Sheer Craziness!

Today there was some chaos in the community where I live. Water was bellowing up from the ground and flowing as a steady stream down the street. The original thought was that the main water line was damaged, but apparently the saddle valve blew off—which connects the main water line to the service lines. And because the pressure was so intense, it blew a hole in the main water line.

As with most of the hardworking men and women who put forth great energy and effort everyday as the community continues to grow with newly-built homes, today was no different. As soon as the issue was realized, individuals from numerous local agencies were working diligently to resolve the issue. Within five minutes or so of noticing the problem, the water was shut off so the flooding ceased. But over the course of the next five minutes, sheer craziness ensued!

As I looked outside, water was again gushing out of the ground and streaming down the street. But why? Because an inspector had to first see the issue before the water could officially be shut off. A worker was told to physically turn the water back on to watch the surge continue until the inspector arrived. Seriously? Where has common sense gone? This story is not about common sense. It’s about leadership.

So often I hear companies say, “We need to get the right people on the bus and in the right seats.” Yet, all the workers I saw busting their butts to help quickly solve the problem and mitigate more damage, were definitely in roles where they knew what to do in a crisis situation and acted accordingly. But then their autonomy was stripped away until one special person could arrive to say, “Yep! We got a problem! Shut the water off.”

Diligently digging and searching for the leak.

Now, I understand there are rules in place for a reason and employees are asked to follow a chain of command. I get that. Yet, it is a leader’s job to create an environment where employees can do their work—to the best of their abilities—without being judged, scrutinized or told to stand down—especially in a crisis situation. The agile workers who responded swiftly and safely had their autonomy shredded today. What do you think will happen next time there is a similar issue?

Stop asking, “How do I get the right people in the right roles?”

Stop asking, “How do I get the best out of my employees?”

START asking, “How do I get out of the way and provide the tools necessary so my people can be their natural best?” 

Training with Tracy | live + online

Tracy Stock is one of the most in-demand and top-rated female speakers and training professionals today—both LIVE and VIRTUALLY—because of her ability to inspire behavior change and achieve positive outcomes. As a Certified Speaking Professional® (CSP) with 20+ years speaking experience, a former director of learning and development, and a best-selling author with five published titles—she has now added “Expert Virtual Classroom Trainer” to her list of accolades.

Learning and mastering this newer craft from one of the best Virtual Classroom Master Trainers in the world, Tracy is elevating the virtual training bar to incredible new heights. CLICK HERE TO READ HOW! She is known for:

  • Engaging, interactive content and activities. Tracy transformed her highly successful in-person workshops into interactive virtual training programs with robust content and customized activities tailored for the online learning environment—so participants remain engaged and learn key strategies they can immediately apply on-the-job.
  • Unparalleled online presence. Tracy’s energy, enthusiasm and online presence are unparalleled—offering results-focused solutions that are fun, professional and collaborative—ensuring participants remain active every 2-3 minutes for a highly-focused virtual experience. As a seasoned facilitator, Tracy is exceptionally skilled at both demonstrating and communicating what participants should do next, so they are captivated and engaged throughout the learning experience.
  • Expert professional host of a reliable platform. All virtual training platforms are not created equal. Tracy is highly skilled at using the Zoom platform which includes numerous interactive elements such as HD video capabilities, breakout rooms, chat experiences, whiteboards, polling, reactions, and more. She even provides a one-page user-guide to ensure seamless Zoom navigation as well as professionally designed participant guides that are useful, engaging and support the learners’ performance.


As a dear subscriber and follower of my monthly ezines, you clearly are aware that I’ve taken a hiatus from communicating online—which was a conscious choice. After enduring a painful divorce, I chose to leave Colorado and make a fresh start. I looked at a map of the US, and asked myself, “Where do I want to live…now and possibly when I retire some day?” I considered various amazing options and settled on the Charlotte, NC area. With only know one person who lives here—a fellow female speaker and wonderful friend—I couldn’t be happier with my choice! My leap of faith paid off!

I now live in a small town northwest of Charlotte which is far enough away from traffic mayhem but also close enough to everything I want and need…plus a gorgeous lake, beautiful mountains and the breathtaking ocean only a short drive away. As I evaluated my new life, I decided there were other aspects that also needed to be altered. So subsequent changes evolved. In addition to my last name formally changing (Stock), I changed my phone number that I’ve had ever since I can remember (980.280.7005), and I also renamed my business (Achieve Positive Outcomes) to be more in line with my overall offerings—with both keynotes and training now being offered live and virtually. This led to me developing an entire new website with a new logo, which then led to needing all of my social media accounts to be revised—leading to a new You Tube channel, a new speaker reel, a creative new blog entitled, Take STOCK of Your Life, all marketing materials being revised, and on and on and on. So I refer to my offline time as a conscious hiatus, but in actuality, it was the busiest I have ever been in my life!

With all of the sleepless nights, waffling thoughts and countless quick decisions I needed to make, I could have chose to wallow in self pity, sit back and watch my business tank during COVID, or do something about it. I chose to look at my HUGE bowl of lemons, add cups of sweet sugar, and considered adding lots of alcohol to make it “hard lemonade”, but instead, added kindness, love and passion to create an even better me. As I frequently say, “We all face tough stuff, but it’s never the tough stuff that does us in; rather, it’s our reaction to the tough stuff.” I chose to not be bitter, but better. I chose to not be hard and jaded, but soft with understanding, compassion, strength and a generous dollop of optimism. Because without those choices, I would not be who I am today.

Remember…true learning happens when we experience things; not when we talk about experiencing them. What have you experienced recently? Connect with me on my new social media (so I can organically grow my SM presence) or via email and share what you’ve learned lately.


Last Name: Tracy Butz to Tracy Stock

Business Name and website: Achieve Positive Outcomes, LLC

New email address:

New phone number: 980.280.7005

New address: 359 Secretariat Dr, Iron Station, NC 28080

Linked In:

Twitter: @TracyStockAPO




Youtube Channel:

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