How great is this! Spring practice is in full swing, new information is pouring in every morning, and the Red & Black game is only a few weeks away. And, to top it off, the Bell Tower Boys sent out their April newsletter a day early. They
got Nick Saban to return their call and they are getting their newsletter out before the April Fool's Day holiday. Those three are really stepping up their game!
I got a sneak peak at this month's issue and a few things jumped out:
1. Gerald shares his favorite holiday recipe.
2. Kent conducts a rather heated interview with a Tech legend.
3. Guy, unscripted.
4. And, most importantly- flow charts, flow charts, flow charts.
For anyone not familiar, a flow chart is a corporate tool designed to chart process flows and decision making. Flow charts can also be used to quickly explain large swaths of information using a few simple diagrams. For example, say an alien knocks on your door and wants to know all about the 90's. You can invite him in for coffee and spend several hours talking through each year of the decade, or you could pull out your Seinfeld and Friends DVD's and let him download, or you could simply show him this flowchart I found:
Simple and to the point. I might spend weeks chronicling all of the important events from the decade, but could never sum it up as succinctly. It's for this reason that the Bell Tower Boys have embraced flow charts. They know what they are doing and they can prove it.
Enjoy the April edition of Musings from the Bell Tower Boys and enjoy the flow charts.
The Flow Chart Experiment
Welcome to the April edition of our newsletter! How does that old Lubbock saying go- "March dirt brings April mud, and April mud brings May tornadoes! Yippee!" Or something to that effect.
We’ve been trying to get ourselves up to speed with all the new corporate techniques out there. So, in that spirit, we had a certified flow chart master come in and teach us how we can streamline our processes by documenting our efforts in flow chart form. It took us 4 months to master, but we’ve got it down. Flow charts are an easy way to visualize the processes that go into decision making, problem solving, or just about anything. They can also be confusing as hell. Learning the process literally made Gerald cry for the first three weeks. But, we are now certified and our processes seem so much smoother. You'll find samples of our work throughout this edition, including a process flow on a very big decision we made a few months back.
Hance on leadership
In March I covered Rule #1 of leadership: Never let a sumbitch cuss you. This month, I'll explain rule #2.
Rule #2 of leadership:
Always enforce a strict dress code. Dress codes promote professionalism and are conducive to a productive work environment. No more flip-flops and khaki shorts around here baby! Casual Friday is for losers!
Here is the dress code we follow in the Bell Tower:
It works well for us. Sometimes we are tempted to pop our collar, but we have discipline and self control. We never forget that we are professionals. That's very important.
Next month I'll detail rule #3: How to use fear and loathing to your advantage. Until then, have a great month!
Gerald's Recipe of the Month
With Thanksgiving just around the corner I wanted to share my favorite recipe for turkey dressing. Enjoy!
1 cup chopped onion
1 ½ cup popcorn (un-popped)
1/4 cup parsley
3 cups giblet broth
1 ½ teaspoon sage
Mixing & Cooking Instructions:
1. Chop giblets fine. Mix all ingredients in broth.
2. Stuff turkey loosely. Bake slowly at 350º approximately 5 hours or until popcorn blows the turkey’s ass off.
Serves a few people and the kids get popcorn.
Lessons from the Family Guy (Bailey)
I’ve got nothing. I told these guys I didn’t want to participate in this newsletter. I think it’s a stupid idea. But do they ever listen to me? Nooooo. Here’s how a typical conversation with those two will usually play out:
"Hey Guy, Ah think we’re gonna fire Leach."
"Um, I’m not sure that’s such a good idea."
"Ok, thanks for your support. Hey Gerald, he’s in!" "Yippee!"
"I’ve got peanut butter all over me!"
Where are they now?
Blast from the past segment featuring a Tech legend
Since Gerald has been busy with contract negotiations (see basketball wrap-up) and, the fact that he locked himself out of his office the day this interview was scheduled, Chancellor Hance conducted this month's "Where are they now?" segment featuring Yosemite Sam. It went well:
Kent Hance: Good mornin’ Yosemite, it’s nice to see you again.
Yosemite Sam: Why who isa this Ima talkin’ to?
KH: I’m Kent Hance, from Dimmitt, and I’m Chancellor at Texas Tech University, your old stompin’ grounds. I’d like for you to share your memories with us about your time as our mascot during the 80's and 90's.
