The Manufacturing Executive
The Manufacturing Executive

Episode · 1 year ago

Servant Leadership in the Manufacturing Sector w/ Dan Erschen


You know the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. But do you practice that philosophy as a manufacturing leader? Does it influence who you hire? How you manage your team? The way you interact with your stakeholders? 

On this episode of the podcast, I invited Dan Erschen, the owner of Wisconsin Metal Parts, a contract manufacturer of metal parts and assemblies, to talk about servant leadership.

Dan and I discussed:

  1. Dan's personal battle with MS and how it has shaped who he is today
  2. What servant leadership is and the benefits and challenges it brings to manufacturing companies
  3. Dan's advice about how to start shifting culture through servant leadership

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We hire four character and we train for skill, and that's all part of the whole servant leadership modeling. Welcome to the manufacturing executive podcast, where we explore the strategies and experiences that are driving mid size manufacturers forward. Here you'll discover new insights from passionate manufacturing leaders who have compelling stories to share about their successes and struggles, and you'll learn from B tob sales and marketing experts about how to apply actionable business development strategies inside your business. Let's get into the show. Welcome to another episode of the Manufacturing Executive podcast. This show is being brought to you by our sponsor, cademus part solutions. I'm Joe Sullivan, your host and a cofounder of the Industrial Marketing Agency guerrilla seventy six. Today we're going to have a conversation with a manufacturing leader about a concept called servant leadership. Let me kick this off by reading you a definition of the subject from the Center for Servant Leadership. A servant leader focuses primarily on the growth and wellbeing of people and the communities to which they belong. Will traditional leadership generally involves the accumulation and exercise of power by one at the top of the pyramid. Servant leadership is different. The Servant leader shares power, puts the needs of others first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible. My guests today is somebody who has embraced and embodied the characteristics of a servant leader as the owner of a manufacturing company. So let me take a moment to introduce Dan Ershin. Dan Is the owner of Wisconsin Metal Parts, a contract manufacturer of metal parts and assemblies. Early in his career, Dan worked at a number of small to midsize manufacturing companies as a tool and die maker before founding die concepts ink in one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight, which eventually became Wisconsin metal parts. DAN IS CO founded two other companies along the way, die maker's manufacturing INC and lean manufacturing products inc. As you'll learn in our conversation, Dan is battled ms throughout his adult life, a journey that is shaped his outlook both as a business owner and a person in general. But shortly I'll let Dan tell that story himself. Dan Resides and Pewaukee, Wisconsin, just outside of Milwaukee, with his wife, Bonnie. Dan, welcome to the show. Thank you. They have a big fan of years. Certainly never chosen there, certainly never expected to be chosen to be on a podcast with you, but I'm thanks for having me. But here you are, right, we never know where what adventures lifely, John So, Hey, I never thought I'd be hosting a podcast. So but here are, other myself, most for a reason for it, I guess. So right. Yeah, well, before we get into the meat of it, Dan, can you tell us just a little bit about your personal and professional journeys up to this point, and, in particular, I would love you to tell us a little bit about your battle with MSS and how...

