Do You Have What it Takes?

Having come back from Northlake Auto Recyclers in Hammond, Indiana, I bet you’re wondering if it snowed while I was there. I was prepared for it, but thank God, it didn’t. Here’s what I discovered. Northlake Auto Recyclers is run by Marty Hollingshead, the new Secretary on the board of ARA. In the past, Marty has been named, “Boss of the Year”. In fact, a few years back, his company, Northlake Auto Recyclers, was also named, “Car Recycler of the Year for ARA”. What characteristic or innate ability must a person or business possess to be granted such prestigious honors?

Glad you asked. Marty has what I call, LIFE VALUES. There are some principles or things that will guide a person or business on the pathway of being credible. I believe Marty Hollingshead, Jim Butler from Butler’s out of Florida, and Shannon Nordstrom of South Dakota have outstanding principles.

Each of them is to be admired because they stand for something. As the country western song goes, “If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” People must be willing to stand for something or believe in something. This, I believe, becomes a sign post on one’s credibility journey. In turn, values are relevant to credibility. To do what we say we will do is the behavioral definition of credibility. We must know what we want to do and how we want to behave. That’s what our values tell us.

All three men that I’ve named here know where they’re going. In fact, there are plenty more within the recycling business who know where they’re going, such as Jeff Schroder from Jeff works hard, showing fellow recyclers what is in the future.

All these men know what they believe in, and what they stand for. Their values and frankly, our values and value systems as well, serve as plans, perhaps road maps, for guiding us toward our long-term visions. I also think they help us in resolving conflicts or disputes along our journey. We are always making a choice on principle, and when we come to a fork in the road (and at some point, we will) there may be a variety of paths we can take. Values provide us with the direction in which to head when those kinds of choices emerge.

Values keep us focused on what we are doing. They help us to understand that in the difficult times, there’s a higher purpose or a greater calling than simply the task at hand. Values are the silent banners we wave that tell us that we can be proud of where we are going. Even though we may not have gotten the right results yet, our values reaffirm that “You’re on the right path…keep going.” So, now they give us a motivational purpose.

I named four people, three running very successful yards and one running a very successful, software company. All of them, at any given time, can tell you their values and what they believe in. All four are entrepreneurs who can point out specific times in the growth of their business that their values got them over each hurdle. For all four people, I can look up and call them friends. The recycling business is better because these four individuals are leaving a legacy where they walk.

If you feel your values and principles need revamping, it’s okay. You can start today.  There are plenty of successful people and business owners that you can model at any of the ARA meetings or URG conferences.

See you next time.

Correspondence regarding this article should go to:

D.J. Says, 2820 Andover Way, Woodstock, GA 30189

D. J. Harrington is an author, journalist, seminar leader, international trainer, and marketing consultant. He works primarily with customer service personnel, and his clients include such world-class companies as General Motors, DuPont, Caterpillar, and Damon Corporation. He may be reached at 800-352-5252. E-mail: 52 weeks a year, we are as close as your telephone.