Battery Storage Is More Important Than Energy Generation – Salt Batteries (MIT)

New Atlas – The new system, which the team calls Thermal Energy Grid Storage-Multi-Junction Photovoltaics (TEGS-MPV), is based on the molten salt batteries that sit at the heart of grid-scale energy storage systems like concentrated solar. But there are a few problems with salt as a storage medium – for one, it becomes quite corrosive when the heat is cranked up.

“The reason that technology is interesting is, once you do this process of focusing the light to get heat, you can store heat much more cheaply than you can store electricity,” says Asegun Henry, lead researcher on the study. “This technology has been around for a while, but the thinking has been that its cost will never get low enough to compete with natural gas. So there was a push to operate at much higher temperatures, so you could use a more efficient heat engine and get the cost down.”

Alphabet’s hot salt energy-storage project becomes its own company (Google – Alphabet)

Malta is working on a megawatt-scale pilot plant.

Alphabet’s X division has played host to a string of experimental ideas, and another one is spinning out as an independent business. Malta uses cheap, abundant materials including salt, anti-freeze and steel to store power at grid scale.

Malta taps into the laws of thermodynamics to store renewable and fossil energy as heat in molten salt and cold in low-temperature anti-freeze until it’s needed — you probably still need electricity at night, when the sun isn’t shining on your local solar farm. The company is working on a pilot plant, backed by $26 million from its first funding round, which was led by a fund Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates and Michael Bloomberg are involved with.

Power storage is often a cumbersome, expensive problem, particularly for the likes of wind and solar farms. Providing them with a reliable, inexpensive way to keep electricity in reserve could cut down on waste, while helping renewable energy companies find the bandwidth to generate more power.

Russel Brand Podcast – What Is Utopia – Candice Owen

Spend a couple of hours on this podcast and you won’t be disappointed. The banter and ability for Brand and Owen to articulate their belief systems individual impressively. Note the pace, the quickness of the back and forth and the use of logical fallacies in their back and forth.

What is Utopia? Is it Brands vision of small communities and love and understanding or is it Owen’s belief that deep down humans are bad and unchecked we devolve into dark places. Is it love or individidual liberty. This one made me think.

An explosive conversation with controversial conservative thinker Candace Owen – a staunch advocate for the free market, capitalism and Donald Trump. Listen to some heated debates about the pros and cons of the left and the right and an attempt at negotiating what utopia might look like!

HERE is the SHOW

Nietzsche Explained To The Common Person

Check out this four-part discussion on the philosophy and ideas of Friedrich Nietzsche. Famous for his God Is Dead quote, learn what was behind the statement and how we as a society are worse off because of it. 

Stephen West – from Philosophize This! – For anyone interested in an educational podcast about philosophy where you don’t need to be a graduate-level philosopher to understand it. In chronological order, the thinkers and ideas that forged the world we live in are broken down and explained.

The connection with Nazi Germany is explained away in one of these episodes as his sisters wrarping of his ideas after his death.  

Nietzsche is a fascinating figure who ultimately went mad. This first episode is a bit hard to follow but sets up the next few episodes. I had to listen to these a couple of times to pick up all the nuances. 

The part I’m wresting with is the ideas around Power. Integrating the Stoic ideas with the Nietzsche model is going to take some thinking about.  In the end, the balance between ‘nothing happens as good or bad, it’s just how I interpret the events’ (Stoic) and ‘what good is happiness without sadness to appreciate the full range of emotions’, is the crux of the merging of ideas. 

Pain is good? After hearing how Nietzsche describes the concept of living on the edge and feeling the full range of emotions from pain to happiness, I sort of get it.  The analogy of the CAMEL – LION and CHILD is pretty interesting. The Lion and Dragon motiffs continue to show up in history.

The Lion and The Gazelle – Business Style

Business, like the great planes of Africa, you better be faster and more aware than the next guy or you’re going to be eaten. Love this CNBC story…love it so much I live it in my organizations. 

I love this; It doesn’t matter if you’re at the top or the bottom of the food chain, you better be on your game.

