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The best way to inspire 


your people is to accept


them as your internal


customers . . . and not


your puppies.



Did you ever think of your “inner circle” of employees, your key support staff, as a pack of puppies? Not the same as a litter; those are all the same breed. A pack! A pack of puppies. Some are more aggressive than others. Some are more animated. Some bark louder. Only a few pay serious attention to the tasks at hand. They run and jump in every direction, except at dinnertime — they all like to eat!

And all will, of course, perform as challenged

for the smallest of treats.


They look up to you as their leader. They pay off your expenditures of energy and time (which they sense or understand) and money (which they do not understand) with unsolicited admiration and unquestioning, unchallenging instincts to follow your commands and your examples. They won’t cross you because they don’t want to risk missing dinner and . . . because they know you’re “the boss”! 

As they grow, they become more set in their ways. Regardless 0f temperament, most like to explore –the woods, the beach, the basement, maybe only their own paws, but some thing. They can get discouraged though quickly when explorations are frowned upon.

Have you seen employees become discouraged when management emphasis is having them learn to stay in line, follow orders, and continually focus on past events and future plans at the expense of the present moment.

Puppies and free-wheeling innovative employees are present-moment creatures.


To keep things manageable, you coax them all (puppies and employees alike) into a the security of a routine. As if almost in a trance-like state, routines tend to be non-threatening and predictable. But, wait! Is that what you want for your entrepreneurial mission? Are you in search of  innovators or household pets?

The trouble is that as the relationships grow over time, and the reward treats become bigger and more expensive, there seems to rise from the ground in a great cloud of smoke, an irresistible temptation to mix up that smoke with some mirror tricks, and/or become lackadaisical, dependent, and reliant on the leader for direction.

Consider the ultimate corporate and (excluding military, police, fire, and EMT services) government life routines of: 9 to 5, paychecks, benefit plans, and (for those lucky-but-mostly-come-to-be-unappreciative few), holiday turkeys. These are wonderful reassuring kinds of expectations for cultivating employees to behave like pets.

It keeps them in control, and makes healthy, fun-loving life companions out of them. But (and you know what’s coming):

Entrepreneurs and small business owners and managers can no longer afford compliant, obedient, do-nothing employees.

Despite preachings you may hear from the White House, there is no denying that these are, and continue to be, tough times.

Trying to be profitable in a country that is virtually broke is like trying to play inspired World Cup Soccer in a silent, empty stadium.


Employees must be catered to as much as customers. Innovation needs to be ignited and encouraged daily. Employees are your key internal customers and they will either drive business for you, or they will quickly transform from entrepreneurial puppydom into corporate and government sheep, waiting for you to sheer and feed and shepherd them!

# # #


302.933.0116   Hal@BusinessWorks.US

“The price of freedom is eternal vigilance!”   [Thomas Jefferson]

Thanks for visiting. Go for your goals! God Bless You.

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

One comment so far


  1. […] that such actions are looked upon unfavorably by both internal customers (employees, investors, referrers, suppliers, lenders, advisors) and external customers (purchasers and […]

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