A long time ago I heard Lou Holtz speak at an industry conference, and he said something that really stuck with me:
“I challenge you to apply these 3 rules to any moment of decision in your professional or personal life and they will guide you to the right course of action. They are:
- Do the right thing
- Treating others the way you want to be treated
- Show up and do the best you can” Lou Holtz
Simple, Profound, Timeless. But this practical advice has helped set the foundation for our organizational culture and provide guidance for our managers and employees alike. I just have not found a situation where his wisdom could not be applied.
“Do the right thing”
Sounds easy enough! But our business moves fast and can be surprisingly complicated. Sometimes our people must assess a complex situation, decide on a course of action, and put the plan in motion…quickly! They need to be empowered to act, and to know that senior leadership trusts in their decision-making process. This is how we all grow…Trust your integrity and trust your instincts.
“Treat others the way you want to be treated”
We all want this, right? But cross-functional teams work shoulder to shoulder (or zoom to zoom!) all day long and sometimes the deadline pressures fray the nerves. Take a pause, think through the situation, and apply the Golden Rule. This has served me well since 5th grade. It’s really about empathy and understanding for the people you are with.
“Show up and do the best you can”
Dependability. Accountability. Effort. We ask this of our employees and should truly ask this of ourselves. Were we genuinely present today? Did we give our best effort? If at work- did we add value to our company today? And if at home-did we enhance our relationships or take them for granted? “Showing up” means you are both present and aware-not going through the motions. “Do the best you can” is acceptable if that is indeed the ‘best you can do’.
Good company cultures (and good relationships) are formed, nurtured and tended to. Issues will continue to come to us in all shapes and sizes, from the simple ones to the ones that change the day. Applying these rules to any situation has served us well and will continue to do so as the company continues to be vibrant and grow.