More insight here: 99U.
I’m on a conference call.
A long conference call.
The discussion is stretching and swirling in a loop.
I can feel my patience growing thin.
Is this normal brainstorming?
Or part of the creative process?
Or is this a complete mess?
Or is my lack of sleep clouding my judgment?
My mind drifts.
I call up one of my favorite management books: QBQ by John Miller.
John would suggest that I ask the Question Behind the Question?
Why am I amped up?
What have I done to contribute to the rudderless direction of this call?
I think about that for a moment.
Nah, can’t be me. Of course not.
I let the debate go on. I listen in silently hoping the solve is coming.
I turn to gnawing on a finger nail.
Aren’t you too old to be biting your finger nails? Disgusting habit. [Read more...]
- Be strategic. Be Tactical. Be a firefighter.
- Push for productivity. For excellence. Pull. Pull with PURPOSE.
- Set pace. Drive. Pause. Stop. Change. BALANCE.
- Build Relationships. CARE. Keep adequate distance.
- Learn. Coach. Nurture. Correct.
- Hire. Upgrade. Right-size. Fire. (sigh)
- Lead. Manage. Own. Delegate. Follow. Release.
- Show Strength. Be Resilient. Be Tough. Be Fair. Be compassionate. Admit weakness.
- Cheer. Rally. Celebrate. Recognize. Recover. Regroup. INSPIRE.
- Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. BE ON.
It’s my third email of the day.
A member on the team is getting accolades.
I flashback to a conversation with his manager three years ago.
“He’s rough. Not sure he has it. Big Risk.“
“There’s talent there. Trust me.”
I send him a note: “I’m proud we’re on the same team.”
Seconds later my email is flashing with his reply.
“You made my day.”
I push my chair back.
And turn my back to my desk and stare out the window.
Good to be wrong.
“…It turns out that when we decide how we feel about someone, we are making not one judgment, but two. The criteria that count are what we call “strength” and “warmth.” Strength is a person’s capacity to make things happen with abilities and force of will. When people project strength, they command our respect. Warmth is the sense that a person shares our feelings, interests, and view of the world. When people project warmth, we like and support them…”
“…While each of us exhibit both strong and warm qualities, the authors found through various studies and research that we often fail to utilize the right amounts of each. This is because, although both strength and warmth are positive traits, they can become negative if not balanced for and catered to your specific situation. Awareness is key. Strength and warmth are controllable traits we use in every interaction we have—via our tone of voice, the words we use, how we stand and walk, what we wear, and even how we cut our hair…”
Read more @ 800ceoread
Find this book @ Amazon
Two questions: Which one of the four below are you? (Assuming you are one of the four.) Which one is optimal?
- “A” > “B” = No “C”
- “A” < “B” = No “C”
- “A” + “B” = Some “C”
- “P” = ”J” = No “C”
Where ‘A’= Time Spent On What You Love to Do.
Where ‘B’= Time Spent on Your Job.
Where ‘C’= Amount of Your Free Time.
Where ‘P’= What You Love To Do.
Where ’J’ = Your Job.
Chart Source: Great Work Done From 5 to 9 @ Indexed by Jessica Hagy
I watched from a distance. A short, feisty, scrappy, spit-fire. A Chihuahua.
Place of Birth: The Bronx. With accompanying accent.
Deep skills. A reputation for getting things done, but doing so and leaving a large wake. She didn’t tolerate fools gladly. She was quick to show up colleagues. Result: A bulls-eye on her back.
It was January, 2011. It was a 12-minute interview. I told her that the job was hers sans the wake creation. I would have zero tolerance for air turbulence. I created enough of my own.
I went on to give her the pre-game disclosure. And motivational speech:
You’re playing on the A team now. Out of junior varsity.
We use proper English in our memos and letters.
No slang. Or whatever that is coming out of your mouth.
I need to show up at the right airport. At the right meeting. On time. All the time.
No crying when your feelings get hurt. You want a hug, get a dog.
I had better not find HR in my office on any antics.
You won’t keep up. Just accept it. [Read more...]
