…the clipboard

November 5, 2013 Leave a comment

Ever see someone wandering the hallways, standing around with their hands in their pockets, or fiddling with their phone? I have…there are plenty of them around, in many cases, too many.

Now compare them with someone walking around carrying a notebook, tablet or clipboard. Now there is someone that is going somewhere and doing something!

For all we know the person with their hands in their pocket just won the Nobel Prize…and the person “going places” just has to go pee….reality is that we don’t and won’t.

What we do know is perception is often reality – so carry a friggin notebook….

…make wise choices,
-sk

…myopic goodness

July 8, 2013 Leave a comment

Few things bother me more than people that lack focus. It is great to be aware of the situation and understand that your actions have reactions. It is great to want to help those around you and, thereby learn from others’ endeavors. Building trust, esprit de corps and collaborative relationships are awesome and are invaluable in personal and professional maturation and growth.

None of this means anything – unless you can hit your targets, commitments and achieve results. One of the focal points of these writings has been focused around delivering and achieving results. It stands to reason that supporting elements are important – but they are only just that – supporting elements. They are secondary to the goal….the only goal – hitting the target.

Look through the proverbial scope – see the opportunity and take the shot.

…make wise choices,

-sk

…target of opportunity

May 27, 2013 2 comments

military target “visible to a surface or air sensor or observer, which is within range of available weapons and against which fire has not been scheduled or requested.”

I was in Central London last week the same day that the Country was a-buzz with news of the attacks on a British Soldier in Woolwich by cowards filled with misguided ideology. The timing of this to Memorial Day, here in the States had such a connection that I felt compelled to include this in my post. Although news stories are often sensationalized, the basic facts are a soldier dressed in civilian clothing, wearing a well respected UK Veteran support organization was basically hit by a car and hacked to death with bladed weapons. He was out-of-the-fight so to speak, but still a military asset and a target.

There are plenty of dangerous jobs/careers that people knowingly (and sometimes unknowingly) assume. Serving in the Military is one of the very few vocations that follows you home in some cases.

It follows you home in the potential forms of discrimination, physical disabilities, emotional disabilities and more recently so – being a target. I am not going to pretend that random violence does not take place. I will not ignore the fact that certain demographics of people are targeted for crime. That being said, we have had domestic instances of such attacks  on military bases, and attacks  away from bases as well. Certainly, this trend won’t soon diminish as we have generations of post-war zealots that continue to use religion as an excuse to do harm to others. That, coupled with an increasing amount of veterans rotating out of the various battle theaters worldwide – will present more targets.

Yes, I realize that this as been going on since the dawn of time…how wonderful would this world be without religion (a post for another time)?

And so another Memorial Day is upon us, at a time of year where flowers would be in bloom all over the Country. And we can remember and live for and on behalf of those that no longer can….AF

While it is difficult to directly support Active Duty members of the military, it is fairly easy to provide support to trusted organizations. As in previous years, with one addition to the top, given recent events – are organizations that I personally believe in and support:

http://www.helpforheroes.org.uk/
http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/
http://www.taps.org/
http://www.fisherhouse.org/

Most, if not all do not expect support or recognition for their service…that’s why we call it service.

…make wise choices,

-sk

…the worm

May 15, 2013 2 comments

I was sitting in my backyard sipping some rum and enjoying a nice cigar the other day. Enjoying the signs of spring, I spied a bird swoop in and peck at a worm on the ground. It had rained the night before so food was plenty and the birds were having a great time feasting. As I watched the bird take the worm and start to eat…another bird swooped in on top of the first one.

It basically thumped the bird and took its worm.

The message of the day? The early bird may get the worm, but it takes a whole lot more to keep it.

Don’t get hung up on acquisition only…retention is equally as important.

…make wise choices,

-sk

…sticky sunshine

March 9, 2013 Leave a comment
Been a bit…got lazy..
The other day I watched Louie (love me some Louis CK) and it’s the episode that depicts him struggling through a stand-up routine in an Atlantic City lounge. So he’s not doing so well – folks not engaged, low energy and a generally depressing tempo of jokes. Louie goes into a rant on how much casinos stink and that folks are idiots for giving their money to Donald Trump (his venue was the a Trump hotel). Naturally this does not sit well with management and after an emotional back and forth, he quits. He puts his personal ethos for comedy (no holds barred..) before receiving a clearly needed paycheck.
Later that night, while moping around feeling sorry for himself, he stumbles into a much larger venue with Joan Rivers performing. This lady is, of course ancient and is walking the stage and actually making folks laugh. He chats with her and fast forwarding to the end – she has a very motivating perspective.
She reminds him that certain folks have a calling to do something great. In her example – this is to be a comedian (of course). Sometimes things suck, sometimes they don’t – but you never ever quit. Sure she makes some crude references to Betty White’s body parts and discusses some sexual acts that I’ll not repeat – but the message is clear. Beautifully and passionately conveyed from an old comic to a younger comic. Well done!
I do not know why – but for some random reason, this episode charged me up and put some pep in my step!
The message here, is that motivation comes from the strangest of places. You may not always see it coming but when it hits you, it sticks.
…make wise choices,
-sk

…turning left

January 14, 2013 Leave a comment

So, I was arguing with myself the other day in the park…it is a lovely sight if you ever happen to come upon this spectacle. It all started so innocently with some introspection on people and how they perceive themselves over having to do the right thing.

