Here is a guest post by the fantastically talented Amy Lorton. Amy is a writer and editor at Dave Ramsey’s office. You can guest post as well! Read how to here.
While Chris is gone to the wilds of San Antonio, Texas, at EntreLeadership Master Series, I offered to take a turn as a guest blogger. His schedule is brutal for the next few weeks, so I thought I would lend a hand. That’s part of our culture here. We support each other and are willing to help wherever needed. In fact, that’s one of the main reasons I love my job so much. We are much more than employees, we are like family.
But still … in the spirit of full disclosure, I have to admit something. I love to write, especially anything fun. So since Chris didn’t give me any parameters, I thought I would definitely take advantage. And because I’m already full of the holiday spirit, even though Thanksgiving is still a couple of weeks away, I decided to focus on one of my favorite movies of all time: National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation.
Every year, starting right about now and running through the holidays, Christmas Vacation will be aired on some station. It’s as predictable as the big bearded, red-suited fat guy coming down your chimney on Dec. 24.
What’s the draw of this film? I have a theory. Despite being portrayed as a bumbling oaf, Clark Griswold is simply a genius. And the lessons he teaches, well except for the rabid squirrel, exploding turkey and overloaded septic system, not only apply to our lives, but also our businesses. He’s quite the EntreLeader – a man ahead of his time and hopefully Cousin Eddie. Here’s why:
Whether trying to find the one bad bulb on 25,000 Christmas lights or bringing home the ultimate Christmas tree, Clark has the stick-to-itiveness that we should all emulate. Or like he says, “Nobody’s walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas.”
When times are tough, do you freak out or try to come up with a solution? What are you doing to make sure your business stays on the forefront of your customers’ minds? Actions always speak louder than problems.
Generous to a Fault
There’s an old saying that to give a man a turkey, you’ve have fed him for today. Teach a man that he won’t get one this holiday season and you’ve made him angry for a lifetime. OK, maybe it’s not quite the original adage, but you get the point. Your team plays a critical role in your success, so be generous. Whether it’s through profit-sharing, holiday gifts or bonuses, or simply giving them an extra day off, you’ll be paid back in loyalty, smiles and your own satisfaction. A spirit of generosity always wins the day. Membership in the jelly-of-the-month club may result in your kidnapping.
A Great Storyteller
Never one to let his feelings be unknown, Clark is an incredible communicator, especially when it comes to telling stories. And you should be, too. As part of creating a culture of communication, you need to let your team members know the story and history of your company. Share with them your struggles and victories. The result will be new respect for the past, plus renewed energy and creativity when they realize they are working on something bigger than them.
So now that you’ve had a chance to bask in the genius that is Clark, there’s not much left to say except one of his favorite lines: “Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas.”
Question: What leadership traits do you share with Clark?