Tag Archives: Leadership

Being an ambassador of culture will elevate your leadership and company growth!

I recently was asked to be a table host for an HR leadership event to discuss what it means to be an “ambassador of culture”. There was so much energy in the room and a real hunger for ideas about how elevate culture in everyone’s organization. As I️ reflected on some of the conversation it got me thinking about the importance of culture and how it is critical to every winning organization. It doesn’t matter which role you play, customer service, management, operations, human resources, sales, accounting, etc… We all have the choice to drive culture!

I️ was recently watching the ESPN 30 for 30 special on Notre Dame head coach Lou Holtz. He took over as head coach in 1985 and led his team to a national championship four years later in 1988. He started by setting expectations, getting buy in, and recruiting the right players that aligned with his mission and values. Sounds like a winning business model, right?

When you look at championship teams, they all have one thing in common… a winning culture! Culture is “the ties that bind us”. It’s what we believe in at our workplace or in a volunteer organization. We can either have a winning culture, or an accepting culture. In both scenarios, the leaders of the enterprise actions are the key to which way the pendulum swings. Think about companies like Southwest Airlines, Chick-fil-A, and Apple. What do you see? Employees believe… They believe in the mission and values of the organization. They believe in the alignment with their own purpose and have empathy for others to drive outcomes! So what’s your culture like in your company? Let me share a few action items to consider for better outcomes as you develop your business planning strategy for success.

  1. Do you know the vision, mission and values or guiding principles of your enterprise? They are on our walls and all around us. Invest time to discuss them with other members on your team and why they are important in your workplace and for your clients.
  2. How can you tie your mission and guiding principles to the business needs for positive outcomes? In our business, it’s about building trust, reducing stress, and delivering reliability around the world for companies needing support when needing to relocate talent. How does your mission link to your business needs?
  3. How can you be an ambassador of your culture? Take some time to talk about your vision, vision, and values with other teammates and share what it means to you. Start driving conversation and decision making based your guiding principles. Find your lane and drive your workplace with purpose!

In his book “Hit Refresh”, Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft shares the following excerpt… “any institution building comes from having a clear vision and culture that works to motivate progress both top down and bottom up.”

Did you hear that? From top / down leadership, and bottom / up leadership! We all have a choice to make a difference in our workplace.

Quote of the day: “The Goal is bigger than the Role.” (Excerpt from the book FIND YOUR LANE)

Call to action: Write down your vision mission and values. Get to know them, confirm alignment with your purpose, and share with others. Strive to be “The Ambassador of your Culture”!

This has been A Relocation Minute on “Ambassador of your Culture” with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media facebook and twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

10 takeaways from the 2017 HRSouthwest Conference! Plug In and Power Up!

Earlier this month, I attended the 76th Annual HRSouthwest Conference, also known as the SHRM State Conference of Texas! Once again, the Fort Worth Convention Center was packed with conference attendees roaming around looking to elevate their growth as an HR professional. The conference was one of the best ever from big name keynote speakers, to numerous educational sessions, to a full marketplace filled sponsors and exhibitors to support all of your HR needs. Today, I want to briefly share 10 impacting takeaways for everyone as a reminder to “plug in and power up” to an idea or strategy they learned from the conference, and to share with everyone that did not get a chance to attend. 

So, here we go…

  1. New Attendee Orientation. The room was packed!
  2. Keynote Speaker John O’Leary. Inspirational message “What more can I do”.
  3. Monday Night Social in the Marketplace. Thankful for our exhibitors and sponsors!
  4. Networking… with the best of the best in HR.
  5. Pair and Share Program. Meeting new HR leaders!
  6. Bookstore and Book Signings! Bonus was the opportunity to sign my own book! #FindYourLane
  7. My Speaking session on “elevating the onboarding experience when relocating talent”. Hopefully everyone enjoyed it…
  8. Juli Burch, 2017 Hall of Fame Speaker!
  9. Conference closing reception! Always fun to share this moment with everyone, especially the volunteers for their hard work each year…
  10. Ms. Laura Bush – Inspiring Message about “All we have is now”.  She is first class!

…and so much more. Special thanks to Conference Director Kathy Hassenpflug and all of the conference volunteers, SHRM, DallasHR Staff, our Sponsors, our Exhibitors, our Speakers, and Texas SHRM and our Texas State Chapters for making this another successful event. We hope to see you again in 2018 led by Conference Director Kim Vincent!

Now… What was your top 10?

Share one of your favorite activities about the conference for others to see…

Call to Action: Let me know if you would like to know more about my Top 10! If you attended the conference, reach out to someone you met and connect or share with someone that couldn’t attend as well. It can make a difference!

