Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Interview with Dr. T. William Hefferan

Today's special guest author is Dr. T. William Hefferan, DBA, MBA, CCIM, CPM to talk about his book Jobs: How the United States Can Reach Long-Term Full Employment.

With over 23 years of experience as President/CEO of a 100 employee company, Dr. Hefferan decided to put his corporate work experience together with his academic background and solve one of our most significant societal problems. His unique approach to explore ways to end the persistent ups and downs of unemployment includes a peer reviewed research study he designed specifically to discover ways to solve the problem.

Dr. Hefferan shares with readers his life-changing event that compelled him to dedicate over three years of his life to find these sound solutions, creating a blueprint for America to reach long-term full employment.

Welcome, Dr. Hefferan. Please tell us about your current release.
In Jobs, I provide a compelling approach to how we achieve long-term full employment in the United States. I describe the 10 building blocks I created that will not only get us to full employment, but will also end the repeating cycles of high unemployment. This represents an essential shift in how we need to think about jobs and employment because it accelerates our timely transformation into a knowledge worker economy.

This profound shift also invigorates our heritage and foundation of innovation and entrepreneurship – restoring our global leadership in education and learning – leading to a dawn of new discoveries, creating exciting new jobs and unique careers.

I show how everyone benefits from this journey to a steady stream of rewarding jobs as I demystify our journey to long-term full employment using original entertaining real-life stories as examples.

The unemployed as well as employees wanting a better job learn how to secure their perfect job; employers learn how to attract and retain top-tier employees; and entrepreneurs feel personal growth as they discover new ways to put their ideas and initiatives to work.

I also discuss the value of ethics and authenticity in the workplace and why everyone in an organization can be a leader -- adding value to the company and the employee’s career growth.

I call this a contemporary revolution to a brand new America that will always have meaningful and rewarding jobs.

What inspired you to write this book?
I share with readers a life-changing event that compelled me to dedicate over three years of my life to find these solutions, and create a blueprint for America to reach long-term full employment. I describe in detail my 10 month expedition in the Caribbean to find opportunities for my company expansion from the U.S. into the region that served as the genesis of my book.

I had no expectations whatsoever that I would be side-tracked for over 3 years to embark on such an incredible journey to solve one of our country’s most significant social and economic problems. In my book, I call this turning point “Day 77.”

With over 23 years of experience as President/CEO of a 100 employee company, I decided to put my corporate work experience together with my academic background and solve one of our most significant societal problems. I made a personal decision that I was the person who is supposed to do this.

I began this project with a peer reviewed research study I designed specifically to discover ways to solve the problem. I interviewed job seekers, employees, employers, CEOs, and HR professionals all across the U.S. in 100s of hours of one-on-one interviews I conducted.

What exciting project are you working on next?
Besides writing my next book that focuses on innovation and entrepreneurship, I am promoting my new nonprofit organization, Wisdom in the Streets. This company emerged from the findings of my research study and my conclusions I discuss in the book.

I created this company, and completed a very successful pilot program, to focus on helping communities and businesses create meaningful jobs through innovation and education.

Once I create the infrastructure for the company, including the right personnel to make this nonprofit a national organization, I think I can get back to work after this temporary 4 year interlude! I will admit that living in the Caribbean during those four years has made my diversion even more memorable!

When did you first consider yourself a writer?
In my early 20s, I was very fortunate to be assigned as a writer for Army in Europe Magazine during my time in the U.S. Army. I traveled for two years to virtually every country in Europe writing human interest stories. I lived in beautiful Heidelberg, Germany. Not only did I learn to love writing full time, but I thought I was living in a dream world!

Do you write full-time? If so, what's your work day like? If not, what do you do other than write and how do you find time to write?
The best way to answer this question is to refer to my philosophy: I have never worked a day in my life. Since I was 18, if I ever determine what I am doing at any given time is not fun, I stop doing it.

If you observed me from afar, you would say I work 7 days a week, 18-19 hours a day; but in fact in my mind, nothing I do is work to me. So I end up with those hours to accomplish whatever I set out to do. So out of those 126-133 hours per week, I log-in tons of hours writing.  

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Since I write in many different styles, primarily business and academic writing, I take breaks from the seriousness of that genre at unpredictable times.

I love writing humor! I think there must be some sort of supernatural power that takes me over as I have little control where these humorous sojourns might take me. Characters emerge, wild stories come forth, plots develop, and pages accumulate. I sometimes find myself laughing so hard with tears rolling down my cheeks, I can’t see the keys to type!   

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
An electrical engineer – I fell in love with technology when I was 8 years old. I started in college in electrical engineering, but I had already started buying apartment buildings when I was 18, and the love of that business trumped engineering. That is still my business today, designing, developing and managing commercial investment real estate.

Anything additional you want to share with the readers?
If readers have only time to focus on just one chapter in my book, they need to read the chapter, Passion for Work. You will see not only how to find and develop your passion, but you will also see how important that is in not just your work-life, but in all aspects of your life.

Those of us who have passion for writing, for example, can integrate that passion with other areas of interest like I have done.

Employers place a high value on employees with passion for their work, which naturally aligns with the notion that employees with passion for their work do not feel as though what they do is work. In The World is Flat, Tom Friedman wrote that his dream for the United States is, “. . . that everyone is doing the work that he or she loves to do.”

Jobs and unemployment concerns are definitely some of the biggest issues facing the United States at this time. If you would like more information about Jobs or about my organization – Wisdom in the Streets, please visit my website. Order your copy of Jobs, How the United States Can Reach Long-Term FullEmployment today. 


Nikki said...

Lisa - Thank you so much for sharing your interview with Dr Hefferan. He has good ideas that people, businesses and communities can implement to improve the JOBS situation -- and that is something many people are concerned about.

Nikki Leigh

Dr. T. William Hefferan said...

Lisa -- Thanks for the interview and mentioning my nonprofit, Wisdom in the Streets, Inc. -- William Hefferan.