As one of my responsibilities for work, I get to meet a lot of different types of people that work in many different fields of work. This week I had a chance to spend some time with a couple that has devoted their time to assisting people and businesses become more environmental friendly.
I had a chance to walk around their offices and speak with their staff members about each of their jobs, the responsibilities that went along with their titles and also hear about some of their accomplishments. One thing that was said during my tour of the company seemed to stick out, and I wanted to pass it along.
In speaking with the company’s Green Building Director, I asked a question about their office building and a piece of equipment that she had in her hand. She was using a Thermal Imaging Infrared Camera that showed where heat sources were. This is the same equipment used by law enforcement to find bodies trapped or hiding in buildings. I thought that I needed one of these pieces of equipment until she told me that I could buy a mid size car for the same price.
What was interesting about the conversation was that she was able to show me heat sources and also when we went outside she could show me where heat was leaving the building. This helped her determine what needed extra insulation or if a better weatherstripping. The most interesting thing was when she showed me that most of the heat was escaping from where the walls meet the foundation. Then she said something that goes right along with leadership. She said, “no matter how much money you spend trying to make the people comfortable, it is wasted if you do not start at the foundation.”
I read a story a long time ago about the great football coach, Tom Landry. He was talking about foundations and priorities, and he stated that he had three priorities in life: God, family, and football – in that order. He went on to state that “until you get your priorities straight you will never be truly successful at anything.”
As leaders we need to make sure that our foundation, our priorities are straight. If not, then we will spend much wasted time and energy trying to create an environment when our foundation is working against us.
This week’s experiment is to ask yourself as a leader, are your priorities in order?