Ron, TMP supervisor for a paper mill in northern Ontario, Canada, told Session 4B of the Leadership Development Lab:
"In July of 1979, Paul Bennett, the Director of Major Projects, hired me to work in capital projects. I enjoyed the projects. Two years later in early 1981, I was working on a twelve million dollar capital project to speed up the Paper Machine (PM) 1. Burt Moore, who was the project engineer and an excellent mentor, had an angina attack a few months after I started on the project. Paul Bennett asked me to manage the project while Burt was off sick. I was reluctant because my experience was limited to:
Paul said he would be there for me and anyone who knows Paul knows that he is a man of his word and definitely a person who has always followed the first Leadership Principle Ė ĎLead from High Ideals.í I accepted. I put in a lot of nights and weekends to ensure the projectís integrity. During the first few weeks on the project, I had managed to put together the three requisitions for the calendar stack, head box, and press section. The requisitions totaled five million dollars and exceeded 75 pages of specifications. Burtís health improved and he came back a few months before the equipment was installed. PM 1started up on March 3, 1982, ahead of schedule and on budget.
Although the whole project had been very exciting for me, the thing I found the most rewarding was when Fred Campling, the Chief Operating Officer, met me on the front side operating floor of the paper machine to shake my hand and congratulate
me on a job well done. I swear I walked into the machine room at elevation 742í but it felt like I walked out at elevation 752í.
The lesson I learned from this experience is that I can accomplish great things when I am enthusiastic about a project, and surrounded by great mentors I can trust. I also learned that praise builds selfconfidence. Itís powerful. Praise anchors pride of achievement and builds morale.
"The action I call you to take is to be enthusiastic about your projects and savor the moment when you win. The benefits you will receive are personal satisfaction, self-confidence, a sense of accomplishment, and maybe even a few pay increases."