As our MACS committee first formulated our concept for Keys To Success, the entire committee was unanimous in thinking Gary Perkins would be a great individual to kick off the series. All of us expected a great experience, but I believe I speak for all when I say we received so much more than we ever could have hoped for.
Mr. Perkins started off his reflection by painting a picture of where his career began. A common misconception may be that this man that has been extremely successful, and the CEO of Children’s for 30 years, has background within the medical field. In truth, Gary began his career as an accountant. However, he quickly took over as the CEO of a smaller organization at the ripe age of 28.
One of the continuous themes that Gary touched on was culture within the workplace. What is culture? Who creates it? How do you breed a positive culture? Listening to Gary speak about how you can integrate different personalities, and different generations, into one fluid movement provided such insight and wisdom. To illustrate his point about how no one person is more important than the other, Gary told us about a time one of his advisors said to him, “Gary, let’s say that you and someone from your environmental maintenance (cleaning) crew were gone for four days. Who do you think would be missed more?”
When creating culture, looking at your mission and vision is also extremely important. Times, trends, and culture change and evolve, which means your vision should evolve as well. But your mission is your foundation, and all vision’s should lead back to it. How do leaders create a new vision? Gary’s expertise helped us to understand that by engaging and selling our vision to our employees, we will more efficiently get everyone on the same road versus practicing command and control.
Having the opportunity to sit down and pick the brain of such a successful individual was truly an amazing opportunity. It was also a great example of the degree to which leaders in Omaha are not only accessible, but are ready and willing to help develop the next generation of talent. From all of us in attendance, thank you Gary for your time, wisdom, and selflessness.
Next event: Monday, November 10th, noon. With John Ewing. Click here to sign up.