Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Travel and Internet Issues

Well, my posting has been spotty of late, and I don't have a strong excuse. What I can tell you is that I am traveling quite a bit, and the internet isn't always strong where I am, in particular I've run into issues at some hotels. 

As my schedule settles down, I will become more consistent, and in the near future, I'm hoping to build up a repository of items to post, so that I'm not dependent on the mercy of hotel or airport internet. 

Look for a Wacky Wednesday tomorrow, a thought-provoking post on Thursday, and the quote of the week on Friday rather than Monday. Hopefully Monday I can return you to your regularly scheduled programming. 

Thank you!

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Wacky Wednesday - Science Facts

I typically share a Wacky Wednesday that is funny. Today I decided to share science. Here are 10 facts you probably didn't know:

Monday, January 23, 2017

Quote of the Week - Plato

Leaders shouldn't be afraid of the light, in fact they should welcome it. A moral person is someone who does what's right, regardless of who is watching. Great leaders do what's right for the team regardless of who is watching. If you are doing things that you don't want published in a newspaper, or you wouldn't want your team to learn of, then you aren't doing the right things. 

Leadership is often espoused as a moral thing, but what I've learned over time and through study is that leadership isn't solely the purview of good people. Good or bad, leadership skills don't make the distinction. Instead it is up to the person to use their skills for good or ill. 

Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Truth About Success

Several years ago at the District 56 Table Topics Contest, I was "What is your definition of success?" As we start a new year, I think this is an interesting question to reflect on.

The beauty and challenge of success is that the definition keeps moving. In elementary school it might have been "get good grades." High school probably included "Varsity athlete, dating the quarterback, or staring in the school play, graduate." College: "Find the right major, get good grades, join the right fraternity / sorority, graduate." Immediately after college: "get a job, get married, buy a house." Mid-career: "promotions and pay raises." Post career: "beach condo, world travel, retirement"

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Wacky Wednesday - Seagulls

There's a group of people who create a series of videos called "Bad Lip Reading" where they take videos from popular sources and try to change the dialog. Most are clever. This one made me laugh:

Enjoy, and avoid the Seagulls on the beach. 

Monday, January 16, 2017

Leadership Quote of the Week - Thomas Edison

There is a fable that Thomas Edison was once interviewed by a reporter who asked how many times he failed before perfecting the light bulb. The response people know is:

I didn't fail. I just found 10,000 (number up for debate depending on source) ways that won't work.

Don't worry, that isn't the quote of the week. Here it is:

From the Smithsonian in Washington DC. By Erin Morey

What if Thomas had stopped at 9,999? Or for that matter, 10? Would we all still be using gas lights? Or would light bulbs look completely different from today? Would we even know who Thomas Edison was?

Persistence is the secret recipe for success, and the honest truth is that you only fail if you quit. With last week's post about NYRs, what are you working on? Have you figured out your Why? Do you have a Plan? Missing these things can easily lead quitting and failure. Until Wednesday, best of luck, and comment below to let us know what you are working on!


Thursday, January 12, 2017

New Year's Resolutions

Welcome to 2017!

The last couple of weeks I've made jokes about New Year's Resolutions (NYRs), especially about how most people don't do them right and the huge failure rate of the resolutions. Some statistics put it as high as 92%!

Why do so many NYRs fail? Because we aren't doing them right! Think about it. Resolutions often circle around several themes:

1. Eating healthier
2. Exercising more
3. Stopping a "bad habit" (i.e. smoking, drinking, etc.)
4. Starting a new habit.

We are encouraged to write them down and then start working on them. Within weeks they are forgotten or people quit. The first step is often the first problem. With the definition! When we write down our NYRs, they often take the form of:

"I will eat healthier"


"I will exercise more"


"I will quit smoking"

These are almost guaranteed as doomed before you even begun! Would you accept such loosely worded goals from you teams? Or as part of your business goals? Of course not! 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Wacky Wednesday - Ninja

Sometimes people fall down for no apparent reason. Finally there's an explanation: NINJAS! Watch and learn:

I believe this is the original by Street Troller at FailArmy. It reminds me of America's Funniest Home Videos, but at least provides a reason for the end result. Some of these can only be explained by the sudden appearance of a ninja (or in some cases stupidity). I only hope the last guy managed to pull the cord for his chute...

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Wacky Wednesday - New Year's Resolutions (Part 2)

As I searched for something to share on Wacky Wednesday, I came across this picture and it brought a smile to my face:

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Leadership Quote of the Week - Warren Buffett

One of the major traps of today is that of instant gratification. People want things to be be better now, not next week, month, year, decade or lifetime. It's not just related to electronics. The Harvard Business Review published an article about how most publicly traded companies can't have a legitimate 3-5 year plan because Wall Street pushes for Quarter to Quarter improvements, and if a company experienced several quarters of losses in pursuit of the plan, the CEO would be ousted for someone who could "provide" Quarter to Quarter improvements (forget being ready for the future).  A leader is supposed to have a vision for the future, plan for it, and take action to accomplish it. With all the expectations and lack of patience, this is a very difficult requirement. Hence, I find Warren Buffett's Quote even more pertinent:

Thanks again to my wife Erin for the picture and meme. The picture was taken at George Ranch Historical Park. Those two people enjoying the view are actually a statue meant to represent AP and Mamie George, the last generation of George descendants to run the ranch. If you get a chance, the family story is quite fascinating. Back to leadership.

As we progress into the New Year, what are you doing for the long term? How are you providing for the future of your team, or for that matter, of people in general? What goals and resolutions are you pursuing? Let me know in the comments. Maybe later this week I'll share a few of my own.

We may not always be around to witness the end result, but that shouldn't be the excuse not to lay the groundwork!