YS: Mah time as a who? Everybody knows me. I’m Yosemite Sam. The meanest, toughest, rip roarinest Edward Everett Horton-est hombre whatever packed a six-shooter. Ah never served as no mascot for nobody, nohow.
KH: Ha! That’s funny. Your accent makes me laugh. Anyhow, can you tell us about your favorite game at the Jones?
YS: Ya stupid idgit bidrago dragon. I’m a givin’ you one second to draw a gun.
KH: (laughing) Stop it Sam! You’re making my sides hurt! (after regaining composure) What was it like to be on the sidelines when Zach hit his head on the bell after his pick-six against A&M?
YS: Rackin’ frackin’ nazit-trappin’ shark livered varmit-hammer headed halibut, carsarn durn fool idgit. Ahma gonna tell you one more time. Ah’ve never been no mascot.
KH: Ok, let’s change gears. Tell us how it felt when we upset #20 Arizona in the first game of the ‘89 season en route to a great year and a bowl win.
YS: Great horny toads! I think I dug all the way to Chinee! Mah biscuits are burnin’! Mah biscuits are burnin’! Fire in the hat!
KH: What? I'm not following. Nevermind, let's move on. So, Sam, what are you doing these days?
YS: Teaching molecular biology at Stanford and writing my memoirs. I also have a vineyard.
KH: Wha? Well, looks like we're out of time. Ok folks, there you have it. Great memories and insight from a Tech legend. Thank you, Yosemite Sam!
YS: Thank you. Have a fruitful and prosperous day. Best of luck in all of your future endeavors.
Basketball Wrap-Up by the AD
Patrick and the boys wrapped up a magical run in the NATIONAL INVITATIONAL TOURNAMENT with a heart-wrenching loss to Ole Miss. What a run! Hey Cinderella, the slipper fits!
The NIT is truly a special event. In that other, less prestigious tournament, teams get "automatic bids" or they have to "qualify." "Ooh, sweet 16, big dance, Final Four, CBS running promos for Survivor every 6 minutes, whoopie." Whatever. You can have all that glitz, I’ll take the NIT. Do you realize a team has to be invited to the NIT? No automatic bids here. Teams play in this glorious tourney by invitation only. It’s really a big deal.
So, after the close call in Oxford, Bobby and I met to discuss the season. While reflecting on the year we uncovered an interesting statistic. Patrick would’ve won 11 more games if a few of them were 20 minutes shorter, or a few of them were 20 minutes longer! Unbelievable! Patrick only needed more time to catch up, or less time to hold his lead. So, based on these facts, I decided to extend his contract. A 30 win season deserves to be rewarded. You can’t argue with the facts.
Quote of the Month
Inspirational & motivational quotes from around the globe, handpicked by the AD
Our quote of the month comes from baseball Hall of Famer, Rickey Henderson. This newsletter has focused on stats, facts and flow charts. Rickey summed up the true meaning of stats when asked about a report that at least 50% of baseball players use steroids.
His response (in third person of course):
"Well, Rickey’s not one of them, so that’s 49 percent right there."
Brilliant. Gerald admires Rickey’s greatness. Thank you Rickey.
Our Decision Making: A Thorough Process Flow
By now you’re asking "Where are all the flow charts? You promised us flow charts!" "Sure, we can understand the dress code in the Bell Tower, but what else is there?" Alas, we have your answer. Hold on tight because we’re about to give you insight into the 2nd biggest decision we’ve made in our careers. (The biggest decision, of course, was installing HDTV’s in our bell tower bathrooms. B-B-B-Brilliant!)
This is gonna blow your mind.
The flow chart below shows what a painstaking process we went through in late December. We are professionals. We don't pop our collar. We thought through all possibilities and we know what we are doing. The proof is in the chart:
Can you say, "SCOREBOARD?" We can! Case closed baby. When his attorneys see this they’ll probably offer to settle for three boxes of Cap’n Crunch. Did you hear that? That sound is us doing a chest bump.
Bump. Bump. Bump.
It’s good to be in the Bell Tower and it’s good to be flow chart certified. Our case is air tight.
In the coming months we’ll share more "behind the scenes" details about the goings on inside the Bell Tower. We hope you enjoyed this month’s issue, and, as always, please send money. We need to pay for this new software, our flow chart black belts, and room & board for the flowchart master.
Oh, and the new TV’s.
And in case you missed it, you can access the premier edition of our newsletter here. Send money. Really.