“What more can we do? Give Hope!” (John O’Leary)

This has been “A Relocation Minute” HRSouthwest Conference 2017” with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media facebook and twitter page.

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for review my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

Is your HR Leader a Difference Maker? Make their day by nominating them for the DallasHR HR Exec of the year! Applications close October 31, 2017!

In my book “Find Your Lane”, I share about the importance of making the most of your journey. This chapter is really about serving others. When you focus on serving others, there is a sense of fulfillment for helping others. Think about how you got to where you are today. There was someone in your path that provided you a lift of encouragement, right? You are probably thinking of that person at this very moment. When you give, it’s amazing how you get back so much more. If you read the book, you noticed the section where I shared 10 ideas to make impact. One of these ideas is nominating someone for a deserving award… Well, here is your opportunity! 

DallasHR’s Human Resource Executive of the Year Award is presented annually to an HR leader in the DFW area. The Award recognizes an HR Executive who has exemplified the strategic role of HR in the past twelve months, and who is otherwise an outstanding leader within the HR community. Past winners include Julie Hoagland, Adrianne, Court, Kate Lengyel, Tony Bridwell, and Terry Cooley.

Who will it be in 2017?

Hurry………. Application Deadline is October 31, 2017!

You can click the link below to review the award criteria and complete the online application. The nomination does not have to be a DallasHR member.

Click link to nominate someone today… DallasHR Executive of the Year

Call to action: 1) Complete the nomination form on the DallasHR website, and 2) SHARE with others for awareness. It will make someone’s day!

This has been A Relocation Minute on “HR Exec of the Year” with Bruce Waller, For more information, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com or check out our my social media facebook and twitter page. 

Also, check out http://www.BruceWaller.com for resources and my latest leadership book “Find Your Lane” on sale at Amazon!

Special thanks to these men and women… Driver Appreciation Week 2017!

May 8-12 is driver appreciation week. We also call it “van operator” appreciation week in the moving industry. Van operators have some incredible challenges, are tasked with many responsibilities, and instrumental in the success of a household goods move for families moving locally, or across the country.

In 1995, I also received my commercial driver’s license (CDL) to move household goods shipments within the state of Texas while spending time in operations! Yep, I was a driver. I was responsible for transporting household goods in the state of Texas (intrastate moves)), as well as local moves in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. It was hard work and extremely challenging from planning shipments to managing moving crews to having time with my family. Since then, I have valued and appreciated the men and women in the driver’s seat helping our customers every day. 

Did you know? Many van operators are on the road more than 200 + days a year (that’s being on the road 40 of 52 weeks) while others drive a regional / local area and are home more often.

Many customers don’t realize the number of responsibilities they have when moving a family. In honor of driver appreciation week, here are 10 things that we all need to know about our van operators.

Each of them are responsible for:

  1. Providing excellent customer service for each family moving.
  2. Protecting the home when loading and delivering.
  3. Hiring qualified labor at local UniGroup agency for support.
  4. Managing the moving process from inventory through delivery.
  5. Driving a large tractor with 53′ moving van in the city, through the mountains, in bad weather, and across the country to meet delivery deadlines.
  6. Keeping compliant with hours of service and electronic logs.
  7. Updating operations for planning.
  8. Completing paperwork for payment.
  9. Vehicle maintenance for tractor.
  10. Tracking quality scores to meet corporation expectations.
    … And so much more!

THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all of our van operators this week for elevating the experience for our customers across the nation! We appreciate you!

“We must find time to stop and thank the people who make a difference in our lives.” -John F Kennedy

Call to action: Personally thank a driver, or send a “thank you” note to one of your drivers this week. If you don’t have any drivers at your company, send to me and I will post for drivers to enjoy!

This has been “A Relocation Minute” on “Driver Appreciation Week” with Bruce Waller, for more information on relocation resources call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com.

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Are you pushing or pulling?

Have you ever wondered what separates the good employees from the great employees? It will often point to PERCEPTION. You may have a team of great employees but some may not be perceived great if they don’t understand the value of pushing information. We have all experienced working with an employee that didn’t understand the importance of sharing key updates before we asked for them which created a concern – even when things may have been going well. When we have to pull information, there is a sense of negative perception, as well as a sense that the employee is being micro managed, even when that’s not the case.

Creating a great customer experience is about anticipating or pushing information to others before they have to ask for it. This creates positive perception and drives a better experience for both internal and external employees. 

For example, when an airline texts the customer flight information or a gate change before the customer has to call to confirm information for their flight creates the perception of a great company and drives a better experience for the customer.

