When you’ve been to 31 countries and 6 continents, met many people, and considered organizational development in every place your feet landed, you learn a lot about a lot. One of the most impactful lessons Bill Kieffer has learned after 20 years of Human Resources and Talent Management and 12 years as an Army Officer is to listen more than speak and to ask the right questions. Being able to lead to the best of your ability and do work that matters has been paramount to Bill and he is grateful to have made his mark.
“I’m dedicated to my family, and I’m a work guy,” quips Bill. He truly enjoys identifying unique skill sets and attracting talent to organizations and fitting them in like a missing piece to a puzzle to enhance the inner workings of the business. So much of his role in Human Resources is about creating talent capability that enables great results; Bill also enjoys being able to watch employees grow. Being able to help someone move from a technical role at the beginning of their career and see them progress to a business leadership and management role directing a large business segment is exciting for Bill.
The Formula for Success
After being in the workforce for over three decades, holding numerous training sessions, and speaking to high school, university, and business groups, Bill has honed in on what it actually takes to be successful. His balanced and practical advice really cuts through all of the noise and gets to the heart of the issue. Bill advises first defining what success looks like for you at that moment. Then secondly building the resilience to work through the challenges and obstacles that will come up as you try to reach your goal. Also, having the agility to get from where you are to where you want to be is necessary; there are no straight paths leading to success.
Who Am I and What is Critical to Me?
Bill firmly believes that as you are going through life and those challenging moments leading up to your success, how you respond is also a key part of your journey and whether or not you will reach your end goal. As a young Army Captain being considered for his first command assignment, Bill had to develop his philosophy of command. In the Army, your philosophy of command documents your thoughts on leadership and how you will best lead to care for others and accomplish your organization’s mission. In this moment he had to take a hard look at who he was and what was critical to him.
After lots of thought, self reflection, and coffee, Bill realized that the following are the core elements that define him and what is important to him.
- Initiative- To be successful, you must first get up and do something
- Integrity- Do everything with complete integrity, for in the end all we really have is our honor
- Focus- Pay attention to what you are doing, your surroundings and the impact of your actions on others
- Foresight- Always anticipate tomorrow’s impact of today’s decisions and actions
- Commitment- Whatever you do, do it fully and do it right
- Common Sense- If something doesn’t seem to make sense, it probably doesn’t make sense
Developing a laser focus on what it means to be who you are and what is critical to your being is something Bill strongly recommends for everyone. Doing this exercise has empowered Bill to passionately pursue life as a husband, dad, grandpa, brother, son, Human Resources professional, Army officer, motorcycle enthusiast, elected official, and so much more.