...that's shaped who you are today. Sure, so, I'm a pretty simple person. Grew up in a small town, went to a small high school with the text text school instead of colleague. So, but then, after working at several job shops as a tool and die maker, my wife and I had our first child, Samantha, and then we decided that one of us is going to stay home and raise the child or, you know, be with the child. So we kind of talked about it and I guess I want I won that one and I got to stay home with Samantha for the first year and a half that she was born and and then I started die concepts out of the basement while I was while I was staying home with Samantha and and basically I just design progressive dies and design dies out of the basement and then we kind of grew the business and in moved out of the House and Bonnie stay at home and then in one thousand nine hundred and eighty eight we renamed it to Wisconsin Metal Parts to represent more so what we grew into. And we now have about a hundred people doing tool and die making, metal stampings, wire DM CNC machining and sheet metal fabrication, which includes laser cutting and punching, bending, welding secondary operations in assembly. So so it's grown quite a bit and in the last thirty two, thirty three years. So I started that when I was twenty eight years old. I'm fifty nine now and now I had my first MS attack when I was twenty nine. So that kind of came on as a surprise and my legs kind of fell asleep and next thing you know I was in the hospital and the employee was bringing work in the hospital for us to quoton and do from there. So, but I got I got somewhat better for, you know, after three months of physical therapy and occupational therapy and and then, ten years later I ended up having another MS attack and that one, you know, kind of left me not walking, for not walking unassisted anyway, for about a year and a half. So there's some pretty big challenges there. I started exercising and then I've really been, you know, blessed that I regained my bilibility to the level of being able to, you know, run marathons and then do iron man distance strayth Lns, which you know what iron man distance strathlon is. You know, I don't know the specifics of it, but I've you know, I've known people who have done iron man's and it's far beyond by my typical three mile run that I do a few days a week. So yeah, well, well, I gotta say it just because it's fun to say so. So it's a two point four, two point four miles swim followed by a hundred twelve mile bike ride and then followed by a full twenty six point two mile marathon after that in the same in the same day. So and I was able to finish three of the four of those attempts, and after not being able to walk for a year and a half and stuff. So that's absolutely incredible. Yeah, then we also don't like the Grand Canyon and I still do several hundred plus mile bike rides every year... well. No kidding that. That's a just amazing. So I some of the listeners may know, and he's very vocal about it, but my business partner John, who John Franco, who introduced the two of us Dan, he's been living with MS for a few years now and and it's been just really inspiring to watch, you know, John just take this thing by the horns and use it as a way, you know, not just to deal with it or a pout about it or things like that, but to use it as a motivator to, you know, just get his be at the top of his health, I mean's and he's running marathons himself, he's biking, I mean just ridiculous amounts and raising a ton of money for the MS society in the process and just inspiring so many people. And it's just amazing to watch guys like you and John Take, you know, a challenge at life's thrown at you, which is a pretty pretty significant challenge, as you've you know, as you've said here, and then, you know, turn it into a positive in so many ways, at a personal level and in terms of how you impact others. And it's also just very impressive to see, you know, somebody who's had to deal with these things run, you know, not only one but three successful businesses, as you have. So I need to applaud you for what you've accomplished in your career despite what life has thrown your way. It's really admirable. Yeah, well, you know again, living with MS really has helped make me who I am, I mean aste. You know, you don't get a chance to give up. You know, you really got to go, go, go, and and when you find something that's working, then you actually just keep doing more of it. But which kind of you know, like John, no, like myself. Mean we are trying to set an example of what life can be like with MS instead of, you know, this newman gloom picture that you know, Ms has actually been for so many people for so many years and so realizic, you know from what I've done. I also wanted to share my journey with others who have Ms. so seven years ago I started inviting people with ms to Wisconsin Metal Parts to exercise and then just share what I've learned about living with MS. and they come every Wednesday and Friday morning. Well, the covid thing now has got them put. You know, we get we got to be careful there. So we've been doing more outside stuff than inside stuff. So but I've inviting them, you know, to Wisconsin Metal Parts twice a week, every Wednesday every Friday morning, for two hours and we got a group of probably, I don't know, twenty to forty people that come pretty consistently, pretty regularly with Ms, and we see life changing improvements of some of the people. Mean, one of them, you know, hadn't walked for twenty seven walked unassisted for twenty seven years and her daughter brought her and that was a first time her daughter had ever seen her mom walks. So Bob. Yeah, so there's a crowd. There's been some pretty amazing things and may just person after first after person who never thought they'd ride a bike again or a writing bike, and we get creative...

