I guess everything comes together…

I walked into Starbucks this afternoon to do some work.  I'm cold from outside.  The heater in my car isn't work.  I'm too cheap to fix it.  I only need heat 1 month out of the year.  There's one seat open that I see in the place.  It's next to the drafty and often opened door. A man dressed in black signals the chair is free, as if welcoming me.  I put my stuff down.  Then go order.  I see another chair away from the door (warm).  I go to gather my stuff.  A small nudging voice (in my head) … [Read more...]

That’s just not funny…

This morning I turned on the TV.  I tuned to Comedy Central... my source for news and current events.  I prefer Colbert to Stewart.  But The Daily Show was coming on, so that's what I'd watch.  The show came on.  I wasn't greeted by the smarmy Stewart who's come to be a little too entertained by himself.  I was greeted by irony. Jon Stewart spent nearly 10 minutes talking from his heart about the somber events that took place on Saturday.  A Federal Judge and Congresswoman were gunned down, … [Read more...]

Trick or Treat? Both please…

Halloween is big business.   Five Billion Dollars big!   Wow!   And guess what?   It's not a kids holiday.   More is spent on adult costumes than for kids ... by a lot!   The market is booming. Here's a question... WHY?    What has driven a holiday that was for kids into an extravaganza for adults? For 364 days a year adults play grown-up.  We put on the brave faces of ... husband, wife, employee, customer, boss, father, mother, friend, Christian (I'm writing from Texas).   This is the … [Read more...]

Make Strong … Encourage!

When's the last time you  gave specific, meaningful encouragement from someone?   What does encouragement mean to you?  Encouragement has come to be seen as a touchy-feely word.   That's interesting.  It means:  To Make Strong.  To fortify. When steel is forged, it is encouraged.  When rubber is vulcanized, it is encouraged. My wife and I send each other an encouragement email every Wednesday.  In five years we've forgotten fewer than 5 times.  We have over 500 emails encouraging one … [Read more...]

What color is your wristband?

I see a lot of yellow wristbands everywhere.  Then there's the pink ones, the blue ones, the purple ones, etc.  So many people are supporting worthy causes.  That's pretty cool. Marketers figured out painless ways to sell charitable support.  Give a little money, get a wristband.  Wear the wristband, show that you're good, kind and giving.  For little commitment, we buy belonging while contributing to a cause we think might be important.  For a little commitment, a charity just earned a … [Read more...]

Read the Kindle

It's hard to change the world all at once.  If we start with a few key people we increase our chances.  The few are our kindling. People in organizations can be broken down into the following group: Innovators, Early Adopters, Early Majority, Late Majority, and Laggards.  Check out the graphic for the breakdown. When we want to light a fire, we can throw matches on to a log or we can choose the right kindling to light and let the kindling catch the logs on fire. Find your … [Read more...]

Sad Songs Say So Much …

I attended a funeral this morning.  It was the second in a little over two weeks.  Both funerals included eulogies.  Loved ones offered recognition of the character of those who passed.  They offered glimpses of what their children and grandchildren appreciated and admired about them.   Those who had passed may have enjoyed hearing about how they touched and impacted friends and family. It's sad that we have to die to hear about what others admire in us. Admiration and appreciation are … [Read more...]

Get ON your soapbox

Are you a leader?  Do you want or need people to follow you?   Where's your soapbox?   How can you lead if you can't be seen? To lead we need to be seen, frequently.   Whether it's face-to-face, in a meeting, via e-mail, newsletter or blog post, we need a soapbox.  Something to elevate us to be visible.   This is true if you're leading 1 person or 1,000,000. If you want to lead, find your soapbox.  Take the step.  Get ON your soapbox! Oh, yeah .... have something to say first! … [Read more...]

We can do this the easy way or the hard way …

A few weeks ago, I was at my brother and sister-in-laws for a birthday celebration.  At one point we realized that of the 5 people in the living room, 5 people were staring at 3x5 "phone" devices.  We were poking away at our phones.  Checking Facebook, Twitter or browsing for some sort of trivia. People traveled 2-4 hours to spend time together ... to ignore each other.  I've seen this many times.  I'm guilty of it. Humans seek the path of least resistance when it comes to … [Read more...]

Opportunities are never lost … someone else will get them

I have set up  many  cups of coffee, lunches, and quick discussions.   Meetings with a potential mentor, client or business partner.  The conversation is going swimmingly.  We're connecting on different levels.  Then comes the question, "So, how can I help you?" There are a few different responses, based on my experience. Awkward silence. Well, um, (followed by a  long rambling reply). Short, concise answer. Mark Twain said, "If you want me to speak for an hour, I am ready today." "If you … [Read more...]