Forward thinking: George Washington’s Farewell Address deserves rereading

The date was Sept. 19 . . . the year was 1796. Our nation’s newspapers carried the publication of President George Washington’s Farewell Address. It announced Washington’s intention to retire from public life after his second term. For many decades, the Farewell Address was required reading in grade schools across America and was commonly invoked…

Forward thinking: Monkey see, monkey do, and how to lead by example

As we go through life, many things are beyond our control. You can’t control our nation’s economy, the stock market or the weather. If you are a business proprietor, you can’t control your competitor’s marketing tactics. Even more maddening, you can’t control the decisions prospective clients make about your company. On a personal level —…

Forward thinking: Reflecting on politics this Constitution Day

Constitution Day is observed each year on Sept. 17. It commemorates the signing of the Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787. In short, this day marks the 231st anniversary of that commemorative signing. It is dedicated to all U.S. citizens. It is this writer’s opinion that our Founding Fathers gave us a Constitution that is sufficiently…

Forward thinking: History in the making at SCOTUS

It all starts Sept. 4, 2018… I’m referring to the confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court nominee, Brett Kavanaugh. It all begins with opening statements by committee members Tuesday. The questioning of Kavanaugh will actually start Wednesday, Sept. 5. The hearings are expected to last three or four days. President Trump nominated Kavanaugh on July…

Forward thinking: Connecting with others

I confess — I’m a people person. I truly enjoy being with people. Talking with people… engaging in activities with people. Furthermore, at this stage of my life, I seriously doubt if I will be making any significant changes. Somewhere in my DNA is a “people person” gene. I came into the world with it…

Forward thinking: Clearing out clutter

Her name shall remain anonymous — may it suffice to say that she is elderly. In a few short months, she will celebrate her 92nd birthday. That is the good news. The not so good news: family and friends recently had to move her into an assisted living facility, which proved to be a challenging…

Forward thinking: Making the tough call

I never played the game myself. However, I have a grown son and two grandsons who love it and play it on a regular, ongoing basis. I’m referring to the game of soccer. The truth be known, soccer is a relatively new sport in the United States compared to the rest of the world. However,…

Forward thinking: The True Patriots

It may come as a surprise, but a lot of important events took place in our nation’s history on July 4. A few of you may recall. However, my guess is most of us do not know or will not remember the majority of them. That is to be expected. Allow me to share some…

Forward thinking: On encouragement and being an encourager

Encouragement: the act of giving hope, approval or support to someone. It was a bright Sunday afternoon. The banner hung over the wall on the forty yard line in Texas Stadium – home of the Dallas Cowboys football team. The words were painted in bright red on a king size bed sheet for all America…

Forward thinking: Your most valuable asset

At some point, you may have heard me talk about having three stint heart implants… the year was 2006 and I was 63 years old. At that point in time, I was travelling a lot in my consulting business. In other words, I was eating most of my meals in hotels, restaurants and mini-markets. Needless…

Forward thinking: Uncommon courtesy

A common courtesy is a polite remark or respectful act that we do for everyone, regardless of whether we know them or not. Another Mother’s Day is history… The day has not held much appeal to me personally for several years. My mom made her transition over a decade ago, a victim of the dreaded…

Forward thinking: Without virtuous leaders

Eric Metaxas, in his book If You Can Keep It, has provided us with a thrilling review of America’s uniqueness. It is also a chilling reminder that America’s greatness cannot continue unless we the people embrace our own crucial role in living out what the Founders entrusted to us. He makes it abundantly clear that America…

Forward thinking: Are the disengaged destroying us?

…Democracy? …Republic? …Other? What type of government does the United States have in place? If someone asked you that question, what would your answer be? If your answer is “a democracy,” that’s understandable. Many elected officials from all levels of government to instructors from the university lecture hall to the grade school teachers have repeatedly…

Forward thinking: First steps to success

Sales persons are coached in the power of a first impression. Orators devote hours to opening statements. Journalists are admonished never to bury the lead. Sprinters practice racing out of the starting blocks. Interviewees are taught the importance of their initial handshake with a potential employer. In many areas of life, the beginning . ….

Forward thinking: Signs of the times

How healthy is America… Several months ago, I was introduced to the writings of author Jim Nelson Black. He made several comments that stirred my gray matter. One in particular was that from ancient Rome to the superpowers of the 20th century, all of the greatest nations in history have something in common. In short,…

Forward thinking: Using time wisely

Time is precious. Ask the coach whose team is behind in the final seconds of a game. Ask the air traffic controller in charge of scheduling takeoffs and landings at a major airport like Sea-Tac. Ask the cancer patient who has recently learned they only have two months left to live. Or you might ask…

Forward thinking: How insecurity takes its toll

Insecure people, especially leaders, are like fireworks with a lit fuse. It is only a matter of time until they explode. When they do, they hurt everyone close to them. As I have reflected on the drawbacks of insecurity in my own life and that of others, once again I found myself focusing on the…

Forward thinking: Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda

If you were guaranteed success, would your thoughts and actions be different from what they are today? Would you take more risks and spend more time taking action and less time talking about how things could be? Author H. Jackson Brown, Jr. once said, “The biggest gap in the world is between I should and…

Forward thinking: Keeping score differently

They call it March Madness or the Big Dance… In case you are not overly familiar, it is the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) annual basketball tournament for men from the Division 1 level college teams. It is a single elimination tournament played each spring in the month of March. It currently features 68 teams….

Forward thinking: Founding mothers

The expression “Founding Fathers” has struck some students of American history as inherently sexist. Not so. The fact that only men signed the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution did not preclude women from leaving their imprint on the winning of American independence from Great Britain or on the founding of the new republic. Despite…

Forward thinking: The signers and their sacrifices

The Founding Fathers… It is a phrase that we have affectionately adopted over the decades to refer to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence. With even a casual familiarity with our nation’s early history, I am assuming that you recognize and can recall the names of at least a few of them….

Forward thinking: Gratitude at work

Please and Thank You… As a child, my parents stressed the importance of these words when speaking with others – especially adults. They had a magical quality about them. Remember the question, “What do you say?” And the answers were invariably either “please” or “thank you,” or sometimes both. For whatever reason, I grew up…

Forward thinking: Repairing broken relationships

Have you ever broken trust with an important relationship? Perhaps it was a loved one… personal friend… colleague at work or a teammate. How did you handle it? More importantly, did you take action immediately to repair and restore it? Or did you let the relationship rust? If you are a leader, you’re out in…

Forward thinking: A bigger, brighter future

“The best thing about the future is that it comes only one day at a time.” ~ Abraham Lincoln Alvin Dark, former major-league baseball manager, used to say, “There’s no such thing as taking a pitcher out. There’s only bringing another pitcher in.” In other words, don’t look back at the bad pitches, the walked…

Forward thinking: To vote, or not to vote

I have a question for you. Did you vote in the recent local election? Did you take part in the 2017 elections to pick mayors, city council members and local school boards? Nearly two-thirds of Washington’s registered voters sat out the Nov. 7 election. This set a new low mark for turnout. Only 37.1 percent…