You are on page 1of 16

SPECIAL REPORT

Professional Development

How to Find the Best Loss Prevention Jobs


and Build a Successful LP Career
P
rofessional growth is something that most of us improvement of what we have, using systems,
strive for. Its one of the many things that we use processes and technology to react to business needs.
to measure our quality of life, our contribution Management skills are used to establish and maintain
as individuals, and our personal legacy as it pertains objectives and standards, driving a plan through
to every aspect of who we are and what we do. critical thinking and rational methodology. Strategic
However, this is a journey thats never complete. As planning, intellectual application and analysis,
we move along our career path, we look at the problem solving, direction, organization, and
different steps that we might take as individuals to administration are all guiding principles of effective
help move our careers forward. We speculate about management.
what it takes to get ahead, and what we have to do to By comparison, leadership embraces a different
become a more complete professional. aspect of personal abilities, and involves the
We should never underestimate the value and emotional or human side of our skill sets. By
importance of developing our skills, improving our focusing on people, principles and purpose,
productivity, looking for new and creative ways to leadership allows us to seek out potential, beyond
perform, and striving for professional excellence. But that which is right in front of us. Leadership requires
these are never the sole factors in building a career. insight into interpersonal relationships, social
Many personal and economic factors can come influences and team dynamics. It teaches us to
into play as we make decisions about our education connect with our team and focus on our mission.
and academic growth. The importance of family and Leadership stokes imagination, confidence, pride,
work/life balance is a personal as well as situational and the will to win.
factor that can have substantial bearing on our
choices. This will also influence our willingness to Stepping Up: How LP Managers Can Become
move or travel. Professional security and a fear of Retail Executives
change is often more of a factor than many realize. Retailers come in all shapes, sizes and
As life unfolds, plans change. Priorities are personalities. Major international retailers have tens
revised to fit different needs and agendas. As we or hundreds of thousands of employees and tens of
mature as individuals as well as professionals, we billions in annual sales, while twenty- to fifty-store
will continue to make decisions that will have a direct regional chains have dozens of employees doing less
and lasting impact on our personal and professional that $50 million in sales. Medium-sized retailers can
direction. Whats most important is that we make range anywhere in between, all with unique strengths,
informed decisions. Companies change direction. weaknesses, and business strategies. One thing all
Some companies fail. Departments adapt new retailers have in common is inventory shrinkage
approaches. Positions are re-defined, while others are and the need for loss prevention professionals to
eliminated. There is a continuous evolution of the manage programs to reduce it.
retail experience, and it influences every one of us in Large retailers often offer more opportunities for
some way. If a fear of change is holding you back, growth and career advancement. Many times,
you may want to reconsider your way of thinking. however, when loss prevention managers get to the
regional level, they find their opportunities for
Transitioning from a Manager to a Leader advancement are severely limited and the
A critical component of personal development is competition is fierce.
understanding the difference between being a While large retailers have little problem
manager and being a leader. In the business world, attracting top-tier experienced talent for their director
the term leadership is often used hand in hand with and VP positions, attracting and keeping solid talent
the term management. While the terms are clearly to develop and/or run LP departments can be a
interrelated, they are by no means one and the same. challenge for small- and medium-sized retailers.
Management functions can potentially provide a These retailers may lack the resources, expertise, or
strong foundation for leadership, and leadership experience within their executive ranks to understand
qualities can influence ability to manage. But the their true loss prevention needs and attract
terms refer to two distinct types of skill setsboth of experienced director-level candidates to help them
which are important to your development as a assess and address those needs.
professional. This dilemma can create unique opportunities for
Focused on maintaining standards, supervising, loss prevention professionals at the regional level to
and establishing controls, management refers to the step up to the position of director. Many regionals are
processes and strategies that are used to accomplish hungry to step up, but do not know how to proceed.
goals. Management strives for a continuous This uncertainty can lead to career stagnation and

2|Professional Development Special Report


frustration, and may result in potentially great shrinkage. Developing a strategic approach to this
industry leaders leaving loss prevention for other objective based on a companys culture and business
fields. climate can be an exciting venture.
Retail Business. To be truly successful, an LP
Self-Educating Mindset professional must learn retail as an industry, not just
Remember that large retailers have more retail loss prevention. Learn retail accounting and
resources, money, and systems to execute their loss supply-chain management. Understand distribution,
prevention programs and recruit and hire talent. allocation, and the buying process. Understand basic
Smaller retailers not only may not have the resources, retail accounting principles and corporate
but they may not have the leadership to help them governance. Be prepared to talk about margins,
understand what resources must be devoted to the LP accruals, cost-of-goods-sold, and profit-and-loss
program to be successful. On top of that, they may statements.
not understand how profitable a loss prevention Understanding retail as a business will help you
department can be. Medium-sized retailers may have speak the language of the executives with whom you
recently outgrown their small company culture and will come into contact. If they see you are interested
be experiencing unprecedented inventory shrinkage and somewhat proficient in what their priorities are,
problems. they will likely become interested in your priorities
A good regional loss prevention manager who is and listen to your ideas.
hungry to step up must begin to develop a few basic Higher Education. Recognize that college
fundamentals that will lead them down the path to graduates are highly sought after. Continue your
opportunity. Without these guiding principles, education and strive to attain your degree if you do
opportunities will pass by almost unnoticed because not already have one. An education in business
one is not prepared. To begin, one must have a management and the loss prevention programs
mindset of a self-education and training process. offered through universities such as Eastern
Basic Principles. First, begin understanding the Kentucky, Northern Michigan, and the University of
programs that you currently work in and those you Florida can make your candidacy for an executive
may have worked within in your past. Analyze what position much more desirable than your peers without
parts of the programs work and why. Where else such an education.
would these strategies work? Although not every Network. Spend this time as a regional to
retailer is the same, there are basic guiding principles develop a network in the industry. Seek a mentor
to retailing. who may be your boss or a former boss. It may be a
Priorities. Understand what the objectives are. more experienced peer or a counterpart in the
For some, the priorities may be internal theft, while operations division. Build relationships with others in
others may be supply-chain control, and still others the industry, including vendors. Understanding what
may be shoplifting, burglaries, and robberies. What their priorities are will help you in your future role as
strategies have you experienced in your current or you negotiate contracts for services.
past positions that can address each of the different These contacts throughout the industry can help
priorities a company may have? Most retailers share you identify opportunities for career advancement
one primary objective: the reduction of inventory before anyone else knows about them and can help

