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Hire for Character - Train for Skill


A couple weeks ago we finished another leadership class here at the Boone County Sheriff Office.  At this time I believe all our employees have been through this 10 hour course that teaches the philosophy of “servant leadership”.

This class originated about 5 years ago when a friend recommended a book for me to read by James Hunter called “The Servant”.  I was told it was a fictional book about a leadership retreat.  I told my friend that I do not read fiction.  For some reason I cannot make myself read that stuff.  I would rather spend my time reading something that is true, historical or educational.  My friend insisted I would like the book, so I got the book and began to read. After the 1st chapter, I was so impressed; I looked online to see what else I could find that Mr. Hunter wrote.

What I found was one of the best books on leadership I have ever read called, “The World’s Most Powerful Leadership Principle”, (How To Become A Servant Leader).  As I began reading the book, I began to take notes.  When I finished the book I had 17 pages of notes that I took from this awesome book.  I took the notes and separated them by the chapters of the book I took them from.  Then I made a worksheet for each chapter.

I contacted the office of the author of the books and asked if I could speak to him and within about a week I received a phone call from Mr. James C. Hunter.  I asked him if he had a workbook that would go along with the book to use as study material.  He told me no.  I told him I had read his book, took lots of notes and had put together a worksheet for each chapter.  I asked for his permission to use my worksheets to train all my staff on his book.  He was glad to grant permission and I offered to send him the material I had made.

Since then, we have implemented a lot of the same philosophy taught in his book here at the Sheriff Office. Things like:

We hire for character, train for skill.

We manage things, we lead people.

1st duty of a leader is to train more leaders.

There is a difference in leading with power and leading with authority.

There are many more lessons and “rules” of leadership we study here, but these are a few.  The bottom line is we want to continue training here at the Sheriff Office in all areas of our careers and leadership is a very important part of that ongoing training.

We’re better people for it.  That makes us better employees for the county and better servants to our citizens.

Sheriff Mike Moore