Plus It

Posted on July 19th, 2012 in Perspectives on Leadership by John Jensen

Leaders,

Sorry for there being such a large gap between blog posts, I just returned from a week long vacation to Anaheim, California to visit Disneyland.  I figured it would be completely appropriate to write today’s blog post about one of my personal heroes, Walt Disney.

Walt Disney had a philosophy about all of his work called “plus-ing”, which I have written about before on this blog.  Plusing is simply giving your customers more than they paid for.  This can be transferred over to leadership pretty easily.  We as leaders should always be giving more than the bare minimum to everything we do.  Someone who just attends a meeting is not a leader, but someone who runs the meeting, speaks up in the meeting, and devotes themselves to an organization is a leader.

When the Disney studios would be producing a film, the animators would show Walt a sequence from the film, Walt’s response would typically be “alright, now plus it.”  The greatest compliment one could get from Walt Disney was “that’ll do.”  “That’ll do” meant that your work was acceptable and that Walt believed it had been “plused” as much as possible.

Robert Gruber told the best story about plusing at UW-Whitewater’s commencement for Spring 2012.  Walt was planning a Christmas parade at Disneyland one year, the Disney accountants told Walt that the parade was going to cost them a lot of money, but since they had not announced or advertised the parade at all no one will be expecting it, so it could be cancelled without anyone noticing.  Walt told the accountants that that was the exact reason they needed to have the parade, because no one knew it was coming.

Always give your customers (or followers) more than they paid for.  Dedicate yourself to your cause/organization 100% and give it everything you’ve got.  Plus it.  Your goal should always be to leave something a little bit better than you found it.

“It’s kind of fun to do the impossible” –Walt Disney

Until Next Time,

John Jensen

Surround yourself

Posted on July 3rd, 2012 in Tips and Secrets by John Jensen

Leaders,

One mistake I continuously find leaders making is surrounding themselves with individuals who hold back their true potential.  George Washington once said, “Associate yourself with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation. It is better to be alone than in bad company.” If you do not surround yourself with people who complement you, challenge you, and respect you your time as a leader will be difficult and not enjoyable.

Having someone who complements you does not mean having someone that tells you they like your outfit that day, it means someone who makes up for important qualities that you may lack.  Someone who fills in your gaps as a leader is of utmost importance to being successful.  Having someone who challenges you is also very important, because often times you will not think of everything.  Often times having an opponent can spur fantastic innovation that motivates us to be better leaders.  Obviously, it is hard to be leaders without having people respect you.  So always conduct yourself in a respectable manner and earn people’s respect.

Most importantly, find people who fill these roles.  If you surround yourself with people of good quality, there are very few things that can stand in the way of your success.

Until Next Time,

John Jensen