3|Professional Development Special Report


you hit the ground running when you finally achieve operations is much different than running someone
an executive position. elses program.
Ask Questions. Ask your boss about your In many instances, opportunities arise from
departments operation, strategy and budget. It is networking. A CEO reaches out to a colleague asking
okay to let your director or vice president know that for feedback on how to find a good loss prevention
you want to learn the industry in more detail. Your director, and that person talks to a few others, and
boss will not fault you for your eagerness to learn. In soon someone you know mentions your name
fact, he/she may appreciate it and see an opportunity because of the work you have done over the last few
to be a mentor to you. years developing your reputation and skill sets. A few
Reputation. Be mindful of your reputation. If phone calls later and you could be sitting in front of a
you have bad professional relationships from the CEO of a $50, $100, or $200 million retail chain
past, try to repair them without compromising your talking about the skills and strategies that you can
core values. Try to build a reputation as an honest bring to their organization.
and fair, yet tough, executive who will keep their Because of the preparation time you have spent
word. Make your word and a handshake actually during the past years, you can speak intelligently
mean something, while recognizing that not everyone about the operation and talk to the CEO with an
operates as honorably. understanding of the companys needs and how to
Others Experiences Learn from others proceed. If there is a match, both of you will
successes and failures. Analyze why some people are recognize it.
effective, and emulate those traits. Ask successful Hiring a regional manager is about finding an
people what they attribute their success to. They will individual with the right skill sets. Hiring an
be flattered by the question and most likely be willing executive is as much about personality and
to tell you. Do not be afraid to ask your boss for management style as it is skill sets. If there is not a
input. No director or vice president wants to lose match, be prepared to move on to the next
good subordinates to another company, but most opportunity.
would be proud to see their subordinates succeed and
move to the director level themselves. Some of the Making the Move
most satisfying times can be when one of yours Once the opportunity materializes and you make
gets promoted. the move from regional manager to the coveted
Communication Skills. Understand how a CEO, position of director of loss prevention, do not make
operations, or human resources director or vice the common mistake of thinking your development is
president thinks and what is important to them. Are now complete. In fact, it is more critical now than
they relationship-driven, or are they driven by reports ever.
and data? Are the executives you come in contact Seek Guidance. Continue to reach out to peers
with results-oriented or process-driven? Learn what it and contacts in the industry. Sometimes we all try to
takes to speak with different types of executives so reinvent the wheel, when directors and vice
you are communicating your strategy and ideas presidents all over the country are willing to share
effectively. their experiences and help you avoid pitfalls. Most, if
not all, are willing to help those seeking guidance.
Waiting for Opportunities Build Alliances. Once in place as a new director
This learning and preparation process can take a of loss prevention, how you begin your tenure can
year or more, which is to be expected. Patience and and will influence the level of success you achieve.
perseverance here is important. This is the time to build alliances within the
Many regional loss prevention managers have organization, and to understand everyone elses
spent time learning the industry only to come to the alliances as well. It is important to begin to
realization that they are happy as a regional manager. understand the companys culture and operation
Learning during this time will make you a better before criticizing and trying to change it. Remember
regional manager, even if you decide against going to that the company has had some measure of success,
the next level or if that great opportunity takes so it is important to appreciate the people who
several years to materialize. brought the company to where it is.
As you prepare, be honest with yourself on what Look Forward. Resist the temptation to always
you are and are not ready for, but know that risk is talk about how your last company did things. Most
part of this process. A good executive cannot be corporate leaders resent having another companys
afraid to step out of his/her comfort zone. Being the name brought up as having all the answers. You are
department head and developing programs and now an executive at your new company. Instead of

4|Professional Development Special Report


saying, At XYZ Company, we, try saying, in touch with industry trends and share ideas. Finally,
What if we tried something like this? I think it could consider the following:
work because... Talk about industry best practices Dont neglect the marketing of your departments
rather than what your last employer did. successes and the value you bring to the executives
Build Consensus. Learn to use the alliances in of the company.
the organization to build consensus for programs you Dont forget to share the credit for success as well
want to implement. Understand the resistance you as be willing to accept responsibility for things that
will meet and work within the alliances to reduce the dont go well.
resistance to change, building ownership in the Always measure performance and track progress.
program. Work on being looked on as an overall business
If your operations team has some influence in the leader in the company. Be a retail executive first
final program development and sees their input in the and a loss prevention executive second.
final product, they will be more likely to buy into it Never allow the CEO, other executives, your boss,
and influence others to support your program. This or your business partners to be surprised, especially
equals success for both you and the company. by bad news.
Expect Compromise. Every good executive Being trusted and respected as an executive of
needs to be willing to compromise. Take others integrity is worth its weight in gold.
concerns into account when developing proposals for Develop guiding principles and a mission
a change in control or methods of operation. statement for your life and career. Living and
Sometimes a diplomatic solution is more successful working by them will bring consistency and respect
than flexing muscles and expending political capital. to you and your organization.
You may need that capital to develop support for a
future initiative. Fifteen Tips to a Better Job Interview
Think Strategically. The ability to think As we travel down our loss prevention career
strategically will influence the level of success you path, we learn that the road to professional success
achieve. Strategic thinkers have a vision of where requires a wide spectrum of skills and experience far
they see their lives, their careers, and their companies beyond those that we carried when we first entered
at various points in the timeline of life. Being able to the field. But in order to secure the best LP jobs to fit
your strategy, and then communicate the steps our abilities, it also demands the capability to
needed to achieve your vision is paramount, to the effectively communicate our talents to the decision
success of any executive. makers who can propel our careers to the next level.
Small- and medium-sized retailers by their This is an essential skill set that commands our
nature can be tactical in their processes. This can understanding and attention, regardless of whether
provide an opportunity for you as a new loss we are exploring options within our own company or
prevention executive to provide strategic vision and beyond our current employer.
leadership to the company, increasing your value to
the executives and earning you a seat at the table.
Strategic thinking will influence the way your
decisions are made. Decision making as an executive
of a company must begin with a strategic analysis of
the impact the decisions will have on the overall
operation, and not just the loss prevention efforts.
Understanding the priorities of your counterparts in
human resources and operations will lead you to
understand how to develop strategies that create win-
win scenarios. As you develop guiding principles for
your management style, make it a priority that every
new control or program will make your company
more efficient, more profitable, and not hinder sales,
or create unreasonable burdens on the employees.

