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Managing to Make a Difference by Larry Sternberg

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Introduction

What is managing to make a difference? Ask the next five people you see to tell you about a manager who made a difference in their lives, and see what you hear. Here are some responses we got when we asked that question:

“She was supportive and highly in tune with my strengths. She consistently looked for ways to maximize my potential, always recognized my work, and helped me realize how much value I added to the organization. She was a mentor and coach but, most importantly, a friend.”

—Jess Karo describing her manager, Trisha Berry

“I had a manager on the police department who would inspire us before the DWI detail we had every year during the month of December. He would plan a theme for the month. His squad was called the South West Weasels. The first year was ‘Weasels in Wonderland.’ He brought New Year's confetti poppers and sparkling grape juice to our kickoff. We drank to our success and sang songs. (Think of that—45 macho cops singing together!) He would then carefully assign people to various job tasks. The traffic oriented cops went out to stop cars. The more warm and fuzzy cops took calls for service. The burly ones were assigned to break up wild parties. Everyone was assigned to the jobs they were most successful at and gravitated toward. Job satisfaction was very high, and he played to people's strengths. Plus, everyone knew Mike had our back. No other brass would mess with Mike's squad. He was supportive, empathetic, the most creative person I have ...

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