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What is normal?

COVID-19 turned the world upside down. Then the death of George Floyd set it on fire. Since then it gets a daily dose of gasoline from pundits, politicians and protesters. As it burns, we wonder, “Will the world ever be normal again?” The answer depends on your definition of normal.

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Before I die…

Every day we are bombarded with updates of the coronavirus death toll. It’s a reminder that we can die at any time. We can turn the crisis into an opportunity for growing and getting better. It might cause us to live our lives differently…

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Being comfortable with being uncomfortable

We have no idea what will happen as a result of coronavirus pandemic. More people will suffer and die. But when you look at life on a continuum over many years this is normal. What is not normal is the idea that we should not have to experience any degree of pain or should ever have to be uncomfortable. The economy will turn around. The markets will go up. New businesses and jobs will be created. That’s normal. But to expect things to remain that way is not.

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Bucking the Trend

Hank Williams made his debut at the Grand Ole Opry in 1949. At the time Roy Acuff was known as the King of Country Music. “I was a pretty good imitator of Roy Acuff,” Hank said. “But, then I found they already had a Roy Acuff, so I started singin’ like myself.” It turns out people were hungry for something different. The Opry audience demanded six encores. Today’s success can blind us to the opportunities of tomorrow. But we’ll never know what those opportunities are if we aren’t willing to buck the trend.

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20 Questions for 2020

We’ve used this process to completely restructure organizations. It not only clarifies existing roles but identifies roles that need to be created and those that need to be eliminated. When the right people are in the right roles it’s like putting round pegs in round holes and square pegs in square holes. Everything fits. Productivity, synergy and morale improve dramatically.

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Giving what is most difficult to give: What Doc Lunsford taught me about Christmas

The following story about Doc Lunsford was published on December 23, 1991. It remains one of my favorites. So much so that I decided to make it a tradition and share it with our subscribers each Christmas. At a time when Christmas seems to have lost much of its meaning in our hectic lives, it is my sincere desire that this story about Doc would remind us of what we are truly celebrating. Have a Merry Christmas and a Purposeful 2020!

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The Age of Disruption

We are living in the age of disruption. Of course, the world has always been in a state of disruption, but it’s now happening at warp speed. It’s affecting every industry and field of endeavor. It’s not a question of whether your world is going to be disrupted, it’s a matter of choosing to be the disrupter or the disrupted. If you choose not to be a disrupter you will be playing catch up in a game where you probably won’t catch up. But if you choose to be a disrupter be prepared — you will be attacked by the disrupted.

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Change or Transformation?

Futurist Daniel Burrus describes the difference between change and transformation like this, “Change comes from the outside in, forcing us to react and manage crises. Transformation, on the other hand, whether it is business or personal, always comes from the inside out, and that gives us far more positive control while allowing us to actively shape the future.”
Transformation always begins with the question of purpose. When you are purpose-driven you become proactive instead of reactive.

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The Leadership Top 10

There’s a big difference between being a manager and being a leader. In the words of John Quincy Adams, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” Managers push, leaders pull. People don’t follow managers, they follow leaders.

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The Perfect Place

Perfect can be defined as being entirely without fault or defect. It is human nature to desire perfection. In a perfect world, no one would suffer or struggle. But that is precisely the opposite of what we need or even want. In the words of Viktor Frankl, “Ever more people today have the means to live, but no meaning to live for.” Frankl, a neurologist and psychiatrist, was incarcerated in Auschwitz, the most famous of the Nazi’s concentration camps during World War II. It was in this hell-on-earth that Frankl validated his theory of Logotherapy which he chronicled in his book, Man’s Search for Meaning. “It is one of the basic tenets of Logotherapy that man’s main concern is not to gain pleasure or to avoid pain but rather to see a meaning in his life,” wrote Frankl. “That is why man is even ready to suffer, on the condition, to be sure, that his suffering has meaning.”

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A lesson in race relations

In the days of segregation, my mother, my father, and a young baseball player named Billy provided me with a lesson in race relations that I’ll never forget. Race relations is about doing the right thing. Regardless of the color of our skin.

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The 7 levels of leadership

My friend Kathy Wright has written an article entitled The 7 levels of leadership that is required reading for anyone who wants to understand what

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A Memorial Day Tribute

By Jim Whitt As this was our first trip to France we suffered from a perpetual state of directional disability. And that is how we

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A Superhuman Race

By Jim Whitt We’ve all seen the devastation of the fires that have swept across the Great Plains recently destroying lives and livelihoods. In its

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