Foreword Ryan Rogers xiii
Editor’s Preface xix
1 Golden Rule Leadership 1
The Golden Rule is one of the world’s oldest and best-known philosophies, yet it is frequently overlooked in business circles. Mary Kay demonstrates that this rule is still powerful in today’s complicated world.
2 You Build with People 15
Leaders are dependent upon the performance of their people, and so is a company’s success. Good people are a company’s most important asset. People are more important than the plan.
3 The Invisible Sign 21
Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from his or her neck saying, ‘‘MAKE ME FEEL IMPORTANT!’’ Never forget this message when working with people.
4 Praise People to Success 29
Each of us craves to be recognized. Let people know that you appreciate their performance and they will respond by doing even better. Recognition is the most powerful of all motivating techniques.
5 The Art of Listening 39
Good leaders are good listeners. God gave us two ears and only one mouth, so we should listen twice as much as we speak. When you listen, the benefit is twofold: You receive necessary information, and you make the other person feel important.
6 Sandwich Every Bit of Criticism between Two Heavy Layers of Praise 49
Sometimes it’s necessary to let somebody know that you’re unhappy with his or her performance. But be certain to direct your criticism at the act, not the person. It is important to criticize effectively - in a positive way so that you don’t destroy morale.
7 Be a Follow-Through Person 57
Be the kind of person who can always be counted on to do what you say you’ll do. Only a small percentage of people possess follow-through ability, and they are held in high esteem by all. It’s particularly important for your team members or employees to know that you possess this rare quality and for them to think of you as a totally reliable person.
8 Enthusiasm . . . Moves Mountains! 73
Nothing great is ever achieved without enthusiasm. Leaders are enthusiastic, and enthusiasm is contagious. Interestingly, the word enthusiasm has a Greek origin meaning ‘‘God within.’’
9 The Speed of the Leader Is the Speed of the Gang 81
You must set the pace for your people. Real leaders aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty, and they set examples for others by demonstrating good work habits, displaying positive attitudes, and possessing a team spirit. True leaders establish success patterns that make everyone think success.
10 People Will Support That Which They Help to Create 93
An effective leader invites people to participate in new projects that are still in the ‘‘thinking’’ stage. By confiding in associates and seeking their opinions, they generate support at the initial stage of each new venture. It’s a fact that people often resist change when they don’t participate in the decision-making process. Some of the best leaders ‘‘plant the seed’’ that permits others to propose the idea and take credit for it!
11 An Open-Door Philosophy 107
At Mary Kay corporate headquarters, there are no titles on executives’ doors, and there is ready access to all management levels. Everyone within the Company - from mailroom clerk to chairman of the board - is a human being and is treated accordingly.
12 Help Other People Get What They Want - and You’ll Get What You Want 115
As the parable of the talents (Matthew 25: 14–30) tells us, we are meant to use and increase whatever God has given us. And when we do, we shall be given more.
13 Stick to Your Principles 125
Everything is subject to change - except one’s principles. Never, absolutely never, compromise your principles.
14 A Matter of Pride 133
Everyone within an organization should have a sense of pride in his or her work. They should also feel proud to be associated with the company. It’s a manager’s job to instill this feeling and to promote this attitude among his or her people.
15 You Can’t Rest on Your Laurels 145
Nothing wilts faster than a laurel rested upon. Every person should have a lifetime self-improvement program. In today’s fastpaced world you can’t stand still. You either go forward or backward.
16 Be a Risk-Taker 153
You must encourage people to take risks; let them know that ‘‘nobody wins ’em all.’’ If you come down on them too hard for losing, they’ll stop sticking their necks out.
17 Work and Enjoy It 159
It’s okay to have fun while you work; good managers encourage a sense of humor. In fact, the more enjoyment people derive from their work, the better they will produce.
18 Nothing Happens Until Somebody Sells Something! 167
Every organization has something to ‘‘sell,’’ and every person in the company must realize that nothing happens until somebody sells something. And accordingly, they should be fully supportive of the selling effort.
19 Never Hide behind Policy or Pomposity 177
Never say, ‘‘That’s against company policy’’ unless you have a good explanation to back up the policy. It infuriates people. It’s as if you were saying, ‘‘We do it this way because it’s the way we’ve always done it.’’ By the same token, pomposity can also be a transparent cover-up for incompetence.
20 Be a Problem-Solver 189
The best leaders recognize when a real problem exists and know how to take action to solve it. You must develop the ability to know the difference between a real problem and an imaginary one.
21 Less Stress 197
Stress stifles productivity. Leaders strive to create a stress-free working atmosphere for their workers by using both physical and psychological approaches.
22 Develop People from Within 205
The best-run companies develop their own managers from within - rarely do they seek outsiders. In fact, it’s a sign of weakness when a company goes outside too often for management personnel. The morale of the company is likely to suffer; people may begin to feel threatened and think, ‘‘No matter how well I perform, an outsider will probably get the position I want.’’
23 Live by the Golden Rule On and Off the Job 213
Don’t be a hypocrite - live every day of the week as if it were Sunday. There’s no place for two sets of moral codes. Conduct yourself in business with the same scruples you would want your children to observe in their lives.
Afterword: Leaders Creating Leaders 221
What do independent sales force leaders who’ve been the most successful following Mary Kay’s principles have to say about them today? Nearly 25 years after she originally put them down on paper, Mary Kay’s thoughts and ideas are as timeless as ever according to the 500 women worldwide at the top of the independent sales force. They are her living legacy.