What is the Best Christmas Gift You Ever Received

Do you still have it?

I wrapped a couple Christmas presents this week. It is the season we hope to give and receive great gifts. What is the best Christmas gift you’ve ever received?

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Here is a tougher question. Do you still have it? Or have all the “must have,” “just gotta have” desires that ruled that particular season faded to a faint memory?

Think Thankful Like Einstein!

Making the complex simple starts here.

Simple is good. Albert Einstein is credited with saying if you can’t explain something simply you don’t understand it. Ever found yourself rejecting simplicity because you didn’t think it could be that easy?

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Isn’t it ironic that many (likely most) of the greatest thinkers, inventors and creators in history commonly made the seemingly complex simple!

Moments of Significance

The indelible experiences of life we hunger for...

It was a moment like few we ever experience. This was a moment of significance that will be remembered forever. People will be talking about the setting and event for years to come. But for me the significance of a brief moment was more—much more!

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I have dreamed of these moments. But try as we might, these indelible experiences can’t be planned for or manufactured. We are unlikely to see them coming. They sprout from seeds we sow along our journey possibly never realizing we had nurtured them along the way.

Think For Yourself

You can't just "Google It" or ask "Alexa"

Knowledge is a commodity. Just ask “Siri” or “Alexa.” If you would have said, “Google It,” 10 years ago, few people would have known what that meant. But today “Google It” and “Ask Siri or Alexa” are part of our daily lexicon. Thus some of us are only as smart as our “smart phone” allows us to be.

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Known answers are at our fingertips and we are bombarded (even overwhelmed) with data. High alert—“the value of explicit information is dropping.” 

Always Be Curious or Not

The danger of relying on what we know

I lost something. You’ve likely lost it too. We had a lot of it as kids. But something happens on our journey to adulthood that allows it to slip away seemingly undetected.  We lose our innate curiosity and stop asking questions.

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It happens to all of us—some more than others. We’d rather stick to what we know. But what we know won’t be enough. In fact, what we know today won’t even be enough to sustain the present let alone allow us to make meaningful contributions in the future.

Journeying from Father to Great Dad

Being a father is easy—becoming a dad creates impact

It took me awhile to understand being a father is easy but becoming a great dad is difficult. You don’t need a degree or license to become a father. Fatherhood rarely begins as you expect it to or unfolds as you plan. It is indiscriminate in its ability to reveal and demonstrate how ill equipped you are to run this race.

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Fatherhood is a strange paradox—testing your resolve and commitment like few things can and providing joy like nothing else can. It may be the essence of clinging to the obligation and responsibility of being a father long enough to understand how becoming a dad creates a lasting and rippling impact on our kids.

Do You Have What it Takes to do the Toughest Job in the World

Do you have the skills?

I was intrigued. How could anyone not be interested in understanding why even 24 people responded to the ad. The ad placement drew 2.7 million views, which is not a surprise. What was surprising was the fact that 24 people inquired about the toughest job in the world and participated in an interview.

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The job title, Director of Operations, was certainly appealing. But after a quick review of the job requirements it is easy to see why even the most ambitious candidates quickly moved on.  

Five Timeless Leadership Competencies for Millennials

Taking advantage of a generational transformation

One of the greatest shifts in business history is currently unfolding. A generational transformation is underway that will open the door to an unprecedented opportunity for impact for Millennials and their organizations.

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You can gain a significant advantage by both recognizing and seizing it. It begins with organizations of all types clamoring to attract quality talent. But beyond attracting talent how organizations respond to this generational transformation may well predict not only future success but survival.

5 Pieces of Fathering Wisdom

If I could talk to my dad today...

As Father’s Day approaches, I slow down a bit—pause, look around and reflect on what it means to be a father and the importance of running the race of fatherhood with courage, conviction and commitment.

I have come to appreciate a popular adage, “Being a father is easy, but being a dad is hard.” The impact of a dad in the life of a child has long been recognized. 

“Nine Things Every Graduate Needs to Hear”

Knowing they already know it all

High school graduation—you are pretty sure you know everything. But to remove all doubt you head off to college. College graduation—now you have added four years of profound life experience and a degree thus eliminating nearly any doubt that you know everything.

Graduates will send out dozens if not a hundred graduation announcements to friends, family and a few potential donors. Yes donors—people who just might wrap a card around some welcomed cash.