Saturday, September 19, 2009

Follow The Leader

Who remembers their First?

Was it a fabulous mind blowing experience?

One that you will always treasure?

Or was it a complete and horrible mess? An experience that you could not wait to erase?

How do you remember your First…..job?

What did you think I was talking about?

In most cases, our first experiences are the ones that stick with us. They make the initial cuts into our personal molds that begin to sculpt us as the person we will eventually turn out to be.

Our parents obviously are our first teachers, but they must eventually hand us off to the school system leaving us all open for a myriad of educational firsts.

I remember my first great school teachers as the ones who taught me the most.

With more adult clarity, it would now be defined as the ones that forced me to learn.

My Great Teacher category would certainly not include those whose teaching skills were halfhearted and tepid at best.

I loved the teachers that pushed me.

The ones who encouraged me to live up to my full potential,even when I did not feel like it –which was always. The ones who made me write and write until I learned to stop complaining about it and just do it.The ones who helped form my solid work and study habits that would last a lifetime.

There are a few standout teachers that I truly remember for those attributes. The others are just watery grade memories.

Entering into the real world, my teachers were eventually replaced by bosses.

As a brand new employee, I was anxious to learn and grow and I was willing to be shape shifted into anything that they needed me to be.

I was a clean slate.

I watched, listened and learned as I got a taste of how the real work-world went.

One of my first jobs as a teenager was at an all salad restaurant (ahead of its time back in the day). It was a brand new facility on the boulevard and my brother and I were lucky to land jobs making salads and dressings for the customers. They had the most awesome cucumber dill dressing that I had ever tasted.

Nothing compares to date.

The owners were strict but fair and we absolutely loved the tight ship that they ran. We came home and excitedly reported to our mother things like ‘and when you sneeze you have to run downstairs and wash your hands’ or ‘if you’re late, you can’t work your shift until the next day’or ‘If you don’t follow their dressing recipes exactly, you can get fired’.

Stupendous dill dressing does have its standards.

Who would have thought that kids relished in the pride that came from being a crew member of a tightly run ship? How lucky we were to have been given a lesson in supreme work ethic right out of the gate.

I remember them making a point of praising us in front of others and when there were directional issues that needed be addressed, always doing that privately.

Sounds simple right?

Such an easy recipe for managing people; Praise Publicly, Pounce in private.

Why is it that so many leaders forget this necessary ingredient for awesome Dill dressing?

Steady, strong and fair leadership was what we respected. We were only ever required to do the best job possible and consequently, we worked vigorously to earn extra praise each day, as an additional reward from our bosses.

Without the consistent follow up of the rules and regulations of what was expected of us, we would have all been allowed to flounder and eventually slack. OMG what a horrible standard to set! Instead we were given strict and fair guidelines and a paycheck as a reward for a job well done.

As I grew and moved on, I found that the same theories of teacher-greatness still applied themselves in bosses, supervisors, managers, leaders of leaders and owners of companies.

I have had my share of terrible bosses. They have also unknowingly shaped me into what I am today. And that is the antithesis of what they were.

Whenever I felt that I was treated unfairly or with poor choice communication, I would sock those feelings away and swear that I would never make anyone feel that same way if I were ever in their position. And eventually, I sure as hell was.

My greatest bosses, and I was extremely lucky to have a handful, were the ones who strived to make me better. These true leaders were phenomenal at developing those below them into becoming great leaders themselves. They possessed exceptional patience and a real passion for training.

They taught me all that they knew (without fear of being overthrown with all this new found knowledge) and then delegated full responsibility to me when I was ready, allowing me to soar or fall all based upon my own efforts.

They were competent and skilled managers who have been in my shoes and were specifically chosen because they proved that they were suitably qualified to lead.

As I continued to grow into a skilled qualified leader, I found myself emulating many of their wonderful qualities. My eventual success in my desired field, was a direct reflection on them and I was proud to shine on their stage.

My success equaled their success.

Am I mistaken to assume that a boss should be the same as a really great teacher? One who assigns responsibilities and tasks, enforces rules and regulations, guides and teaches. Listens? Molds? Develops? Takes suggestions without fear of losing commanding ground? Someone who possesses the lions’ share of your respective field experience, as well as the ability to pass on that knowledge in the most constructive and helpful manner possible?

This recipe for great leadership is not such a tall order. There are many statuesque individuals out there proving it day in and day out.

I will say that remembering all of your bad experiences is definitely a good thing. They will help lead you in better directions throughout your entire life. Ex-boyfriends not excluded.

Keep your eyes wide open in recognizing a good path not just for its lack of past bad attributes but for its potential future possibilities.

Many thanks to those leaders who scored the deeply ingrained pride and work ethic notches into my own personal clay.