...on how, you know, how to get people to ride bike. We try to do it safely, but we put them on trikes and things like that so that they know they can still do it. So, but MS is an entirely different subject and I could go out, I could go off on now. Well, I appreciate you sharing your story and being transparent about that. I think it's really important for people to hear the here. You know what is shape, the person behind you, know the the businessperson that you've become, and so it was a great lead in. But let's let's talk about this, this topic, servant leadership. Yeah, and I'm happy to talk with people about Ms if they want to contact me directly. So, yeah, ok, great, but the share anything I can. Will have you at the end of the episode here. Will have you a kind of tell people how to how to get in touch and will list that, all of that in the show notes as well. Appreciate you offering that out to listeners. So well, okay, so servant leadership. This is, you know, a concept that I introduced it in the introduction and it's, you know, something that I know you've embraced. My business partner John, it's that's something that's he's really, you know, hung his hat on as well, and so I thought would make a really great episode here. So can you start by just sort of talking about the benefits of servant leadership in manufacturing and why you've embraced the servant leadership model at Wisconsin mettal parts? Yeah, well, I mean certain leadership certainly has a place in manufacturing. You know, again, maybe not be the most common leadership style and manufacturing, but it certainly has a place in manufacturing. And and personally, I'm not sure how we would have done with anything but certain leadership, mostly because, you know, that's who I am. You know, I've pretty much been raised, you know, trying to help other people and you know, it's a philosophy that I believe in and it's something that was fairly easy for me to you know, to bring to the to the company, because it's kind of just what we do. So but I really, you know, it really helps us attract and retain awesome people throughout the entire company, you know, and in manufacturing, you know, again we try to attract people, you know, to it, but it's such a highly skill art. Our business is such a highly skilled business. That's, you know, it's really sometimes we don't get a chance to talk to those people and but with a certain leadership at least, we have it a really good opportunity to attract them and and, once we get them there, to really retain them. And we like to, you know, take care of our people at a level that they want to stay there and at level what they want to recommend us to a friend or family member or something like that as well. But when we hire, we hire for character and then we train for skill, and that's all part of the whole servant leadership model as well. As you know, you hire for character, for who the person is, and then you train them for skill and we try to train them to the spot that they want to be, not necessarily where we need them. Obviously there has to be a fit, but if we can get them where they want to be, then they they end up really liking it, their ny for form well.

So it also, you know, builds a culture of you know, customer the customer base and the people. It's a culture of loyalty. So the loyalty, you know, kind of comes right along with it, which is a little bit uncommon again and in business today, because it's kind of a dog eat dog world out there and I think you know, with a servant leadership as our you know, the core of our business. Basically, customers chooses for the experience that they get by work working with us, and then in all of our people, you know, can relate to the servant leadership model in regardless of their education, regardless of their experience level, regardless of the race or religion, they can all basically relate to the servant leadership model. And so, I mean it's, you know, a big benefit of it as well, and people really get to grow on a personal basis because we're here to help you, we're here to develop you, were here serving you and instead of just trying to fill a spot. And from a financial perspective, it helps us remain profitable and secure, which is important all of us and manufacturing. So it's kind of, you know, there's some big benifits there. Yeah, some serious benefits for sure. When you can, you know, when you could put these principles into play and really start doing it? Well, can you step back a little bit and tell me what servant leadership is to you and your people at Wisconsin Metal Parts? Yeah, I mean, putting it as simply as I can, it's basically honoring the golden rule. Just do unto others as you want others to do unto you, but actually live it, you know, actually put others first. Don't worry about yourself. You know you're going to be okay as you as you bring servant leadership into your place, but really put others first and do everything you can to make their job easy, you know, and help them get in that spot that they want to be. You know, not necessarily where. You know, it might be totally different from what you hired them for, and that's okay, but when you more from into the spot that they really want to be, that's when they're going to do the best. That's we're going to be excited about coming to work. That's where you can get the most product, productivity out of them, you know, and and again it might not be where you hired them, hire them for, but then, but then, once they get in that spot where they want to be, just help them be an expert in that spot. And we want experts throughout the entire company. You know, we don't, we don't really want link weak links in the company. Want experts in all spots and all spots are important. They're all critical to our business. I mean we so we just can't have weak links. So so again, when you take that philosophy, you try to you know to me that certain leadership is trying to help these people get to where they want to go. If you take a look at our up in our organizational chart, well, look at a traditional organizational chart and you know you always got the leader at the top and then it kind of funnels down and then, you know even from people mentally coming to work, they come to work to keep their bosses happy. You know, it's like, well, the servant leaderships the other side. The other way around. It's an upside down pyramid. The customers are actually on the... of the pyramid and then they'll people who do the work for the customers. They're right there on that next line supporting the customers, and then they're the ones that are going to do the jobs right or and doing one time, you know, or they're not. So they're really the ones supporting the customers. The leaders then, basically are Bel who the people and they're there to support the people, there to say, how can I make that person's, you know, job easier? How can I help this person develop into what they want to be? And so and again we're trying to, you know, serve them at at a level at they had higher everic recommend us to a friend both the customers and the people. And again, that's kind of servant leadership to me. At work. Sure, what are Dan, what are some ways, some tangible ways, you've been able to infuse these principles of servant leadership into the way your business operates at Wisconsin Metal Parts? Well, and again, we're trying to really, you know, bridge this skills gap that's in the industry, you know, especially the highly skilled, the high skilled people. And we're going to go right back to the right back to the interview stage when we first start, you know, bringing people on, and they're going to experience the servant leadership model right in the interview. And again, once we get good people, you know, in an interview, we really want to bring them along and in and listen to them, I mean just really try to get to know them. And eventually, as we get to know we're going to ask them, have you ever heard of servant leadership? And you know, what does that mean to you? And a lot of times we're going to get as like a blank face. It's like, Huh, so so. So those people we can kind of, you know, understand, you know, we can kind of see that they may have worked someplace else where wasn't a servant leadership model. If they work at a servant leadership model, what they're going to do is are going to they're going to light right up, you know, they're going to they're going to know what servant leadership is and then they they want it, you know, they see it, they hear about it, they want it and they want to be part of it. And typically those are natural servants themselves, you know, and they really appreciate the way we're treating people and the way that's the way they want to be treated. So goes right back to that golden rule again. The people that don't believe you. Yeah, again, they might need a little more time to build trust. You know, maybe they weren't. They weren't treated the way we treat people and they don't believe you in the first place. They just think it's more of a salesper you know, Pach, are you trying to get them to, you know, to come and work here? And then they you know, they probably came from a different leaders ship style. So, depending upon our character. They're either going to come around and engage or they probably just don't belong here. You know. I think if they don't engage, you know, in it, it's probably, you know, not a good fit for them. Sure, what about performance reviews? To certain leadership play a role there, and performance reviews as well. You it does, you know, for us? You know. Well, first of all, let's go back to manufacturing,...