The Future – Technology of the Sharing Economy

When you see a movie, listen to a podcast or read an article that you think about weeks or months later, the message was impactful.  The interview with Russ Roberts from EconoTalk and Michael Munger about the economy of the future is one of those impactful interviews. 

Listen – HERE

Economist and author Michael Munger of Duke University talks about his book, Tomorrow 3.0, with EconTalk host Russ Roberts. Munger analyzes the rise of companies like Uber and AirBnB as an example of how technology lowers transactions costs. Users and providers can find each other more easily through their smartphones, increasing opportunity. Munger expects these costs to fall elsewhere and predicts an expansion of the sharing economy to a wide array of items in our daily lives

The show digs deep into the future of sharing with the analogy of a power drill. Think about how often you use a drill, to hang a picture or fix something. Why buy when you can share. Facinating discussion on dreaming about how far AirBnB or Uber can and will go. 

Suffice to say, the future worker is going to be disruptive for workers. The jobs of tomorrow will be in creative thinking and the humanities and for the STEM fields who are programming the machines.  Schools of tomorrow will have to adjust to the markets of the future. 

If you’re interested in this topic, make sure to watch the documentary – Automation and the Future of Jobs – at 2016 work by a Swedish network available on Amazon Prime.

Towards the end, the discussion on Universal Basic Income comes into the documentary.  Check out Hanomy Manifesto for a deeper look at that concept. As the future evolves with automation, as a society, we’ll be forced to ask; What is the meaning of work?

Discussion On Where We Are As A Society- Zen Master

Doshin Nelson Roshi describes himself as poet, troublemaker, and teacher. He is the head abbot of Integral Zen – an expert in both the tradition of Zen and the Integral philosophy of Ken Wilber.

Victimhood – Personal Responsibility – HERE

Self vs Ego – HERE
Zen Mind, Integral Theory and Jungian Psychology – HERE
Shadows – HERE
Radical Responsibility – HERE
When Trauma Leads To Growth – HERE

Victor Davis Hanson – The Trump Phenomenon and Mid Term Elections

I enjoy Victor Davis Hanson‘s historical perspective on modern day events. He makes the stories of ancient Rome and Greece come alive and his lectures on WW2 are detailed and much different than we hear from textbooks.

Hanson is an American classicist, military historian, columnist, and farmer. He has been a commentator on modern and ancient warfare and contemporary politics for National Review, The Washington Times and other media outlets.

A couple of recent interviews on current topics rung true for me. Give a listen to this podcast and a new interview and catch a historical perspective on current events.




The Foundations Of Making Schools Work – Research Paper

Abstract – J Higgins 2018

Numerous studies have pointed to teacher quality as a major predictor of student outcomes. To define quality teaching, this paper will focus on evidence-based strategies that can be implemented in a school network that will translate into student achievement.  The leadership skills needed to implement these strategies will be outlined and real-world application in a mid-size school district will show how these strategies can be.

Strong Teachers

The biggest predictor of success in the classroom is a strong teacher.  How do we find, train, support and reward strong teaching? This paper will spell out the importance of teacher quality as the single largest impact on student achievement. To arrive at teacher quality this paper will and analyze the myriad of attempts to impact teacher quality in the US. Putting the hypothesis that teacher quality will translate into market success, I will also lay out a real-world case with measurable outcomes to argue that there is a scalable way to fill schools, delight stakeholders (parents, regulators, teacher) and create a culture that leads to student achievement, all with a singular focus on strong teaching.  To improve our schools, leaders must learn from best practices from top quality schools, analyzing the data on teacher impact on learning and experimenting with real-world ideas in an active school network. Fixing American education can be done by one teacher and one classroom at a time.

Teacher quality and student outcome have been a much-studied topic in America. Work by the National Comprehensive Center for Teacher Quality aggregated the myriad of completed studies and surmised that not all measures of teaching quality produce results in the classroom. Of the four areas measured, I’m going to focus on two characteristics that as an operator of schools I have the biggest impact on. Those areas are Teacher Practices and Teacher Effectiveness. The other two areas that the study covers; Teacher Licensure and Teacher Characteristics are important but are more human resources and screening functions and should be implemented before a teacher joins a school. The focus of this paper is to use researched-based findings that can improve the performance of teachers in my school network.

