JANUARY 1990

In the press of a busy day, it's difficult for most CEOs to keep in close touch with employees. Harry Seifert, CEO of Winter Gardens Salad Co., a 140-employee salad-manufacturing company in New Oxford, Pa., developed a simple, if slightly impersonal feedback system. He rubber-stamps "Read by Harry" on reports and routes them back to key employees for safekeeping. Time permitting, he augments the stamped acknowledgement with comments in the margins.

"For an employee, the worst thing is to be ignored," says Seifert. "Imagine if you spent all this time working on a report and it got stuffed in a drawer. It would really get to you. That's when quality slips." Since he began using the stamp a year ago, Seifert says the quality of the reports he gets has improved.