Category Archives: Change

Chapter 1 – What is Leadership?

To study anything; to truly look at it in an objective way and then to share that experience is a true challenge.  First you must first be able to agree on what it that you are talking about.   That seemingly simple first step is often harder than it seems, particularly when it comes to the subject of leadership.

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A small book about leadership

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The Lucky Ones

A bit of a warning here.   This is probably more personal than my average post.  I’m not sure how relevant it is to those who come here looking for business or strategy.  But at this time of year, my thoughts turn to the more personal side of life.  So in the spirit of “changing the game” – I’m talking about and sharing some intensely personal moments.

I’m not trying to be anyone’s inspiration.  I leave that to others.  Here’s one.

The hardest part baby is smilin’ when your plans don’t work out,  and count yourself – a lucky one…

Willie P. Bennett wrote those words in the 1980’s for his album of the same name.  He called it “The Lucky Ones”.  From the moment the words came through the speaker of my car stereo, on an early mix lent by a friend, they spoke to my heart.  They inspired me then as they do now.   At that time in my life, I was myself experiencing a slow awakening. Continue reading

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Hot Potato – Why We Need To Rethink Management

Remember that childhood game, “Hot Potato”?   You would take a ball, beanbag or other item and pretend it’s a hot potato.  As soon as you got it you’d pass it on to the next person.   Then at the end of the music, a timer or just a random announcement from the game master – whoever is holding the hot potato loses.

Child’s game?  Or is it how we manage our companies?  If it is, we need to find a way out of this trap.  It kills productivity, destroys job satisfaction and dooms us to a world of enforced mediocrity.   That’s what I was thinking about the other day.  Here’s how it started.   Continue reading

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Where Are the Snowdens of Next Year?

The enemy of freedom is not tyranny.  It’s complacency.

Our freedom, our lives – all that we believe in and hold dear does not get ripped from us all at once.  It happens, as T.S. Eliot so famously said when he wrote:  “This is the way the world ends.  Not with a bang, but a whimper.”

So it is.  And so it would be without the whistle-blowers, the leakers of information – the dissidents. Continue reading

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ROC – Return on Curiousity?

This is a story about the future impact that Waterloo can have on the country and maybe even the world.   But it’s NOT about Blackberry.  Crazy, you say?

Today, on a beautiful Friday afternoon in late September – what could be one of the last great summer-like days of the year we did somethign crazy.   We said “to heck with that” and headed indoors to a crowded lecture theatre in the Engineering building at the University of Waterloo.  It was worth every minute. Continue reading

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Filed under Change, Commentary, Organizational Change, People, Startup, Strategy, Waterloo

For a song…

This blog was inspired by work done by a group of us to assist in flood relief.  The project created the video “Carolyn and I” which to assist the fundraising effort.  You may want to follow this link after reading the blog, but I’ll leave that up to you.

It’s been a while since I’ve updated this blog.  I can’t believe where the time has gone.  There are have been some challenges recently.  I’ve moved my home – I still run the company in Toronto, but we bought a beautiful house in Haliburton county – near Minden, Ontario.  I’m looking out at the loons on the lake as I write this.  Stunning view!

On a sadder note, my business partner and I split up in the past month.  Disagreements about how the business was to be run.  We had some conflicts, but I think the move to my new house really set things off.  We had one of our management meetings in a local cafe where we usually meet (no reason to not have pleasant surroundings for meetings).   It was at that meeting he said to me that he didn’t think I was committed to the business. Continue reading

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Filed under Change, Commentary, People, Purpose, Social Change