Market Yourself
Remember that you have peers in the industry
who are more than willing to help with ideas and
offer sound advice. Most executives attend
networking events and roundtable discussions to keep

5|Professional Development Special Report


A job interview provides a means to open a program, and how they approach the job. Speak
window into who we areas a professional, as a with mentors who can help you better understand
leader, as a partner, and as a person. We are given the position. Understand the opportunities and
precious minutes to summarize our value and our challenges. Learn the possibilities, and how they
character and make a positive and lasting impression. might help you grow as a professional. All of this
This is a platform, and not a guarantee that others helps set the tone for the interview.
will see us for who we are. It is up to us to open the Perspective. Put yourself in the shoes of the
window and share the picture. interviewer. Ask yourself tough questions that go
But an interview is also something more. It is a beyond the routine: Why should I pick you over
search for a match, and a chance to take our skills someone else? What value can you bring to the
and abilities to another level. It is a means to build position and to the organization? Look at what
upon our career, and find a home that not only meets youve learned through your research, play the role
our needs, but helps reveal our future. Unfortunately, of the decision maker, and force yourself to step
it is also a skill that many take for granted. Its not up.
enough to be good at what we do. We also have to be Attention to Detail. The little things can make a
able to share that information with others, and offer difference. Interviewers will pay attention to the
the best possible picture of who we are. Following way you approach the details, and translate that
are some fundamental tips to help you put your best information into the way that you approach the job.
foot forward in the interview process. For example, various websites can provide
1. Approach the interview with the right financial information (if publically traded), recent
attitude. Enthusiasm is key. Many things can go into company-related headlines and news, detailed
determining who will be the best candidate to fill a company profiles, and more. Use that information
particular position, and a number of those factors go wisely, and make an impression.
well beyond the details listed on a resume. By the Preparation is critical to the interview process. It
time that the hiring process gets to the interviewing helps us get the information right, but it also builds
stage, most of the candidates have represented the confidence. That confidence can be felt throughout
skill sets necessary to be considered a viable hire. At the interview. It comes through in the tone of our
this juncture, interviewers are looking at capabilities voice. It helps us to relax. It helps the conversation to
as well as qualifications. Theyre looking for a fit. flow better and more freely.
They want to see passion, drive, and enthusiasm. 4. Dress appropriately and conservatively:
They want to see the qualities of a leader. They dont clean suit/dress, pressed clothes, polished shoes, long
necessarily want to see cartwheels, but they want to sleeved shirt/blouse. Minimal or no cologne/perfume.
see energy. Enthusiasm is contagious let them feel Check your appearance right before you walk in to
it! the interview. Keep in mind that occasionally
2. Dont allow your ego to drive the interviews may not call for a suit or a dress, and the
conversation. Approach the conversation with the interviewer may share that information prior to the
mindset that This is the job that I want This is interview. However, that, doesnt imply that we
where I want to go, and take it from there. With this shouldnt dress well and look professional and crisp.
approach, whats the worst that can happen? We get Dress for success.
into the conversation, realize it might not be the right 5. Shake hands, look them in the eye, and
opportunity, they make us an offer, and we turn it smile. No gum. No food. No smoking.
down. Most of us can live with that. The other side of 6. Be genuine. Show energy and enthusiasm,
that coin is what leads to frustrating results. Too but be sincere. The job search is about finding a
many people take the Lets see how this goes or the match, and finding a home. Dont give answers
Whats in this for me? approach to the interview. simply because you think its the response that they
These are the types of ego-driven mistakes that haunt want to hear.
us later. 7. Focus on your accomplishments. When
3. Set yourself apart from other candidates. asked about your experience, dont simply reiterate
There are three primary areas where we can prepare your job descriptions. Did you lead? Create? Develop
for this: programs? Develop subordinates? Manage through
Perception: Having a good feel for the company change? Build business partnerships? Show the value
and what theyre looking for in a candidate. Do the that you can bring.
homework. Whenever possible, speak to peers and 8. On the topic of strengths and weaknesses
others familiar with the company. Visit the always have both, and always attempt to turn the
companys website, and learn its mission, vision weakness into a positive. There is a reason that this
and history. Learn as much as you can about the is a popular question during the interview process;

6|Professional Development Special Report


and while the answers are important, our response the most important for both parties. There is a time
can reach beyond what those specific strengths and and a place for those discussions, and a way to
weaknesses might be. Decision makers want to know approach the negotiationespecially if you hope to
if you can be self-reflective. Can you look yourself in get the answers that you want to hear.
the mirror and ask, Where can I get better? Show 15. Be confidentbut not cocky. Show ability
the maturity to recognize your developmental needs, and potential (Yes, Im good at what I do...), but
and the initiative to try to make personal coupled with the humility and maturity of a leader
improvement. (But there are always things that I can learn.).
9. Know where youre going and give yourself Make a strong, positive and lasting impression.
plenty of time to get there. Dont be late!
10. A well-written, well-constructed resume Mentoring the Big Jump
can be a critical aspect of the interview process. It Senior leaders in the asset protection industry
is not only a summary of your professional have the unique opportunity to mold star performers
experience and abilities; it is also a point of reference from their current role to the next stage of their
that the decision maker will use as they prepare for career. This jump in their responsibility can range
your interview. Make sure that your resume from taking the journey from one store to their first
accurately describes who you are and that its easy to multiple-store assignment, or from district to regional
read and follow. management.
11. Bring extra copies of your resume. Bring at Our role in supporting this upward change is to
least threea copy for the interviewer, a copy for prepare them for the differences they will face in
yourself, and a copy in case they ask you to meet their new position. Whether the changes are
with someone else. Bring high-quality resumes on a emotional, geographical, or functional, we owe our
nice grade of paper. Have something to write with. new leader the skills and insight to remain successful
12. Ask questions that showcase your research and build on the potential that brought them here. In
and allow the interviewer to see you in the job. most cases, our star is walking into their new role
For example: In my research, I noticed that the with limited opportunities to observe the behind-the-
company is looking to grow significantly in the next scenes functions that we sometimes take for granted.
two years. From an operations/HR/global When a promoted leader first takes the reins of
perspective, how would you like to see our his or her new team, they are often blinded by the
department contribute to that growth? This would whirlwind of changes that are taking place. In most
also open the door for you to add how you feel that cases, they are too busy trying to keep up with their
the department could/should contribute. transformation to stop and learn how to deal with the
13. Try to learn a little about the person that significant changes to their role. Yet while these
youre interviewing with, especially if its someone adjustments and life lessons are important for their
that youll be working directly for. Why did they join growth and development, there are several things that
the company? What do they think about the direction we can do to mentor and assist in their journey to
of the organization? Once again, a job search is about ensure that they are successful, and that the stress of
finding a match. Candidly, you want to learn if this is the changes is minimized.
a company, a program, and a team that you can work
with as well.
14. Dont ask about money unless the
interviewer brings it up first. That would include
talk regarding benefits. Your primary objective in the
first interview is to be seen as someone the company
wants or even needs to hire. Be seen as an
outstanding candidate, not a dollar sign. As a rule of
thumb, salary increases are typically based on:
What youre currently making
What theyre capable of paying
Industry standards for the position
The experience level that you bring to the position
How well you interview
Communication
Unrealistic salary requests make us look
With job transition comes a change in
unreasonable, and can undo all of the hard work that
communication. A new leader will experience
got us to that point. If pressed, be smart and flexible
different kinds of discussions with a different level of
with your response. The money question is one of

