Reaching our potential requires change

By |  August 26, 2018
Illustration: Leo Michael

Illustration: Leo Michael

Among my interview questions for Sterling Barbour for the story, “Hiring, training veterans for a career in pest control,” was: How do you balance all of your responsibilities? Barbour is COO of a pest control company he co-founded, executive director of its veteran recruitment and training offshoot, and co-founder and vice president of a veterans advocacy organization. Barbour also is a husband and father who likes to travel and, I assume, sleep once in a while.

“The key is having quality people working with you and building a culture of teamwork,” Barbour told me. “I start my day by meeting with our pest control team to ensure we’re headed in the right direction, and to receive their feedback and insight as valuable members of our company.”

Because his various roles overlap, Barbour added, “I am afforded the opportunity to present the same kind of leadership at my company, on councils and at organizations. Yes, I get home late, but I find time to spend quality time with my family.”

I encourage you to step back and look at the leadership you’re providing. Are you truly leading — surrounding yourself with quality people dedicated to the same corporate mission, values and strategies — or really just following the crowd? To become all we can be, as individuals and organizations, we must shed our comfort cocoons and continuously change and grow.



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