In relocation, the move coordinator and driver will call or text the customer to notify arrival times during the moving process and confirm alignment with employees expectations. However, if the customer has to call the company to ask when the moving truck will arrive, it often creates a less than great experience. Everything could have been going well, but the perception is driving the experience!

Here are a few ways for you to elevate the perception and move from good to great in any role:

  • Sending the weekly, or monthly report before your boss or customer asks for it.
  • Sharing an idea for improvement with leadership when you see a gap in the process.
  • Sharing information you learned at a recent conference to help others in your network.
  • Responding to an email even if you don’t have the information to acknowledge received.
  • Routinely updating new sales activity with the sales manager before he asks.

When we are able to anticipate questions, or customer concerns and push information they may need, we are “perceived” to be on top of our game. Employees can also be looked at negatively when we are always asking or pulling information from them during the process and often creates a concern only due to lack of awareness during the process.

When you want to move from good to great, anticipate the questions or situation before others reach out to you and watch the perception of your role elevate to another level!

Call to action: Reach out to your business partner or a co-worker to discuss strategies to help you move the perception of your role, your team, or your program from good to great… or SHARE this post with others to help them anticipate and elevate for success!

This has been “A Relocation Minute” on “pushing versus pulling” with Bruce Waller, for more information on relocation resources call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com.

Follow me…
• LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/brucewaller/
• Twitter too https://twitter.com/BruceWaller
• Facebook https://www.facebook.com/brucewwaller

Meet Rufus Alexander! BeALifter Leadership Interview Series #10. Sharing Leadership Lessons with Bruce Waller…

BeALifter Leadership Interview Series #10 with Rufus Alexander

10 Questions from Leaders that make a difference!

Jim Rohn once said, “Your success in the next 5 years will be determined by the books you read and the people you meet.”

This is a testimony to my personal leadership growth over the past 20 years. I continue to learn each day by connecting with some of the most talented people in business. In this series, I want to add value to your leadership growth by introducing you to leaders that make impact as they share challenges, successes, and perspectives on their journey as a business leader or in their personal life. So let’s get started…

Today, we are going to hear from Rufus Alexander with Tatum Insurance in Norman, Oklahoma. Rufus attended the University of Oklahoma where he played football for the Sooners from 2003-2006. He was an All American linebacker and received Defensive Player of the Year honors in the Big 12. Rufus was drafted in the NFL by the Minnesota Vikings in the 6th round and is now a business leader at Tatum Insurance. In the fall, you will also hear Rufus on the Oklahoma Sooners football radio broadcast sharing his perspectives on each game. I enjoyed meeting Rufus earlier this year attending a football game in Norman and immediately sensed his passion for people. He is authentic, approachable, and a great ambassador for the University. You are going to enjoy getting to know him too! rufus-alexander

Now let’s get started…

  1. Where did you grow up?

       Breaux Bridge, LA

  1. How did you get started in business/career?

       A friend of mine approached me and said I would be good at and I gave it a shot.

  1. Do you remember a challenge or life lesson that you had to overcome early in your football career which made you a better leader?

       I tore my ACL my freshman year in college. It taught me patience, dedication, and perseverance. It        also allowed me to see other guys lead the team, which I observed and took pointers.

  1. What was that moment when you knew that you had found your lane, your purpose in life?

       The moment I started enjoying what I was doing, it consume my mind, and heart every day. I                continue trying to perfect my craft.

  1. What is your most favorite achievement?

        Getting a scholarship and graduating from the University of Oklahoma

  1. Is there any one person that inspired or mentored you along the way?

       My high school Coach David Barham

  1. Do you have a saying or mantra that you live by?

       Effort needs no Talent

  1. What book are you reading or audio to help grow your leadership right now?

       The Motivation Manifesto By: Brendon Burchard

  1. Can you share any of your daily disciplines that help you stay focused as a leader?

       Working out, it keeps mentally and physically fit to attack every day.

  1. What advice would you give others to help them on their leadership journey?

        Listen and observe, before you lead. You can’t lead without knowing and understanding your               situation and people.

Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us, Rufus. Some of my takeaways include: When you encourage people, you can change their life. When you have a setback in life, you can learn a lot from observing others such as patience, dedication, and perseverance. When you find something you enjoy, focus on improving your craft each day. Everyone needs a mentor and some of the best mentors are your coaches in sports and in business. Effort needs no talent is a great mantra to live by. I love this! One of the most common threads I see in leaders today is to work on yourself each day which includes reading and focusing on your health and fitness. Finally, some great advice for others is to listen and observe, before you lead. You can’t lead without knowing and understanding your situation and people.