7|Professional Development Special Report


leadership. Whether it is email, simple conversations, once, which can further dilute our effectiveness. We
or conference calls, our mentoree should be prepared need to teach future leaders to prioritize decisions
and know exactly what to expect. Here are some and projects to get the biggest impact with the least
ways that you can help. amount of time and effort.
Conference Calls. Once youve identified high- Leaders should know where they stand in all
potential employees, allow your mentoree to run your areas of profit and loss at all given moments. Does it
conference calls on occasion. This helps with their make money? Does it prevent loss? Will it make the
confidence level and gives them a rhythm for their job easier? If it falls into one of these categories, our
own eventual calls. Get permission for your student leader should take a deeper look.
to listen in on other leadership calls. Whether its
your supervisors calls or another member of Global Thinking
leadership that they will likely interact with, listening Our decisions can provide great benefits, but can
in on these calls prepares them for what they will be also have the potential for adverse effects on our
dealing with on a first-hand basis. entire markets. New leaders often make situational
Email Communication. Send out practice emails decisions in one location that eventually bleed over to
that you would typically receive and answer. This other markets. Such decisions must also consider the
practice will help get them focused on the potential needs, culture, and strategy of the entire business.
changes in upward communication. Have your These from-the-hip decisions can cause headaches
mentoree respond, and then set aside time to critique that take multiple actions to undo and can tarnish the
the response. reputation of the new leader.
A decision as simple as removing one SKU off
Altitude Change the sales floor due to external theft concerns can not
With upward promotion comes a different level only affect sales and profits in the store, but also
of thinking. Moving into a new role will also mean bleed to other stores and markets, replicating the
managing a different set of responsibilities. The mistake. Teaching our mentoree to refrain from
thought process revolving around what is truly making these rash decisions and instead focusing on
important will change and become more global. At a the bigger picture will allow them to make better
store or district level, AP professionals are flying decisions and eliminate pain-points with business
close to ground level. The move to 30,000 feet can be partners.
significant, and often a new leader has not been Practice Exercises. Put your mentoree through a
prepared for this flight. series of scenarios that will allow them to think about
Taking time to start the mental transformation decisions before they are thrust into the role.
will be important and will decrease stress once your New Market Visits. Have your mentoree visit
mentoree gets in their new role. Take them out of other markets with you. This experience will give
their comfort zone as often as possible during the them an alternate view of the world and dial in the
process. Your star will thank you for it later. larger perspective that is needed to successfully
Report Analysis. If possible, assign higher-level manage multiple markets. The contrasting picture
reports to be reviewed, analyzed, and reported back will also open their eyes to the pitfalls of reacting too
on. We must teach our future leaders how to lead a quickly.
team and course-correct a store without having
immediate physical access to the location. A Clear, Concise Plan
Lead Store Visits. Have the mentoree lead store Moving upward into a new role requires pinpoint
visits with you in other markets or stores they are not planning to make the necessary changes seamless for
familiar with and have not previously visited. This the new leader and their team. Ensure your mentoree
not only gives them an opportunity to get out of their understands the significance that the change can have
comfort zone, but also gives them a taste for the job on their business partners and how this might impact
prior to being thrown into the fire. their teams. Proper planning starts with
understanding what needs changed, then devising a
Prioritization plan that will tactically implement the changes to get
New leaders often struggle with prioritizing desired results.
issues. Fires can spread quickly, and our mentoree Slower Is Faster. Many new leaders start
will be trying to impress superiors and business changing simply for the sake of change. Teaching the
partners with every decision they make. The planning process will ease a tremendous amount of
eagerness to please sometimes blindfolds the thought pain for the duration of their career.
process, leading to poor and ineffective choices. This Planning Practice. Have your mentoree
can also lead to trying to tackle too many tasks at construct their own plan for your area of

8|Professional Development Special Report


responsibility using information that can be made challenging and sometimes discouraging to a
available to them. This will allow you to see their new leader.
thought process and give them practice without Shared Vision. Leaders both new and
consequences. Who knowsyou just might see your experienced must create a shared vision with our
market differently after the exercise. business partners. This shared interest will provide a
vested interest in the outcome for all parties.
Organization Everyone Must Benefit. Teach your mentoree
One of the most important habits to teach is the that small sacrifices lead to big wins. In order for new
personal organization required to make the big jump. initiatives to take flight, everyone must benefit. The
Keeping up with calendar invites, staying current customers, the organization, the stockholders, and the
with email, returning the 57 phone calls that were business leaders must all gain something. If not, the
missed during a flight, ensuring that all work is change will be met with opposition.
turned in on time, and being where you are supposed Helping your team reach their full potential and
to be when you are supposed to be there you have arriving at the next level is an important role that you
mastered these critical skills. It will be new set of play as a leader. Reach out to your mentorees
skills for your mentoree to learn. Providing sound weaknesses and make their strengths even stronger.
advice to help them manage through the Decreasing the stress level during their career move
organizational needs of the position will pay huge will make them better decision-makers and stronger
dividends for them in their new role and for the rest leaders. Teach them to succeed, and your career will
of their career. grow as well.

