All the great advantages of being a leader

  • Build great career paths for employees
  • Provided training and development supporting career paths
  • Assist in removing barriers to successful employee performanceLaozi on leadership
  • Design meaningful and challenging work assignments
  • Sponsor laterals and promotions when employees are ready
  • Provide recognition for small and large accomplishments
  • Use of influence to place round pegs in round holes
  • Lead by example: values, integrity, work ethic
  • Show them that humor is important

Being a great leader – it is like the famous quote from the teacher turned astronaut, Christa McAuliffe who was killed in a space launch, “I touch the future, I teach”.

Great leaders are teachers! They do touch the future.

What greater contribution can you make to those who work for you than to help mold successful futures!

***** S&E *****

Humming Along    

This is a different kind of success, but a success nevertheless.  And some distance from the intent of this page, “Success”.  However, here it is…

I’m about as far from a “birder” as you can be, birder being one who studies birds.  But…

A Humming Bird (HB) flew into the garage.  It happens infrequently and not always HB’s.  Normally I use fishing net to capture the bird and release it outside.  The HB was too small so it always flew out of the holes in the netting.humming bird artr

This went on for hours, I was pissed and the HB exhausted.  It eventually landed on top of a container located near the garage ceiling, resting, or in torpor as it is called.  With the help of a ladder I was able to pick it off the container with my hand.

So, go to the web for instructions – put it in a small box (used a motorcycle battery box), let it rest, feed it sugar-water, and when it’s recovered turn it loose.  I fed it through a straw, from 8 to 11pm, on and off, it eventually did respond, enthusiastically drinking from the straw. Very cool!  I called it a night putting a bottle cap of sugar-water in the box, hoping it would be alive in the morning.  They can die in four hours if not fed due to their high rate of metabolism.

At 7 am it was very much awake, sitting on the edge of the bottle cap.  I placed the box in a hedge row out back, opened the lid fully and off it went.

Very interesting birds –When hummingbirds migrate to the United States in the springtime, they cover 500 miles across the Gulf of Mexico, flying for 20 hours without stopping.  In preparation for migration, a hummingbird will store half its body weight worth of fat.  Hummingbirds migrate alone and not in flocks.  Very commonly the males migrate first followed by the females.

***** S&E *****

Log Entry No. 121: “Hooter’s Cruiser”

Hooter spent gobs of money, time, and effort in the spring, converting a used panel van into his dream camper with many special features and accommodations. He lived in the northeast, his area famous for its nasty winters featuring cold, ice, and snow.  Accompanying those elements were the many tons of road sand and salt just waiting to ruin your car or in Hooter’s case his newly restored camper.

Hooter 2Hooter’s answer to the DOT’s concerted effort to slowly rot his dream machine was to store it away for the winter.  His answer to an alternative source of transportation was an early, old 1960’s boat of a car for which he paid close to nothing, as I recall a few hundred bucks. It only had to last until spring.  An honest description of the car would be to describe it as a rust bucket, featuring peeling paint, many dents, banged up wheel covers… one owner away from the junk yard, just plain ugly.

Unlike his van, he had little respect for his winter “Beater” as he called it.  He used the back seat as a garbage area for all sorts of waste to include rags, empty cans, fast food garbage and empty automobile oil containers. The Beater had a never-ending, insatiable appetite for motor oil, much of which went up in black smog, a byproduct of engine operation, exiting into the atmosphere from the car’s exhaust pipe.  Hooter always carried spare quarts of oil (and beer) in the back seat.

It was a chilly weekday night that turned into bar hopping ending late, maybe 1:30 am.  Hooter was dropped off at his apartment by his two friends, actually relatives.  They watched him ascend the outside steps to his second floor apartment.  His Beater was parked just outside.  After some discussion they decided the paint was so bad on the car it needed touched up, that night, before dawn, prior to 6:30 am when Hooter had to leave for work.

It was a mad rush to round-up a sufficient number of used spray paint aerosol cans to do the job.  Color was not a concern.

By 2:30 am the perps were hard at work on Hooters car, skillfully applying various colors to most of the painted surfaces on the Beater.  There had to be some special effects, so stars were painted on the hub caps (it was an old car, still had hub caps).  The exterior mirrors were addressed, as was the roof.

Hooter 1 The trunk lid rolled down, offering a huge flat area which faced onlookers or drivers with a view of the rear of the car.  So, to match the stars on the hub caps, the boys painted “State Police” across the rear of the trunk, trimming it up with two more stars on each side of State Police. Perfect!

The boys moved back a block to watch Hooter’s reaction at 6:15 am, his departure time for work.

Hooter, feeling not so good from the night before, opened his apartment door, and on the way down the steps had the pleasure of a full view of his police cruiser. The boys witnessed an indescribable dance and were sure Hooter wove a tapestry of words never featured in the English language.

I suppose the icing on the cake as it’s called, was that he had to drive his new (to him) cruiser more than 15 miles to work, much of the distance being a state highway.

It is one of those log entries that never goes away, still alive in Hooter’s family.

***** S&E *****

When is it all going to change!

For all too long now it has been all about the parties. Who will control the house, who will control the senate, conservatives, liberals, and not about the country.

