Good HAKA to You In ’21

Good HAKA to You In ’21


By Rich Loudenback


My last several years before retiring I worked for a national management consulting company traveling eight northwestern states including Alaska plus four provinces of Canada. During our interviews, we always asked the question ‘What would you say are your company’s three biggest business problems?” Invariably, it mattered not where I was, one of the answers was almost always the constant need to find good people.


That was 11 years ago, that’s certainly not changed and yet there are plenty of Americans looking for jobs. In our internationally competitive world today where second and third world nations have awakened and can no longer have their resources and labor exploited, reality is that many of them are now viable competitors of ours. We can’t afford to sit around crying about the way it was and wanting to turn the clock back while demanding job security and guaranteed anything. Businesses have no guarantees and must stay vigilant to competition and changing environments all the time.


In a totally free marketplace, workers, as well as their employers, must work hard at doing the best they can at competing all the time. There is no room for complacency.  That’s why it’s called work.


The attributes of what I call HAKA is the closest we can come to job security today. So by now you are no doubt asking what the heck is HAKA? Of course, professors, phycologists, and good salesmen can turn this upside down and inside out to say it their way. But this is my way.


HAKA is an acronym for Health, Attitude, Knowledge, and Application. And I say it is all that we all have going for us.


Health – We can’t do anything well for long if we’re not healthy enough. I didn’t say handicapped. I said and mean health. We must take care of ourselves, ’cause these bods we walk around in are our temple, factory, and bank. They can only give from what they have.


Attitude – I have a great brother who lost all of his right arm and has much damage to both legs as a result of serving in the Marines in Viet Nam.  He has the greatest attitude that makes me very proud of him.  He is adamant about not being called handicapped.  He says he is not handicapped, he is just challenged.  The only thing I know of he can’t do is tie his shoes, so he uses shoes with Velcro straps. And if you play golf with him you would be wise to leave your money home, cause he’s a kick ass golfer.  Says he has fewer moving parts to struggle with.  Oorah!!!


Our attitude has to be right. We can’t last long with a bad one without going downhill. Attitude includes ambition. With the right attitude, we can even accomplish things that are literally over our heads and even for which we are not remotely qualified.


Knowledge – It really matters not if it came formally or informally from experience, however formally can be a great shortcut. Knowledge is the most recognizable attribute one can have. Much can be accomplished with a little knowledge.


Application – Or what we do with the first three attributes is probably the most important. Application is our effective use of our time to apply our knowledge, with the fire of our attitude and the stamina of good health. It’s what we do with what we have that’s most important. The more stamina we have the more positively realistic we are and the more we know and apply it all the bigger our advantages.

So, I say these four simple attributes are all any of us has going for us. Without them, guarantees mean nothing, with them we are guaranteed offering the best we can be in the marketplace of jobs or business opportunities in services, manufacturing, or marketing. That is because job performance is what an employer needs, is looking for and will pay for and makes a business successful.   Accomplishing at the level of performance a business needs is the closest thing there is for job security and a business’s success and it comes from adhering to what I call the attributes of HAKA.


I can’t stress enough the major importance of a good attitude and application.


Inland NW Report wishes the best HAKA to you and yours in 2021.