A few days ago, I was reading an interview with James Hackett, the CEO of Steelcase. When he was asked about his most memorable leadership lessons, he spoke of the importance of becoming a leader who was not "prepackaged." In the course of his work, he met many CEOs and he noticed that the ones who were truly impactful—truly leaders in every sense of the word—were those who were not "prepackaged." The great leaders were those who exhibited a "sense of peace, this self-awareness that says, ‘I understand who I am.’"Read more »
Did you know that Minnesota has one of the highest concentrations of eagles in the country? A couple of years ago, I had a chance to visit the National Eagle Center, just south of Red Wing.Read more »
In preparation for the Institute for Mindful Leadership's recent Mindful Leadership retreat, we send some prework to the participants, inviting them to begin to notice some of the "autopilot" conditioning we all engage in from time to time, especially in parts of the day when we are transitioning from one place to another, like driving from home to work.
Just a few days before the retreat, one participant, Major General Gale Pollock (ret), was on her way to work when she found herself stopping and getting out of her car to join a group of people gathered on the street.Read more »
It is so easy at this time of year to feel overwhelmed. We work extra hours to bring our organizations to a satisfactory end of the year, to get things cleared away before 2012 appears, and with the often mistaken belief that getting a list of extra things done will allow us to have a more restful holiday. That belief would be more true if there were not an endless list of things that can keep our mind busy thinking about work .
And we have the additional errands and costs associated with entertaining, gift-giving and shopping. Add to those things the pressures of cooking and cleaning and decorating, not to mention the internal chatter of our minds that often arises from the gift selection process for parents, children and friends, and it is easy to find ourselves dropping into bed at the end of the day feeling totally exhausted. And we might conclude that "this is just how it is right now," hoping that someday it might be simpler. Someday when the kids are older or the business is less hectic or we have more money or...Read more »
Winter might be imminent, but the peak of the fall season is still vivid in my mind. While its brilliant colors are striking aesthetically, I also appreciate them as a reminder of impermanence. In our "autopilot existence," it may be easy to miss the springing forth of new green leaves and the warming days of summer, but it seems more difficult, at least for me, to miss the first biting breezes of fall and the colors that seemingly appear overnight—green leaves magically turning into red, yellow and orange. And then they are gone… a seemingly gentle breeze enough to change the landscape yet again.Read more »