...because I really want this to be about manufacturing so manufacturers can relate, relate to it. Yeah, and and in manufacturing, from people that we interview and we talked to him and saying, you know, what was your performance reviews like and things like that, we find out that they really they don't exist, or there's some sort of a can report that doesn't add a whole lot of personal value, or the leader just calls them in and says, Hey, you're doing good or you're doing bad, and that's about it, you know. So so that's kind of what we find out, you know, from our employees that we bring on of what their performance reviews at other places were like. So again, our performance reviews are also centered around the server of leadership model. So first thing we do is again we listen to our people and we go back to what do they want to do? You know, how can we help them become an expert at that? You know, how do we help them get there? So we the whole the whole performance review is more about listening to them and, you know, asking them what they need in order to be able to get to what, you know, what we want them to do and what what they want to do and hopefully that, you know, that's a good one of the challenges for the people in the interviews is in again, people of manufacturing, they maybe aren't as communicative as people in sales are, you know. So one thing that we ask them to do is to communicate with us and let us know what they want to do and what then where they want want to be. And a lot of times we'll get the feedback from them that, you know, I've never been listened to before. ME, why does it matter what I want to do? And you know, to me that's you know, that's just a sin. No. So so we again we really try to listen to our people, try to get them where they want to go, try to get him the you know, the support that they need to be whether it's training or technology or work. You know, work towards that. So that's great. We're going to take a thirty second breather here for a word from our sponsor, Cadinis, part solutions. Let's talk real quick about getting specified. Are you a component manufacturer? Maybe you sell architectural products to parks or large facilities. Engineers and architects need models of your products to test fit in their designs. That's where codinis comes in. They help you create a dynamic shareable cad catalog you put on your website. Designers can preview the product from any angle and download it in the format they prefer. They get the data they need for their design and you get a fresh lead to add your marketing pipeline. To get one of your products turned into an online d model for free, use the code executive at part Solutionscom. Slash executive. What about it? Those sort of you know, just on a daily basis. Is there anything just in the the day to day that you, you and your leaders, try to do to embrace servant leadership? Yeah, and again on our theme. Are you know, our leader's job is basically how can we make our jobs easier for the people? You know what processes can we improve? What technology can we improve? You know, what? What... can we provide and, you know, what support can we give them? You know, all of this is looking at what what do we need to do for our customers? But again, you know, the people are going to do what we need, what we need to do for the customers. We need to make it easy for the people to be able to do that for the customers. So so that's really on a daily basis, is kind of what our theme is is, you know, is how do we get better? You know, how do we you know, how do we get better as a company, and how do we get better as a you know, as helping our people be able to do that? So and then there's daily challenges that come up as well, and we really engage our people in the daily challenges and we solicit ideas from them daily and realistically, they are the experts. They have the best, you know, the best solutions to the challenges that we have, and so again we listen to them. And then we were all those ideas into our continuous improvement program which is a documented, you know program, and then will document that and basically prioritize it and then and then implement it, as you know, as it makes sense. But I mean a lot of times, you know, companies anyway, they have hard time getting people to engage in a continuous improvement program but when you do it through subserver leadership model and that we know, they know that we're here to help them make their job easy easier, they engage. You know, they engage pretty pretty regularly and pretty rapidly. And then again, will even go as far as making it easy for them to share their ideas for improvement. So, you know, if somebody's not real comfortable with writing something up, which a lot of you know. You know people aren't real comfortable with that, we are write it up for will be standing there having a conversation for him, saying all right, for you, and the next thing you know, you know, they've got an idea that was submitted for them. And again, it's really about developing them. It's not about you know, but me your but the leaders understand that. It's not about us, it's about, you know, serving the people's yeah, I makes sense. You mentioned to me prior to this conversation that the servant leadership philosophy may have been somewhat natural for you to adapt, because of who you are and the challenges you've come to face in life. What were some of the biggest challenges that you found in creating this as part of your culture at Wisconsin Metal Parts? This the power leaders. You know, it's by far the power leaders. And sometimes the young the young people be you know, want to try to become a power leader. So you're trying to develop, you know, take somebody from a technical position and you're trying to develop them into a leadership position and and then all of a sudden they think that they've got this power and they end up, you know, it's the my way of the highway leaders that really struggle with this concept at first. You know, number one, it's just not natural to him. You know, they feel that since they're a leader, people need to listen to them and do as they're told, which is totally opposite of what the Servant Leadership Model is. So...

