Blog

  • The value of building group culture from the start

    Among the many facets of the Southwest Airlines story that are worthy of admiration, the most impressive to me is their ongoing ability to build and sustain their truly exceptional group culture. Right from its inception, Southwest espoused revolutionary ways of organizing work. The company has always been—and continues to be—structured around a small number of trademark concepts that have defined the Southwest way

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  • How the unique leadership tale of Southwest Airlines began

    After writing—somewhat unexpectedly—about the Malice in Dallas last time, I am now thinking it would be interesting to go a bit further into the life story of Herb Kelleher. How this unlikely individual came to co-found Southwest Airlines, and then lead the company through three decades of truly remarkable success and prosperity in a difficult industry—that is in and of itself a tale worth

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  • Cultures of fun, combined with serious business

    Garry Charnock’s statement that Ashton Hayes should take carbon neutrality seriously, and at the same time “have a little fun”, caused me to think of a true master of combining these two elements—legendary former CEO Herb Kelleher of Southwest Airlines. I have long held a deep respect and a genuine fascination for Kelleher, whose life story and business career are

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  • A few further lessons from Ashton Hayes

    This week was a busy and interesting one for me, with a steady stream of travel and consulting for clients. Unfortunately, all this activity left me with few opportunities to write. Nonetheless, I did have some time to reflect, and I considered a few further items worthy of comment, with respect to the impressive environmental endeavors of the English town

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  • How the environmental movement began in Ashton Hayes

    In the previous post, we saw the story of a remarkable village that took a stand, deciding on its own to do its part to combat global warming. Of course, the energy policy of Ashton Hayes will not have a significant impact on climate change in the world at large. At the same time, this small English town provides a

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  • A village takes a stand

    There is one type of leadership story that I have a particular affinity for: tales of common citizens who lead without authority. In other words, I like to hear or read about people who do not necessarily change the world, but who have an enormous impact on their worlds, despite having no formal position of power. One of the reasons I enjoy these narratives

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