Stack ‘em up and rumble. Dawn till dusk. Conference calls. One on one calls. Meetings. Emails + Texts: 175 and counting (the day isn’t over). Swinging a gas powered weed wacker. The day: A half-high-five. Many routine ground balls. No major drops. Grade? Falling forward.
I’m on the 7:15 pm MetroNorth railroad heading home. The overhead air conditioning vent is heaven; a cool shower drying sweat from the sweltering cross-town walk. I close my eyes. And drift back to the day’s highlight. A working lunch. I’m 7 minutes late. I apologize and sit. The team waited for me before digging into lunch.
We’re 10 minutes in. The racing, charging, driving of the prior four hours burns off. My heart rate slows. I’m not tapping my foot. I’m not pushing the pace. Not glancing at my watch. Not thinking ahead to the next meeting. I’m watching. And listening. I’m actually present. [Read more...]
Simple illustration. Various applications.
Source: Carl Richards
Wednesday mornings are reserved for my selections of fellow bloggers’ inspiring posts of the week. Not today. I’ve been traveling. By air. And I have some short stories to tell. Sarah’s blog post title nails the theme of this post: Holy Sh*t! Airplane Manners People. Here are the top 9 situations that I encountered in the past month:
- Female passenger carries on an oversize bag. She is “caught” at the gate and asked to check bag. She then holds up the check-in line and commences to yank stuff out of her bag in order for it to fit in the sizing container. She is red faced and berating the check-in attendant. (Human? Animal? or Android?)
- Passenger is boarding. Coffee in one hand. Carry-on luggage in other. Another bag over shoulder. He dumps the entire cup of coffee on seat (not his seat) – - and keeps walking to the back of the plane to find his seat. Makes no attempt to clean it up or advise flight attendant. (Yo Mamma share with you the old proverb? Do unto others…)
- Man clipping his fingernails at 35000 feet. (There are no words…) [Read more...]
Make sure they understand the “Why” or…you may realize same outcome.
Simon Sinek: “People don’t buy what you do; they buy why you do it. And if you talk about what you believe, you will attract those who believe what you believe…But very, very few people or organizations know why they do what they do. And by “why” I don’t mean “to make a profit.” That’s a result. It’s always a result. By “why,” I mean: What’s your purpose? What’s your cause? What’s your belief? Why does your organization exist? Why do you get out of bed in the morning? And why should anyone care? Well, as a result, the way we think, the way we act, the way we communicate is from the outside in. It’s obvious. We go from the clearest thing to the fuzziest thing. But the inspired leaders and the inspired organizations – regardless of their size, regardless of their industry – all think, act and communicate from the inside out…I always say that, you know, if you hire people just because they can do a job, they’ll work for your money, but if you hire people who believe what you believe, they’ll work for you with blood and sweat and tears.”
Simon Sinek, 39, is the author of the best seller: Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action. He popularized the concept of the Golden Circle (‘Why’ first. Then ‘How’. Then ‘What’.)
Image Source for Juvenile Bald Eagle: Thank you (again) Fairy-Wren
Potpourri of articles that have lingered with me…and have fired up the thinking gene:
1) Extend our conscious life span by 150%. The End of Sleep. (Aeon Magazine)
(DK: I need to get some of this “medicine.” Or, maybe not.)
2) Not Doing Better Than Our Parents. And Loving It. (The Umlaut.com)
(DK: Just what my kids need to read. I can hear it already. ”See Dad. You have it all backwards.”)
3) Choking on China. The Superpower That is Poisoning the World. (Foreign Affairs)
(DK: I’m not Mr. Green. But, this. This is frightening.)
4) A Man of His Times (Karl Marx). (NY Times)
(DK: Hard left. Hard Right. We’re all human. )
“He is an intensely loving father, playing energetically with his children and later grandchildren, but also suffering what would now be diagnosed as a two-year depression following the death of his 8-year-old son Edgar.”)
5) Change Your Thoughts About People For a Better Life. (Steve Aitchison)
(DK: I set a modest goal after reading this post. No judging for 1 day. Outcome: Fail. I’m workin’ it. First step in recovery is recognizing…you know the line…I’m on step 2.)