...and again we as leaders, we need to listen to our people and again, meet them where they're at and truly understand their perspective and then support them in a way that makes sense for the common goal. And you know, and again, many of the power leaders they come around eventually and they become great servant leaders. They got the energy, they've got the knowledge, they got what it takes to do it. It's a matter of moving them into the servant leadership model instead of the power leadership model, and then they can they they can see that, they see the light then and when we get to that point where the power leaders become servant leaders, that's a great day. That's you know, that's that's a big win. So I mentioned that's a really rewarding thing to see when you see that transformation start to happen. Huh, it is. Yeah, another big challenge is just leading a teaching leadership period. I mean technical skills and leadership skills are totally different skills, and teaching leadership to a technical person. So let's just say you have a really good tool maker out there and the toolmaker you know you really like to have some apprentices learn from him and you know you have some other people learn from a well, that might be really uncomfortable for that high, highly technical toolmaker because he's such a deep, deep thinker and problem solver and it's just hard for them to get out of that that spot. But what really, what people don't realize, is that any time two or more people are working together, there's an opportunity for leadership. And you know, some people don't realize that you don't need to have a title for a leader to be a leader, you know. And so the teaching, the technical part of it, is a challenge also, but the servant leadership model really gives us a great format for that and you know, we get a lot of success out of bringing that, the technical skills to the next generation with this sort of leadership modeling. Party diffent business and I'm sure you've heard the saying, you know, give a man of fish, you feeding for a day, teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. Well, teaching people how to fish in this case is servant leadership. It's great. I love that. What effect do you see these certain leadership values having on the way your team interacts with each other, the way they interact with customers or vendors? People can sense that we're generally out for their best interests and they trust this rather quickly, both internally and externally, once they figure out and see that this is actually what we're doing. We build trust pretty quickly, you know, and that's a you know, I think that is part of the culture just rolling into you know, who we are and what we do and with the certain leadership model and place, when we bring somebody on, I'm confident that they're going to be treated with respect, as we you know, as a as we bring them into the you know, into the company.