For questions about this leadership interview series, send email to bwaller@goarmstrong.com. To find out more information about Tatum Insurance click link below and ask for Rufus! https://www.tatuminsurance.com/locations/insurance-in-norman-ok/

Bruce Waller, CRP, PHR, SHRM-CP is the Vice President of Armstrong Relocation and Companies in Dallas, Texas. You can visit his BLOG “A Relocation Minute” with Bruce Waller at https://brucewaller.wordpress.com/ for more information on employee relocation resources, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com. Follow @brucewaller on Twitter too!

Meet Brad Shanklin, Executive Director, DallasHR! BeALifter Leadership Interview #8 with Bruce Waller…

BeALifter Leadership Interview Series #8 with Brad Shanklin.

10 Questions from Leaders that make a difference!

Jim Rohn once said, “Your success in the next 5 years will be determined by the books you read and the people you meet.”

This is a testimony to my personal leadership growth over the past 20 years. I continue to learn each day by connecting with some of the most talented people in business. In this series, I want to add value to your leadership growth by introducing you to leaders that make impact as they share challenges, successes, and perspectives on their journey as a business leader or in their personal life. So let’s get started…

Today, we are going to visit with Brad Shanklin, Executive Director for DallasHR, the local affiliate for the Society for Human Resource Management (“SHRM”) in Dallas, Texas. Brad joined DallasHR in March of 2016 to oversee operations of the organization’s 2,000-member association and its annual regional event, The HRSouthwest Conference. I have personally enjoyed getting to know Brad while serving with him on the Board of Trustees. I would describe Brad’s leadership style as authentic, creative, and he has a passion for developing volunteer leaders to help better the organization. You’re going to really enjoy getting to know him too.

Now let’s get started… brad-shanklin

1. Where did you grow up?

Houston, TX

2. How did you get started in business/career?

Started out in politics for (late) Senator John Tower (TX). That position lead to another political gig and contacts from those lead to others. It’s the connections we make in life that keep our career paths open.

3. Do you remember a challenge or life lesson that you had to overcome early in your career which made you a better leader?

I learned early on to move on when I no could no longer effect change.

4. What was that moment when you knew that you had found your lane, your purpose?

Early in my career when I realized how I can be successful by helping volunteers be successful. That was the key for me and an area I knew I wanted to pursue long-term. Volunteering is such a key to the success of so many organizations and helping those who serve is rewarding.

5. What is your most favorite achievement in your previous role?

I would say heading up a wet/dry election for Plano while CEO of the Plano Chamber of Commerce. Business members (grocery and convenience stores) of the chamber were penalized based on when they came into business and when the wet/dry laws came into effect years ago. We went to the voters and the wet/dry issue passed with more than a 2/3 majority. We had huge community support both financially and commercially and it was a great victory for business.

6. Is there any one person that inspired or mentored you along the way?

I wouldn’t say one person only. I have learned a great deal from many people. Both by what they do well and not so well.

7. Do you have a saying or mantra that you live by?

“Don’t sweat the small stuff…and it’s all small stuff.” Good words to live by as there is always something more dire and critical than what you are worrying about. Focus on what you can change and the rest will follow.

8. What book are you reading or audio to help grow your leadership right now?

Reading Colin Powell’s book, “It Worked for Me”. The book is full of great life experiences that helped Secretary Powell (and can help us all) achieve success in our careers.

9. Can you sharer any of your daily disciplines that help you stay focused as a leader?

Pay attention to those around you. Someone said to surround yourself with people smarter than you. I have found this to be very true in work as those teammates who live in their areas of expertise will bring true success to the company.

10. What advice would you give others to help them on their leadership journey?

Dr. Steven Covey said, “The main thing is to keep the main thing, the main thing”. I’ve always liked this quote as it remind me that with so many distractions in work and life, you have to stay focused. Stick to what you think is right regardless of how others may try to detour you.

Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us, Brad. Some of the takeaways include: it’s okay to move on when you can’t effect change. Volunteering is a key to the success of so many organizations and helping those who serve is rewarding. Many people can teach you many things by what they do well and not so well. Also, don’t sweat the small stuff. Focus on what you can change and the rest will follow. Surround yourself with people that are smarter than you for true success. …and Lastly, the main thing is to keep the main thing, the main thing. Great advise for all of us…

For questions about this leadership interview series, send email to bwaller@goarmstrong.com. To find out more information about DallasHR, check out their website http://www.dallashr.org.

Bruce Waller, CRP, PHR, SHRM-CP is the Vice President of Armstrong Relocation and Companies in Dallas, Texas. You can visit his BLOG “A Relocation Minute with Bruce Waller” at https://brucewaller.wordpress.com/ for more information about this interview or for information about employee relocation resources, call 972-389-5673, or email bwaller@goarmstrong.com. You can follow @brucewaller on Twitter for information too!