Milestone Blog

What’s your price? (The Cost of Values)

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Feb 24, 2015 7:30:00 AM

I’ve often heard people say, “Values don’t matter until they cost you something.” When I’d hear someone say that, I’d usually smile and nod my head in subtle agreement, never fully considering the meaning of that statement. It wasn’t until I actually faced an important values dilemma that I realized both the meaning and the irony of that phrase. Each of us employs values to guide everyday behaviors, and by extension, nearly every action and decision becomes a trade-off of competing values. Most of the time we do this work without thinking, and as a result, we are woefully ill-prepared to calculate the costs of our values until it’s too late. I learned my lesson the hard way, but I believe there is a more effective and practical solution.

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Topics: Leadership, Values & Ethics

Jackie Robinson Would Have Said Something

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Feb 13, 2015 8:40:00 AM

April 15, 1947 doesn’t mean much to people outside of the game of baseball. In fact, many baseball fans don’t know the significance of that day. But that is the day that the Brooklyn Dodgers started one Jackie Robinson at first base. Jack Roosevelt Robinson was the first African American to start in Major League Baseball in the modern era. Jackie Robinson was a very good baseball player. When most odds were against him, he succeeded by taking his talents and developing them through hard work and consistent practice. I don’t pretend to be an authority on Jackie Robinson, but what I do know gives me pause to think that perhaps he is one of the best athletes in our nation’s history. While attending UCLA, he lettered in 4 NCAA sports: football, baseball, basketball and track. His courage and willingness to withstand the racial abuses brought an end to 60 years of discrimination in Major League Baseball based solely on a man’s color. One thing is sure, he was honest and full of integrity. He displayed a commitment to his values that served him well when he needed them most.

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Topics: Leadership, Values & Ethics, Powerful Influencers

Determination: An Important Leadership Lesson

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Jan 8, 2015 4:33:00 PM

A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure to attend the annual Fred Forum in Vancouver, British Colombia. The FRED organization is devoted to elevating the quality of leadership in the world through investing in leaders focused on developing other leaders. During the forum, participants like me were sent out into the community to visit a variety of not-for-profit organizations to learn about these organizations and meet the people who lead them. The goal of these visits is to see first-hand how the leaders inspire and guide their organizations. My experience not only demonstrated how to run an excellent not-for-profit, but inspired me to lessons in life I would have never expected prior to our visit.

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Topics: Powerful Influencers, Deeper Life, Values & Ethics

3 Truths About Work/Life Balance

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Dec 18, 2014 4:36:00 PM

I'm at the career and life stage when I'm being asked about work/life balance. I hold a title of CEO and officially hit my mid-40s this month. I have a wife, two sons, and a mortgage, which is to say, I've achieved a certain degree of “normal.” Time and experience have led me to believe three things are true of Work/Life balance: 

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Topics: Personal Development, Values & Ethics, Practical Tips & Tricks

Making Space for Rest

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Dec 16, 2014 5:23:00 PM

Every year as the holiday season approaches, I have found that there is always a predictable theme that emerges among my peers, coworkers and other social circles; busyness. During a time of year that is specifically set aside for our rest, rejuvenation and reflection on the things that we hold most dear, our minds instead become bogged down by the growing lists of things we must do. Who is hosting the family this year? What will I buy my significant other? How will I keep up at work? How many days off is enough to appease dear old mom before jetting back to the office?

As the questions mount, so does the stress level. In a culture that has adopted a 24/7 lifestyle, it is no surprise that our holiday season is no exception. The question is what are ways that you can make room for rest in your life this holiday season?

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Topics: Personal Development, Values & Ethics

What If It Was Me?

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Jun 12, 2014 9:00:00 AM

I just finished a really good book called The Secret Race by the somewhat famous rider Tyler Hamilton.  The book goes to great lengths to explain the pains that cyclists went through to hide their proclivity towards doping; primarily EPO and Transfusions. Now I know, many readers of our blog know nothing or care to know nothing about the world of cycling, but Lance Armstrong was a national figure that was in the middle of the drama and that made it sort of mainstream.  He evidentially confessed on Oprah so it had to be a little mainstream.   The quandary that built inside of me while I was reading the book was “what if it was me?”

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Topics: Leadership, Values & Ethics

3 Things I Tell Anyone I Mentor

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Jan 30, 2014 9:00:00 AM

Mentoring relationships –and the advice that comes with them— are as varied as the people and personalities involved.  Context always matters, particularly for the mentee.  For the mentor, it’s typically less of a factor. We draw from our own experiences, successes, and failures.  We’ve received (and probably dismissed) advice from others and witnessed the lessons to be learned from those around us.  These all shape our perspectives and biases that typically express themselves in a mentoring relationship.  Here’s my short list of three things I share with anyone I mentor:

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Topics: Relationships, Values & Ethics, Practical Tips & Tricks, Personal Development

Secret to Winning Their Commitment

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Oct 13, 2013 9:00:00 AM


Keep your promises.

I would suggest it is that simple.

We make subtle promises every day.

"I'll call you." "If you get that to me by the end of the day, I'll review it tonight." "If you get As and Bs on your report card, I'll take you to Silver Dollar City."

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Topics: Leadership, Relationships, Values & Ethics, Practical Tips & Tricks, Employee Development

Sam Walton's Job Description

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Sep 23, 2013 9:00:00 AM

As the founder and chief of Walmart, what was his job?

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Topics: Don Soderquist, Powerful Influencers, Values & Ethics, Creating Culture

Milestones In Our World

Posted by Soderquist Leadership on Sep 13, 2013 9:00:00 AM

This week I found myself reliving memories of that day 12 years ago when I found myself glued to the TV. I watched in horror as many children lost parents, husbands lost wives, wives lost husbands, parents lost kids, and those who lost friends, families, colleagues and loved ones. 9/11 was a milestone for our country that has profound impact on families that causes pain every day, not just on the anniversary. But for a nation, this date is a day to remember what happened and how life as we know it changed. Our country has been and hopefully always will be a light in a rather dark world. Evil raised its ugly head on 9/11 and good rose up to meet it. The sad thing is that we didn’t see the threats beforehand. Hindsight points to potential threats and actions, but no one really saw this coming. Yet it did.

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Topics: Deeper Life, Values & Ethics