Friday, October 30, 2015

The Friday Musical Interlude: Modern Talking's Thomas Andres Plays "I want to be Strong..."

Welcome to Friday here in #Outsiders. Our team settled on Modern Talking & Thomas Andres as The Artist of the Week and we hope all enjoy this selection. We wish all a fabulous Friday and wish all in the United States a Safe and joyous Halloween.

Notations From the Grid: Thought(s) For the Week

Welcome to Friday here in #Outsiders.

Our team chose a number of interesting "Thoughts" we saw on the grid including excerpts from +Jonathan Huie that is one of our daily must reads as we wish all a fabulous Friday......

When we hate our enemies, we are
giving them power over us:
power over our sleep, our appetites,
our blood pressure, our health, and our happiness.
Our enemies would dance with joy if only
they knew how they were worrying us,
lacerating us, and getting even with us!
Our hate is not hurting them at all,
but our hate is turning our own days
and nights into a hellish turmoil.
- Dale Carnegie  

Thursday, October 29, 2015

View of the Week: On #Leadership

For this edition of "View of the Week", our team selected this from the ever perceptive Goeff Colvin on the retirement of one of the anarchosims of Corporate America.    Where this goes is anyone's guess--but still worthwhile to think about and reflect upon--and we could not agree more that it starts with a reaffirmation of culture shift towards the art of the possible: 

Fortune Power Sheet By Geoff Colvin.
Daily insights on leaders and leadership
By Geoff Colvin
October 29, 2015
The media have begun to notice that several big, famous companies – Microsoft, Dell, Accenture, New York Life, and many more – are abandoning one of the most loathed traditions in management: the performance review. The WSJ noted the trenda few days ago, and last month the Harvard Business Review and CNNMoney.comdocumented it. The theme is consistent: Hallelujah, performance ratings are dead.
And I’d be cheering too, except for one problem. Performance ratings in their multiple forms are tools, and at many companies they’re despised not because the tools are bad, but because the users of the tools are inept. The danger is that leaders may conclude they can improve their organization’s performance by changing the tool, when the real issue, a much tougher one, is improving the skills of those who use any tool for helping employees get better.
Everyone’s favorite example in the bad-tool argument is the forced ranking system popularized by General Electric when Jack Welch was CEO: Every employee every year had to be placed in a category, high, middle, or low (the exact definitions of which changed as the system evolved) and had to be told where he or she stood. Many companies adopted the system when GE was flying high, and many of them had terrible experiences. Some employees were furious at how they were ranked, and some felt the system pitted them against one another: For me to be moved into a higher category, someone else must be moved out. Microsoft used the system until two years ago, and employees rejoiced when the company dumped it.
At that time I asked Dave Calhoun about it. A former GE executive, he was CEO of Nielsen and a fan of the system, which he used at Nielsen. His response was simple: The whole point “is to force a conversation,” he said. Many managers absolutely hate to tell employees, rigorously and honestly, where they stand. This is a way of making them do it. He had no quarrel with other means of making them do it – but experience has shown that if you give managers a half-inch of wiggle room to avoid giving employees an honest assessment, most of them will use it. In which case the employees never know how they’re really doing and stand far less chance of improving.
Many of the companies that are ditching the old rating systems are finding other ways to force that honest conversation. Adobe, for example, has attracted much attention with its “Check-In” system that requires feedback often, not annually. Other companies are adopting it.
In this as in so much else, the real issue for leaders is culture. In your organization is it culturally okay to be totally candid about performance, whether speaking upward, downward, or sideways? If so, your organization is probably an excellent performer. If not, then nothing else in the company will work well. Regardless of the evaluation tool being used, the culture needs changing. And change starts at the top.

Notations On the Grid: An #Outsider Newsflash On Creative Commons....

We here @ #Outsiders supported a Kickstarter Project on Creative Commons.  The World Wide Conference was held recently and we received these highlights from the Worldwide Conference which we wanted to report on:
A huge thank you to all of you who helped make Creative Commons' 2015 Global Summit in Seoul such a success! We know many of you travelled from far and wide or tuned in online in order to be with us — from Australia to Chile to India to Kenya to Lebanon, and across the globe.
The energy and momentum of our global movement to support the continued growth and diversity of the commons is much needed and was deeply felt at this year's summit – our biggest global convening in CC history.
One major highlight we'd like to share with you: our theme for day one was the Celebration of Sharing, 우공이산(愚公移山) 우공이산(愚公移山) or U-gong-i-san meaning "the foolish man who moved a mountain," celebrating our persevering spirit and the spirit of the Commons. 
To kickoff this celebration, we were honored to have a special surprise guest, Creative Commons founder and current United States presidential candidate Lawrence Lessig join us with a keynote, sharing stories from CC's history and rallying support for our future work together. Watch Lawrence Lessig's full Global Summit talk.

