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On 29 August 2014 - 5:30pm

Blog5

Liquid is working hard.

That’s what happens when you try to set up shop, a complex online network, in Africa.

While facing unbelievable challenges, they are succeeding. In part, it’s doing business right. Which is effective CSR.

CSR is not just about philanthropy. It’s about treating everyone within your company and everyone without your company with excellence. That’s the first line of Corporate Social Responsibility — not a donation.

Here’s what a good-intentioned company can face. It’s the story of a courageous company called Liquid:

• 5-year legal battle to operate in Zimbabwe;

• 2 years to run cable;

• 18 months of negotiations;

• Cable nearly washed away by a river;

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On 28 August 2014 - 6:40pm

As I’ve found in my own experience, volunteering can be such a positive and valued experience for both the people helping, and the people who need the help. I’d love to share just some of the Positives I’ve observed for volunteers.

1- Be A Part of Something Greater. Often new volunteers find that the “product” — serving homeless people, helping microentrepreneurs, tutoring young mothers on their GEDs, is so meaningful that it’s hard to return to the corporate world. They feel a part of something greater, because it is so definitively clear how they are helping. We all want to feel we are caring for and helping others, and are part of a movement larger than ourselves.

2- Keep Your Skills Current. Use your current skills and ‘exercise’ them just as you would any muscle. Are you an attorney, administrative assistant, construction worker, public relations expert, manager? Put those needed skills to use, and expand them as you continue ...more

On 27 August 2014 - 7:10pm

“You have to be able to tell people ‘great job’ on things that didn’t work.”

– J. Kermit Campbell, former CEO of Herman Miller

Campbell has it right.  A CEO is not an expert except in one area: getting the right people. Actually, let’s add another area: values. You must be a leader who gets the best people and demonstrates the highest values.

Even if you are a manager, you should still think this way. Empower your people to learn and maintain a domain of expertise. Hopefully you can hire them with it. If you can’t, make sure they have the rapid capability to do so.  Let’s learn from Campbell’s advice to us:

“I don’t believe that my job is to lead design at Herman Miller.  My job is to make sure we have great design leaders, continue to listen and try to learn from them…My job is not to be a creative guy, my job is to create a culture that allows and promotes creativity…

You’re going to have to take risks. It’s not all going to ...more

On 26 August 2014 - 5:28pm

“Enjoy when you can, and endure when you must.” 
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Two grand lessons today: Enjoy and Persevere.

Enjoying

There is so much to enjoy… it’s important that we focus on the good!   Watching your nephew play sports, while catching up with family.  Taking a calming walk in nature. Cheering on the 49ers with friends!

Sometimes, we are deterred by something that isn’t working.  Perhaps it’s a rough spot in business, or a relationship that seemed to get off the rails.

But we can’t get distracted.  Find and focus on the enjoyment before us.  It need not be a big event, and often is a small but special gratitude.

Persevere

Then, there are times to patiently persevere.  The road might feel a bit rocky under our feet.  Yet we must stay the course, step by step. Like a diligent marathon runner we are committed to our course, unrelenting to the finish line.   With this experience, ...more

On 22 August 2014 - 5:53pm

1. Build only on your islands of health and strength.

2. Only deal with people who are receptive to what you are trying to do.

3. Only start projects that will make a significant difference if you are successful.

4. Don’t try to build a business; build an organization.

5. Don’t subsidize failure; subsidize success.

6. Don’t try to fix things that are flawed in their concept.  Replace them with a superior concept that works.

7.  The only way to perpetuate a new idea is to make it the norm.

Peter Drucker (1909-2005) was an influential writer on management theory.  He wrote 39 books, which have been translated into 30 languages.  Among his best known books are Concept of the Corporation, The Effective Executive, and Post-Capitalist Society.

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On 18 August 2014 - 8:23pm

Do Unto Others is from ancient times.  Hearing different versions from philosophers and religious leaders make us realize the commonality of Truth.  What a wonderful way to tie the world together!

“May I do unto others as I would that they should do unto me.”
Plato, 5th century B.C.

“Do not do unto others all that which is not well for oneself.”
Zoroaster, 6th century B.C.

“Hurt not others with that which pains thyself.”
Buddha, 6th century B.C.

“Do not do unto others what you do not want others to do unto you.”
Confucius, 6th century B.C.

“Do not unto others what thou wouldst not they should do unto thee.”
Rabbi Hillel, 1st century B.C.

“Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.”
Jesus, 1st century A.D.

“None of you truly have the faith if you do not desire for your brother that which ...more

On 15 August 2014 - 5:40pm

“Henry Ford said, “bring us your hands, and you can leave everything else at home.”  D.J. rejected that idea and said completely the opposite: “I want all of you here.  I want the whole person.” — J. Kermit Campbell, Former CEO of Herman Miller

Campbell continues, “If I can have 5,000 or 6,000 people who are passionate about what they do…solving problems and finding solutions to our customers’ problems, I’m going to be much better off than if I leave that to 10% of that population, who tell the other people what to do.  It’s like a sports team: you can have one or two guys who play well, but if you can get 50 guys on a team all playing at a very high level, you’re very tough to beat.  That’s always been our philosophy.” ...more

  1. J. DePree (18911990) began work as a clerk for the Michigan Star Furniture Company. In 1914 he married Nellie Miller; they had seven children. In 1923, D. J. bought the Michigan
On 12 August 2014 - 6:11pm

World Peace is a hard word.  We all want it. But how can you create “World Peace” ?

What we can do is build World Trust.  We commit to developing long-term relationships based on trust.  If we focus on World Trust, then World Peace can result.  Peace is based on Trust.

Read further on our page, Building World Trust.

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On 7 August 2014 - 5:21pm

I used to be a Caffeine-a-holic, even when I wasn’t drinking any.  I still craved it.

So when I was getting off caffeine, it took me three times.  The first two were outwardly successful.  I got my caffeine intake very, very low, and my energy was natural and in line with who I really was.  But I still craved, oh so craved,  desperately, that Diet Coke.  I wanted the feeling of those sparkly bubbles in my tummy.  Somehow, it soothed my soul. 

That craving made me realize I wasn’t fully healed.
 
Later on I met a very special intern who worked for me at UniversalGiving.  He remains a closest friend today, and his name is Austin Smith.  He was a star runner at Princeton, and he and I were very much aligned with taking care of ourselves, from the vision we had for our lives, to our day-to-day living.
 
One day we were talking about how I’d never done drugs.  And his response was, “yes, you have, and you do.”
 
I was shocked and he was ...more

On 6 August 2014 - 5:50pm

I am always searching for ways to grow as an individual.  Great authors I love are Bill George & Stephen Covey; great leaders I love are Desmond Tutu and Mother Teresa.  I came across this inspiring brief film by Andrew Zuckerman, cataloguing what many of our leaders across different sectors, thought about wisdom. I hope you enjoy: http://www.wisdombook.org/.

Stay inspired and true.

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