People Acuity Newsletter – April/May 2021

Don’t Be ‘That Guy’!

Imagine that you work for a jerk – a total narcissist! He uses an outdated command-and-control leadership style that includes public shaming, blaming, yelling, and criticizing – and you are constantly pounded by him no matter how hard you work or how much success you create. It’s no surprise that the leadership turnover rate in your organization is 50% because no one can stand him! Nor is it surprising that every division has seen negative or little performance growth for a decade – except one… Yours.

Not only have you been a leader for 10 years in a negative environment, but your division has shown a 67% financial gain during that time.  You’ve carried the company’s revenues, producing over 60% of its returns in the past decade.  On top of that, you’ve maintained sound strategies for staying positive and engaged as a leader when others drop like flies.

Sound impossible?

It’s not! This is a true story about Shane, the leader of the North American division for a high-grossing and fast-growing global business. Shane is not a sucker for punishment. He is a tenacious man on a mission, who has changed the course of his entire company and directly influenced its financial success because of his ability to lead himself before trying to influence others. Though Shane has often been the brunt of his CEO’s verbal abuse, he still chooses to “lead up,” even to the point that his boss has followed his counsel on a number of critical occasions while other leaders were summarily dismissed. How does Shane do it, given the total negativity of the situation and the boss he works with?

This newsletter focuses attention on today’s most-wanted leadership competency – Self Leadership – and how you can help others around you get more of it. To learn more of Shane’s story, and how growing Self-Leadership impacts business outcomes and can strengthen others’ enthusiasm for bringing their best selves to work, check out our leadership report. You may also be interested in a 10-minute mini-course that teaches you all about The Most Wanted Leadership Competency of our day, or Growing Your Self-Leadership.



How Self-leadership Improves Business Performance

What Every Leader Needs to Know
View and Download the Whitepaper
These clients from the Philippines have it right!
Here’s to shifting up others by first shifting up ourselves!

Three Exciting New Online Classes

We have just introduced three new online classes, offered at introductory prices for a limited time!

Today’s Most Wanted Leadership Competency – Now only $5.99!

The world economic crisis and global pandemic have changed everything! Top researchers from Fuzu suggest why 7,000 leaders are right in their assessment of today’s most essential personal and leadership competency. You will learn all about it in this brief 15-minute learning experience.

Here, you will:

  • Discover the #1 rated personal and leadership competency of our day
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This program includes:

  • Two videos
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Growing Your Self-Leadership – Now only $49.99!

This program is particularly designed to follow the virtual or online version of the People Acuity Self-Leadership learning experience.  It exists as a tool to help you turn your Self-Leadership insights and learning into sustainable habits.

Growing Your Self-Leadership will:

  • Empower you to make choices that release you from reactivity and negativity
  • Strengthen your ability to have a positive impact on others
  • Guide you to decreased stress, frustration, anxiety, and tension
  • Deepen your ability to live true to your unique purpose
  • Help you anticipate energy/performance pitfalls and create strategies to avoid them.

This program includes:

  • Ten videos that review key Self-Leadership concepts
  • Ten weeks of daily Growth Zone Challenges to help you turn Self-Leadership principles into habits (with daily practice logs to focus and improve behavior)
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7 Virtual Classroom Sessions: Self-Leadership – Now only $495!

This program will increase your ability to be coach-like with yourself and others and lead with greater confidence and tools for empowering yourself and others. Register by May 4, 2021 to qualify for the early-bird pricing ($695 after).

You will discover keys to self-direct your energy, engagement and performance as you focus on applying:

  • Proactive accountability
  • Tools for Increasing Work Joy (tools for creating self-engagement)
  • Practices to reduce toxicity
  • Strengths to reduce weakness
  • Individual purpose identification as a self-motivation and leadership tool.
Learn More and Register

An Employer’s Sour Grapes Means Oily Pennies Paycheck

Sometimes, learning what not to do as a leader is as important as what to do. While the following example is rather extreme, there are certainly incidents that happen quite often of less vindictive and obnoxious but equally unprofessional behavior from the leadership of some organizations.

The combination of cameras on our phones and social media has made it possible for information to go worldwide without owning a media conglomerate. This means that employees, customers, and competitors have the ability to share positive experiences, but also publish issues, grievances, and wrongs… and the posts can go viral rather quickly. The spread of such information is out of our hands, which is why it is important to run your business and manage your workforce (and former employees) as if the world is watching. After all, it just might be! What kind of impression would your leadership style make? When the unexpected happens, do you handle it with grace?

Every day and every place on our Earth, people quit their jobs. Most that do give the customary notice of two weeks, like Georgia resident Andreas Flaten, who resigned his position at an auto repair shop in November 2020. Likewise, we expect the employer to act in a professional manner when handling details like the final paycheck. Apparently, A OK Walker Luxury Autoworks didn’t get the memo on that last part.

After Flaten quit his position, he patiently waited for his final paycheck of $915 to arrive as promised by his boss, Miles Walker, in January. “Damages” was the excuse Walker gave for not issuing the final payment, and the Georgia Department of Labor was no help to Flaten in resolving the situation. A few months later, the former employee and his girlfriend noticed a mysterious pile in the driveway. Upon closer inspection, the couple found a final pay stub decorated with a written expletive and a huge mound of over 91,000 oily, greasy pennies weighing 500 pounds.

In disbelief at the way business owner Miles Walker handled this rather run-of-the-mill business situation, Flaten’s girlfriend posted to social media about the unique method used to issue her boyfriend’s final paycheck. The former employee was interviewed on TV news, and stated he was spending hours each night cleaning the coins so he could cash them in and finally truly collect on the $915 paycheck, all those months later. Walker, who no one will be voting “Georgia’s Employer of the Year”, was asked about the delivery of pennies and told a news reporter, “I don’t really remember. It doesn’t matter – he got paid, that’s all that matters,” and went on to call his former worker “a weenie”. After those comments, he surely won’t be voted “Boss of the Year” either.

The story does have a happy ending though. Coinstar found out about the pennies predicament, picked up the oily coins from Flaten (presumably for later processing), and even rounded the amount up to $1000 and donated $1000 to two animal shelters in the Atlanta area that Flaten chose to receive the gift. For Walker’s part, it would seem by his comments to the news media and his company’s website that he doesn’t feel he’s done anything out of the ordinary. The homepage of his auto repair shop even states “And yes we accept pennies as payment! They are cash!” We’re not sure he’d see the irony if someone with a substantial repair bill dumped hundreds of pounds of pennies in the parking lot and called it payment – but we’d sure like to be a fly on the wall if it ever happened! Imagine how differently this story of a man quitting his job and wanting his final paycheck would have been told if the auto repair shop simply issued via paper check the former employee’s final paycheck and pay stub (without an expletive)!

If you’d like to learn more about how People Acuity can help prepare your organization for our new world, please call us at 952.797.4317, email us at, or simply use the link below.

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