The following research-backed techniques have been found to lead to higher student outcomes,

  • A induction and mentoring program for new teachers into the school network (Cohen & Hill, 1998; Kannapel & Clements, 2005; Wenglinsky, 2000, 2002),
  • Teacher subject knowledge, studies point to both elementary and high school teachers’ mathematics pedagogical knowledge as the strongest teacher-level predictor of student achievement (Hill, Rowan, & Ball, 2005; Rowan et al., 1997).
  • Attract students’ attention and interest in learning through creative and varied learning activities.  Engaged learning is important to hold student attention and for deeper learning.
  • Align the taught and tested curriculum so all students have opportunities to learn content and skills on which their academic progress will be measured (Hill and Crevola 1999).
  • Use student assessment data to diagnostically plan instruction for individual students and the whole class, determine student mastery and provide feedback to students that they can promptly use to increase learning (Danielson 1996; Darling-Hammond 1999; Hill and Crevola 1999).
  • Collaborative decision making between teaching staff and administration are some of several cultural characteristics that researchers say can differentiate high- from low-performing elementary schools (Kannapel & Clements, 2005).
  • Teachers that provide students with clear learning objectives and performance expectations is associated with student achievement in mathematics and reading at least at the elementary and middle school levels (Matsumura et al., 2006; Schacter & Thum, 2004).
  • Several researchers observe that teachers who consistently provide students with opportunities to explain and discuss projects and assignments is positively associated with middle school achievement in mathematics, reading, and science (Frome et al., 2005; Marcoulides et al., 2005; Matsumura et al., 2006).
  • Frequent assessment and feedback is one of the school-level practices that distinguish high- from low-performing schools (Kannapel & Clements, 2005)
  • Teachers’ use of interactive or hands-on teaching practices is positively associated with student achievement in elementary school mathematics and reading (Smith, Lee, & Newmann, 2001) and in middle and high school mathematics(Frome et al., 2005; Wenglinsky, 2000, 2002).
  • Jacob and Lefgren (2005) found that principals’ subjective assessments of teacher quality are substantially related to elementary school students’ mathematics and reading test scores.


School Leaders and Content

A comprehensive program to train teachers is the most impactful long-term strategy that a school system can implement. The research supports substantial investment in developing teachers. In order to lead a school, a leader must have a firm understanding of what makes teachers successful in the classroom. The leader must understand the role of standards-aligned curriculum that scaffolds from year to year and the role of constantly monitoring and assessing the effectiveness of the curriculum being used. Starting with a foundation deep rich curriculum and consistent use of data-driven instruction ensures that the school system has the WHAT to teach and the classroom teacher can focus on the HOW and WHY of the content.  

School Leaders and Teacher Development

The research points to a need for school leaders to create a training plan that encompasses the entire professional life of a teacher in the school.  From a new hire induction program followed up with a strong mentoring program to ongoing professional development programs, a school leader must recognize the time and investment required to perfect the craft of teaching. In addition to a comprehensive training program, a site leader must implement a culture of adult learning that is open and encouraging.  Feedback both informally and formally is an important step on a successful teacher development program. We’ve learned the difference between a Newtonian school culture that is rigid, bureaucratic and has silos throughout the campus in contrast to Glickman’s SuperVision model whereby the culture is collaborative and trust based. In a SuperVision school, the entire staff’s input is valued and there is a safety to experiment and share ideas is encouraged. Teaching is such a personal process. Good teachers pour their hearts and souls into not only the technical aspects of their job but the emotional connection that occurs between them and their students.  Giving feedback that is well received and taken constructively only occurs with school leaders that have built the trust with their staff.

