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Of the diverse, interesting and yes even thought-provoking topics we have covered on the PI Window on Business show leadership, and in particular 21st century leadership, is an area upon which we have focused a great deal of our time and energy. So when I first saw the commercial for Undercover Boss, I can say without any hesitation that I was hooked before the 30 second spot was over. For me it was the realization of an evolutionary leadership cycle which began with the unapproachable reverence surrounding the Henry Ford's and the E.I. du Pont's to the modern day celebrity accessibility of a Lee Iacocca and a Donald Trump to the now real-world vulnerability of . . . an Undercover Boss. Vulnerability, humility and even a healthy dose of courage were words that came to mind along with a feeling that I could only equate with standing over a precipice of the unfamiliar and unknown. In short, it is one thing to walk the talk - it is an entirely different scenario to live the talk, especially on the front lines of a multi-billion dollar corporation. But live it Lawrence O'Donnell, III President and Chief Operating Officer of Waste Management did . . . in front of close to 39 million viewers following this past Sunday's Super Bowl. In a recent interview Mr. O'Donnell, although I would imagine that he would not be offended if I referred to him by the now familiar Larry, used terms such as "not in my wildest imagination," I am definitely not a reality-type person" and "when Lynn Brown brought this to me I told her she was crazy," to describe his first reaction to the suggestion that he become an Undercover Boss. Despite the obvious reservations, Larry O'Donnell did however become the first Undercover Boss on CBS' smash hit. I am also pleased to say that Larry O'Donnell will be my guest on today's PI Window on Business Show.
It's good to talk.