Information--Too Much or Too Little

A bunch of years ago in grad school I had a professor, Max, who taught a course in Human Behavior in Organizations.  Max would regale us with tales of his experiences in corporate America, and he being an Industrial Psychologist, examples of bizarre encounters with others of which he was either victim or participant.

One of Max's early "professional" jobs was with a major corporation.  As was often custom at that time, Max and his wife were the guests of his new boss and wife to celebrate the new job assignment at a fine dining establishment.  After a round or two (or several) of libations, it became obvious that Max's supervisor was losing the challenge of responsible alcohol consumption to the point that young Max thought it well to remove said boss from the premises in favor of some fresh air.  The boss did rally somewhat with exposure to the new environs while also liberated from inhibitions. He proceeded to share and confess to Max a series of life offences:  a…

Distinctive Solutions

The Washington Monument was deteriorating.  The culprit appeared to be the harsh chemicals being applied to clean the edifice.  The cleaning was required in order to eradicate, at least temporarily, the staining caused by a significant amount of excrement, otherwise known as pigeon poop.  This cycle, in one form or another, had repeated itself in some shape or form since the Monument's completion over 130 years ago.

Deeper probing presented a solution.  Why was there such an inordinate population of pigeons?  It seemed that the birds found spiders absolutely delectable.  The arachnids, too, also thrived in the vicinity of the Monument.  So, what attracted the spiders?  Even smaller insects, gnats, found the habitat at the end of the National Mall to their liking as well.  What then with the gnats?  Well it seemed that especially at dusk, when the illuminating lights were flipped on, a gnat frenzy ensued thus initiating the predator food chain, eventually resulting in the requirem…

The Wisdom of the Wizard of Westwood

Us children of the 60's and 70's who had any interest in college basketball were witness to one of the greatest sports dynasties in the history of athletic competition with the dominance of the UCLA Bruins.  Save for one year, from 1964 to 1975, the Westwood cagers not only qualified for our current era's pinnacle of achievement, The Final Four, but won the National Championship 10 times!

Granted the "March Madness" tournament in those days consisted of less than 25 participants vs. today's 68 and there were 220 or less Division I teams then eligible vs. this past season's 351, nonetheless the Bruins were no less of juggernaut.  A record of 335-22 during that period meant that for 12 years they won 15 out of every 16 games played!

To be sure there was individual talent during that time with stalwarts such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (then Lew Alcindor), Bill Walton, Gail Goodrich, and Sidney Wicks making their marks not only collegiately, but later profession…

New Shoes, Love Languages, and Leadership

Favorite daughter, Megan, is now in the transitional season of life at the merger of college graduation, career and graduate school possibilities, and relational considerations.  Like many parents at this intersection my wife and I are carefully introducing her to the realities of financial responsibilities:   car and auto insurance payments, rent and utilities, medical insurance.  The four year period of our scraping together resources, seeking scholarship aid, and requiring her to absorb many of her own personal expenses has been challenging, albeit gratifying for all of us.

As I too enter a period of change, having left the relative security of full-time employment to relocate to Florida and take a try at this thing called life coaching, financial stability and assurance now has less certainty.  We have sensitized her to this reality, no doubt presenting an awakening into the world of adult economic challenge.

Each of us demonstrate love to our family members especially in a numb…

Leadership and the Power of Love

During this Easter week when Christians around the world celebrate the ultimate demonstration of sacrifice and servanthood it is timely to consider our responsibility to share love in every aspect of life, especially in our vocational environments.  Since time immemorial our human nature has been towards a desire to achieve power through force, persuasion, greed, and financial means as opposed to more positive and less salient attributes such as gentleness, kindness, and meekness.

An element rarely considered or discussed at work is love.  The love referred to here is not a romantic love and oftentimes is not emotional either, but rather pertains to goodwill, active listening, and servant leadership.  Servant leadership was demonstrated in an untold number of ways by my Savior--washing of feet, performing miracles, even submitting himself to the authorities and ultimately death for our sake.

So how do we carry out servant leadership in every day lives?  In the workplace, many of tho…