Half A Brain

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“If you had more than half a brain, you’d be dangerous.” I recall hearing words to that effect a few times in my more impulsive youth — usually in the aftermath of some ill-considered venture like stuffing cicada shells in exhaust pipes, dispatching a rattlesnake in my parents garage with gasoline and a match, or choosing to paint a house …

Cool Stuff My Dad Used To Say

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’ve spent a lot of time on the issue of fathers this week. It included clients dealing with the influences of that role (both the receiving and giving side), a dear friend who lost hers, watching my son-in-law with his two ruffians, and perhaps looking ahead to a men’s weeklong fly fishing retreat where—inevitability—one of the most perplexing stations in …

Forced Swing Don’t Just Happen On The Golf Course

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Okay, there is a pattern here. By Day Two of a major tournament, Tiger Woods is at or near the top of the leader board, appearing invincible, and fueling renewed anticipation of his resurgent quest to beat the Jack Nicklaus record of 18 major championships. Then on Saturday, Tiger’s swing takes on this artificial feel, and by Sunday he can look …

Life Is Fair

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“Life isn’t fair.” We hear that a lot, most often as a bromide offered to reassure someone who has experienced some calamity or seemingly unjust return on their best efforts. It’s not true. Life is fair. That might seem like pretzeled logic, but our notions of fair reveal a lot about our beliefs that somehow we can stand in the right queue …

The Stuff of Legend

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I finally sat down this last weekend with the box of old CDs that had been muttering at me for years now for attention.  I figured I better rummage through them before my one remaining CD player went the way of my record turntable, cassette machine and digital tape player. (There is something here about the extinction of physicality in …

Leading is not “automatic”

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I took some time away this week to join a friend on a photo shooting expedition through a decayed inner city neighborhood. I did not expect to see much there (I was wrong) and was probably more concerned that some vandal would key the door panels of my new car parked on the street (I was right). I have a …

If The Truth Be Told

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“Tell me the truth.” How often do we hear that, say that?  Isn’t a bit curious that we have to exert ourselves to get it, even more to hear it? Why do we doubt we are getting the truth? Why do we so often battle it when it does come? The character of Lt. Col. Jessup in A Few Good Men said …

Hang Gliding On Purpose

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Where do you want to be in five years? We hear that question all the time. It is a bit of a mantra in planning, whether commercial or personal. We are admonished that without a specific goal in mind for our lives, any destination seems acceptable. Yogi Berra, in his own inimitable expressions of tortured syntax, seemed to say it …

The Statutes of Liberty

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Many’s the time I’ve been mistaken And many times confused Yes, and I’ve often felt forsaken And certainly misused Oh, but I’m all right, I’m all right I’m just weary to my bones Still, you don’t expect to be Bright and bon vivant So far away from home, so far away from home Paul Simon – American Tune Freedom. The …

Growing Grass

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If you had the opportunity to invest in developing one aspect of leadership that might make all the difference throughout your career, what would it be? When I ask this question of younger executives, most often the answers fall into a category best described as skills – strategic planning, time management, decision-making, financial management and others. That’s the mistake. I …