As many of you know from over the years, our Firm’s team members have always been signficant proponents of reading to further our professional minds and spur our creative and reflective juices.  A recent favorite of mine is a book called MULTIPLIERS, written by Liz Wiseman.

Being in the midst of the holidays and on yet another flight where I have time to think between club meetings and interviews, I came across my notes from reading (and rereading) the book.  Certainly, every year about this time, many of us think about what we’re thankful for and do a good job of letting people know that we appreciate them.  Reading my notes made me think further about our annual holiday efforts combined with Ms. Wiseman’s perspective that most club leaders today are either “multipliers” or “diminishers” of people and talent.  Holidays often bring out the multiplier energies many of us hold, but often, it’s a fleeting, ‘once a year’ effort that doesn’t sustain itself for long.

According to Ms. Wiseman, diminishers often show the following characteristics:

They are often “Empire builders” who hoard and underutilize talent; they tend to be “Tyrants” who create anxiety and suppress thinking within their staff; they are “Know-it-alls” who tell people what to do without ever asking for input, advice or suggestion; they are “Decision makers” who make isolated decisions because they believe THEY are the smartest ones in any situation; and they are often “Micromanagers” who take over, control and don’t allow for anyone on their team to take credit or often up better, more effective means of getting things done for the greater good of the organization. According to the extensive research of Ms. Wiseman, what they get is less than half of people’s capability!

Compare that with the research Ms. Wiseman has done that shows the characteristics and results from leaders who are viewed as multipliers:

They are “Talent magnets” who attract the ‘best and the brightest,’ and optimize their teams’ talent; they are “Liberators” who create intensity and focus that requires best thinking to reach thoughtful decisions that are likely in the best overall interest of the organization; they are  “Challengers” who extend challenges that encourage people to ‘raise the bar’ on themselves, thus benefitting the organization; they are “Debate makers” who debate before deciding and aren’t looking for or happy with being told ‘yes’ for the sake of going along; and they are “Investors” who instill ownership and accountability, but who also often recognize their absolute need to ‘mentor’ and have appropriate and very necessary ‘humility’—knowing what it is that they don’t know!. According to Ms. Wiseman’s research, what these multipliers get is 2X capability from people with them!

In our own Firm, we’re especially grateful and proud to have our patriarch, Dick Kopplin, being that “multiplier” and moral compass of the Firm, resulting in a Team committed to working hard for and on behalf of our clients and candidates, hopefully to the benefit of and significantly improving lives and outcomes.  I’m further grateful to work with such a terrific group of individuals committed to a common goal and who consistently exhibit “Multiplier” characteristics in all they do!

In the club industry in general, you can see loads of great examples of “Multipliers” in the efforts of industry leaders like Damon DiOrio, Rick Bayliss, Tony D’Errico, Al Antonez, Terra Waldron and countless other great professionals who consistently give back, promote the well being of their clubs and associates, and who constantly challenge themselves with developing their personal and professional skills.

During this holiday season, I’m reflecting on whether I can do more to ensure that I demonstrate (and intuitively live) as many of the great “multiplier” characteristics as I can.  If you haven’t read the book, I’d encourage you to “gift” yourself with it over the holiday and see how you do against the best “Multiplier” characteristics outlined therein. Then please share your thoughts on the book in our Leaders are Readers LinkedIn group.

We sure appreciate what you all do to help us continue to raise the professionalism of club leaders, both paid and voluntary, and wish you all the very best of holiday seasons!!

– Kurt Kuebler

Kurt D. Kuebler, CCM
Kurt Kuebler is a Partner of Kopplin & Kuebler, LLC, The Most Trusted Names in Private Club Executive Placement.