Last week I attended my 6th annual Krengeltech Christmas party.

The venue this year was Squeaky’s in Hutchinson, Minnesota.  Our agenda is included in blue below:

11:00 Welcoming Comments – (Quentin Krengel, President)

11:05 Goals for today’s meeting – (Diann Ross, Controller)

11:10 Staff Blessing – (Jeff Skistad, Sales/Marketing)

11:15 Personal Employee Bios: Background & favorite quote

12:15 Krengel Tech History – (Aaron Bartell, IBM i Dev Mgr)

12:30 Setting the Stage for a Mission Statement

1:15 Video “What, How, Why?”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4ZoJKF_VuA&feature=relmfu

1:35 Introduction to Process Management Brainstorming & Multi-Voting Technique

2:00 What does Krengel Tech do?

2:30 How does Krengel Tech do it?

3:00 Why does Krengel Tech do it?

Working in marketing, I’ve been a part of many a discussion over the years on the topic of “mission statements”.  In many organizations I think it’s common for mission statements to be viewed as marketing “fluff” that often get embellished to something that doesn’t accurately reflected the essence of a company.

Some questions for you:

Do your customers care if you have a mission statement?

Do your employees care?

Does your boss care?

Do you care?

I view Krengeltech as an anomaly.   Definition: we’re different.  I’m not sure our customers care that we have a mission statement but they care about how we treat them and the experience of doing business with Krengeltech.  In the eloquent description of one of our long term customers:

“You can milk me for a long time but you can only skin me once.”

To me, getting “skinned” is getting burned – an improperly handled circumstance that results in the loss of trust.

Now, do our employees care about our mission statement?  I’ll speak for myself.  I’m a marketer and I hate fluff.  I like a well-written sentence, but I hate fluff.  So to me here’s my mission statement summary:

“Krengeltech provides software and professional services for the IBM i server and the postal automation industry.  Support and value remain the core of our existence.  Through each unique employee contribution, our reach expands to new territories.”

In the age of “political correctness” I probably can’t elaborate on the spiritual undertones that are core to my perceptions of what our mission statement should be.  So we’ll save that for another day…Getting back to whether our employees care about our mission statement: I think they want to see it, not read it.  I think that’s a challenge for every organization.  Do what you say you’ll do.  It’s a daily challenge for me – one that remains at the forefront of my mind.

So does my boss care about our company mission statement? I think he does or we wouldn’t have spent the better portion of a full day discussing it!

After the group mission statement discussion we naturally left Squeaky’s to shoot some firearms outside in 15 degree temps.  Here’s Jeff Lin, our Creative Developer, eyeing up a nice chunk o’ dirt to shoot:

Now, I’m a hunter.  Yet, I prefer to arm myself with a bow and arrow or a muzzle loader black powder rifle.  I’ve never shot anything resembling a pistol brandishing the name “Ruger” or “Glock”.  Hence, the photo below which conceals the gash and bruise left on my thumb by the aforementioned Glock.

I will admit.  It was “user error” on my part.

After all employees got their fix of firepower (and just before frostbite was setting in), we headed to corporate headquarters for an evening of hors d’ouevres & cocktails and attempted to solve all the world’s problems.

Did I mention Ruger runs on IBM i?  We’ll stick to what we know and keep you posted when the “formal” mission statement is released.

Happy Holidays and Merry Christmas!