Partnerships Speak as Well as You Think


Effective leaders in asset protection understand What we say, how we say it, and what were
that powerful things are accomplished when we build doing when we say it combine to create great
strong partnerships with our business leaders and messagesor messages that are forgotten in the next
teams. Careers can be built or destroyed by the moment. When you can speak as well as you think,
partnerships that we gain or lose. you can drive your business results, whether you are
Our mentoree needs to understand that trust and addressing shrinkage issues with store management
mutual respect will drive their partnerships. These or discussing profit-enhancement strategies with
important relationships are built over a period of time corporate executives.
and need consistency to bloom to their maximum Beyond that, the ability to communicate clearly,
potential. Proper communication will establish the confidently, and comfortably is a key talent
foundation of these partnerships when the differentiator that will enhance your career. When
correspondence is open and timely. youre speaking to your staff, your management, or
Teach the Same-Day Rule. The new leader your customers, first impressions are critical.
should make a t habit of responding to emails and
voicemails on the same day they are received. This
can make for some long days initially, but the benefit
reaped from this habit will far outweigh the cost.
Business partners will admire the dedication to the
role, issues will be handled promptly and respect will
be gained during the process.
Reveal the Agendas. Partnerships cannot survive
without trust. If business colleagues uncover hidden
agendas, that trust can be damaged. Our new leaders
need to be honest about their intentions with all
aspects of the business.

Influencing Change
Considering the fact that our mentoree is
successful in their current role and being considered
for more responsibility, they likely have developed a
strong acumen for managing through influence. This
skill becomes more difficult to master as we move up
the ladder. Navigating these waters can be

9|Professional Development Special Report


Executive Presence Know this means we want to inform, update, or
Executive presence is what we see and what we educate.
hear as you communicate. The specifics include: Do this means we want to recommend, propose,
EyesWhere you are looking when you speak persuade, or influence.
HandsWhat you are doing with your hands when Believe this means we want to inspire.
you use them (gestures) and when they are at rest When youve answered the question, What do
PostureHow you stand, sit, and move you want your listeners to know, do, or believe?,
VolumeYour speakers voice for those times build your message so that when youre done
when you are on should be at the 7 to 8 level, speaking, thats where you finish.
where 1 is a whisper and 10 is a shout How Will I Influence Them? Six forms of
InflectionThese are the peaks and valleys that influence are used to move listeners to action. The
the voice has. Its how your listeners know whats first five form the acronym S-P-E-A-K. The sixth is
important and whats less crucial. the demonstration. Lets look first at S-P-E-A-K:
Non-WordsThe four most common non-words in S: Statistics and facts
American English are umm, ahh, like, and P: Personal experience, meaning something I have
you know. You sound smarter when those words experienced and can talk about passionately
dont land in every pause. They take away from E: Examples are something someone else has
your executive presence. experienced personally
Executive presence is essential to winning the A: Analogies are descriptive phrases that convey
business or selling a project to the capital committee. a thought, such as the perfect storm or the
Heres what you need to do physically: domino effect.
Speak one thought to one person and pause K: Killer quotes can come from authors, speakers,
between thoughts and people. business leaders, and team members
Use your speaking voice. Finally, theres the demonstration. The great
Inflect your key words and phrases. demonstration of our era was at the O.J. Simpson
Balance your stance or sit up straight. trial, when the prosecution had him try on the bloody
Gesture above the waist and outside your body glove. As Simpson tried to slip his hand into the
lines with hands open. glove, he was clearly heard saying, It doesnt fit.
Reset or drop your hands to your sides between The glove doesnt fit. When a demonstration goes
thoughts. well, its compellingand the opposite is also true,
as in this case.
Message Organization
One of Stephen Coveys habits from his book, Delivery
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, is to start When you deliver, you marry your physical
with the end in mind. To that end, there are two skills with your message. When it matters most, get
critical questions to ask yourself when you organize on your feet. If youre only presenting to two or three
your message: clients, its overkill to stand to deliver your entire
Who are my listeners, and message. But do look for an opportunity to get up on
When Im done speaking, what do I want them your feet. When you are on your feet, you take an
to know or do? ordinary presentation and make it an event.
Who Are My Listeners? Consider your staff, Every message can be delivered by speaking one
team, or audience. Who are they? How many people thought to one person. It will work best if you
will you speak to? What time of day will you speak? organize your message in bullets, thoughts, or
In what ways might they be predisposed to you or packages. Dont write your message out in longhand;
your topic? it makes it too hard to deliver. Speak thought to
If youre familiar with them, and youre there to thought rather than word to word.
influence them, think about how they might have The three main adult learning styles are auditory,
influenced you previously. Do they have a story- visual, and kinesthetic. When you tell your audience
telling culture? Do they like statistics and facts? Do something (auditory), show them a PowerPoint
they often quote key thought leaders? When you presentation and/or give them a handout (visual), and
tailor your message to your listeners, you come have them interact with that handout (kinesthetic),
across as customer-oriented, focused, and aligned they will retain that information much longer.
with them. For example, when you deliver from PowerPoint
What Do I Want Them to Know and Do? We or handouts, follow the approach used by great sports
deliver one (or more) of three key messages when we announcers, such as Al Michaels and John Madden..
speak to a group. Michaels always speaks as he calls the play, meaning

