I do not learn anything when I am speaking. I learn a lot when I am listening.Jim Quigley, the former CEO of Deloitte
Surely there is a mine for silver, and a place for gold that they refine. Iron is taken out of the earth, and copper is smelted from the ore. Man puts an end to darkness and searches out to the farthest limit the ore in gloom and deep darkness. He opens shafts in a valley away from where anyone lives; they are forgotten by travelers; they hang in the air, far away from mankind; they swing to and fro. As for the earth, out of it comes bread, but underneath it is turned up as by fire. Its stones are the places of sapphires, and it has dust of gold.
That path no bird of prey knows, and the falcon’s eye has not seen it. The proud beasts have not trodden it; the lion has not passed over it.
Man puts his hand to the flinty rock and overturns mountains by the roots. He cuts out channels in the rocks, and his eye sees every precious thing. He dams up the streams so that they do not trickle, and the thing that is hidden he brings out to the light.
But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding? Man does not know its worth, and it is not found in the land of the living. The deep says, ‘It is not in me,’ and the sea says, ‘It is not with me.’ It cannot be bought for gold, and silver cannot be weighed as its price. It cannot be valued in the gold of Ophir, in precious onyx or Sapphire. Gold and glass cannot equal it, nor can it be exchanged for jewels of fine gold. No mention shall be made of coral or crystal; the price of wisdom is above pearls. The topaz of Ethiopia cannot equal it, not can it be valued in pure gold.
From where, then, does wisdom come from? and where is the place of understanding? It is hidden from the eyes of all living and concealed from the birds of the air. Abaddon and Death say, ‘We have heard a rumor of it with our ears.’
God understands the way to it, and he knows its place. For he looks to the ends of the earth and sees everything under the heavens. When he gave to the wind its weight and apportioned the waters by measure, when he made a decree for the rain and a way for the lightning of the thunder, then he saw it and declared it; he established it, and searched it out. And he said to man, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding.’
Job from Uz, Chapter 28
Leadership is a matter of having people look at you and gain confidence, seeing how you react. If you’re in control, they’re in control.Tom Landry
I have been inspired recently after reading a speech that a leader gave near the end of his life. He was looking back over his years and wanted to exhort those he had led into maintaining the growth and the focus he had been guiding them in. This speech led to many others, including George Washington’s address to a young nation.
Why would I look into end of life speeches? I have currently reached mid-life (41) and as I am reading these speeches, it is incredible to see what these leaders have considered to be the errors or foundations that shaped them, their productivity, and their legacy. If I can pay attention to those, it builds a focus that can become an almost guaranteed success, so that at the end of my life, I can look back across the decades and feel like I’ve run my race well.
If neither crying nor laughing can change my circumstances, then I rather go through them laughing.Moffat Machingura, Life Capsules
Life is like a restaurant; you can have anything you want as long as you are willing to pay the price.Moffat Machingura, Life Capsules
In the end, if we don’t have God we don’t have anything other than an end.Craig D. Lounsbrough
I am not afraid to fail, I am scared to death of dying and having the Lord say to me: ‘Angelica, this is what you might have done had you trust me more’.Mother Angelica
But after my death let it be known that in my old age, at the very end of my life, there was still plenty that made me smile.Orhan Pamuk, My Name Is Red
I find my thoughts drifting to the Sabbath, the day of rest, the seventh day of the week, and perhaps the seventh day of one’s life as well, when one can feel that one’s work is done, and one may, in good conscience, rest.Oliver Sacks, Gratitude
At the end of life, your reward in heaven will not be proportional to the role you played on earth, but how faithful you played it. Be faithful in every little role you are to play; it’ll lead you to a greater reward! Faithfulness is key!Israelmore Ayivor
At the end of my life I want to say, “I lived every moment of it.’Debasish Mridha
Every Task, Goal, Race, and Year comes to an end… Therefore, make it a habit to always finish strong.Gary Ryan Blair
George Bush had been fading in the last few days. He had not gotten out of bed, he had stopped eating and he was mostly sleeping. For a man who had defied death multiple times over the years, it seemed that the moment might finally be arriving.
His longtime friend and former secretary of state, James A. Baker III, arrived at his Houston home on Friday morning to check on him.
Mr. Bush suddenly grew alert, his eyes wide open.
“Where are we going, Bake?” he asked.
“We’re going to heaven,” Mr. Baker answered.
“That’s where I want to go,” Mr. Bush said.
Barely 13 hours later, Mr. Bush was dead. The former president died in his home in a gated community in Houston, surrounded by several friends, members of his family, doctors and a minister. As the end neared on Friday night, his son George W. Bush, the former president, who was at his home in Dallas, was put on the speaker phone to say goodbye. He told him that he had been a “wonderful dad” and that he loved him.
“I love you, too,” Mr. Bush told his son.
Those were his last words.
~ Excerpt from NY Times
Because your vision always costs more than you estimated, and often takes longer than you planned, it can become blurred by your circumstances and emotions. That is why it becomes imperative to write it down and keep it in front of you! With a clear-cut written goal, you’ll always know where you are and remember where you’re going.
