Home' Rotary Down Under : August 2015 (NZ Pacific) Contents MESSAGES FROM HQ
| 4 | ISSUE 575 AUGUST 2015
The Rotary Foundation has
traditionally used a few annual goals
to guide its planning for the next
Rotary year. However, there is a more
comprehensive plan in place for the
current Rotary year. At their October
2014 meeting, the trustees utilised
the spirit of the RI strategic plan by
approving four priorities to stay in
place for the next three years:
1. End polio, now and forever.
2. Strengthen Rotarians’ knowledge,
engagement and financial support
of The Rotary Foundation.
3. Increase the quality and impact of
Rotary’s humanitarian service effort
through Foundation grants and the
six areas of focus.
4. Enhance the image and awareness
of the Foundation’s record of
the success of PolioPlus
and its 100-year record of
Doing Good in the World.
In addition to the agreed
four priorities for the next
three years, the trustees also
approved four measurable
goals for each of the
priorities. Therefore, we now
have 16 measurable goals to
guide our efforts. The goals can be
changed each year as progress is made
on achievement of the priorities, but
for the current year our course is set –
and for the first time, it is measurable!
I will be sharing some of the goals
with you in future editions, but it
is worth noting that the advent of
measurable goals for the Foundation
came at a propitious time.
RI president KR Ravindran
is a proponent of key
(KPIs) for the work of
Rotarians in leadership
positions, and the new
measurable goals made it
much easier to develop some
KPIs for our regional Rotary
and endowment/major gift advisers.
The KPIs are still an experiment
and they will need refinement and
development, but they are a step in
the right direction as we try to take a
longer look ahead each year.
Foundation Trustee Chair
In the 1930s, Ole Kirk
Christiansen, a Danish
carpenter, had a wooden
sign hanging on his wall
that read, Det bedste er ikke
for godt: “Only the best
is good enough”. Today,
Christiansen is remembered
as the inventor of Lego,
the colourful plastic bricks
beloved by children around
the world. But in the early days of
the Lego company, its signature
product was a wooden duck – one
built to the highest standards, out of
aged beech, with three coats of clear
varnish. Lego’s company history tells
how Christiansen used his ducks to
teach a lesson in quality to his son,
One evening, I said to my father:
“It’s been a good day today, Dad.
We’ve earned a little more.”
“Oh,” said Dad, “what do you
“Well, I’ve just been to the station
with two boxes of our toy
ducks for the Danish Co-op.
Normally they get three
coats of varnish, but since
it’s for the Co-op, I only gave
them two. So I saved the
business a bit of money.”
He looked at me in dismay.
“Godtfred, fetch those
boxes back. Unpack them
and give the ducks another
coat of varnish. You’re not going to
bed until the work’s done – and you’ll
do it all on your own.”
There was no arguing with Dad.
And it was a lesson for me about what
Today, Lego’s quality standards are
legendary and its products are the
most popular toys in the world.
We all recognise that this success
stems directly from Lego’s business
practices – its insistence on quality,
efficiency and innovation. I compare
this with our efforts in governance and
accountability in Rotary, and realise
that sometimes we fall short of the
The leaders at the Rotary
International, zone, district and club
levels have to maintain the highest
standards in governance.
Just as Christiansen refused to
consider sending a lesser product to
any of his clients, so should we refuse
to consider giving a lesser effort to
any of our work. We must always
demand the best of ourselves – in our
professional lives and especially in our
For in Rotary, what is our product? It
is not wooden ducks or plastic bricks. It
is education, water, health and peace.
It is hope and it is life itself. For this
work, only our best is good enough.
President, Rotary International
Only our best is good enough
A longer look ahead
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