Taking a look back at history, we have ample examples of tremendous evil being accomplished under the illusion that it was the right thing..that fit someone’s idealogy. This could be true in business and in the personal life of a person. In my mind this always boils down to a person’s character.

I’m a firm believer (and I have written about this previously), that most people are inherently selfish. Furthermore, given the opportunity many will do what is best for them, despite being detrimental to others. We can argue that this is not universally applicable as we have examples of individuals doing selfless things, often resulting in harm to themselves. As with every type of Gaussian function, I am referring to the majority of individuals.

So what’s the hook here? Figure out a balance (vs. integration) – what is right and beneficial. Every situation is, of course different and sometimes it is better to turn the other direction – even for a short time.

…make wise choices,

-sk

…grand resolutions

January 1, 2013 Leave a comment

As I sit here, watching the final remnants of the Twilight Zone New Year’s Marathon, I reminisce about the previous year and the things that have come to pass. Every year seems to bring both wanted and unwanted adventures. Positive and negative experiences, some rich and fulfilling and others wasting time that I will never recoup.

One thing is pretty consistent, my personal drive does not change, diminish or falter (save for purposeful course corrections). It is not triggered by calendar events. Some of the most annoying things that I have read via various social media outlets, hell, just about everywhere…is the notion of starting over or beginning something wonderful in the new year.

Now, I can understand the advertising aspect and timing to merchandise products/services…etc – I get that. What gets my proverbial goat, is the fact that so many folks actually use Jan 1 as a catalyst to start something different, better…etc. Such ferocity and drive, much like a grand flame – burning with a bright light – very admirable concept. How many measure and push themselves after the temporal novelty has given in to the mundane drudgery of everyday life? I think you know the answer to this question.

I am not perfect, not even close. I have no desire to be, quite honestly. However, when something needs to be improved, augmented and/or ceased – it is done when it needs to be done, not when it is a certain time of the year.

Maybe in 2013, I’ll change my mind and do something different – or maybe I won’t.

…make wise choices.

-sk

 btw. Odd advertising, in every commercial break during the 24 hour episode marathon…Cialis, Sonic & Furniture stores….I don’t like the target demographic that  I have been placed into…not one bit!

…oil and water

December 17, 2012 1 comment

I often think about the impact technology has on our lives. The fact that we are constantly connected to one another, whether we like it not, can be a daunting one. Digital peer pressure and the expectation for prompt answers (regardless of time) to various forms of communications seems to be increasing.

What was once a notion of work-life balance has become a concept of work-life integration. In some cases, there is a clear line when one is “off” from their job. That being said, in many careers in globally connected companies – that line has become nothing more than a gradient.

We should accept this new normal and its impacts our lives. We must learn to ensure that we maintain a vigil in under/over commitment towards one end of the extreme or the other. It is no longer enough to balance. I believe that balance assumes a fulcrum of some sort exists as well as a clear understanding of the “weight” on each side. This is largely a fallacy.

I’ll argue that the weight is continuously shifting so much as a focus on balance has become a source of conflict. If we focus in integrating the two, I believe that allows for less personal energy expenditure on a perceived balance.

This allows us to focus on what’s important at the moment while operating within a larger context.

…make wise choices.

-sk

…no one likes a quitter

November 30, 2012 Leave a comment

I had some interesting conversations with people recently regarding some personal and professional issues. Most of those centered around conflict resolution as well their ramifications – one of my favorite topics. We eventually gravitated to the concepts of giving up versus surrendering. Initially discussions were centered around both terms having the same meaning and the debate was lively to say the least.

In my opinion the two terms could not be more different – and yet they are very tightly coupled to one another. The simplest way I can differentiate the two is that a person can surrender without giving up…but not vice versa. Giving up involves compromising principles, admitting defeat and one of the most serious transgressions (in my opinion) – quitting. Surrendering means compromising (temporarily) and/or putting yourself in control of someone (or something) else’s will.

Never Quit

…make wise choices,

-sk

…double tap

November 11, 2012 Leave a comment

Two days (among a few others) that remain etched into my mind are before us. Yesterday, marked the 237th Marine Corps Birthday  and today marks Veteran’s day here in the US. One is a joyous occasion celebrating the continued existence of the most fierce fighting force in the world. The other, a day of reflecting on the past and present men and women that gave service to our Nation.

Both events have an underpinning that I have discussed a few times in this blog – the notion of service. Doing something beyond yourself, and in many cases with no personal gain as a motivating factor whatsoever.

We do what we can so that others can do what they must.

Actively support organizations that help our warriors return to civilian life and contribute, to return to whatever normalcy they can and help support the families that they leave behind.

http://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/

http://www.taps.org/

http://www.fisherhouse.org/

…make wise choices,

-sk