ladies love how he dotes on them and calls them sweety.  I also felt welcomed by him when I became the new owner.  He publicly encouraged me and thanked me (for doing my best, not necessarily for doing THE best) and I appreciated his accolades.

This week; however, his compliments were a double edged sword.  Michael met with me privately and expressed his appreciation for successwithoutapology.com and my attitude of unapologetic success – and failure.  He told me he had really thought about the recent post, It Can’t Be Just About You, and had discussed it with his wife.  He was finally going to take a big giant step of faith and I had encouraged him to do so without the fear of failing.

You may have guessed it, but at nearly 60 years old he was inspired to go out on his own.  He wanted to try and own his own salon. He quoted my blog post to me, thanked me for the hard work over the last year, and then through scared eyes he gave me his notice.  (Insert ohNOOOOO here)

I am not sure if I was slightly misty-eyed or he was, but the moment was gratifying, yet painful.  In a month, Michael will have his own salon.  He will be my friendly “competition” in the market and he will try this thing we call small business ownership for the very first time. It is exciting for him.  It is sad for my salon. #InspireLeadersDaily #ItStartsAtHome #MyPainHisFutureGain

As I told him, I believe my mission and purpose is to encourage all people to succeed at the highest level they desire and to strive to use all of their God-given potential.   The salon I own is not just a brick and mortar building for earning money, it is a facade for mentorship.  If I cannot be happy and supportive for one of my own, then I can’t spread this message around the country with clear conscience.  I believe Michael can do great things and I know I will invite a new “michael” into our salon to mentor and encourage.

So today’s message is one for the mentors. If you are a great mentor, remember your goal is for your people to succeed as their very best self.  Sometimes when they do, they may even become a competitor.  #AndThatsOkay

Tom Peters, an American writer on business management practices is quoted as saying, “Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders.”

Today a new leader is born and for that I am encouraged.  #GoMichaelGo  Thank you and keep reading the blog.  My audience will love hearing from you in a year from now.  You can tell us about your success, without apology.

 

@Attitude’s Salon

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Uncategorized

It Can’t Be Just About You

In response to last week’s blog post, a woman encouraged me to continue this message of unapologetic success and shared her experiences of battling against media and society along her professional journey.  Additionally,  I was encouraged by the number of responses and comments I received through each of the social media platforms.  For that  – I thank you.  Your comments and feedback remind me this message is greater than me, and it is needed.  So we will take this taboo subject and make it streamline – together!

On the home page tag line of SuccessWithoutApology you, “I don’t apologize for success or failure,” This is an intentional statement, and I mean it.  More importantly I want you to adopt the tagline in your life.  It may seem radical for me, a believer, to tout a refusal to apologize.  This is not a rude, snotty statement, but a radically honest and pointed attitude I am hoping more women will adopt.  While there are many reasons for this personal statement, a video I recently watched reminded me of the biggest reason of all…. it isn’t just about me. Screenshot 2016-08-29 10.52.16

Just as the saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”  I believe today’s failure may very well be tomorrow’s foundation for success.  As a small business owner I have had failures.  As an athlete I did not always win.  As an employer, sometimes I make bad managerial decisions.  I have entered into bad partnerships, spent too much outsourcing services, tried to do too much on my own, and even lost money to a point where bankruptcy was an option (that I did not take).  But I believe each of those hurdles, challenges, and failures have built the foundation for the business professional I am becoming each day.

I am so thankful for the foundation others have laid before me so I have the right to make mistakes.  I have the right to be a female business owner. I have the right to succeed and fail.  For their sacrifices and their hard work, I am able to do so without apology.  From the 300 activists who gathered in Seneca Falls, NY in 1848 to call for equal treatment of women and men and voting rights for women, to my Mom who has balanced motherhood with being a ranchers wife and successful business owner over the years, to the teenage girls who have dreams bigger than Texas, I am thankful.

As a tribute to the women who came before me, I choose not to apologize for my success or failure. Imagine being one of the 300 activists, like Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott, who signed the Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions in 1848, hoping to one day vote and be treated equally, yet never to see their dream come to fruition.  Seventy-two years after the Seneca Falls Convention, the 19th Amendment, which gives women the right to vote, is ratified. Only one person who had signed the convention’s Declaration of Sentiments and Resolutions, Charlotte Woodward, was alive and able to exercise her right to vote.  #ItCantBjustAboutYou

It is my hope to see the fruits of my labor, as I try to improve society’s view of successful women.  It is my plea for you to stop apologizing when you earn a higher degree, raise healthy and successful children whom you are proud of, and own possessions you have earned through hard work.  When you have something bigger than yourself to drive you – there is no excuse.  There is no pain you cannot overcome and no criticism or judgement you cannot withstand.  #StayFocused #SuccessWithoutApology

 

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Inner Success, Outward Success, Uncategorized

Beyonce’ Sings My Thoughts

 

Sometimes my thoughts come out in Beyonce’s songs and I am not sure how that happens.  Most recently, her song Flawless, brashly and aggressively paints the picture of our twisted support of successful women.  Here are a few of the lyrics that were PG enough for me to post.

