A professor of industrial management at Tulane University in New Orleans, Dr. James Sweeney’s lectures on human potential were powerful, but he lacked concrete proof to back up his theories. One day he met a new employee, George Johnson, who had been hired as the janitor for the bio-medical computer center, which Sweeney was also in charge of. After a few words of welcome and instruction, Dr. Sweeney became quite aware that George Johnson was not one of the most well educated people he had ever met. He reviewed George’s personnel folder and found that he had been an elementary school drop-out, was almost illiterate, and his only other job had been as a porter in a downtown New Orleans hospital. If you had looked at George Johnson that day, what would you have seen? What might you have done to help him improve himself? Could a man like George Johnson become so motivated that his life would be altered dramatically? Professor Sweeney believed it could, and it was that strong conviction combined with his own personal confidence that led him to ask permission of the University to work with George Johnson. So began Chapter One of Sweeney’s Miracle…one person helping another grow, improve, and tap his amazing potential, very much like you may doing with your children, employees or the people on your team. As you do, though, what level of expectancy do you have? And how do you communicate that expectancy to the ones you’re trying to help? Each day Dr. Sweeney worked with Johnson, focusing on their common goal: to enable him to become an assistant to the computer operator in that bio-medical computer center. Mornings were spent studying, learning and growing; afternoons were spent sweeping and scrubbing floors.
Amazing potential, just begging to be released.
Johnson was catching on, and finally, after six months, Sweeney felt he was ready. He instructed Johnson to change from his janitor attire to that of a computer operator. Success, achievement, and then Johnson even began training others. In fact, he went from janitor to programmer … to one of the top computer people in Tulane! Self-motivation …. leadership …. growth … wow! It’s a miracle they said! Chapter Two. Now George Johnson no longer worked at Tulane University. He was back in downtown New Orleans. Only this time, you’d have to go to the home office of Pan American Life Insurance Company, and as you scanned the directory in the lobby, you’d find under the title of Director of Data Processing Operations:Mr. George Johnson. Sweeney’s Miracle! Or was it Johnson’s Miracle, or both! What a leader… What a doer! What a teacher…what a student! One with high expectancy, one with initial desire that was transformed to higher personal expectancy. What caused this dramatic improvement? Was Sweeney able at will to improve another person? Was Johnson a sleeping genius awaiting to be awakened? Or could it have been one person’s belief and positive expectancy in another? One person’s commitment to help another to reach more of his potential? Yes! It was the power of expectancy on Sweeney’s part that enabled Johnson to improve himself and to initiate positive productive action.
Progress began to show.
Here’s What You Can Do:
- What’s your level of expectancy?
- How do you view the people on your team?
- What amazing untapped potential do they have, just begging to be released?