From a small northwestern observatory…

Finance and economics generally focused on real estate

My newest friend

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In my work, I’m fortunate to meet some terrific people.  If I attempted to write about each one, I’d never have time to actually accomplish anything myself!  However, my “newest friend” really rates a few minutes of my time.  Let’s also recall that the theme of this blog is the economy, with a focus on real estate.  Her work really has serious implications for people who do what I do.

Two months ago, I read a great article in Fortune about Frances Hesselbein, the former CEO of Girl Scouts of America who now actively heads up the Leader to Leader institute (formerly the Peter Drucker Foundation) in Manhattan.  Her institute is slated to be re-named in her honor, the Frances Hesselbein Institute, this coming year.  I want to stress that she is actively engaged as the leader of this institute, because Ms. Hesselbein is a very spry, very active 96.  (For a copy of the Fortune article, click here.)

Given my own interest in both the Scouts and in the work of Peter Drucker, the Fortune article was one of my favorite “reads” in November.  Thus, last week, when I met Ms. Hesselbein in Charleston, I instantly knew who she was, what she’d done, and what she was currently doing.  I won’t go to the effort of copying the article here — I highly encourage you to read it yourself.  However, it’s helpful to review Peter Drucker’s famous five questions, because they really do influence how we should run excellent organizations:

1.  What is our mission?

2.  Who is our customer?

3.  What does the customer value?

4.  What are our results?

5.  What is our plan?

Those are real attention-getting questions.  One of our resolutions for 2012 is to go through a mantra similar to that with every project we undertake here at Greenfield.  I would add to it the six points raised by Ms. Hesselbein in the Fortune article as key tactical take-aways from the Drucker outline, particularly as they apply to organizational doctrine:

1.  If a door opens, walk through it

2.  Have a clear mission

3.  Be inclusive

4.  Be on time

5.  See yourself “life-size”

6.  Look to the future

For more about Frances Hesselbein and the work she and her team are doing, visit the Leader to Leader Institute’s web site by clicking here.



Written by johnkilpatrick

January 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm

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