We teach girls to shrink themselves
To make themselves smaller
We say to girlsImage_woman_shame
“You can have ambition
But not too much
You should aim to be successful
But not too successful
Otherwise you will threaten the man”

Society wants women to be successful, but not so successful they outshine men, hmmm. We all know this.  We may not want to know this – but we do. We, ambitious women, know it before we are able to articulate it. Academic research, to a certain extent, confirms our instincts.  And a great blog post , written by Rebecca Ruiz earlier this year, confirms no one is immune to these cultural barriers, not even world famous celebrities like Taylor Swift.

With the actions of Kanye and other male chauvinist men aside, why are women, like me and you, not taking credit for our day-to-day accomplishments? Why do women not receive the necessary credit for their own success?  In a single word: Judgement.  We want the success, but the judgement is real and it hurts.  So we deflect the success and the credit to avoid the judgement.

I was sitting around visiting with friends when a woman shared with me that she does not ever mention the fact that she earned a law degree around her work peers because in her experience if she has mentioned it, she felt judged and almost shunned her for her higher education.  #ItsRealPeople #WomenJudgeWomen

How do we stop the judgement?  It starts with us! We must stop judging each other.  Here are two scenarios and I want you to see yourself listening in each conversation.

Scenario 1: You are in town for a couple days and decide to catch up with an old college girlfriend. When she talks about her career and the travel required for her job, how do you respond?  What questions come to mind to ask her or to further the conversation?  Admit it, you want to ask if she ever sees her children, or how her husband handles being home alone so much.  You may even ask, how do possibly get any rest?

Scenario 2: Have you ever sat across from a man who talked of his success and thought to ask him how his wife felt about having to be the sole parent while he traveled?   No, more likely, you thought, wow he must make great money.  I bet his wife and kids are set and don’t have to work.  That’s more “normal.”

I have been guilty of this for decades, and I am committed to stop judging.  I know women can succeed and they can accept the credit for their hard work, without feeling guilty.  Can you accept the credit for your accomplishments, degrees or salary?

When your children show great respect, take credit for great parenting!  When you are told what a great teacher you are, say thank you.  When you lead a team through the execution of a project that earns the company millions of dollars, accept the accolades.  When you earn a huge bonus – gloat.  🙂 Do not shrink yourself.

For our children and for all women who want to succeed after you, please take credit for your success. Little girls and young women need to see women who receive credit for their accomplishments.  Accept the credit, and the judgement for the evolution of our society.

Do it now.  Change begins with you and your time is now.  Steve Jobs has a quote I’d like to use to encourage an urgency. “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition.”

Follow your heart.  Expect the judgement. Accept the credit. Create a legacy.  #successwithoutapology

 

 

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Uncategorized

Crew Chief Leadership

This summer I was asked to present on leadership qualities and the qualities of great crew chiefs.  As I prepared, I found the topic to be challenging because I feel like it is the area I struggle with the most.  There are certain crew chiefs I admire greatly, and I covet some of their skills. Some people are so good, they have you leaving the game thinking about their leadership.

A few who come to mind for me are Troy Winders from Kentucky, Dawn Marsh of Georgia, Penny Davis of Washington, or Bryan Enterline of Indiana.  I believe they have the “it” factor of being a crew chief.  Their styles are different.  Their personalities and training as diverse as it gets, yet they have “it.”

Though each crew chief is different, many share certain characteristics.  I have come up with eight crew chief qualities I have witnessed over the years and strive to attain and improve in myself.

Great crew chiefs:

1.Create a safe environment

2.Inspire and motivate

3.Display integrity and honesty

4.Manage People : Manage Situations

5.Build relationships

6.Have subject matter expertise

7.Give information freely

8.Prepare for the worst, expect the best

I will expand on each of these qualities in separate posts, but today let’s focus on the first of the eight qualities, creating a safe environment.

Have you ever had the feeling your games just go so much smoother than anyone else’s games?  Have you ever felt you are ready for the next level because your season goes without controversy?  If so, thank your crew chief(s).  What I have found as I advanced from high school to small college and small college to Div II and from entry DI to being a crew chief, is that the last year I was at each level, my games were C-R-A-Z-Y, crazy!

It is true.  The last year I officiated high school I had ejections, T’s, crew issues, etc.  I was on the phone with the boss more than I was on the floor, it seemed.  The next year, as the U1 or U2 at higher levels,  I didn’t give a single technical foul.  hmmm, coincidence?  I believe it’s more than that.  I believe the last year I was a high school crew chief, I had been given increased responsibility by my assignors.  It was my duty to create a safe environment for my U1 and U2 and to “protect” them from the drama.  It was my job as the crew chief to T the coach who was out of line with my partners.  It was my job to help my young partners earn credibility with coaches by putting them in the safest situations possible.  And I was being trusted to do so, without big-timing them.  (key to success)

I believe so many crew chiefs have done that for me along the way.  At the high school level people like Jeff C, Rick D, Robert J, and Robert S protected me without me even knowing.  These guys are all still officiating and I am certain they still protect many young referees like they did me back in the day.  They are the top rated officials year after year, and commissioners and assignors love them because of how they treat those passing through the league, either on the way up or the way down.  They are class acts who can be a leader on the crew as the R, U1, or U2. Without a doubt they handle the game and create a safe environment for people like me working to be a better crew chief.

Two reflection questions:

  1. Are you creating a safe environment when you are the crew chief or do you create an environment of doubt and uncertainty?
  2. Can you think of a time when a crew chief protected you in a situation and you didn’t even realize til years later?

 

Our next post we will explore how great crew chiefs inspire and motivate and display integrity and honesty.

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