6) The Happiest People Pursue the Most Difficult Problems. (Rosabeth Moss Kanter @ HBR Blog Network)
(DK: “It is hard to feel alone, or to whine about small things, when faced with really big matters..” YES. Period.)
Image Source: GagaBoss Studio
New leadership books pour over the dam each day claiming to share a secret sauce. A cow rhythmically chewing and regurgitating its cud. But far less effective. It largely comes down to these eight lines from James Autry. Period.
In every office
you hear the threads
of love and joy and fear and guilt,
the cries for celebration and reassurance,
and somehow you know that connecting those threads
is what you are supposed to do
and business takes care of itself.
~ James A. Autry
Source: 800CEORead - Bring Your Emotional Self to Work. The words above were written by James A. Autry and are included in Love and Profit: The Art of Caring Leadership (p.32). And all of this reminds me of the John Maxwell quote: “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”
Image Credit: Cory Smith – Ix.com
Good Wednesday morning. Here are my selections of the inspiring posts of the week:
Olive @ Olivethepeople with her post titled The Subway Samaritan: “…He was crazy. At least I thought so. At least at first. You see…“
Tina @ Practical Practice Management with her post titled Who Made an Impact on You. I’ve read similar iterations of this thought but it never seems to get old and always seems to leave me in wonder. “Name three friends who helped you through a difficult time…“
Sedone @ Getting Better, Man. with his post titled Giving Happiness a Helping Hand aka Beware the Silent H*. “I’m dedicated to giving happiness a helping hand, although sometimes I want to give it the finger…And don’t miss the short video.
The Lilac-breasted Roller ”is found in sub-Saharan Africa and the southern Arabian Peninsula, preferring open woodland and savanna; it is largely absent from treeless places. Usually found alone or in pairs, it perches conspicuously at the tops of trees, poles or other high vantage points from where it can spot insects, lizards, scorpions, snails, small birds and rodents moving about at ground level. Nesting takes place in a natural hole in a tree where a clutch of 2–4 eggs is laid, and incubated by both parents, who are extremely aggressive in defence of their nest, taking on raptors and other birds. During the breeding season the male will rise to great heights, descending in swoops and dives, while uttering harsh, discordant cries. The sexes are alike in coloration. Juveniles do not have the long tail feathers that adults do. It is also the national bird of Botswana and Kenya.” (Source: Wiki)
Image Source: Fairy-Wren
Good Wednesday morning. All of my inspiring posts of the week come from a single source. Thank you Sandy Sue for pointing me to Peg-o-leg’s Ramblings who has started a series of guest posts called “Should Have Been Freshly Pressed.” Peg awards the bloggers a “Freshly Pegged Award.” Here’s some samplings:
Life In The Boomer Lane with her guest post titled Why I’d Rather Be 65 Than 5, 15, 25, 35, 45, or 55: I hate that my body moves more slowly than it used to, that when I roll over in bed, my back hurts, that sex is accomplished in mostly one position, that photos of myself scare me, that I can no longer run up and down the stairs or sit in a pretzel position on the floor or reach way under the bed to grab something. I hate that reaching way down into the crib to pick up my grandson must be planned like a military operation . I hate that my memory fails at the oddest times, that I am beginning to lose a grip on pop culture, that I think a lot about being home in bed with a book when I am out in the evening. I hate that people in charge can look younger than my children…” Great post. Read more here.’
Misty @ Misty’s Laws with her guest post titled The Last Straw…To My Heart. “I have an admirer. I am being wooed on a daily basis. I see him almost every day and he gives me what I so desperately need. He satisfies my cravings and soothes the beast within. He gives me the ability to face the day. He provides me with the fix that I need before I can function every morning. He is . . . the drive-thru guy at my Dunkin Donuts...” Read more here. [Read more...]
“…Work is love made visible.
And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.
For if you bake bread with indifference, you bake a bitter bread that feeds but half man’s hunger.
And if you grudge the crushing of the grapes, your grudge distils a poison in the wine.
And if you sing though as angels, and love not the singing, you muffle man’s ears to the voices of the day and the voices of the night.”
- Kahlil Gibran, (1883-1931) from The Prophet – “On Work”
- Of work done with love (nonworld.wordpress.com)
Good Wednesday morning. Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
- Thank you Megan @ Make Something Mondays for her post More Than Photographs where she shares the photo above and a collection of similar inspiring shots. See more here.
