A Little Help from your Friends

December 28, 2011

As we all know, there simply are not that many original ideas in modern management and leadership. We develop solid strategies derived from great sources like Dale Carnegie in New Jersey http://www.dalecarnegienj.com  and we move forward.

It is interesting how leadership and the automobile business have gone hand-in-hand and good and bad. Dating back to the late 1860’s and the steam-driven carriage, to just prior to the Great Depression when 108 firms engaged in the fledgling car business within the Garden State, New Jersey has always had  a center stage.

Henry Ross Perot, Eagle Scout and U.S. Naval Academy Senior Class President, ran for President in both 1992 and 1996. He tours the country still giving an occasional speech; we are sure he gave one or two right here. Regardless, he is still a great leader and wonderful  story teller.

Ross Perot told this automotive story in a speech years ago. Although paraphrased, it is a lesson in the power of others.
Henry Ford had two best friends, Harvey Firestone and Thomas Edison. Yes, that Edison who moved his facilities to Menlo Park in 1876. Edison was much older than Ford and Henry always tapped him for ideas. One day Henry rings Tom up on the telephone and has him rush over to the Ford Factory Building in Detroit. With his arm around Mr. Edison, Mr. Ford points over to six big guys, loaded down with tool belts. They are working very hard assembling a car by hand. Slowly they finish one area and when done they move to another. Each to his own section of the automobile; they never missed a beat in the process. Henry sounding like a proud father says, “Well, Tom what do you think?’ Edison, probably one of the smartest men ever on earth, says this to Mr. Ford: “Henry, have you thought of having the car move and the workers standing still?

We all know it was Henry Ford who is credited with making the assembly line integral to auto production. But whose idea was it?

It never hurts, no matter the person, to get a little help from your friends.

Some ideas are just not that original. We all make mistakes and we all need help!

Punishing honest mistakes stifles creativity. I want people moving and shaking the earth and they’re going to make mistakes.
Ross Perot

The ideas I stand for are not mine. I borrowed them from Socrates. I swiped them from Chesterfield. I stole them from Jesus. And I put them in a book. If you don’t like their rules, whose would you use?
Dale Carnegie

This post is shared with you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Central & Southern New Jersey. We would love to connect with you on Facebook

Register today for Strictly Business scheduled for Monday February 27th in Bordertown; with a focus on problem solving and risk taking, it is a great way to head into 2012.  




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