It is internationally embarrassing, irresponsible, petty, corrupt, controlled by special interests, and just plain disgusting.  It is about power, about raising money to achieve it, and then holding onto it once you’ve gotten it.

The change we need — leadership: integrity, honesty, issue focused, a government the represents the people, not political parties and financial contributors.

The situation might be corrected when:

  • It is illegal for special interests groups and lobbyists to fund / contribute to campaigns
  • Term-limits apply to all elected congressional representatives and senators
  • Washington DC officials have the same health care plan and other benefits as any citizen
  • The federal budget is managed like citizens manage their household budget
  • Intense scrutiny of money that is sent, donated, given away to other countries
  • A positive (versus adversarial) focus on building an international economy and trade
  • Smaller government

The dilemma is that the very people who “benefit” from the corruption, who have put themselves first, instead of their country, are the very people who have to change it.

How, when, is it all going to change? And, who will change it?

The most abused phrase used in Washington, DC is “in the best interest of my constituents”.

***** S&E *****

Success in flood control in the Netherlands

CBS 60 Minutes, September 23, 2018.  If you missed it, the link to the full segment is below.  Here are some excerpts and of course a comment from me here and there.

Holland is about twice the size of New Jersey and is one of the world’s most densely populated countries. Much of it is below sea level, yet the Dutch don’t bother with flood insurance. They don’t need it. As the U.S. cleans up from Hurricane Florence, we were wondering, do the Dutch have a solution?

We met a Dutchman – Henk Ovink – who says it’s time to rewrite America’s disaster playbook entirely.

“The storms are perhaps man-caused and you can debate that, but the catastrophes because of the storms? Uh, those are man-made.” Hank Ovink.

Henk is the world’s only water ambassador, appointed by the Netherlands, says damage from hurricanes could be lessened with the help of Dutch-innovated storm water management

FEMA and many other federal, state and local agencies do a tremendous job in advanced warning and managing the aftermath…  Katrina, Harvey, Sandy, Florence.

But we spend billions on the aftermath …  the Netherlands spent billions on managing the storm water to eliminate the flooding.  It was not easy!

The Netherland gates took six years to build and cost $500 million.  Bill Whitaker: That’s a big investment for something that you’ve only had to use once or twice since it was built. Henk Ovink: $150 billion were lost in New Orleans. I don’t think I need to say more. How many people were killed? Sandy, another storm, $70 billion. We don’t have those damages.

Henk has been consulting with FEMA and other US government agencies for years… apparently we must be slow learners.

Why is it we can always find the money for wars, but not domestic priorities.

***** S&E *****

Responsible Companies – Telltales

Many successful companies are well-respected for a number of reasons – great values, fair employers, responsible in their communities… things you just can’t find on an Income Statement or Balance Sheet.  Fortune magazine’s annual issue, “100 Best Companies to Work For”, provides real insights to the internal makeup of responsible companies.

Fortune 100 2018And citizens will find responsible companies often publishing “Giving” reports that summarize actions that document their commitment to their communities.

In the case of environmental catastrophes, companies of all types use their vast resources to assist.  In the recent, devastating hurricane that slammed the east coast, some of the companies participating: Tide, Pepsi, Lyft, JetBlue, 3M, Eaton Corporation, Florida Power & Light, tesla, Anheuser-Busch, Chef, José Andrés.  That is far from an inclusive list.

And, you just have to respect the power companies as caravans of vehicles from many states travel great distances down the interstates in route to assist in the disaster.

In contrast…  and probably in the minority, there are companies who just don’t get it… like the cable company that billed its customers at the end of the month in which a hurricane caused the area’s residents to be without cable and power, for a minimum of 6 days, 20% of the month, some much, much longer.

It is not about the money, it is about the thoughtlessness.

Here’s to the many companies that are responsible!



2016 Yamaha Wave Runner Glove Box Latch Repair

This would apply to various years of Yamaha Waverunners.  See photo below.

The cheap plastic glove box latch design has the latch pivoting on a metal pin which is secured by very thin plastic holes on each side of the latch housing.  The holes break away quickly.  Pitch the latch !

The fix is to use E6000 industrial strength glue (small tube about $7).  I used magnets about $10 bucks from Amazon, glued to the glove box cover and the glove box housing.  Magnets fit perfectly.   Magnets:

Creative Hobbies Ceramic Industrial Magnets -11/16 Inch (.709) Round Disc – 3/16″ THICK (.198″ or 5mm) – Ferrite Magnets Bulk for Crafts, Science&hobbies – Grade 5-100 pcs/box!   You will get 100 for the 10 bucks, but magnets are handy.

Here’s a photo: You can see the magnets glued to the glove box cover (top of photo) and2016 Yam VX Deluxe Magnets glove box housing (bottom of photo).  Glue takes 24 hours to set. Do the bottom or top first, separately.  Use clamps on the top cover (with it open).  Do the bottom magnets keeping the top open.  Maker sure you have the polarity correct.

On average about $10,000 machines — bad design, or, maybe just the cheapest way out.

In balance, great engines and drive trains !!!!

***** S&E *****