So and I'm confident that we're going to bring out the best of them. And then when we build that culture internal of our place, that pretty much flows directly to the customer experience that they receive as and it's natural and as genuine. And you know it's not. It's not, you know, it's not just faker trained. So that you know again that experience flows right to our customers and our customers sense and appreciate that. But again, to me that certain leadership philosophy is one of as timeless. It sets us up for leadership into the next generation. And as far as that, you know, is that next generation goes the following generation. You know, it can, you know, work right into that as well. And I think, really think manufacturing businesses in the United States really need to focus and set the next generation up for success. And for us at Wescotts some metal parts, that's a really high priority. We want the next generation to be stronger than the first generation. I think we're well on our well on our way to do that. It's great philosophy. What do you think spend? Some of the most rewarding outcomes that you've experienced with a culture of servant leadership it's when this hard knows, stubborn my way of the highway employee engages in it and comes out to me afterwards and tells me how much this leadership, you know, style and this leader you know training that's helped him at home with his wife and his kids and and you know when when it hits at the family level like that, you know now we're talking about, you know, actually making a bit of a difference in the world and you know that that part, I think, is one of the most rewarding thing to me. You know, these stuborn people, they're they're pretty reluctant to change anyway, and when they actually engage in it and they actually see the value in it and they they thank you for, you know, for running a business this way, you know, like say, that's rewarding. I had a wife come up to me one time and her husband was working with us and and she says that once, you know, once he got engaged in the servant leadership, the entire dynamics of our entire family change and, you know, to me that's, you know, that's what it's all about. That's really powerful when you can it extends beyond just their business life but you see it being reflected in their life at home. And then she told me that probably fourteen, fifteen years after he was working there and after we had engaged in it, you know. So again it made a big impact over a, you know, a long period of time. So I think a lot of calls. Yeah, I get a lot of people that, you know, thank me for, you know, living this way and teaching this servant leadership model, and there's absolutely no doubt in my mind that that's one of the reasons we don't have much turnover. You know, it's it just makes people better people at home and at work. It's great. Well, Dan, what advice I still have for leaders of other manufacturing organizations about how to start shifting culture through applying these servant leadership principles? Can I back up one more to...

