Bruce Cloud, Jr. writer dba CloudCrafts ... Established 1987 ... In God We Trust
Bruce Cloud, Jr. writer dba CloudCrafts ... Established 1987 ... In God We Trust
Editor's Brief- Before his passing my father and I visited about how a new generation of business leaders can gain by having these Notes for a resource. If I may paraphrase the title of his final article... we should know about our past otherwise we will just have to face it again in our future ... otherwise known as history's tendency to repeat itself until we learn the lesson.
I hope you will go ahead and purchase these first-run (2009) hardcovers while they last.
Contact me for special volume orders. Text: 512-422-2912
All the best to you, Bruce Cloud, Jr.
Editor's Comments - Notes from the Manager's Scratch Pad, Articles Written to the Employees of the Company. by Bruce Cloud, Sr (1920 - 2007), Professional Engineer
In the mid-1960s companies were forced to initiate better safety programs for their workers particularly on the job sites. OSHA, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration was formed to better watch over, instruct and enforce governmental rules in the workplace - particularly Safety. This book is not about OSHA.
It is about Bruce Cloud and the employees he had a responsibility to lead. He was a Professional Engineer (PE), A World War II veteran in the Corps of Engineers and a proud fightin' Texas Aggie, '40 who was asked in 1965 to write an article for their construction company's safety newsletter, the ZachryWay of HB Zachry Construction Company, San Antonio Texas. Now known as Zachry Construction Corporation.
As a leader in the company, he continued writing these articles into the mid-1980s. He shared the vision, goals, and especially attitude toward teamwork, planning, competition, value and growth of the company. One result of all this cheerleading was that people noticed his leadership in the industry. The Associated General Contractors of America, the AGC of Texas, ASHTO, Texas Good Roads, Texas A&M University all benefited from his experience along with many other national, state and local involvement.
Bruce Cloud is my father. I am Bruce Cloud, Jr. the book's editor. A little bit after his eightieth birthday dad asked me if I would like to try and round up as many of these articles as possible. He and I both believed that so many of the topics back then have much relevance still today. Does this quote ring a bell? "We have fought many wars to pursue freedom of individuals and now we are about to relinquish that freedom to bureaucratic groups at all levels of government by depending on someone else to take care of us. Some would have the world stand still with no-growth policy. We didn't build this great nation by standing still - we did it through hard, productive and progressive work." (December 1974).
Within these 281 pages are included 92 of the articles the ZachryWay printed under the byline, Bruce Cloud - from the Manager's Scratch Pad from 1965 through 1984. In 2005 the company asked if they could have one more article to share with the employees. Titled, Things of the Past Should Not Be Forgotten, January 2006, ZachryWay. Cloud summarized his successful philosophy on leadership for a thriving organization. Over those 20 years, the company and our country struggled to do the right thing and find ways of doing it even better.
On page 35 he writes, "Each time I have written an article for the company's publication I have tried to instill thoughts of leadership, to stress cooperation, or discuss matters dealing with people. ... Nothing moves until your people can make it move."
Open to any page and find a Note or two that hits the spot. Among all the 2 and 3 page articles he supports the entire labor force. From bottom to top as long as each one did their job each one is equally as important. Toward the end of page 246, "Yes, Sir - I am glad to have a job; I'm anxious for the morning to come so I can get up to another day, and I feel good at night because I have accomplished something worthwhile. I sure hope you feel the same way."
Here are a few reviews 'Notes' has received:
Keith Q, - I knew after I read the first few pieces that your Dad had the ability to write motivating and clear messages. An unusual ability and one not expected of engineers in any profession. I have only read a few. There is clearly a theme which should be good for any company manager to share with his employees. I would encourage you to open it up to others.
Clarion Review, Barry Silverstein -
Bruce Cloud spent most of his professional career working for the H. B. Zachry Company, a leading construction firm based in Texas. He was president of the company from 1987 to 1993 and vice chairman of the board from 1993 to 1994. In the early 1960s, the company began a magazine called The Zachry Way which became the vehicle for Cloud’s regular column, “From the Manager’s Scratch Pad.” Cloud authored 136 articles between 1962 and 1992 and was asked to write one last installment in 2006. Bruce Cloud died in 2007 at the age of eighty-seven.
