September 14, 2003
Last Revised: May 23, 2012 4:50 PM
An "executive" is one who can "execute." This means he is a doer, no matter how much he may also be a thinker. His "doing" results in Valuable Products that can be used by others.
In my many years of observation and experience I find that most people I admire as "executives" seem to have had the necessary traits all their lives, and apply these traits in just about everything they do.
One area of observation is in the type of thing which motivates the executive.
Mr. Hubbard describes four different types of motivation:
The weakest motivation is money. People and businesses that are motivated only by money are wobbly people.
The scale of motivation from the highest to the lowest is:
Duty -- highest
Money -- lowest
Money is important in the world. But it is the grease on the machines, not the motors. In a society which has lost its patriotism and pride, money will be found as a primary motivation. True, one is in trouble without money and it is a crime in the eyes of the society to be without money. But one also needs dirt to stand on and yet dirt cannot be said to be the primary motivation for living.
So money is a tool, a gas tank. It is a MEANS of getting something done. It is no valid end in itself.
(HCOPL 11 November 1960, Issue II)
It has been easy to observe that true executives are rarely motivated by money, alone, and usually have at least a Personal Conviction, if not a sense of Duty about what they do. The person operating at the level of Duty, of course, also needs "money" since that is often the measurement of how successful he is in "doing his duty" or expanding the organization in which the duty is performed. The term "fire in the belly" is often used to describe these people!
My observation and experience has been that a person who is a clock-watcher, who measures his "work-time" by the 9 AM to 5 PM mode, is likely to have always done that, and always will, and does not have the make-up of an executive. He lives for his pay check. It it fruitless to say that, "He was a clock-watcher in his early jobs, but now that he is being given more responsibility he will demonstrate a sense of duty, or at least personal conviction."
I've had "good people" who seemed brillant, or whatever, and after their failures at being an executive, only then have I found out the answer to the question I was too polite to ask:
"How many simple HOURS well in excess every day of the seven days in the week does he work?"
"Politeness" is MY failure; a "forty hour syndrome" is the hidden deadly disease of many others who put on the hat, but do not wear it, of the EXECUTIVE.
An executive does not WAIT for responsibility to be given, but seizes it, without upsetting others, by the way! You can work toward having more responsibility. It is simple. Mr. Hubbard developed a trio of words that are called the "KRC Triangle." "KRC" stands for knowledge, responsibility and control.
It is difficult to be responsible for something or control something unless you have knowledge of it.
It is folly to try to control something or even know something without responsibility.
It is hard to fully know something or be responsible for something over which you have no control, otherwise the result can be an overwhelm.
(The Book of Basics)
Certainly, then, the easy entrance into the Executive world is to set about learning and increasing your knowledge about the Company and all that it stands for and does. The Policies on this web site are a good place to start with increasing your knowledge. There are, then, some 100,000 pages of data that can be accessed, starting with the major articles on various subjects. There is also an opportunity to increase your knowledge about the Management Technology developed by Mr. Hubbard, here.
The executive, or the person who "wants" to be an executive, has another universal characteristic. He is active! His actions make improvements. He makes things better around him. Whether he is working as a janitor, cooking hamburgers, or in the ranks of up-coming managers, the area around him gets more profitable, has more sales, more satisfied customers, better morale among the staff. This is not luck or an accident, although many people who don't have the stuff to BE an executive believe in luck or chance.
It may seem unfair, but broken equipment and falling sales in an area suggest strongly that there is no executive in charge.
An executive develops those below him to be like him -- look for responsibility and opportunity to help the organization expand.
A lazy worker should be motivated to be better, or fired by someone serving as an executive.
The executive is happy when he is producing valuable products for his organization. Money or high pay? If that is what it takes to make him happy, then you have the wrong person to be an executive.
The essence of any ethical business is "exchange." We must, as a Company, exchange our products with society. If our products do not serve society, then no sales success will result in Company success.
We strive to "exchange in abundance!"
Mr. Hubbard describes four different conditions of exchange and the fourth one of those in this way:
The fourth condition of exchange is not common but could be called exchange in abundance. Here one does not give two for one or free service but gives something more valuable than money was received for. Example: The group has diamonds for sale; an average diamond is ordered; the group delivers a blue white diamond above average. Also it delivers it promptly and with courtesy.
. . .
The fourth condition is the preferred one. It is the one I try to operate on and have attempted to for ages. Produce in abundance and try to give better than expected quality. Deliver and get paid for it, for sure, but deliver better than was ordered and more. Always try to write a better story than was expected; always try to deliver a better job than was ordered. Always try to -- and deliver -- a better result than what was hoped for. (HCO PL 10 Sept 1982)
That is, we give far more in value, in our products, than we receive in money. The person who would be an executive must do the same -- be "worth" far more to his group than any pay he receives. The person who truly avoids bypass surgery, or lives healthy years that otherwise he would not? These benefits are worth far more than any money the customer pays for our bottles. (This, incidentally, is one of the reasons why the "free information" on our web sites is so valuable to the consumer.) The individual, likewise, cannot withhold part of himself from contributing to the success of his group because he thinks he is "not paid enough."
The same is true of an executive. He or she gives value far in excess of any pay received.
One more thing. The executive is more ethical than the non-executive. We have seen many exactly contrary apparencies in the US Business world, in recent years, but the bad apples are being found out, and the good guys still drive the engine of our society forward.
The findings of this study may pose problems for cultural relativism, which is interpreted to mean that there is no single right way. In other words, people should not impose their values and standards on others.
The reasoning behind the arguments usually is that we should behave as the locals do, or "When in Rome, do as the Romans do."
It is probably still unethical to encourage emulation of locals who are corrupt (Lane, Distefano, and Maznevski, 1997).
Assimilating into a more corrupt collectivistic culture could encourage denial of accountability that individualism better maintains. (Source)
The bottom line is simply that if you "want" to be an executive, then take on all the outward characteristics of being an executive, and you can make it.
Mr. Hubbard says this:
Joy Of Creating
Force yourself to smile and you'll soon stop frowning.
Force yourself to laugh and you'll soon find something to laugh about.
Wax enthusiastic and you'll very soon feel so.
A being causes his own feelings.
The greatest joy there is in life is creating.
Splurge on it!
I infer from the above that anyone can "be" an executive by forcing himself to "do" the actions of an executive. Many of those basic actions are described on this page.
Quotes from L. Ron Hubbard are copyright 1994 © by the L. Ron Hubbard Library. All rights reserved.