Saturday Jan 10, 2009

Dilbert on Leadership Thoughts

So much for the wisdom of posting leadership thoughts ...

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Wednesday Dec 03, 2008

Courage From a Distance

AesopBack on November 11th, I posted a blog entitled "Innovation Requires Bold Courage."

Today, an interesting related quote attributed to Aesop crossed my desk: "It is easy to be brave from a safe distance."

I suppose this applies to all the armchair quarterbacks of the world and to all the folks who dream of innovation without really getting their hands dirty.  For football players, really bold courage means giving it all on icy Lambeau field in January.  For those who really innovate in technology, it means down-and-dirty, against-all-odds kind of innovation - a grind-it-out persistence in the face of criticism and doubt - not second guessing from the safe distance of the ivory tower.

I tip my hat to those who really innovate - and to those who brave the bitter cold of January football games in uncovered stadiums.

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Monday Oct 20, 2008

Emerson on Character

"Character is higher than intellect ... A great soul will be strong to live, as well as strong to think."

-- Ralph Waldo Emerson, American essayist, philosopher and poet.

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Friday Oct 17, 2008

Donald Trump Leadership

Dogbert aka Donald Trump?

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Thursday Oct 16, 2008

The Wisdom of Pete Hatton

Pete HattonIn his presentation at a quarterly business review this week, my colleague Pete Hatton offered bits of wisdom I just had to pass on to you:

General George S. Patton, US Army
"If everyone is thinking alike, someone isn't thinking."

"Make your plans to fit the circumstances."

"A good plan violently executed today is better than a perfect plan executed at some indefinite point in the future."
Tom Landry, Dallas Cowboys Coach
“I don't believe in team motivation. I believe in getting a team prepared so it knows it will have the necessary confidence when it steps on a field and be prepared to play a good game.”
Sir Alex Ferguson, Manchester United Manager
"When an Italian says it's pasta I check under the sauce to make sure. They are innovators of the smokescreen."

"David Beckham is Britain’s finest striker of a football not because of God-given talent but because he practises with a relentless application that the vast majority of less gifted players wouldn’t contemplate."
Pope John Paul II
"Stupidity is also a gift of God, but one mustn't misuse it."
Thanks, Pete!

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Saturday Sep 13, 2008

Leadership Quote: Oliver Wendell Holmes

"Every calling is great when greatly pursued."

This quotation came from either Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., (1809-1894), American physician, writer and poet, or his son, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., (1841-1935), US Supreme Court Justice.  It has been variously attributed to both.

I think this is a profound statement.  The greatness of our life's work does not depend so much on what so-called "status" it might bear or others may think of it, but on the intensity, passion and diligence we give it.

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Stretch Goals

I participated in a conference call yesterday about establishing yearly "performance maps" that include goals to achieve during the current fiscal year. Coincidentally, the Dilbert comic strip yesterday addressed the same subject.

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Saturday Aug 09, 2008

Leadership Quote: Marcus Arelius

"Our life is what our thoughts make it."

Marcus Aurelius, Roman Emperor from 161 to 180

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Thursday Feb 14, 2008

Napolean Dzombe - Heart of a Champion

Early this morning, as Valentine's Day dawned for me in the Santa Clara Holiday Inn, I met a new hero in my life, Napoleon Dzombe of the African nation of Malawi. Knowing that I would be out of town today, my wonderful wife slipped a small Valentine's gift into my suitcase before I left home. When I awoke early in the morning, I opened the gift, which included a DVD entitled "The Blessings Hospital Miracle," and watched it on my laptop.

The film recounts the true story of a remarkable man who emerged from personal poverty against seemingly unsurmountable odds to save thousands of his people from starvation during one of the worst droughts in Malawi. We can learn much from the courage, determination and selflessness of this true champion.

You can watch the entire 25 minute film here or purchase the DVD here.

I highly recommend it.

Thank you, Claudia, for introducing me to true greatness this morning. Happy Valentine's Day!

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Discovering Identity was founded on in May 2005 as a means of documenting my exploration of the field of Identity and Access Management. In February, 2010, I switched to hosting the blog at In March 2012, I began posting Oracle-related information in both places.

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