Lester Brown to Retire.

I received the announcement that the Earth Policy Institute plans to cease operations. Very sad, but understandable. The founder, Lester Brown will retire in June 2015. Lester was a hero of mine and a great champion of bringing sense to an economic system that was self-destructive. His statistical analysis were essential to understanding the destructive forces at play as well as the clear profitable solutions that was being offered. If you are not familiar with him or the Earth Policy Institute, go visit their website.

Lester Brown surely comes to mind when one reads Man in the Arena by Theodore Roosevelt.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Excerpt from Theodore Roosevelt’s speech “Citizenship In A Republic”delivered at the Sorbonne, in Paris, France on 23 April, 1910

Getting out of ghetto is successful!

According to multiple, peer-reviewed studies, simply being in an open network instead of a closed one is the best predictor of career success. Michael Simmons, Forbes ENTREPRENEURS 

University of Chicago research shows that the social network you create offers competitive advantage for growth and innovation

26th TBLI CONFERENCE will be held in  Chicago, January 23, 2015

I am looking forward to greeting our speakers and guests at TBLI CONFERENCE@BOOTH/KELLOGG 2015 this week in Chicago. Keynote is Irene Pritzker, President of IDP Foundation

Can’t make it or want to support our capacity building on ESG and Impact Investing, make a charitable donation to TBLI Foundation.

Work That Matters & Mobilizing a Movement.

Was having a bit of a bad hair day, or days this week.

I was looking at some new blog postings, interviews, and came across an interview with Seth Godin about his decision to focus on Work that Mattered rather than Work that Paid. It struck me that what I started TBLI and Brooklyn Bridge because I wanted to do work that mattered, and not only work that paid. I had been losing that focus and needed to refocus on the original mission. Work that Mattered. I was re-energized and my hair looked great.

Seth Godin gave a great speech on Tribes and mobilizing societal change, at Ted.

Let’s get back to work that matters.

New Year. New Approach. New Angel

My apologies for the delay in writing my blog. It seems that there is no pause anymore between one year and the next. I returned from holiday early January and it has been non stop running. What ever happened to that week or ten day period where it was quiet; no pressure, relaxed, and time for reflection to prepare the new year.

We are all under so much pressure to produce more and more in less and less time. Sometimes, it feels like we are an orange that is being squeezed to make orange juice. The difference is that instead of accepting that the orange is empty, we, our employers, or our clients think that there is still more juice to be squeezed out. You can only stretch the rubber band so much before it snaps.

Do you get many social phone calls at work? How are you? How is the family? What have you been doing? How is your health? Gossip. etc. Very few people call just to tell an anecdote, a joke, a funny story, or an inspiring incident. This merry go round is moving too fast and there is no brake.

Stop. Why don’t we all call someone tomorrow, just to say hi. Share a joke or a funny story. Tell an inspiring anecdote, or a quote. Take time for each other. What a nice surprise it would be for each of us if we start taking time for each other by showing our humanity.This miniscule break might be the transitional period that we have lost in the last few years, particularly if we do this consistently. In the past, a letter was fast enough, now an email is not fast enough as a means of communication. I like the idea of slow food. Let’s do the same for life and call it living.

We are living in a time when if you can balance three spinning plates on three sticks, you are rewarded with a fourth. And then a fifth. -Stephan Rechtshaffen

Angel of the Month:

While I was in Thailand on holiday with my family, I took a cab. The cab driver, named Khun Som, was quite cheerful in spite of the massive traffic jam with which he was confronted. We started to have a conversation, in my poor thai. I mentioned that the skytrain and metro were going to be expanded significantly. Khun Som seemed quite happy about the development. That puzzled me. I asked if the expansion of the public transport system wouldn’t be a problem for him as a taxi driver. Those working in that profession make very little money. The average taxi fare is about 50-60 baht (a little less than 1 Euro). He said yes “it will be a problem for me, but never mind. It will be very good for Bangkok, for the people and the environment”. When I heard that I knew that Khun Som was the Angel of the Month.

It is easy to try to be generous as long as you don’t lose anything. For someone who has so little, to be willing to sacrifice that for the benefit of society is for me the epitome of a true angel. Congratulations Khum Som.