...the back back to the benefits. So, yeah, from a financially financially. The benefits of the servant leadership is it reduces costs throughout the entire company and it reduces reach recruiting costs, it reduces training costs, employee engagement is higher. So again we don't have that turnover on the employee loyalty and ending when people quit a job, they technically don't want to quit the company. They don't want to leave the company. They leave their boss for the coworker that don't belong, doesn't deserted, belong there anyway. You know, and that part of it, I think, is really part of what servant leadership brings to the to the companies on a financial basis. Also is that, you know, you just got that loyalty and you got, you know, the consistency, and that boils right down to the customers. So the customers, you know, they know they're going to be working with the same people all the time. So a year after year after year after year. That, you know, that builds loyalty as well. And then I think, you know, we win orders that we would have never won otherwise. I mean, if you're out there and just in a bidding war, you know we may not be the lowest cost person, you know, from a spreadsheet perspective. But when they know what they're going to get and they know what we're going to deliver, and when they know that you're going to deliver on time, they know the delivers are going to be the parts are going to be right, they're going to find a way to work with us, you know, and and that part of it, I think, is a real differentiator for us in the industry and it's also a really competitive advantage, both internally with people and externally with with the customers. So so again, certain leadership from a financial perspective is got a lot that it brings to the table as well. That's great. Thanks for adding that. So where do you start? Where do you start if you're another manufacturing leader that's listening to this right now? You know there are the resources you point people to. How can they start putting some of these principles into play? Well, I think people have to at least believe in the philosophy. If they don't believe in the philosophy and they think it's all, you know whatever, they got to believe in it. So and they got to study it. So they got to kind of take a look at you know, how am I going to get there? So I think once you start believing in the philosophy and you figure out can this work for us or cannot work for us, and you really believe it, you know, then you start leading by example and you put you know, start putting people first and you know, just going out there to see how you can, you know how you can serve them and get put your know your wants and needs a little bit besides, and say what can I do for you? Type of thing. And then, and then don't necessarily tell your people how to serve, but show them. You know, as God he said, you know, be the change you want to see in the world. And I and I think you know that part of it is against you. Get to start with believing it first and look... the mirror a little bit and say can I get there? And then read James C Hunters Book The Servant and go through his Audio Seminar on Servant leaderships. So He's got a book and he's got a servant leadership seminar out there and will work well for us. As we made notes on the seminar and then we shared them to be able to share with our people and then we went through that seminar together. So we had like five to seven people at a time and we it was an audio so we basically just put the CD in and we turned the audio on and we go through it for about an hour at a time. It's about six hour program and always stop and talk often during that program and just discuss, you know, how these principal covered will work in our organization and that, I think, was just a really effective way to get started, you know, for us to really bring some organization to the Servant Leadership Model, even though we were kind of scattered, doing it a little bit here and a little bit there, just because that's who we are. But James C Hunter really did a nice job of kind of bringing it on organized way and then and then putting a seminar together to be able to teach it. And I got to say that it's by far the best thirty bucks I ever spent in the business. And I've I've given, I don't know, probably hundreds of these books and CD's a way to people too, and I'm one of them. One wound up inside our office. I know because my business partner John, I think he either heard of it from you or got a copy from you or something of James Hunter's Book The Servant, which I also read and really loved a lot of the principles that were laid out there. So we'll make sure to link to his program that you mentioned, the sort of six hour program, as well as the book. So anybody listening can go check that out, and it sounds like you'd highly encourage that, ton Dan. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, that's a great starting point. And then it's great, yeah, it is seminar. He's actually has some skills inventory. So you can actually, you know, kind of take a look at his questions that he asked about you as a leader and then be honest with yourself. You know, where are you now, and then maybe work on some of the things that you know that makes sense to you as you're going through that, the skills inventory assessment, and then take it again. You know, so so again, it's really going to start from within and then, you know, from there you're going to start serving your people at a different level. And I think, but and then slict of feedback from the others as well means, as in the people that you're leading actually just have them go through the skills inventory process that James Hunter has and say what do you think about this? For me, you know, as a leader, even if I don't want to hear what is, know what does it sound like? So thank yeah. If you do get started that way, you know you're going to be well on your way to creating a culture of servant leadership and and I think it's you know, it's definitely worth going at route if you can, if you can bring yourself to serving other people. Well, Dan, fantastic conversation... Really appreciate your willingness to share your story and your experiences and how you've applied all these servant leadership principles throughout your own business. I think it's something that's gonna give people a different perspective, maybe them what they're used to hearing or how, maybe how their companies have been, you know, operating traditionally. And that's what I love to do, is is just bring different perspectives of the table here and make people think. So you can get to go ahead. Yes, my pleasure and I'm happy to be happy to do it. I'm I hope it's beneficial to someone in some way. I think it will be, for sure. Can you, can you tell our audience how they can get in touch with you and where they can learn more about Wisconsin metal parts. Yeah, you can go to our website with Scots and Metal Partscom and you can contact me through any of the request information options. I get the information from all of them, or you can email me directly that day. On that Ershin and it's Er scan and then the add symbol wiscots and metal partscom. Beautiful. Well, before we wrap it up, I want to say thank you once again to our sponsor, codinus part solutions, for helping make this episode of reality, and Dan thanks a ton for being a guest on the show. You're welcome, Joe. You know the thanks really goes back to you. Thank you for all you're doing for all of us in manufacturing get. You're providing great content that you know that we wouldn't beginning otherwise, and thanks for having me on the show. I appreciate you saying that it's great to get some validation that somebody's out there listening and putting us the stuff into practice. Right. I'm a big Fan. Thanks Dan Wells. For the rest of you, I hope to catch you on the next episode of the Manufacturing Executive. You've been listening to the manufacturing executive podcast. To ensure that you never miss an episode, subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast player. If you'd like to learn more about industrial marketing and sales strategy, you'll find an ever expanding collection of articles, videos, guides and tools specifically for BTB manufacturers at Gorilla Seventy sixcom learn thank you so much for listening. Until next time,.

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