School Leaders and Technical Skills Needed for Success

First and foremost a good school leader must possess a strong knowledge of what good teaching is.  From the almost 75 years of research in the field of quality teaching, student engagement is paramount to student achievement.  How one teacher achieves engagement compared to another is the art of teaching, but a strong school leader must respect the differences in style and personality but hold true to the end outcome of student engagement.  From humor to connecting uniquely with each student, to high energy and frequent formative assessments, each teacher has their own unique way of keeping students engaged. A school leader must know what engagement looks like and trust that their teaching staff is getting there in their own unique way.  A school leader must monitor, have a strong culture of ongoing learning and improvement and know the best way to impact each of their teachers without slaying their spirit. A school leader must also have a strong understanding of data-driven instruction and what story the data is telling. Data can point to global problems with curriculum, refinements needed with a particular teacher or issues within the classroom that may be beyond a teachers control. With a firm understanding of data-driven instruction, a school leader can adjust and monitor their teaching staff to ensure student achievement.

My District Wide Leadership Plan – Technical

The foundation that successful school has and that our organization strives for begins with a standards-aligned curriculum that matches our pedagogy, which happens to be classical education. A public school district in Arizona that consistently achieves the high end of year testing has developed a curriculum delivery model called Beyond Textbooks. Their content is now licensed to schools around the country.  Our network embarked on creating a similar program that is uniquely matched to Classical Education. The curriculum program launched this school year and teachers are discovering the benefits daily. With our Schoology (learning management system) we can provide our teaching staff with WHAT to teach and allow them to focus on the HOW and WHY of the content. The rollout process is intentionally explained as this the curriculum is available as guide rails and not a tract or script.  We are careful to respect the professional choices of the teacher in the classroom. We are finding that with the addition of 120 new teachers this year, having a foundation of standards-aligned curriculum that classically interconnects all the subject areas has taken a lot of stress off new teachers. We find that over time, as new teachers advance in our system they customize their content more to what their students engage with. With our Schoology program, we can quickly grow and add on campuses with the knowledge that we have a firm foundation of content at each campus.

The role of data-driven instruction is as important as the curriculum and content to our organization. Our team is in the fourth year of operation and each year our interpretation and adjustments towards data-driven instruction get better and better. Our team approach brings our leadership team together to go over the best practices that they have implemented at each campus.  Last year, I let each Principal develop their own corrective plans with approval and oversight by me. This year, our leaders met over the summer to codify the best practices for interventions and build out a toolbox of practices that each campus could choose from. We increase and formalized our intervention programs at each campus, we brought in digital tools to extend our intervention teams reach and each campus has a concerted focus on differentiation in the classroom and breaks intensive standard strand focus for those scholars in need.

Pulling It All Together

To exemplify how all these programs come together, last year our state tests showed a system-wide gap in grammar and editing and writing.  Since the problem was system-wide and not isolated to a campus or a particular grade we implemented the following fixes for this school year;

  1. Our virtual academy teachers and Principal built into our Schoology learning management system, writing prompts to mirror state standards by grade for narrative, informational, creative and opinion writing styles. We front-loaded narrative and informational text as the state tests are heavy in those areas. Schoology embedded writing prompts across subjects. Writing prompts are built into history and science to ensure emersion.
  2. Our campuses carved out specific time for writing to occur in the English blocks. We added in a grammar program from Shurley English with foundational memorization in K3 and application in 4 to 5 and made the grammar program optional (to new schools in particular) in 6-8th grades.
  3. Our Professional Development department held summer workshops including flying in Collins Writing to PD our English department and lead teachers on the program we embedded into our Schoology curriculum delivery. The PD department then holds campus-wide training once per quarter at each campus and offers full day, job-embedded training for teachers through the year.
  4. Our final step is to change our grading and assessment program to include campus-wide grading protocol that has a heavy focus on writing.
  5. We implemented a teacher evaluation program system-wide that was beta tested last year. The evaluation system was developed by Dr. Chris Moersche from San Diego and it focuses on the Danielson Rubric with elements of scholar engagement, teacher planning, and we’ve customized it to include aspects of classical educational elements that are unique to our model. The PD department and site leaders use the system teacher pop-ins or formal observations. We have a goal for each Principal/VPrincipal each month.  The 5 point scoring scale is tracked and aggregated system-wide. The benefit of the program is that if our district Professional Development Director and a site based Principal are off on their scoring of a particular teacher we can discuss the difference and move towards consistency. The aggregate data that comes back to us also helps us to tailor our future professional development offerings.

