Tuesday, October 31, 2006


Carve your own virtual jack o'lantern. It's a lot less messy than the pumpkins the kids carved last night!

Monday, October 30, 2006


Just before he drifted off to sleep last night, Max listed all of the activities he's looking forward to participating in this week. Among them: Math Counts (a competitive math team) on Monday, Halloween on Tuesday, lunch with his friends on Thursday, and Friday "just because it's Friday."

I need to take a lesson from Max in appreciative anticipation.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Who is it? What is it?

I've been working on a new blog that will support my emerging professional identity. Trouble is, since the identity is emerging in fits and starts, the blog is, too.

Without a well defined purpose and focus, I'm finding it tough to write.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Yeah, right.

Today another young and highly talented colleague and friend walks out the front door at work for good.

So what? There's no shortage of high potential leadership in this country - plenty more like him wherever he came from.

Fare you well, HN.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Two Roads Diverged

I drove to work this morning as expected. After I logged in, I opened my browser to find Sandy's comment on the blog. I clicked the link and discovered a personal invitation to attend the BAWB Global Conference as a member of the media - in other words, as a blogger! I giggled to think of my little blog as a media outlet, but I admit the offer was far too appealing.

First I stressed over never having "enough time to do the things you want to do once you find them." Then I checked my calendar, my gut, and my heart and decided to make the time. Within 10 minutes I had answered my new emails and declined any non-essential meetings. I had one call at 3:30 p.m. that I felt compelled to attend, but it's a call, right? So I recorded the conference call number and determined that I could dial in from Cleveland on my mobile phone just as easily as I could from Columbus on my desk phone. (Thank you, technologists everywhere!)

About 7:05 a.m. I started out the front door of the building (against the incoming tide of puzzled earlybirds) and jumped in the car. I crossed my fingers that the "Service Engine Soon" lamp on the dash, which has been lit for several days, was due to the hanging muffler strap and wouldn't pose a significant problem.

Up and back in a little over 12 hours. It made all the difference.

Thanks, Sandy! You helped me think about myself (and my blogging) in a new way.

Monday, October 23, 2006

I Left My Heart in San Francisco . . . and Cleveland

My heart this week is with my mentors, colleagues, and friends who are participating in the BAWB Global Forum in Cleveland.

Appreciative Inquiry Annotations promises to blog the virtual (and live?) event, so I'll be checking in there when I can.

If I could be in two places at once, I'd also be in San Francisco at the OD Network 2006 Conference. Matt Minahan is journaling that event through the ODN listserv. And I know that Melissa and Page were planning to attend in person, so I hope I'll hear some rich stories when they get home.

What was the question again?

I started reading The Answer to How is Yes last week. It isn't an easy read. Block uses small words and short sentences, but he uses them in unfamiliar combinations!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

I'm Floating in a Most Peculiar Way

Earlier this week I dialed into a virtual improv workshop featuring Izzy Gesell and Andrew Rixon. Carla Rogers of Evolve Facilitation and Coaching sponsored the event, and she has planned a number of similar free "Leading Lights" conference calls that you might want to check out.

For me, the most interesting exercise on the call was an effort to have 5 people count upward from 1 to 10. The rules, which were designed for an in-person exercise, stated that you could not visually or verbally signal to the other counters who should proceed with the next number. If more than one counter said the same number, the game started over from 1 again.

The level of listening and awareness on the call during that exercise was intense. It was as if the entire group of almost 100 people on the call was collectively holding its breath in anticipation of the next number.

What would happen if we listened to each other with that kind of intensity at home? What if we listened to each other with that kind of intensity at work? What would the world be like if we could get our leaders to listen to each other with that kind of depth?

By the way, Andrew Rixon runs Anecdote, a very cool blog that I've been meaning to point out for some time.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

It's Been Such a Long Time

I've been walking the razor's edge the last few weeks. It has taken a lot of concentration to stay balanced, and I don't think I've come to the end of the journey yet. So bear with me as I eek a little more out of this metaphor. I'd like to point out some milestones along the path . . . in no particular order . . .

Blues Chasm
Parenting Passage
Road to Rockside
Niko's Sea of Loves
Little Brother's Wavering Visage
Cracked Tooth Cairn
Bright Spot of Renewed Friendship
Dark Cavern of Professional Uncertainty
Jealousy Green