Friday Five for November 11

Because employers are increasingly feeling the financial cost for employees health costs, they are start (essentially) to assess fines on employees who don’t take advantage of their wellness programs. What’s interesting to me about this is that this illustrates a basic principle in life: “he who pays also controls”. It’s not rocket science. If you want to know who is really in charge, just find out who is financially responsible. Unless the Government has specific laws in given situations restricting control from those who pay, this is a life principle you can rely on. If we expect employers to continue to shoulder an increasing cost of our health care, then we should expect them to take actions like this – actions which can lower their costs.

Data breaches continue to be an issue. Here is a short article that discusses common sense questions to ask yourself when it comes to protecting customer data.

Why do Managers micro-manage? This is a good, brief blog post on why we micro-manage. I can attest that I have been guilty of both points: feeling disconnected and not knowing how to move out of my comfort zone into a more strategic role. I like the phrase in this article: What got you here won’t get you there. I might need to pick up the book too.

I find that I’m running my business a bit differently than many on several fronts. I don’t know if this is good or bad, but I have a plethora of folks who I ask to speak truth into my life, character and work performance. One of the areas that I manage differently is HR. I consider HR to be both tactical and strategic because of their abilities to help myself and others recruit and find the right personnel for my company. This HBR article eludes to this way of incorporating HR into the leadership aspects of running a company. I rely heavily on my Vice President of HR to help me understand how my decisions affect different aspects of my company. She brings to the table a unique perspective that often causes me to re-think a decision. I would encourage those who run small businesses to view their HR personnel as more than just an outsourced function that is an evil necessity to the growth of your business. Instead, I would encourage you to view HR as a core player on your management team that can help you drive growth and profit by finding and recruiting better talent into your company.

While I don’t agree with everything in this article, I do agree that leadership encompasses the whole person. It is difficult to lead if you are deficient physically, socially or mentally. I would also submit that having a right relationship with Jesus Christ is the foundation for all of your other relationships. When you’re out of fellowship with God, other relationships on earth tend to deteriorate. Leadership isn’t about giving orders and holding people accountable – though that is an aspect. It is as much about who you are as a person as it is about what you do in your role as a leader.

Bill English, CEO