Archives For Good Book

Team of Teams book“Management models based on planning and predicting instead of resilient adaptation to changing circumstances are no longer suited to today’s challenges.” – Walter Isaacson in the forward to Team of Teams by General Stanley  McChrystal.

Walter Isaacson – resilient adaptation

nuggets from “41”

January 5, 2015

Like many of you that love to read, I received some books for Christmas this year – Unbroken and 41Both are excellent books and are worth your time in my opinion.

Unbroken contains some incredible lessons about how your mindset impacts your reaction to your circumstances.

I found 41 to better than I expected. Of course it is a loving portrayal of father by his son made special by the fact that both held the office of President. In addition to the book being written with a warm and genuine tone, it is also filled with little gems of wisdom.

Following are some that I highlighted in the book:

“. . . grace in victory, good sportsmanship in defeat, and a commitment to ‘do your best’ at all times.”

“. . . the measure of a meaningful life was not money, but character.”

“. . . when you give your word, keep it.”

“. . . courage, loyalty, and service.”

“Do your best. Don’t be arrogant. Never complain.”

“He learned the importance of hiring knowledgeable people and listening to their advice, of delegating responsibility and holding people accountable, and of making tough decisions and accepting the consequences.”

There are more, but these especially caught my eye.

May you have a blessed week!


Have you ever been in a situation where you were leading an area in which you had little or no expertise? Where many of your team knew much more about the area/industry than you? How did you handle yourself? What did you do?

For me, except for the first two years of my military life, that has pretty much been the case most of my working life. I now am once again in the situation of leading a team that has much more technical expertise in our area than I do. Fortunately, I have been blessed with a good leadership team who want to be even better. I have learned to choose to trust my team and to do my best to take care of them while they take care of business. Of course, I do learn the technical aspects in each new situation, but it is often the case that I will never catch up to the experts I have led and do lead now. So I have learned to give power away and to take care of my team. So far that has worked for me – not perfectly of course – but it has worked.

One of the best books on this subject, in my opinion, is L. David Marquet’s Turn the Ship Around. Following is  TEDx Talk by David Marquet – it’s worth watching if you are interested in a better way of leading others.

keep it simple

November 18, 2013

Good Monday morning to you!

Do you ever get tired of “business-speak” or “ministry-speak”? The cliches, the code words, sound–bite type phrases, and acronyms? At first they sound impressive – at least we think they do, but after a bit we realize that we don’t really know what they mean. Even when we are saying them, we don’t know what they mean.

Simple BookMaybe it’s time to start getting simple in our communications and start using plain English to communicate. In the book Simple, the authors recommend speaking as if you were explaining something to Aunt Edna. How would you explain your ministry or business to your favorite aunt – especially if they have no experience in your field?

When you communicate, talk to your favorite aunt. Use plain words and a warm conversational tone.

Here are a few suggestions from the authors:

– Short sentences.

– Simple, everyday words in place of jargon or technical terms.

– The use of personal pronouns such as ‘I’ and ‘you.’

– Active rather than passive verbs.

– And – as an added touch – humor, grace, or anything to break the tedium.

Keep it simple and communicate powerfully.

Peace and grace to you,



Good morning – looks like it is going to be a beautiful day here in northeast Indiana. Finally looking like spring.

I have been enjoying a good book called Creative Intelligence by Bruce Nussbaum. One thing that has struck me so far is his creative intelligencediscussion on framing and reframing. Essentially framing is how we look at things – our lives for instance. We all have a set of lenses through which we interpret the world and many times those lenses are “out of focus”.

His key point is that we have the power to change those lenses. We have the ability to “reframe” ourselves and to see ourselves behaving in alternative ways. reframing is about breaking your routine. He goes on to talk about how our frames of engagement are shifting from passive to active, transactional to relational, and impersonal to very personal. You can change the way you see the world, how you connect with people and how you think about the future.So often we are so used to looking at the world in a certain way that we become blind to the possibility of something we can’t even imagine yet.

He has some questions he recommends you ask to help you in reframing so that you can see new opportunities:

What’s really going on?

How did we get here?

Why are things the way they are?

What if things were different?

Some good questions to help you to start thinking differently about your situation and your life and to start seeing new possibilities.

Hope your week gets off to a great start today!