Forward thinking: Influence in motion

Did you ever stop and reflect on your ability to positively influence those around you? My guess is that most of us have not. Nevertheless, I have recently been challenged to make the most of my influence while in motion – like when I am on the go throughout the day doing whatever I am…

Forward thinking: Overcoming our fears

Fear is universal. It crosses all boundaries of gender, race, culture, religion and generation. We all feel and experience fear. So, why do some people appear to be fearless, doing battle with enemies that others cower before? Years ago, I was pondering that very issue in the presence of one of my mentors. And my…

Forward thinking: Starting over… again and again

His name was Dr. J. George Taylerson… He was one of several mentors that crossed the pathway of my life while I was in graduate school. From the first time I met him, I was immediately impressed with his wisdom and insights on life and living. Over time we developed a habit of meeting at…

Forward thinking: Credible communciation

Election Day 2017 is rapidly approaching. In the City of Lynnwood, there are three council seats and a mayoral race to be determined. If you are a resident of our fair city, you have undoubtedly seen the so-called “yard signs” for the various candidates on virtually every street corner. Having personally served on the Lynnwood…

Forward thinking: Be honest with me

Confrontation. It is something that most of us shy away from — especially if it involves co-workers, loved ones and close friends. Sometimes it involves you being the one conveying bad news to another. That is bad enough in itself. What is worse is when you are on the hot seat, and you know the…

Forward thinking: Constitution Day and Citizenship Day

It was Sept. 17, 1787… The First Constitutional Convention was wrapping up in Philadelphia. The hundred day debate had finally come to an end. It had been a grueling process. The delegates each took their turn signing the document that would forever change our fledgling nation – The Constitution of the United States of America….

Forward thinking: The all-important question — why?

As a young kid growing up, I use to follow my father around at his bakery. When he would do a particular thing — regardless of what it was — I would invariably ask him “why” he did whatever he was doing. Quite honestly he told me to stop asking so many questions countless times….

Forward thinking: A need for humility

Back in the dark ages, when I was in high school, I took three years of Latin. I recall two things about studying that dead language. First, my teacher had taught my mother the same language years before – she truly was an old maid school teacher. Second, I learned that 52 percent of the…

Forward thinking: Growing to your full potential

Think with me for just a moment… Did you ever know someone who was especially good at something? Perhaps he/she was an outstanding singer. Or perhaps that person had a unique ability to get others to talk about themselves. Let’s stop there for a moment. Have you ever known someone who should’ve risen to the…

Forward thinking: A can-do attitude

Over the years, automotive tycoon Henry Ford became well known for his insightful comments about life. One in particular stands out in my mind. Mr. Ford is credited with the observation that, “If you think you can, you can. If you think you can’t, you are right again–you won’t be able to.” I have found…

Forward thinking: Hitting the wall

I sat listening intently to my friend… He uttered the words, “I will never forget the experience of being fired. I was thirty-six years old, with a wife and two small children.” After taking a deep breath, he continued. “After telling my wife, we sat on the bed, cried a little, and realized there was…

Forward thinking: Helping people feel good

It’s a Wonderful Life. Such is the name of one of the greatest Christmas movie classics ever made. It tells a beautiful story about the priceless value of relationships. I must have watched it two dozen times over my life time. The story follows the life of one George Bailey who sacrificed his dreams to…

Forward thinking: The challenge of change

I greatly enjoy reading biographies and autobiographies. Several years ago, I found myself reading about Henry Ford, the automotive tycoon in the United States. On his way to dominating the automotive market with the Model T, Henry Ford embodied innovation and progress. By pioneering the assembly line, Ford slashed the amount of time needed to…

Forward thinking: The bookends of success

I am not a NASCAR fan. I never have been and probably never will be at my age. I would be hard pressed to tell you the names of the various races and their locations. I could not tell you the names of more than a few of the drivers and not a single race…

Forward thinking: Why the best leaders are the best leaders

As a kid growing up, I loved baseball. I loved playing it, watching it, talking about it and reading about it. I dreamed about being the shortstop for the New York Yankees. My idol on their team was Pee Wee Reese. Long after I gave up on that dream, I followed the fortunes of my…

Forward thinking: A gentle reminder

Independence Day, America’s Birthday… Use whatever title fits your fancy. July 4th has come and gone once again. It’s a day where communities across our nation mark this major mid-summer holiday with parades, firework displays, picnics and performances of “The Star-Spangled Banner” and marches by John Philip Sousa. I probably should add… and eat a…

Forward thinking: Why talent is not enough

Name recognition has become an overnight phenomenon. One day, you have never heard of person. The next, he or she is a household word – thanks to the magic of modern-day media. This is particularly true in the world of sports. For example, how many of the following names do you recognize? • Tonya Harding…

Forward thinking: Tips on attaining improvement

Improvement. Our happiness and well-being are tied to the notion that our lives can improve and get better. My guess is that we all hope for a better future for our business, our family and ourselves. We dream of a tomorrow that’s brighter and more fulfilling than today. Over time, as I have listened to…

Forward thinking: Keeping respect alive

I don’t get no respect, I tell ya! The other day I told my wife, “I lost my wallet. I’m very depressed.” She said, “That makes two of you, you and the guy who found it. – Rodney Dangerfield Comedian Rodney Dangerfield built a career by lamenting the lack of respect he received from everyone…

Forward thinking: Falsehoods about success

The voice of the GPS chirped “turn left.” Instead, the driver took a right turn. In fact, Donna Cooper had stopped listening to the device hours ago. Not following the directions of the GPS was precisely what had caused Cooper, her daughter Gina and their friend Jenny to become lost in the first place. The…

Forward thinking: America’s historical amnesia

Amnesia. Just the sound of the word gives me chills. It brings to mind various friends and relatives who have or have had it. I’m sure someone comes to you mind as well. As you are aware, if a person has amnesia, they have lost or forgotten their past. They can become heavily dependent on…

Forward thinking: It’s election time again

You might describe me as a vagabond… Over the years, I have lived in four different states, eight different cities, and called twenty-one different houses home. In each community, I found a variety of community service organizations. They were all committed to doing “good” in one form or another, both locally and abroad. One in…

Forward thinking: In a word, consistency

The question is thought provoking. Have you ever considered the time investment in some of the world’s greatest achievements? I’m serious. Have you ever stopped to realize: • It took 26 months to build the Eiffel Tower. • It took Da Vinci four years to paint the Mona Lisa. • It took Michelangelo four years…

Forward thinking: The Crucible

Crucible. It is word that we don’t hear too often and use even less. In fact, you may be wondering or asking — What is a “crucible?” If so, you are not alone. The very word sounds like something out of the Middle Ages. In reality, however, it is a very good word. One that…

Forward thinking: Are we customers or citizens?

September 11, 2001. I remember the day well. I’m guessing that you do also. It was the day that terrorists attacked the Twin Towers in New York City as well as the Pentagon. Former President George W. Bush stepped in front of the TV cameras and asked the American people to go shopping to prove…