Undercover Boss

By Michael Bell Friday, April 2, 2010

Every top executive wants his/her company to be the best. They are always thinking of new ways to make products or service better than the competition. But what every executive must know is the one major thing that sets his/her company apart from the competition is the employees, because the employees are the ones that drive the company every day. Why am I taking the time to tell you this, you might wonder...? Well, there is a great show on CBS every Sunday that I believe every business owner and employee should take the time to watch, called Undercover Boss. It is quality TV that allows owners and CEO's to get their hands dirty in the trenches and see what it is like to be an employee at their own company.

Each show features a high ranking executive or the owner of a major corporation such as Waste Management, Hooters, 7-Eleven, White Castle, Churchill Downs and GSI Commerce going undercover in their companies for a week working in various areas. The goal is to go in as a mid-entry hire in his or her company to find out how the company really works, the impact of the company’s corporate policies and finding the unsung heroes among the employees.

What makes this show interesting is the fact that executives are putting themselves in their own employees' shoes and the show’s format is unique because in order to explain the camera crew the  executive says he is being filmed as part of documentary about workers in a particular industry. When in reality he/she is trying to find the good, the bad, and the ugly about the company and will eventually reveal their true identity at the end of the show.

In one of the episodes on 7-Eleven we meet a man named Igor who is from Kazakhstan, he is a delivery truck driver. In this clip he tells us how he came to America with $50 in his pocket with his wife and kids and spoke no English and has survived against the odds to achieve the American Dream. We learn his passion and love for not only his job, but America. This clip taught me many things including to not take anything for granted, to keep your head high and to always maintain a positive attitude because you never know when you will be recognized for your hard work. To view a clip of his story watch this video:

Whether you are an employee, a top executive, business owner or have aspirations to be one, this show will teach you valuable lessons in being a great leader and a great worker.

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