The President’s Pen is a weekly blog written by Jonathan Smith, New Vision’s President and CEO about local economic development projects and initiatives. It also covers economic trends, workforce issues, business climate policies, and manufacturing news.
“Raise your hand if you feel this way,” directed Matt Whiat Partner at Barry-Wehmiller Leadership Institute, to the audience. “Does anyone in here like to be bossed around? Anybody in here like to be managed? What about supervised?” The room of close to 400 business leaders from throughout Yakima County was silent. No hands were in the air.
“It’s fascinating the language we use to describe the work of a leader, coach, mentor,” Matt continued. “We call people bosses, managers, or supervisors and yet none of us wants that. How we think, is how we lead.”
Matt delivered a striking message of how any business in any industry can create a culture where regular everyday employees will come to work motivated, eager to contribute, and will actually drive the success of the entire company.
With 80 acquired companies, over $2.4 Billion in revenues annually, and more than 11,000 employees worldwide, Barry-Wehmiller is one of the largest manufacturing companies in the nation. Most notably, it has had 16.9% compound growth in its share price since 1998 which rivals Warren Buffets return over the same time-period.
All of this from a blue collar company that “Measures success by the way we touch the lives of people.” Barry-Wehmiller is proof that business it is not ‘people versus profits.’ There is a better way. A way to create an environment where people can live out their potential.