Most of Cloud’s brief articles from The Zachry Way are included in this book, which is edited by his son. While the book is a fitting tribute to the senior Cloud, the articles have additional relevance from two vantage points. First, they offer an interesting historical perspective on three decades of business from the point of view of a manager in a non-glamorous industry sector. Second, Cloud’s articles set a standard for communicating with employees that could benefit every manager.
In "A Leader," written in June 1965, Cloud says there are four different kinds of authority: the authority of character, the authority of competence, the authority of leadership, and the authority of position. He writes, "a leader is a person whose presence gets performance," and, "leadership is not a method but a way of life."
In "Knowing People," written in November 1976, Cloud discusses the importance of knowing employees individually, rather than as members of a group. He encourages employees to learn to be teachers and to be positive influences on their coworkers. Cloud writes, "It is far better to help a person desire to use their strong points than to take advantage of their weak ones to get them to do what you think they should do."
Cloud’s final article is titled, "Things of the Past Should Not be Forgotten, but Made for the Future." It encapsulates the fundamental advice he passed along in his many articles. It is also a glimpse into Cloud’s business philosophy. "Every company is grateful for employees who take a real interest in helping the business succeed," he writes. "Somebody has to care, and if you do, you are irreplaceable."
Bruce Cloud had the rare ability to convey management’s opinion to employees without being pedantic or condescending. His messages were always simply written, uplifting, and positive, but he was not afraid to tell it like it is. Reading Cloud’s "Notes" will provide managers and employees with a model for how to honestly and openly communicate with one another.
Associated Press - New Collection of Posthumous Articles Share Secrets to Business Success, Integrity and Sustainability
SAN ANTONIO – Professional engineer and seasoned general manager of the internationally successful, family-run Zachry Construction Corporation, Bruce B. Cloud, Sr., inspired three generations of company leaders and their employees to reach for success as individuals and as a thriving company within the competitive construction market. In the new compilation of his posthumous short essays, Notes from the Manager's Scratch Pad: Articles Written to the Employees of the Company (published by AuthorHouse), edited by his son Bruce Cloud, Jr, Cloud, Sr. serves as the inspirational catalyst for a new generation of leaders facing a similar volatile business landscape.
Whether readers are involved in the nuts and bolts of the construction industry, general managers in any industry or simply readers seeking answers for how to improve their personal and professional lives, Notes from the Manager's Scratch Pad has something to offer. Cloud was known for emphasizing a company’s strengths and capitalizing on its resources, encouraging each employee to visualize and realize their role in the company’s success.
It has been said that Cloud had the intrinsic ability to communicate with every level of his organization, as well as the leadership of industry associations to which he devoted his time. In Notes from the Manager's Scratch Pad, Cloud Jr. pays tribute to his father’s skills and the articles that were written directly to the employees of his company, which speaks to how Cloud inspired loyalty, citizenship, pride, humility and much more. Covering myriad topics, Cloud’s articles define the fundamentals of business success while expounding upon the qualities that an individual must nurture in order to reach their personal goals. Titles such as “A Leader”, “We the Company”, “Energy Crisis”, “Inflation”, and “Know Yourself”, aptly describe the insightful commentary within each article, which is just as relevant today as when he first penned them.
As the writer under his byline for Zachry Construction Corporation’s internal news and safety magazine, Cloud could never have known the enduring quality of his work and how issues of government involvement, inflation and fuel prices would resurface 20 to 40 years later. The commitment and sincerity of his words are representative of the man that he was, the man who inspired a company to new heights by emphasizing teamwork and a unified vision. Notes from the Manager's Scratch Pad compiles these resilient messages for a new generation of managers and leaders, challenging them to combine innovative thought and action in order to achieve success for themselves and for their company.
Bruce B. Cloud, Sr., worked as a registered professional engineer for Zachry Construction Corporation, writing for the company magazine from 1965 – 1984 and again in 2005. He retired as a co-chairman of the board while remaining as a corporate consultant to the Zachry family.
Notes, Bruce Cloud