What is the direction, focus, or vision you have for your life?
At the end, what will your life look like as you look back?
It’s interesting what happens when you intentionally choose to slow down and think through a problem. I have found that while building websites and applications that there is a slippery slope when you run into a problem. The natural inclination is to chase after the problem in order to find the solution.
When I have actually stopped and gone for a walk in order to think through the issue, those are the times that I have found the most elegant solution.
I found this story about Warren Buffet and I really liked the perspective. If you are actually attempting to solve the problems of those you are working for, you will find success.
The first was to find out what people need and use that to get access to them. In 1951, after Buffett finished his studies, he set himself up as a stockbroker. But every time he tried to get a meeting with a local businessman, they turned him down. Who wants to meet some young guy with no track record, trying to sell stocks? So Buffet thought of a different approach: He started calling business people, telling them he could help save them from paying too high taxes. Now they finally wanted to meet, and Buffett was able to kick-start his career.The Third Door by Alex Banayan
What solution are you working out? What is it that your customer needs? It’s cliche, but what are their pain points, not just physically, but emotionally? How do you solve those problems?
Naturally we are inclined to be so mathematical and calculating that we look upon uncertainty as a bad thing…
Certainty is the mark of a common-sense life.
To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways, we do not know what a day may bring forth. This is generally said with a sigh of sadness; it should rather be an expression of breathless expectation.
– Oswald Chambers
Allowing someone to be mediocre is the cruelest form of kind.
Steve Moore has written a new book called “The Top 10 Leadership Conversations in the Bible” and the introduction has already profoundly impacted me. He discusses a man I’ve never heard of, Samuel Logan Brengle, so passionately that I will begin reading more about this man.
The quote which I latched onto was:
Influence, not position, is at the core of leadership. When a person without leadership capacity is given a leadership title or position, the result isn’t a complete lack of influence, but rather a greatly limited power base. This is true in life and in the Bible.
You can read the intro here.
This is an excerpt from the book ‘Strength to love’ by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. He is addressing the problem that has always hampered man: his inability to conquer evil by his own power. In pathetic amazement, man asks, “Why can I not cast it out? Why can I not remove this evil from my life?”
Though the evils of sensuality, selfishness, and cruelty often rise aggressively in his soul, something within tells him that they are intruders and reminds him of his higher destiny and more noble allegiance. Man’s hankering after the demonic is always disturbed by his longing for the divine. As he seeks to adjust to the demands of time, he knows that eternity is his ultimate habitat. When man comes to himself, he knows that evil is a foreign invader that must be driven from the native soils of his soul before he can achieve moral and spiritual dignity.
So, how can evil be cast out? Men have usually pursued two paths to eliminate evil and thereby save the world. The first calls upon man to remove evil through his own power and ingenuity… Give people a fair chance and a decent education, and they will save themselves. This idea, sweeping across the modern world like a plague, has ushered God out and escorted man in and has substituted human ingenuity for divine guidance.
But in spite of the astounding new scientific developments, the old evils continue and the age of reason has been transformed into an age of terror. Selfishness and hatred have not vanished with an enlargement of our educational system and and an extension of our legislative policies. The humanist’s hope is an illusion, based on too great an optimism concerning the inherent goodness of human nature.
The second idea for removing evil from the world stipulates that if man waits submissively upon the Lord, in his own good time God alone will redeem the world. The fallacy of thinking that God will cast evil from the earth, even if man does nothing except sit complacently by the wayside, is that no prodigious thunderbolt from heaven will blast away evil. No mighty army of angels will descend to force men to do what their wills resist.
The Bible portrays God not as an omnipotent czar who makes all decisions for his subjects nor as a cosmic tyrant who with gestapo-like methods invades the inner lives of men but rather as a loving Father who gives to his children such abundant blessings as they may be willing to receive. Always man must do something. “Stand upon thy feet,” says God to Ezekiel, “and I will speak unto you.” Man is no helpless invalid left in a valley of total depravity until God pulls him out. Man is rather an upstanding human being whose vision has been impaired by the cataracts of sin and whose soul has been weakened by the virus of pride, but there is sufficient vision left for him to lift his eyes unto the hills, and there remains enough of God’s image for him to turn his weak and sin-battered life toward the Great Physician, the curer of the ravages of sin.
There is so much more to discuss and Dr. King’s thoughts on this are profound and life-changing to the reader. Please buy this book, read the rest of this chapter, and let’s discuss this further.
We all want to be more effective; increase profit and productivity while decreasing spending.
I came across an article discussing the value of being empathic towards the customer as well sharing the story of why you come to work every day. In one organizations weekly meetings they found that asking the below question increased sales by 23%. Employees began to hear and envision their “why” and were able to find the excitement in how they were helping their customers, not just selling products.
How did we make a difference for a client since last time we met?
A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.
Perhaps the most valuable result of all education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not; it is the first lesson that ought to be learned; and however early a man’s training begins, it is probably the last lesson that he learns thoroughly.