10 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
he tells you what you see. Then, after the play is run, Have a plan that uses these five elements:
Madden steps in and adds the color by telling you Use social media tactically and regularly. Consider
what it means. having a strict policy of only having friends and
As a presenter, know that the audience will look family connected to you on Facebook. Use
first and listen second. If youre delivering with LinkedIn as your outlet of choice for professional
visuals or presenting from a handout, you need to tell contact management and staying in touch with
your listeners first what they see, then what it means. colleagues. Update periodically so people can read
Its critical that the spoken message and the about what is going on in your life.
visual message be identical. So often we hear the Find local events that offer situational networking
presenter adding color first while listeners are and information sharing. There is nothing like
looking at the pitch book to find some visual cue of putting a name to a face and exchanging business
what the presenter is saying. The rule of thumb is to cards in case you need them someday.
write what youre going to say, then stay close to Attend professional conferences. ASIS, CFI, NRF
what youve written. and RILA and others all hold annual conferences.
Organized retail crime has sprouted many regional
Networking: Have a Plan conferences throughout the U.S. that you can
If you were training for a marathon, when would attend each year. Each conference is an opportunity
you start? A day before the race? A week? Probably for education and networking. Events are usually
not if you want to be successful. What if youd never spread evenly throughout the year. If you hold a
run for any long distances before? If you want to run professional certification, you may find these
well and have a relatively good chance of finishing shows eligible for use as continued education units
(or surviving) the marathon, you probably need the (CEU) towards your recertification.
better part of a year to train under normal Work with area colleges. Find a college in your
circumstances. That said; why would you wait until area that has a criminal justice program and offer to
you need to look for a new job to begin networking mentor aspiring loss prevention professionals. Not
with people? only would you get to know students, but you also
In recent years, many loss prevention get to know professors and department heads in the
professionals have found themselves victims of school. These are all people who could help if you
reorganizations, downsizing, condensing and find yourself in need of employment or if you
shrinking departments. Once the shock sets in, they are interested in good advice on continuing your
need to figure out next steps. Its important to ask for education.
help. Find out what opportunities are out there, talk to Talk to people in person. There are so many ways
people, and call recruiting agencies. If you havent to communicate with people at an impersonal level:
networked yourself properly, you may have texting, email, and messages through social media.
unintentionally limited your resources. But what about the old-fashioned way, like calling
When people hear the word networking they people on the phone, or better yet, meeting them
usually think about social mediaFacebook and face-to-face? Find twenty people you really want to
Twitter for their personal contacts, and LinkedIn for keep in touch with and can help you. Call them or
professional contacts. These options are fun and a try to get together for coffee. Find one hour on one
great way to keep up with others, but there is much day each week and make those connections.
more to networking than that. So what happens when you successfully navigate
the five elements of networking? You get to know
people and they get to know you. You become a
resource for people because they get an idea of your
experiences and expertise while you learn from them.
Now your network is larger and people know who
you are.
If you find yourself in the unfortunate position of
looking for employment, you will likely ask yourself
Now what do I do? The first thing you should do is
reach out to your contacts and ask for help. The better
youve networked up to that point, the better chance
youll have of getting the help you need. When you
need to differentiate yourself from 100 other people
with similar experiences and education, it does help
to know someone. Dont wait until you need to

11 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
network; make networking part of your regular jump ship at the first opportunity to earn a couple
routine. Start today, because you never know when extra dollars. I agree that there are circumstances
your marathon will need to be run and youll need to when it is necessary. However, when you see a
be in great shape for it. history of job-hopping, it is a good indicator that
there will be little loyalty with you as well. The best
Job-JumpingFitting Stereotype, or the New indicator of future behavior is past behavior.
Reality?
What does company loyalty mean today? Do we Job-Jumper Myths and Perspectives
subscribe to The Offices character Dwight Schrutes In an article discussing job-hopping and other
evaluation of when we should leave a company, or do career fallacies by Monika Hamori in the Harvard
loss prevention professionals continue to reflect and Business Review (HBR), July-August 2010 issue,
reward a more traditional definition that includes Hamori describes the cultural shift from companies
long-tenured employees? rewarding loyalty with promotions to executives
We often hear career histories discussed with starting to move from one company to another to get
words like stability and consistency as positives ahead. According to HBR, the 1980s brought a shift
and instances of short tenure as negatives. But is in our loyalty thoughts as firms stripped out layers
short tenure that negative, or is it a product of our of management, promotions became fewer and far
ever-changing society? Is it a mindset that should be between.
tossed out with VCR tapes and receipt rolls? What HBR conducted a study of 14,000 non-CEO
about in terms of the loss prevention industry, where executives to compare the outcomes of their internal
a professional typically has to move to find a broader and external career moves. Hamori dispels the myth
multi-store experience? that job-jumpers ultimately prosper more than those
The subject was discussed with more than more-tenured colleagues. Overall, the more years
twenty-five LP practitioners to attempt to determine people stayed with a company, the faster they made it
the following: to the top, states Hamori.
Is job-jumping really that negative, or is that But how does this research apply to the loss
connotation an antiquated stereotype? prevention industry? Are we more tolerant of job-
Specific to the loss prevention industry, what jumpers because it seems the industry is full of them?
causes people to change jobs and what are Chris OLeary, president of Loss Prevention
acceptable reasons for leaving? Recruiters, thinks when evaluating a resume or a
Does the loss prevention industry breed job- professionals experience, its important to ask the
jumping? why question when there are multiple moves
indicated on a resume.
People ROI Each persons resume is unique and contains
According to Dave Arnold, Ph.D., J.D., general varying professional and personal experiences, says
counsel at Wonderlic, the average cost to an OLeary. Ask the question and there may be logical
employer for hiring a mid-level LP practitioner who responses, such as being tied to a certain geography
leaves within a short time can be more than $30,000. for family reasons or other circumstances that require
The costs are found in advertising for the position, a job change. Not all reasons are good, but in my
time to screen people, the individuals learning curve, experience, here are a few right professional
and the training and education investment in the first reasons:
90 days. Of course, the longer an employee works, Moving from single- to multi-store opportunity or
the more up-front costs the employer recoups. any type of progression move upward
Arnold admits not all turnover is bad, stating, Gaining experience in different loss prevention
Some turnover can actually help an organization, as programs or strategies;
long as the people leaving are considered Gaining different types of retail experience in a
unproductive, or the company has already recovered new environment;
its payback for the initial costs. Gaining experience in difficult markets or larger
There is typically a significant investment in populated geographies.
hiring an individual and if they leave within the first Some LP executives focus more on the what
couple of years, it is likely you did not get an ROI on when it comes to evaluating job-jumpers resumes,
the hire, says Shane Sturman, CPP, CFI, president at specifically in terms of what has the candidate
Wicklander-Zulawski & Associates via a post on accomplished in his or her tenure at the company and
their LinkedIn group. Most companies have did it make a significant impact.
experienced spending significant time and effort in I dont believe there is a magic number when it
training and development, just to see that investment comes to timeframe at a company, but the critical