Photo by Sebastiaan ter Burg, video by CC Korea. CC BY
Days two and three focused on the Work of Sharing: 상선약수(上善若水)상선약수(上善若水) or Sang-seon-yak-su meaning "the supreme good is like water" and the Future of Sharing: 수구초심(首邱初心) 수구초심(首邱初心) or Su-gu-cho-shim meaning "a fox turns its head towards the cave from whence it came when it dies." 
Videos from many of our keynotes and programs are available on our website, all packed with ideas, debates, lessons learned, best practices, big wins, and more.

Monday, October 26, 2015

A "Tip of the Week" Courtesy of Darren Hardy of Success

We are hereby launching a new feature here in The "Education" Channel and the inaugural post is one on going vs. Growing.   

Please enjoy this "tip of the week" courtesy of Darren Hardy @Success:

Good Morning!
Today I want to break the age-old myth that wisdom is accumulated with age.
Here's the reality...
Wisdom is not (necessarily) earned through age.
I’ve met some really unwise 80 year olds.
And I’ve met some really wise 40 year olds.
Instead, wisdom is earned through this:
Action for today: ... Go to post

Sunday, October 25, 2015

On the Eve of a New Week: Thought(s) & Sentiments.....

On the eve of a new week here in #Outsiders, our team settled on this courtesy of +Jonathan Huie :

There are moments when the heart is generous,
and then it knows that for better or worse our lives are woven together here,
one with one another and with the place and all the living things.
- Wendell Berry

Love your neighbor as yourself.
- Jesus (Mathew 22:39)

A person's religion is what they do and say all day, seven days a week -not what they say and do at 10 am on Sunday. Our religion is defined by how we choose to treat the Least of These. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

These are comforting thoughts which we pray the World takes note of as the inferno of War, refugees and destruction seems to be the order of the day.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Notations For the Week-End: Thoughts on Leadership

As The Week-End dawns, we ran across these that resonated with us as we contnue our service here in #Outsiders: 

“Action is a great restorer and builder of confidence.
Inaction is not only the result, but the cause, of fear.Perhaps the action you take will be successful; perhaps different action or adjustments will have to follow. But any action is better than no action at all.”~ Norman Vincent Peale

This one was an exceprt from the Fortune's Geoff Colvin in his daily "Powersheet' Column on Leadership as he commented on the on-going leadership challenges in Washington:

It’s worth remembering that people deeply want to be led, and they want a leader who deeply wants to lead them. They can sense ambivalence. So here’s a thought to keep in mind as the actual casting of primary ballots draws near: Will voters believe that Donald Trump truly yearns to be president? Do you think he does?

This is as we all were reminded that: 

We wish all a fab Week-End.

Friday, October 23, 2015

The Friday Musical Interlude: MIchael Jackson's "Earth Song"

As it is Friday here in #Outsiders, it is time for the Friday Musical Interlude.   The powerful song by Michael Jackson is a stark reminder of the challenge awaiting us as we look to the Paris Conference and are witness to stronger Hurricanes and Typhons as epitomized by what is going on in Mexico right now with Hurricane Patricia with the work organizations like and others are doing.  This is also as the year has been the hottest on record:

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Notations From the Grid: On #environmentwatch

One of the key focus points here in #Outsiders has been to assess and understand the on-going challenge Mother Earth is faced with as we all have been dealing with Climate Change.     We have seen a shift despite the rhetoric by some of the current US Presidential Candidates.     This change is epitomized by the elections in Canada.

We have just recently discovered a new go-to site that reflects upon such issues which we have added to our "must reads" as we continue to develop the work and wanted to report on the latest newsletter we received this morning in our Virtual Studios:

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Notations From the Grid: On Making a Difference....