- Russ Towne @ A Grateful Man with his post: There is Greatness in Goodness. “ I just flashed back to a scene in the movie where a man with many flaws who has wanted his whole life to be great and failed over and over again finally does something that is indeed great. The woman he is with says something to him that is profound. It went something like this: Yes, you were great. “But you were also something much better than that…Read more here.
- Julie @ jmgoyder with her post Gutsy9′s Growth: I look forward to each post (pictures and updates) on G9′s development. G9 is a orphaned baby peacock which Julie has adopted. And there has been an exciting new development. ”But guess what? I think he might…Read more here.
- Renplus @ for her post titled Cocoon Breaks Open. “The enormity of Monday’s layoff didn’t sink in until yesterday, and I allowed myself to grieve finally. It needed to happen, and I was proud that I could experience it, release the pain, and move forward. Some beautiful things that I never expected really touched me, though…” Read more here. [Read more...]
cab·in fe·ver: Irritability, listlessness, and similar symptoms results from long confinement or isolation indoors during the winter.
32F yesterday with chilling winds. Spring can show up any time so we can frolic around like Dairy Cows in Holland. I’ve been around cows. I’ve never seen this before. Here’s 30 seconds of happy (very) wrapped in U2′s “It’s a Beautiful Day.”
Good Wednesday morning. Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
- Thank you olavstubburd for the photo which was shot in Narvik, in Northern Norway, inside the Arctic Circle.
- Colleen @ The Chatter Blog with her post When You’re Not Good Enough: “What do you tell yourself when you start facing the realization you are not good enough for something? Not that you can’t do something. But that you can’t do something well enough to excel, continue and progress. What Do You Do?…Without a doubt I am not good enough to test for master level…Can I accept that I cannot move ahead, test, progress…Can I do that? Is accepting that I have done “enough” a manner of growing?…
- Kurt @ Cultural Offering with his post A Life Well Lived. In Praise of Ramsey. “Everyone has stories of the best dog in the world and we have ours – the story of Ramsey…Ramsey grew up with our children. He played with them, watched after them, slept on and at their beds. He was an incredibly good natured dog, friendly to most everyone…He never wandered or got in much trouble; instead he was content accompany anyone who might be going on a walk, playing or working in the yard. His idea of excitement was running laps as fast as he could around the yard in a frenzied fit of joy. He was that kind of dog…” Heartwarming story. Read more… [Read more...]
Good Wednesday morning. Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
- The photo above was taken by Luca Setti. Check out Luca’s other shots at Luca Setti Fine Art Photographer. (See Galleries section.) Awesome and Inspiring.
- Elena @ Live Simply, Travel Lightly, Love Passionately & Don’t Forget To Breathe with her post: Old-Fashioned. “In a town, that has so many healthy, but plastic-looking women, with ridiculous hair extensions, it’s truly empowering to be walking it, my way…knowing, that family of a sick child has to pay for a wig, according to that family’s income level, is more than enough reason for me, to donate my hair to an organization that gives it for free. The family is going through enough pain and trauma as it is. I know, because I lost my father to cancer. Authentic and inspiring Elena.
- Rob Biesenbach @ Act Like You Mean Business with his post Fewer Inspirational Quotes, More Original Thinking, Please. “The Internet has ruined quotations for me. I love inspirational quotes as much as the next guy…But enough is enough…Now some people may feel they’ve got no special wisdom or insights to share. Bull. You’re just not looking hard enough…” Excellent wake-up call and post Rob.
- Steve Aitchison @ Change Your Thoughts Change Your Life with his post What on Earth is Stopping you? “Times are changing fast and more and more of us are realizing it’s possible to create a life for ourselves instead of life creating us. There is something more you should be doing. There is something waiting for you. There is a spark inside of you waiting to be lit. There is craving, a feeling, of something more important you should be doing. There has never been a better time to start…So, tell me this. What is stopping you?” [Read more...]
(Note to Self: Hmmmmmmm.)
