However, the other side of this process I developed was that I didn't necessarily retain a lot of the information in my undergraduate studies. As I progressed to graduate school I backed off of this practice because it was really killing the joy I had in the process of building something and taking my time in doing it. Additionally, when I was doing everything by the "T" and focusing so much on the end result, I didn't allow myself time to work on projects with classmates and develop those special bonds with people on that level. I was just a machine pumping out the product without any emotion. That's why I had to change. I was missing out on the real process of growing relationships in the collegiate school environment.
After I graduated from my doctoral program at UNLV, I entered the public workforce in a full time capacity. It was then that I really understood the value of developing culture versus developing end result reports and procedural documents. Everyday I was faced with spending more time in the vocational academic environment on either procedural/academic documents or spending time with my students.
While I certainly completed the formal documents that were required of me, I felt the need to turn them in later (yet still on time) versus earlier. I wanted to spend the majority of my time blossoming meaningful personal relationships with co-workers and creating strong social/emotional rapport with students. This resulted in my "aha" moment which was that people matter more than reports. I learned that the discussions you have over a beer with a colleague are way more important than the droll attendance of meetings in boardrooms and classrooms with my superiors. Now, again...I attended the meetings and fulfilled the requirements, but it never satisfied me.
Fast forward again and now I'm the General Manager of Club Ridges, which is still my current job
At WTS and in particular at Club Ridges, I have been able to as the GM, cultivate a people first mentality. That mentality has grown into one of the most unique, fun and successful work environments in the country. I truly believe that. We don't focus on doing things by the book and we surely don't focus on sitting in an office writing reports and SOP's over and over again. Now don't get me wrong. I believe SOP's are valuable and the need to be done, but I'm not going to spend a ton of time investing into writing an SOP for everything I do.
Someone once asked me to write an SOP for our culture at Club Ridges. They wanted me to write this SOP as a way to standardize how we did things. My response was I'm not doing it unless you want me to write out some script that says when you walk into the club you will get a hug and get the hard high five. The person on the other end of the phone laughed when I said that. The point is that you can't bottle or operationalize love, camaraderie, partying and sincere passion for the people and the consumers we work with. Its something you can't grasp or write down and have someone follow. You just have to experience it, feel it, touch it and take it in. When you devote the majority of your time in any business towards lifting up the people in that business then you will receive a result that is greater than you could have ever imagined.
And I'm not alone in this approach. More and more of today's workforce, especially millennials, are not standing for the old school work environment where the boss is in the Ivory Tower sending out memos about procedure and where you just clock in and clock out. They don't want and I don't want meetings upon meetings that lead to no where. They and I want to experience work in its full and vibrant color. That's why I will continue to lead the charge much like powerful heads of innovative companies like Richard Branson (Virgin Companies) and Larry Page (Google). Its the future, but really its beginning to be the now. Don't be beaten to death by SOP's, memos and the such. While they have a place, its much better to focus on being front and center with your team and growing a beautiful flower of positive flow in the workplace. I say this all the time to anyone who will hear it...love makes money. Believe it!
Until next time...