12 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
component is the ability to work on specific projects jumping, the question is raised, Does this person
and complete them, says Daniel J. Doyle, who has have a hard time assimilating? Or maybe its as
enjoyed an extensive tenure at Bealls and is now the simple as their philosophy not matching the
senior vice president of human resources and loss leaderships?
prevention administration. Sometimes people can From an executives perspective, Linda Heasley,
make short-term gains by changing jobs frequently, president and chief executive of The Limited, told
but they are not able to build tenure-based retention The New York Times in July, I like people who have
tools like stock options and retirement. Ive been demonstrated performance in a number of different
extremely fortunate to be at Bealls for twenty years, places. They dont have to have stayed at the same
and there has always been opportunity for place, but I like to see that they were at a place long
advancement within that time. But it is critical to enough to annualize things that they started and had
stay open and willing to take on more opportunities time to build relationships. Evaluation regarding
that include other responsibilities you may have to whether or not an individual has given enough time
grow into. to establish key relationships was a big factor for
Other perspectives believe the crux of the issue both Heasley and a number of other retailers
depends on how committed the person is to each interviewed.
company theyve worked for. Several LP
practitioners made a point about having someone
invested in the overall company mission and
commented that level of commitment is only
achieved over time.
Have you ever known anyone to wash a rental
car before they return it? asks Pete Trexler, CFI,
manager of loss prevention at Lumber Liquidators,
illustrating the importance of an individuals
commitment and ownership to the overall goals of
the company. In my opinion, reasons for leaving fall
into a few categories. Philosophy doesnt match with
organizational goals, which usually equals poor
results, lack of advancement opportunity, or family
reasons such as geography or work-life balance. Each
of these categories has their own intricacies.
We as investigators have to determine why our While some professionals value time to build
job candidates have left other companies; if you want relationships, others focus on shrink numbers and
long-term investments in people, you have to how they translate into long-term success of the
determine what type of mentality they have. Either executive.
they have a get it now tactical tendency, or they The real test of ones proficiency and skill sets
believe in progressive loss prevention that involves occurs after the fires are out and after the shrink has
predictive models/leading indicators, absorbing your been reduced by 10 percent, says Thomas Stein, an
retail partners goals, and sales promotion. These industry executive with more than 20 years of
strategic objectives take commitment, says Trexler. experience. Improving on or even sustaining great
Most loss prevention practitioners agree that results is inherently more difficult than taking
consistently short tenure has a negative impact on advantage of low-hanging fruit. Everyone can be a
your resume, even if the reasons for changing are hero in the short term, but if you never stick around
seen as legitimate. The issue is that legitimate long enough to show continued, steady improvement
reasons are often left up to the interviewers or to give your current leadership the opportunity to
interpretation, and a positive or negative result could recognize your talents and promote you to a position
be the way the job candidate spins his or her past of greater responsibility, should I assume youre
departures. running to a better job or away from too big of a
Within the LP industry, there is definitely no challenge?
place to hide, says Johnny Custer, LPQ, CFI, Other interviewees took the question of job-
manager of loss prevention operations for Merchant jumping as both a positive for the employer and the
Analytic Solutions, referring to how small the loss employeewithin reason. There are certain positive
prevention industry is and the importance of not aspects about individuals changing companies to both
burning bridges and being honest in the job-hunting the employer and employee, says Chris Barber,
process. If you see a particular pattern of job- director of loss prevention at Goodwill Industries of

13 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
Central Indiana. I came from thirteen years with a certification courses, LPQualified and LPCertified,
big-box retailer with ample funds to build a quality are the biggest thing to hit the industry since
loss prevention program. Now that Im with a non- Wicklander-Zulawski and CFI, says OLeary. Just
profit, I brought all those skills I learned in training take a look at the board of directors, and youll see
and education with me. We dont call that a job- they are the biggest retailers in the country backing
jumper, its a training transfer. I can now this initiative, and its preference on job descriptions
implement a successful program with all the tricks of cant be ignored.
the trade I learned at the big-box retailer, and my
current employer didnt have to invest in that training Its Your Career
and education. From a personal perspective, I have a Basketball great Michael Jordan once described
better quality of life because this organization his career this way: Ive missed more than 9,000
requires a different level of time investment. shots in my career. Ive lost almost 300 games.
In April 2010, the CBS Interactive Business Twenty-six times Ive been trusted to take the game-
Network posted a blog by Penelope Trunk titled, winning shot and missed. Ive failed over and over
Why Job-Hoppers Make the Best Employees. and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.
Trunk states, If you think job-hopping is bad, Jordans legendary status is not characterized by all
change your thinking. Job-hoppers are not quitters. In the mistakes he has made in his career, but his
fact, they make better coworkers and better consistent success.
employees, and I bet are generally more satisfied Wouldnt it be nice if our career mistakes could
with their work life. be celebrated as learning experiences that motivate us
According to Trunk, job-hoppers are ultimately instead of stereotyped as scars to rationalize? The
more loyal because loyalty is all about caring for opinions expressed by these professionals dont
other people. Job-hoppers want their bosses to like definitively answer the question of whether job-
them for good references, coworkers to bond with jumping is an old stereotype or new reality. It seems
them for potential networking, and to ensure a little bit of both.
everyone has a good experience with them so they HRBs final thought was, Whats important is
dont have to fix a bad first impression. to look at each move with a critical eye, putting aside
conventional wisdom and other peoples assumptions
How Long Is Too Long? to make the choice that fits your own ambitions.
Another side of the job-jumping debate is less Todays retail needs and environment require
divisive, but certainly has merit. When asked how all of us to be extremely well-rounded business
long is too long to stay at one company, respondents leaders, practitioners, and partners, concludes Tom
concluded there are inherent positives to staying in Stein. A little segment diversity will go a long way
one company a long time (more than ten years), but in broadening your asset protection, business
there were also potential negatives. acumen, and operating knowledge and will make you
I always make sure that someone with a long more marketable long term.
tenure has taken on other responsibilities in their Most important of all, find a company that
career, says Dan Doyle of Bealls. Its important respects you, treats you as the professional subject-
that people move through a company receiving matter expert you are, and values the insight and
various exposures and promotions over a lengthy experience you bring to the table. Remember that
time period. But overall, instances of long tenure are professional and personal happiness are not found in
less concerning than those of rapid changes. higher salaries or bigger titles. Enjoy what youre
The convergence of experience, opportunity, doing, make the most of every opportunity, and leave
and the right company culture is tantamount to every company and position in better shape than you
winning the great job lottery, says Tom Stein. Its found them.
what we all hope to find someday and it should be a
recipe for long-term stability, economic and Are Happy Employees More Productive?
professional growth, and personal and professional Service-based leadership is a style of leadership
satisfaction. If you are lucky enough to find that that allows the leader to achieve excellence through
perfect company and position, why would you ever the committed involvement of his or her employees.
leave? With service-based leadership, the attitude and
Some LP professionals lack of education or primary motivation of the leader is service to
unwillingness to relocate has kept them stagnant in othersto customers, employees, and shareholders
their careers. Chris OLeary states this requirement of the company. This outward focus of the leader sets
for secondary education and certification is definitely up a dynamic where:
on the rise. The Loss Prevention Foundations Employees are continually recognized