Here are some excerpts from a Dailymail.co.uk article titled: When the weekend ends: 4:13pm on Sunday is when we get the blues ahead of the working week.
- Anxiety about the working week ahead officially starts at 4.13pm on a Sunday, according to a poll.
- Four out of ten adults admit that their Sunday is spent feeling anxious and full of dread.
- The mild sense of depression begins half way through the afternoon and continues into the evening.
- Some 44 per cent of us are jealous of our colleagues’ weekend escapades – not helped by the fact that 75 per cent of us don’t bother to leave the house on Sundays.
- Sundays should be a day to relax and enjoy the last of the weekend break but the results show that people are instead spending their Sundays thinking about work for the week ahead, so they are the most dreaded day of the week. [Read more...]
Good Wednesday morning. Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
- The photo above was taken by Lee Rentz @ Lee Rentz Photography Weblog. Check out Lee’s other shots in Washington State at a post titled When We Walked Through the Forests of Gold. Inspiring.
- Sheri @ The Other Side of Ugly with her post No Small Thing. “Existence is no small thing. To be alive and made up of the very particles of the universe that you live in is no small thing. To have eyes to see, hands to feel, ears to hear, mouths to taste, minds to think and hearts to love is no small thing”…Terrific.
- Ofe @ Tropical Spice Living with her post What Every Boy Should Know where she shares 20 lessons that Mothers should impart with their sons. On point and heartwarming…I won’t be a spoiler. Check out her post.
- Ed Batista with his post The Meaning of Life. I’ve been thinking about this post all week. Haunting. Eye-opening. Here’s an excerpt: “…The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day. That is real freedom. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default-setting, the “rat race” — the constant gnawing sense of having had and lost some infinite thing…” Check out Ed’s post. [Read more...]
Good Wednesday morning. (Wednesday seemed to come in a hurry this week.) Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
The photo above was shared by Canadian Art Junkie in a post titled Paul Nicklen’s World Press Photo Winning Shot of penguins in Antarctica’s Ross Sea. Be sure to check out Nicklen’s other nature shots in the post at this link. (Very inspired.)
And here’s more Paul Nicklen inspiration. DK at Lead.Learn.Live with his December 2012 share of Nicklen’s Ted Talk on The Fear Leopard Seal. Yes, shameless self-promotion of my own share. But come on people – not 1 like? This is one of the most inspiring nature talks/videos you will ever see. It’s a longish 18-minute clip and you need to hang in until the end. It will be worth your time.
S.L. Hoffman at Eagle-Eyed Editor with the post Top 10 books you don’t want to miss in your lifetime. Tell me it ain’t so. I haven’t read one book on this list. And no, I haven’t read To Kill a Mockingbird. Check out the link to see how many you’ve read.
Good Thursday morning. (Yes, we’re mixing it up a bit. Slept in yesterday.) Here’s my selection of inspiring posts of the week.
That’s Patrick Latter‘s photograph above of Canmore Mountains in Alberta. Be sure to check out Patrick’s blog, Canadian Hiking Photography, where every post is an inspiration.
John E. Smith @ The Strategic Learner with his post: Why We Have Social Media. John’s post reminded me of the incredible virtual friendships that I have made on this blogging journey. Thank you all for reading, following, commenting, sharing and joining me for the ride. I’m grateful. Check out John’s short post at this link. [Read more...]
Out the door. 6:30am.
Driving to a team meeting in Manhattan.
Freezing rain. Tap tap tapping on hood of car.
Passenger side wiper banging on an ice chunk. Curse. In a hurry. Again.
Fwap. Fwap. Tap. Tap. Fwap. (You could stop and clear it pal. You could. Or you could keep watching and listening to this show. Show plays on.)
I fan through playlist.
Dreary day. Fog. Rain. Icy conditions.
Feels like, looks like, Detroit. I rifle through playlist hunting for Bob Seger.
And, land on “Against the Wind“
Traffic slowing. Yellow caution lights frenetically flashing.
Salt truck scattering its melting magic on I-95.
I turn my attention to the lyrics.
