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Norm R. Augustine
Technology/Civic Leader

Norm R. Augustine

A former president of the Boy Scouts of America and chair of the American Red Cross, Norm Augustine is the retired Chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin Corporation.

Regulation-Free Leadership

There is no question about it: Santa is a great leader. His employees follow him to the end of the earth, willingly. He gets amazing productivity from his small workforce. His customers are generally highly satisfied. He promotes good behavior and makes his customers happy. What more could be asked of a leader?

And as to that business about favoritism towards Rudolph--that's a hoax. Rudolph has a skill not possessed by any of his fellow-employees and thus falls in a higher job classification.

Of course, there are a few questions. For example, the FAA has no record of an S. Claus having a pilot's license. Further, the Occupational Health & Safety Administration (OSHA) has noticed that none of the elves are wearing safety glasses or safety shoes. Similarly, the customs folks find no record of payment of import duties. The Office of Equal Employment Opportunity notes that Santa's entire workforce, elves and reindeer alike, are male. And then there's that little matter of how Santa pays for the materials that go into all those products coming out of his shop when he has no apparent means of income. Could it be that something is being cooked up there at the North Pole other than Mrs. Claus' porridge?

But this is no time to antagonize Santa. As for me, I'll be eagerly awaiting the jolly fellow to come down my chimney on Christmas Eve. He is a great leader in my book. And, speaking of that, in case you read this, Santa, that's what I'd like in my stocking.

By Norm R. Augustine

 |  December 22, 2008; 2:33 PM ET
Category:  Leadership Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
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You can get a lot of production done with Slave Labor, though technically since his labors aren't human, almost none of the OSHA regulations would apply, and the while the conditions at Santa's Workshops are a crime against Elfity, the elves fare far better than the cattle or chickens at a factory farm.
The real question is, what black magic has been used to make those Elves look so happy about working 24-7 364 days a year to make toys for the offspring of another race? Is it some primitive form of "Brave New World" genetic?

Also why does Santa bring more toys to rich kids, wouldn't it make a lot more sense to bring more stuff to poor kids, since the rich kids parents can buy their kids toys and the like all year long?

Posted by: Muddy_Buddy_2000 | December 24, 2008 7:44 AM
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A person dislikes regulations because they either

a) make them do something they wouldn't otherwise, or,

b) prevent them from doing something they want to do but shouldn't.

We see the effects of deregulation all around us. This can no longer be denied.

So if the elves' working conditions are indeed substandard, that'd probably mark the first time a man with your credentials would concern himself with it, save regulations.

Posted by: dgblues | December 23, 2008 6:17 PM
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I'm asking for Santa to bring a great leader here as well. Perhaps the whole world may actually share this common wish.

The reason Santa hasn't had to suffer from all the regulatory mess is that Santa not only produces locally manufactured good as a non-profit but he doesn't even take a penny in for himself or his staff.

If the rest of the organizations in the world were to follow his example and produce goods for the benefit of others without expecting or demanding a level of recompense then I would image those organizations could slip past regulation just as easily.

The only reason those regulatory agencies exist is to handle organizations and their leaders who are looking to benefit themselves at the expense of others. The only expense for Santa is belief.

Posted by: ChristianT | December 23, 2008 4:58 PM
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