This is the coolest ever! Thank you Lauren for this Psycho Carnival Award!!

This is the coolest ever! Thank you Lauren for this Psycho Carnival Award!!
Now visit Lauren and witness all of her originality greatness!

Thank you my Jersey Girl Goddess!! Now go meet her @inannasstar.blogspot-No way you can resist!!!

Thank you my geeky friend!!! Now go check out Confessions of a Reforming Geek..she is way cool!

Thanks to Diane over at Just Humor Me-Rules for this award: Drink & Blog-Do you see why I love her?

Thanks to Diane over at Just Humor Me-Rules for this award: Drink & Blog-Do you see why I love her?
If you have not met Diane, please check her out. You will not be sorry! You trust me right? Go!

Thank you to the Empress at Gooddayregularpeople- Go visit this magnificent blogger!!!

Thank you Linda! How cool is this award from my buddy over @thegoodthebadtheworse? I know right?

Thank you Linda! How cool is this award from my buddy over @thegoodthebadtheworse? I know right?
She's totally awesome!! Go check her out and see!!!

I Won!!! The Golden Phallus #32 Is Mine!!! Many thanks to The Screaming Me-Me!!!!

I Won!!! The Golden Phallus #32 Is Mine!!! Many thanks  to The Screaming Me-Me!!!!
Go check out the Screaming Me-Me for THE most captioning fun on the internet!!!! She's one of the friendliest Blog hosts out there!!!! Have fun & Caption away!!!!

Huge thanks to Nancy at for this award-Love this !!!

Thanks Heather @ twolittlemonkeysplushubby & Richele @underthegoldenappletree

Thanks so much to Margaret over at & Katsconfessions.blogspot.

Thanks so much to Margaret over at & Katsconfessions.blogspot.
Thanks to Tami & Richeleoxo@underthegoldenappletree.blogspot! Also to Hil'Lesha @ Vicki @ & Amanda at bloggertowne.blogspot You guys rock!!!

DOUBLE THANKS to Noelle @elasticwaistbandsandcomfortableshoes & Daffy@ batcrapcrazy-U GUYS RULE

DOUBLE THANKS to Noelle @elasticwaistbandsandcomfortableshoes & Daffy@ batcrapcrazy-U GUYS RULE
Another Awesome heartfelt thanks to the awesome Lauren @Thinkspin & multi-creative Robin them ...follow them...go!!!

The Rosie Award Comes Home!!!

The Rosie Award Comes Home!!!
Thanks to my bloggy buddy for bestowing this award back to me and letting me keep a Rosie at home forever!!!!

Sunshine Makes My Day!! Many Thanks to Joy@ thepracticalmomguide & Ziva @Zivasinferno for the shine


Thank you Anat over at for this spectacular award!!!

HUGE thanks to Gabrielle @ and Lisa!!

Thanks Lee!!!

Thanks Jenie for The Lady Ms Blogger Award! Visit her giving greatness

Double Thanks to Robyn for both of these awards-visit her @

Double Thanks to Robyn for both of these awards-visit her @
Tamara-Thank you for this!!! xoxoxoxoox visit her at @ xoxoxo

Thanks so much to Blia @

Grab An Award-see below

Finally, you do not need to be a recipient of an award to give an award!

Grab An Award – My way of awarding it forward. The only rules are: THERE ARE NO RULES (Only rule is no rules? Rule for rules? Is that a rule? I’m so confused)

And what is nicer than giving an award with no strings attached just because?

So in the spirit of fun blog awarding and ‘cause I think they’re a great way to connect and share the blog love with our awesome fellow bloggers (without the chain letter affect-they give me the willies), I have created The Divine Blogger and Rock Star Blogger Awards to grab-I know, fancy right? -(o.k. so I won't quit my day job)

Grab it and let the lucky recipient (s) know that you have given them a rule-free award and not to be afraid to pick it up on your site. Once they grab it from your site, they are free to pass it along to others (rule-free of course). And anyone can grab it from their sites to pass on as well.

Hope you all enjoy awarding it forward!

Now hurry! Go make room in your closet for all that good karma. And please get rid of those old sweatpants while you're at it! (-:

The No Rules Rock Star Blogger Award

The No Rules Divine Blogger Award

Award Love Received

Thanks so much to Lisa at (the Grandma sites got it going on yo) and Robyn at Simply Delightful and Tamara at homespunheartscandlesand Jane @agingmommyblog for this award. You guys are awesome!

Okay, here are my 10 honest things about myself:

1. I am an extremely well balanced individual

2. I am easily distracted

3. I don’t take rules seriously

4. I lied about number one (number 3 made me do it)

5. I have a short attention span

6. I often don’t finish what I sta..

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