Our Founder was kind enough to allow us to share this for us to underscore our sense of purpose in service: 

On This Beautiful Morning: Passing Along A Greeting From The International Space Station

On this morning in #Outsiders, our team "checked on" Scott Kelly as he shared his "morning shot" from Space as we wish all a fab Wednesdsay: 

The beauty of this image was just mezmerizing.... 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Notations From the Grid: "Thoughts 4 the Week"

It was so telling that our team received this from +Jonathan Huie that goes to the heart of our mission here in the "Education" Channel and the broad objectives we embrace because it is about striving to be better on a constant and consistent basis:  


A good question is never answered.
It is not a bolt to be tightened into place
but a seed to be planted and to bear more seed
toward the hope of greening the landscape of idea.
- John Ciardi

We tell lies when we are afraid...
afraid of what we don't know,
afraid of what others will think,
afraid of what will be found out about us.
But every time we tell a lie,
the thing that we fear grows stronger.
- Williams Tad 

Re-examine all that you have been told...
dismiss that which insults your soul.
- Walt Whitman

Monday, October 19, 2015

Notations From the Grid: An #Outsider Newsflash Courtesy of USA.Gov

Our team recently ran across this we hope is of interest:

Learn How to Qualify to Have Your Federal Loans Balance Forgiven
Interested in shedding some federal student loan debt? If you plan things just right, there’s a strategy that may work for you. It’s called the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program. Here are the requirements:
  • You must work full-time for a public service employer—a government agency or a non-profit organization. (Not all non-profits qualify.)
  • You must have a qualifying loan and a qualifying repayment plan. (You can restructure both so they meet the requirements.)
  • You must make 120 qualifying payments, all while meeting the points above.
Read this Department of Education blog post for a step-by-step explanation of how to qualify for each requirement.

Notations On Our World: A "View of the Week" On Leadership Challenges

It is an interesting time to be a student of leadership.  We wanted to report on this "snapshot" and will be commenting on it over the course of the ensuing days as the reports come in:

Fortune Power Sheet By Geoff Colvin.
Daily insights on leaders and leadership
By Geoff Colvin

October 19, 2015
The week ahead is packed with leadership drama, yet much of the news coverage won’t tell you about that. It’s a reminder that whenever we read about companies or countries, we’re actually reading about leaders – and if we remember that, the news suddenly gets a lot more interesting and instructive.
Start with this week’s earnings reports – dry stuff, they may seem, but many of them are progress reports on a leader’s transformation efforts, and often the stakes are high. IBM will update Ginni Rometty’s bet on remaking the company around cognitive computing and cloud-based services. At United Technologies, new CEOGregory Hayes is deconglomerating, selling the Sikorsky helicopter business to Lockheed Martin in an effort to revive a plunging stock. Caterpillar’s Doug Oberhelman made his name before the financial crisis, before he was CEO, when he forced managers in the middle of a boom to plan for a bust. Now times are tough again, and he’s again implementing a bust strategy; the stock is down 37% in the past 15 months.
At American Express, Ken Chenault is trying to recover from the costly end of a long exclusive arrangement with Costco and bracing for a possibly adverse court ruling on how retailers steer customers toward different credit cards – all while, at age 64, realigning a succession plan after heir-apparent Ed Gilligan died of a heart attack on a plane in March. Microsoft’s Satya Nadella continues the high-wire act of adapting one of history’s greatest business models to a new era for infotech; for example, he recently gave away the company’s new operating system. McDonald’s board madeSteve Easterbrook CEO last March and told him to rescue the company, which was floundering as U.S. sales fell for six straight quarters, franchisees were rebelling, and some major cities were raising the minimum wage. Investors like his plan, and his challenge now is maintaining their faith as the stock hits new all-time highs.
Amid all those earnings reports, China announced third-quarter GDP growth of 6.9%, which beat forecasts but marked the slowest reading since 2009. Even if (like me) you’re skeptical of China’s official statistics, they can’t deny reality forever, and the slowing growth further chips away at president Xi Jinping’s stature and authority. Now look at the second-order effects. China’s slowdown is one factor in declining prices for commodities from Canada and Argentina – and both those countries are holding national elections this week. Not a good environment for incumbents. Polls say Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative Party will likely finish second to the Liberal Party led by Justin Trudeau, son of former PM Pierre Trudeau. Argentina’s incumbent president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, must step down because of term limits, and none of the three main candidates seems likely to get a majority, in which case a runoff will be necessary.
That’s a lot of human leadership drama just in this week’s scheduled events. The political coverage will emphasize the people while most of the corporate coverage won’t. But all of it will be about leaders, whether it says so or not.

Creative Commons License