Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Tim Russert

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I was stunned by the way so many people across our country were broken-hearted over the death of Tim Russert. I surprised myself as I became weepy every time I saw or heard a reference in those first few days. It can’t be just because we were both born in Buffalo, (even though Tim made it ok for me to come out of the Buffalo closet). Tim made Buffalo kinda cool. I stress kinda.

I have a theory: I think that so many people experienced Russert’s death as a personal loss mostly because he was the real deal. Yup, he was smart, really great at his job, funny, reliable, respectful, relentless, clever in the right way and so much more. But Russert formed a rare kind of connection with millions of people right through the damn TV. Almost as if he was a real friend. From high school maybe. My friend. Your friend.

I believe that Russert's remarkable connection came from his genuineness. It just poured out of the guy. I think we are all starved for people who are the real deal, and not just on TV. He gave us the best version of himself everyday, so let’s take a few management lessons from Tim.

Are you vigilant about being respectful to everyone?
Are you willing to do a sufficient amount of prep every week so you have all the info you need to do your job?
Are you relentless about the things you and your team need to get the job done?
Do you keep your word?
Do you ask (many) questions in order to fully understand any situation?
If you happen to be the smartest person in the room do you ensure that others never feel less smart than you?
And do you go to work every day in service to others?

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