14 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
There is an open flow of ideas, opinions, and uncontrollable forces, you accept the power of your
information own authority. For good or ill, you are the one in
Initiative and risk are highly regarded charge of your life.
Problem discovery and solution is a focus while For the leader, this means that, as you seek
placing blame is unimportant opportunity, you also take responsibility for all
Every employee feels energized and part of the aspects of your duties. Size up those around you
team and is valued for his or her contribution your superiors, peers, and employees. If they
Prestige is derived from performance and demonstrate responsibility, learn to depend upon
contribution, not title them. If they dont, find ways to compensate for their
Customers are treated well because employees are inadequacies. In the case of your employees, take
treated well action as necessary.
The energy and initiative of all employees is The Will to Lead. Taking personal responsibility
focused on the common effort equips you to assume a leadership role. But the will
With service-based leadership, you will find that to lead is a far cry from being willing to lead. Many
good customer service to both internal and external people are willing to accept positions of leadership.
customers is effortless. Less energy is expended in But accepting and exercising leadership are two very
processing complaints, grievances, and conflicts. different matters.
Employees are happier, work is more fun, and Owning Your Failures. When you or those you
everyones job is easier. lead fail in any way, dont make excuses. While there
may be mitigating circumstances, you must take
Becoming a Service-Based Leader responsibility for the failure. Whether you didnt plan
By following and practicing the principles of or train well enough, didnt devote the proper time or
service-based leadership, you can become an resources to the matter, didnt establish priorities, or
effective leader in any situation. As a leader, your underestimated the situation, the bottom line is that
focus should be on those employees who make up you failed. But failure can become your most
your team. valuable learning tool.
Leading Your Team. Line employees are the Rather than casting about for others to blame,
most important staff a company has because they analyze what led to the failure and see what you
interface directly with customers. Their daily might have done differently. This approach
performance in meeting customers needs establishes accomplishes two important things: you establish
and maintains a companys good name and your personal responsibility and authority, and you
reputation. Clearly, their performance is critical to a learn from your mistakes.
companys success. Do not be afraid to make mistakes. Leadership is
Shoddy, surly, disorganized, or inconsistent distinguished by leading, not by hanging back in the
service is a clear sign of a lack of leadership. pack. When you step forward to lead, you risk the
Employees are not to blame; rather it is management chance of highly visible missteps. Experience and
that must be held accountable. Conversely, high trial-and-error can be lifes most powerful instructors.
standards of service flow naturally from effective Effectively Using Your Resources. There is far
leaders. Your teams performance is a direct result of more to do every day than you can possibly
your leadership. This leadership must include taking accomplish. Where you apply your time and energy
personal responsibility, possessing the will to lead, as a leader is of critical importance to your teams
owning your failures, effectively using your efforts and success. Avoid frittering away personal
resources, and knowing your limits. resources on marginal activities. Focus on the
Taking Personal Responsibility. Personal important things that will make a difference in your
freedom is often thought of as the absence of teams performance.
responsibility. In this respect, no one is free. To do this, you should make a list of the key
Everyone is responsible for and to someone else. items on which to focus and have a long-term plan of
There is, however, a freedom that comes from improvement for your operation, as well as a list of
accepting personal responsibility for oneself and needed projects to accomplish. Despite the daily
ones sphere of influence. crises that inevitably come up, keep your focus on
When you blame no one else for the challenges those key items. When things slow down or windows
you face, when you realize that where you stand of time open up, refocus yourself and your team on
today is the result of all your past decisions and those important goals.
indecision, you look to the true source of any Its also helpful to get away from your
difficulties. Realizing this is the true source of your operations, even for just a day. Being away from the
freedom, instead of being buffeted to and fro by day-to-day problems will give a broader perspective

15 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t
on the issues and help you recognize where to apply So as you work to accomplish your companys
yourself. goals, concentrate on those nearest at hand and those
Recognizing the Limits of Your Influence. Being over whom you have the greatest influencethe
an effective leader requires that you understand the employees on your service team. If they do their jobs
parameters of your authority and the extent of your with enthusiasm and a sense of service, the needs of
sphere of influence. For instance, what should you do your other constituencies will also be met.
when you report to a superior who lacks essential
leadership skills? The Ultimate Value of People
Remember the freedom of taking personal Without employees, there would be no
responsibility. You cannot control your boss skill or successful business leaders. Without customers, there
lack of it, but instead of getting upset, focus on what would be no money to pay employees. Without
you can control. Do everything in your power to be owners willing to risk their capital, there would be no
the best leader you can be. Try to insulate your team businesses to hire employees.
from the worst effects of the situation. Do not The distinguishing characteristic of these three
disparage your boss in front of your employees. They statements is that they all involve people. And while
will size up the situation quickly enough and will every person is an individual, unique in background,
respect you even more for not trying to make him experience, and education, the great majority has a
look bad. common set of needs as they negotiate their worlds.
Perhaps your efforts will have a positive effect They:
on your boss. If your area of the operation is Wish to be treated well, with dignity and respect
performing well because of your leadership, it may Want value for their labor given or money spent; in
cause him to take notice. Maybe your boss will other words, they dont want to feel cheated
become curious enough to ask about the secrets of Want to know whats going on and appreciate
your success. If the situation should become timely and accurate information
untenable, remember that you retain ultimate control Prefer to trust and be trusted
over your future and can make the appropriate Appreciate kindness and generosity of spirit,
decision at any time. Understanding the limits of your especially when unexpected
influence also entails the recognition that you have Recognize someone who is principled and whose
more control over your employees than you do over words and actions are grounded in value
your other constituencies. Your customers are Want to be recognized for who they are, not
removed from your direct influence since they are lumped into an unknown, often unnoticed, mass
served by your employees. For the most part, your While any person can hold a position of
influence on customers is secondhand. authority, true leadership and its attendant success
Farthest removed from your influence are your flows naturally from someone who recognizes the
companys shareholders. Unless as owners they take ultimate value of people in all he or she does.
a direct role in your company, they are often absent
from the operation. Their role and status with the Contributors to this special report include Jacque
company is still of major importance, but their Brittain, LPC, Jason Odell, CFI, John M. Vautier,
interests are served at a distance. Kevin M. Plante, LPC, and Ed Rehkop.

16 | P r o f e s s i o n a l D e v e l o p m e n t S p e c i a l R e p o r t