When you write a business fable, people get caught up in the story and don't get judgmental about what you're teaching them. If you're teaching a bunch of concepts, people get skeptical and say, 'Where'd you get that research?' But if you tell them a story, they get caught up in it while they learn.
'One Minute Mentoring' is written in the parable style Spencer Johnson and I popularized in 'The One Minute Manager.' It's an entertaining story about the mentorship between a young salesperson, Josh, and a seasoned executive named Diane. As the characters learn about mentoring, so does the reader.
At my company, we have 300 employees spread across offices all over the world, and I send them all a voicemail each morning with a message from me about why our work is important and a reminder about one of our values. I call myself our company's 'chief spiritual officer.'
Many companies claim they have core values, but typically what they're referring to are generic beliefs: having integrity, making a profit, responding to customers and so on. These values only have meaning when they're defined in terms of how people behave and are ranked to set priorities.
Some people are really good at the visionary role. They're like third grade teachers who tell people the vision and values over and over and over until they get it right, right, right. But they're not implementers. If they're good leaders, they gather people around them who can take the implementation role and move it forward.
Too often in business, only financial data is gathered - and then it is distributed only to management. Other key indicators that relate to performance areas also need to be tracked. Information on performance has to be made available to those people who can best use it - those doing the work.