Allen Baler: Manager Tools Lays Groundwork for Success

Allen Baler on Manager Tools Training

“May I give you some feedback?”


This question is one heard frequently in our company since we invested in Mark Horstman’s “Manager Tools” training. Because our company, 4Patriots, is growing rapidly, we knew we needed to be mindful of how best to manage that growth while still maintaining the attributes we’d cultivated in creating a unique and welcoming company culture.


We spent a day with the company’s founder, Mark Horstman, and learned how simple-to-apply, basic principles of management encourage healthy professional relationships. Horstman, a West Point graduate and former Army officer, also spent many years in the corporate realm. He’s consulted with Fortune 2000 companies and counts billionaires and ex-Presidents among his personal associates.


Spending one day with a man who has turned successful employee management into a science won’t fix a company with a completely dysfunctional culture. But for companies like ours on the rise, Manager Tools training gave us a blueprint for how to structure our departments and build our internal relationships going forward, to avoid unnecessary pitfalls as our enterprise grows.


A few of the key takeaways from Mark’s training that really resonated with me:


  1. Leave the past alone. It doesn’t matter what happened 5 years ago, 5 months ago, or even 5 minutes ago. The past can’t be changed, so don’t spin your wheels in frustration worrying about it.


  1. Focus only on desired behaviors. Give feedback that brings unwanted behavior to light, but with a positive spin. Tell your team exactly what you want from them. Punishment is a waste of time, and you’ll both end up feeling lousy.


  1. Have regular one-on-ones. This is crucial if you expect to get the best out of your people consistently. It will open the lines of communication, keep your team on task, and improve productivity.


Like any growing organization, we realize that we will have to navigate a few bumps in the road. Every business that expands must learn how to manage its employees effectively and to its greatest advantage. This can be harder to implement than first perceived, however. The key is consistent application of learned principles, and pretty soon, the behaviors become habits.


By investing in top-tier training like Manager Tools, we feel empowered that we can handle the storms to come with a compass to help us find our way, and ensure calmer seas as we sail into unknown, future waters.

Allen Baler is a leading entrepreneur and Harvard grad. Allen Baler is a Partner in 4Patriots LLC, based in Nashville.

Disclaimer: This blog post is not a substitute for the sound advice of a business professional with expertise in the subject matter discussed. Please seek appropriate counsel on what strategies make sense for your business.

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