2018 Conference Speaker: Ken Blanchard

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I think we can all agree that life is funny. We go about our lives filling them with day-to-day activities, planning big and small events, and don’t spend a lot of time zooming back out of our lives to try and glimpse the “big picture.” The truth is, the things we do, the people we meet and the contributions we make have far greater influence than we can imagine. Here’s a little example of what I mean:

Ken Blanchard came to a church one night in 2003 wanting to share a part of himself with people who might be seeking knowledge. The message was about leadership, but leadership with a different focus. He challenged the crowd that night to lead in their businesses and homes the way Jesus led. He asked them to lead as a servant.

Art Barter came to the service that night, excited to hear from a leadership legend. Surely this man could give him valuable insights, since he was just beginning to run his own company, Datron World Communications. He was deeply challenged that night; did he really believe what he said he believed? If Jesus came to serve, could Art serve the people of Datron, turn the company around and make it profitable? Could he serve people and change their lives?  Could he get excellent results in a way that would lift people up?

The answer to those questions was a resounding yes! As I zoom back and look from 10,000 feet, I see a company that grew from $10 million in revenue to $200 million in a six-year period. I see many people and families that have been changed because of the Datron Charitable Fund and because servant leadership came into their lives. Ken Blanchard planted a seed for Art Barter, he and his employees nurtured it, and it has flourished. The relationship between Ken and Art has flourished as well and Ken continues to contribute to our yearly servant leadership conferences.