The Johnson Institute for Responsible Leadership, of the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, published a 2019 case study examining the role fundamental leadership principles and practices have played in the career of Paul O'Neill. O'Neill has been steadfast in his values-based approach, whether in government, the private sector, or not-for-profit organizations. His unwavering values include:
- respect and concern for all people;
- continually seeking ways to improve systems and outcomes;
- decision-making based on evidence;
- integrity and accountability; and,
O'Neill consistently challenges leaders who strive to create habitually excellent organizations to consider the following:
Can everyone in your organization answer “yes,” every day, to these three questions:
- Am I treated with dignity and respect by everyone I encounter, regardless of job title, education, ethnicity, or any other distinguishing characteristic?
- Am I given everything I need, such as training, support, and tools, to make a contribution to the organization that has meaning in my life?
- Am I recognized for my work by someone whose opinion matters to me?
The study concludes by stating, “In an era when evidence-based decision-making often falls victim to political expediency or succumbs to a blizzard of social media opposition, Paul O’Neill’s approach to leadership is perhaps viewed as quaint by some cynics. Yet leadership that blends demanding standards of performance with a concern for the individual will always be beneficial to our institutions, our world, and our fellow human beings.”
Geoff Webster, Value Capture Principal, followed this study with a blog post for the Shingo Institute, in which Geoff provides personal insights and examples of specific O'Neill leadership behaviors. Please click here to read A Study in Principles That Drive Habitual Excellence.“
Ken Segel is a co-founding principal of Value Capture and serves as CEO and Managing Director of the firm. In this role he provides support to CEOs of healthcare organizations dedicated to eliminating injuries and improving quality as a means to dramatically raise the clinical and financial performance of the entire institution. Ken's full bio