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Tuesday, Mar 26 2013 04:09 PM

Former local football coach, AD Stuebbe pens book on leadership

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    By Contributed phoo

    Kern County educator Jan Stuebbe died Saturday.

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BY JEFF EVANS Californian staff writer jevans@bakersfield.com

Leadership has always interested longtime Kern County educator Jan Stuebbe.

Now retired after 37 years with the Kern High School District and Bakersfield College, Stuebbe has joined the literary world.

Related Info

Book title:"How To Be A Lousy Leader"

Author: Jan Stuebbe

Cost: $15, plus tax

To purchase: online at howtobealousyleader.comfor $15 plus tax or from amazon.com via its Kindle Store for $9.99.

He's an author who recently completed his first book: "How To Be A Lousy Leader."

"Literature has always intrigued me and I've always been in a leadership position," said Stuebbe, 61, who taught and was the head football coach at McFarland, Shafter and Centennial high schools, then concluded his career as the athletic director at BC for 13 years before retiring on July 1, 2011.

Stuebbe said the idea of writing the book came to him about two years ago in the middle of the night.

"When my wife woke up, I told her I was going to write a book. She said, 'You told me 40 years ago when we were going together you were going to write a book.'"

While writing the book was a lot of work, Stuebbe said he's also had a lot of fun with it.

"It's a tongue-in-cheek title," he said. "It's really, 'Don't do this. If you want to be a lousy leader, don't do this.

"If you want to be a lousy leader, don't pat people on the back. Don't have compassion. It's the opposite of what you want to do."

While athletics were the major part of Stuebbe's professional career, he said the book isn't only for athletes and coaches.

"It's based on athletics but it's for those in education, business -- anyone who leads people, because everyone leads somebody and you have to treat them right," he said.

"It's such an interesting position to be in leadership. It's very rewarding but it can also be very lonely. It's not for everybody."

Stuebbe identified two men who have been the most influential leaders in his life: Bill Hatcher, a former principal for the KHSD and later the district's superintendent, and former BC football and baseball coach Gerry Collis.

Before he became an administrator, Hatcher taught American government at Shafter High and Stuebbe was one of his students. Hatcher was the first principal of Centennial High and hired Stuebbe as the varsity football coach.

After high school, Stuebbe went to BC, where he played quarterback, and Collis was the Renegades' head coach

"They're totally different people and they're both natural leaders," Stuebbe said. "They were born with it.

"I don't think all people are meant to lead. Those two are the exception. They both saw the big picture.

"Collis had natural charisma. That was him. That's the way he was wired.

"Hatcher saw the big picture. He was a visionary for the high school, for the high school district. He let us do our work. That was his strength.

"He thought decisions should be made at the lowest possible level. No micromanaging."

The fifth of 23 chapters in his book is entitled, "Micromanage and Worry About the Mops."

The "Mops" reference deals with an exchange Stuebbe once had with a president of an organization: "Why are we ordering six mops to clean the floor?"

"Instead of being presidential, the president became custodial," Stuebbe wrote. "When leaders micromanage, it undermines the authority of those under them."

The last sentence in that chapter: "If you micromanage and worry about the mops, then YOU are a lousy leader."

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