Are You Living Your Name?

When we picked out our new puppy a couple of years ago, we started searching for a name. As we researched, we came across Cody, which means “helper.” We both though that we could always use an assistant in our lives so our little white bundle became Cody. He’s been a pretty good at it and brings smiles to our faces. It got me thinking about my name, what it means and whether I am living the value that my parents ascribed to me. The name Richard refers to a leader who is courageous in his actions. I mentioned to a friend that while I’d like to think of myself as courageous, I’m not really sure that I can ascribe Read More

This Week’s Resilient Learning…For Me

I conducted a new program this week for a group of professionals. Afterwards I gave myself a solid “B.” Not bad but not great. On the plus side, the program immediately engaged the audience through some good story telling, some small group participation activities, and some large group sharing. Everybody, including me, was having a good time. As I started to drill down into my content, I began to realize that I was succumbing to one of my greatest speaking faults…trying to give people too much information in too short period of time. I was intentional about my outline for the program but as I proceeded towards the end, I realized I had erred in my approach, but after sitting Read More

The Root Causes of Success

After the Viet Nam war, the children of that country’s poorer regions were suffering from malnutrition, a lack of clean water, and little health care. In a project undertaken by the Save the Children Foundation and discussed in the book, “Surfing the Edge of Chaos” Monique and Jerry Sternin moved to Hanoi to understand how this problem could be remedied. Their approach was to study families of both healthy and sick children. However, they did a root cause analysis of why some children were well nourished and discerned that those families supplemented the primary rice diet with freely available fresh water seafood along with vitamin rich vegetables. They also fed their children more frequently than the undernourished children. They called Read More

Creating Your Own Happiness

Later this week, I’ll be meeting, along with a small group of fellow consultants, with Dan Gilbert, a Harvard psychology professor who has written extensively about happiness. You may know Dan from the Prudential Insurance commercials on TV where he talks about planning for retirement. Gilbert’s early research was in the area of synthetic happiness. His research suggests that “Natural happiness is what we get when we get what we wanted, and synthetic happiness is what we make when we don’t get what we wanted”. You’ve heard people describe their own synthetic happiness when they’ve had some kind of setback but then report being happier then ever. Pete Best, who was the original drummer for the Beatles, was replaced when Read More