↓ click for audio (Bob Seger – “Against the Wind”)
It seems like yesterday
But it was long ago…
We were young and strong, we were runnin’
Against the Wind
Running. To get on travel teams. To get grades. To get out of high school. To get the girl. (No one would have me!) To get to college. To get to adulthood. To get. To acquire. To, To, To, something else… [Read more...]
Good Wednesday morning. Here’s my selections for the inspiring posts of the week:
Alex Jones @ The Liberated Way with his post titled The Little Butterfly: An hour ago an Admiral butterfly emerged out of nowhere fluttering about my head. In this cold season it is amazing to come across a butterfly let alone in my own home. In wonder I blinked at this amazing beautiful creature fluttering around the light, apparently it must have been hibernating and had awoken…Read more at this link.
New blood. John Zimmer @ Manner of Speaking with his post: A Truly Heroic Speech. Six year-old Benjamin Wheeler was one of the victims of the 14 December 2012 shooting at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Recently, Benjamin’s father, David Wheeler, gave testimony at a public hearing before the Connecticut State Legislature’s Bipartisan Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety... Read more at this link and be sure to watch the video clip.
Back for an encore. Ray Visotski @ A Simple, Village Undertaker with his post titled “That Was Us“… Oh, the simple life we lived…still seems like so much fun, how can you explain a game, just kick the can and run?…Read more at this link.
More new blood. Let’s hear it for candor and a few laughs. Lily Reed @ We All Shine On with her post “Failure“…The past two days, I’ve seen the internet full of FAILURE talk. I don’t mean cutesy memes…Hang on. Failure means that you LEARNED something, right? I mean, if you look at something and say, ‘Wow, that was @#$%%^ up!’ What was your next step? I’m thinking you inhaled. BAM! Another chance. Read more at this link…And, if you liked this, be sure to check out Now I’m Complaining and Almost 4, Bobby’s Learning How to Ride.
And the Hump Day Inspiring Image of the Week comes to us from Bodhisattvaintraining who takes us to Umbria, Italy – with olive trees, pencil pines, sunflower fields and Lake Trasimeno. SIGH. Another bucket list destination…
Bliss Definition: Google
Michael’s in my head again. Jabbing. Jabbing. Jabbing. Gracefully dancing and landing punches like Sugar Ray. With similar effectiveness. Each one leaving a mark. Punch line popping: You are RUDE.
If you want to pay someone a quiet compliment, give them some serious attention when they are speaking.
“I’ve seen people waiting, watching and hoping someone else would step up, take ownership and make things happen. I’ve seen people stuck in blame-gear while others are doing the work and solving the problems. And I’ve seen people hesitating while others are committing. No surprise these were the same people complaining in my office when others received bigger increases, better assignments, or more interesting projects. But, people who are winning at working become the someone else that others are waiting for. They step up and do something. They know when to act, and they feel better about themselves when they do. That’s because action feels better than inaction and commitment feels better than non-commitment. Both build your self-esteem. Here’s the bottom-line: you can’t be winning at working if you’re waiting for someone else to be the someone you could be. In my way of thinking, winning at working means you commit to offering the best you there is. Sometimes that means you have to dig a little deeper for your courage or push yourself outside your comfort zone. But it’s like Shakespeare said, “Nothing comes from doing nothing.”
~ Nan Russell
Something so simple. Yet, so true. Yes, it takes time. Yes, an introvert would need to leave the safety of their comfort zone. Making a human connection. I care. You matter. Need to work up to top of the ladder. See full and worthy post from The Chief Happiness Officer:
“Please do not underestimate the effect of something as simple as saying good morning at work. Studies show that when you have a good start to your work day, you’ll typically have a good day. Here’s our easiest and best tip for kicking your work day off with happiness: The Level 5 Good Morning. We call it that because there are several approaches to saying good morning at work:
- Level 0: You ignore people completely
- Level 1: A somewhat unintelligible grunt
- Level 2: Saying good morning without looking at people
- Level 3: Make eye contact as you say good morning
- Level 4: Also say something more than just good morning, e.g. “How are you?” or something more personal.
- Level 5: Also touch the other person – e.g. a handshake or a pat on the shoulder.
At what level are the typical good mornings in your workplace? And what would happen if you took it to level 5?”
Even a dog can learn to do it for Pete’s sake…