By Mike Engel, VP Hospitality Innovation, Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures
Many years ago, I was at a food show and ran into an old family friend. Katie was the sister to one of my good friends in grade school and our families knew each other well. In fact, most of Katie’s brothers and sisters worked for my mom as their first job. We caught up on work and family and as we were set to go our own ways, Katie grabbed me and said, “I just want you to know to this day, your mom was the best boss I have ever had.”
Looking back, I probably took the comment in stride as many people loved working with my mom and that was in line with what others had said about her. Thinking about it today, however, I understand that it was more than that, it was my mom’s leadership legacy.
As leaders, we are charged with making sure our businesses succeed and that success defines us as leaders.
Many businesses have a hierarchy of managers, all with fancy titles, that foster a traditional top-down, authoritarian leadership environment. In these businesses, associates do things because they are told to do them. Success is judged by accomplishing a task and quite often the recognition of that success often falls on the “boss,” who, in all reality, had very little to do with it.
A few years ago, Mille Lacs Corporate Ventures pivoted our leadership philosophy and it started with a simple thought – let’s flip the traditional leadership pyramid upside down. Rather than having everything flow up for decisions and approvals, let’s let our teams, who are close to the guests, make the decisions. This was our first step in what has become our servant leadership journey.
Since then, we have gathered once a year as leaders for the MLCV Leadership Conference, it is an opportunity to refresh our batteries, get inspired to be better leaders, and gain new tools to put in our leadership toolbox. Our initial conferences were so successful that we had leaders outside our organization looking to attend. Out of those requests, the National Leadership Development Conference was born.
In 2019 we had 490 participants, 137 organizations, and 23 Tribal affiliations from across the United States. The cornerstone of this year’s conference is Ken Blanchard’s Raving Fans concept: Creating guests who are so amazed by great service, they can’t stop talking about it. Carefully selected speakers educate you, as they engage your creative thought processes and leave you feeling nothing but inspired to be the best version of yourself!
Join us virtually this June at the National Leadership Development Conference where a spotlight will shine on Creating Believers Through Truth, Vision, & Consistency. Take the time to invest in yourself and continue building your own leadership legacy.
For more information go to LeadershipDevCon.com.