Profile: Phil Hardwick
Relationships are a recurring theme running through Phil Hardwick's life.
They join his professional and personal aspirations, and tie together his drive to see tangible results as coordinator of capacity development for the John C. Stennis Institute of Government and Community Development and his work as an award-winning author.
A talented writer of mystery novels, nonfiction and a bimonthly column for the Mississippi Business Journal, Hardwick is an active community volunteer and a self-confessed news junkie.
Hardwick joined the Mississippi State family in August 2003, and "the time has flown by," he said during a recent interview on campus. He lives in Jackson, travels the state, and comes to Starkville frequently.
A typical day might be leadership training for elected officials or facilitating a strategic planning retreat for a non-profit board of directors. Lately, he spends much of his time working on the Mississippi Higher Education Initiative, a project funded by the Appalachian Regional Commission designed to boost post-secondary and college attainment in 20 Mississippi counties.
Over the years, Hardwick has learned that relationships underpin our efforts and our successes, whatever the endeavor.
"Mississippi is a relatively small state. We all know each other or know someone who knows somebody," he said. "It really is all about relationships."
And Hardwick has built many relationships and created important connections through his work for Stennis - reaching out and making a difference in communities around the Magnolia State.
When delivering an address to Stennis training session graduates, Hardwick shares his three Cs: You must be competent. You must communicate. You must use your connections.
"It's easy to scoff at networking, but it makes a difference because relationships matter," he said.
But it's not only about who you know. Two other components are critical to his success formula: responsibility and accountability.
"I love the line about how we judge others by outcomes, but we judge ourselves by intentions," he said. "It isn't enough to set goals. How are you going to achieve them?"
Next week … James Orr !