I call this our full court press on writing and we anticipate positive outcomes this year.

My District Wide Leadership Plan – Cultural

Struck with our rapid success in Arizona, I detailed out my ideas of the WHY of why our school system is working. I followed up the WHY is this working with my district team and site-based leaders. We spend intentional time in executing these five cultural foundations just like we do in curriculum design and data analysis.  The consensus from our team as to WHY this is working was, in order of importance;

  1. Trust – Relational Management style and a Family Feel and people feel that their co-workers genuinely care – the opposite being guarded and self-centered
  2. Servant Leadership – from every level, we model service to others. Glickman defines the concept as SuperVision, I’ve learned it as Robert Greenleaf’s Servant Leadership. My entire day is anticipating the needs of those below me and sweating the small stuff. We’ve parted ways with Principal’s and in the end, life was about them and not about how to serve our families.
  3. Gratitude and Purpose – We all realize that we are a part of something big and important. Our staff came to this profession for a reason, we all desperately create an organization that focuses on kids first.
  4. Respect for the Profession of Teaching – I was CEO/COO of a mid-size medical and it was my first exposure to leading professionals. Medicine was changing and regulations were piling on. I watched these seasoned professionals that had dedicated their lives to their craft being relegated to button pushers. I make sure that in every decision my team makes, we don’t turn our teachers into robots. We welcome and encourage their creativity and uniqueness.
  5. Change is in our DNA – The hardest part of my transition from business to leading in education is instilling a culture of change. There are so many people that have risen up to leadership only in the teaching profession that falls back on what they’ve learned before and become resistant to change. In the business world we change or die, I’m trying to bring that mentality to the education field but it remains a daily struggle.




TQ Research and Quality Brief. Goe and Strickler.

Teacher Quality and Student Achievement. Kaplan and Owings. Research Gate


What I’m Reading and Listening To – Cleaning Out The Junk Drawer 2018

My process is that when I find something I like or that speaks to me I save it. Like the old days of clipping newspaper articles, I’ll typically email the content to myself,  then clear through my articles/podcasts and then edit down the nuggets. Life and been crazy and these past few months have gone by so quick, I haven’t had a chance to edit down and post individual pieces of wisdom.

To clear out one of my to-do lists, these are the best of the stuff I’ve learned from in these past few months;


The Good Life – Seth Godin – HERE 

We read the book Linchpin with our leadership team. He writes about ( the post-industrial revolution, the way ideas spread, marketing, quitting, leadership and most of all, changing everything. You might be familiar with his books Linchpin, Tribes, The Dip and Purple Cow. His latest book is This Is Marketing (


Second City Works presents “Getting to Yes, And” Pastor MaryAnn McKibben – HERE

The more I listen to this Second City Works podcast series the more I want to take Improv classes! As I listen, Improv is all about supporting your cast mates. The Yes, And theory is that moment (after much practice) when you can perform with a team and constantly be feeding your team mates with positivity and the setting them up for success. 

Kelly has a powerful conversation with pastor MaryAnn McKibben Dana whose new book explores how she has incorporated her improvisational training into her spiritual life and pastoral work.

HERE is a list of all their episodes – Poke around and find some you like.


Finding Mastery; Conversations With Michael Gervais – Dr. Brene Brown – HERE

This podcast format is Gervais does long form interviews with people at the top of their game in multiple fields. His format is amazing, he’s prepared and his graciousness with his guests get them to open up and become very comfortable. He’s vulnerable which in turn opens up the guest to be the same. Having done radio for 7 years, I can really appreciate the art of the interview. Gervais has it.

  • Brené’s TED talk – The Power of Vulnerability – is one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world with over 35 million views.
  • The relationship between vulnerability and courage is a focal point of our conversation.
  • In Brené’s words: “You cannot get to courage without walking right through vulnerability.”
  • So what is courage all about and when is it the right time to be vulnerable?
  • Whether it be with a loved one or in the corporate world, do you have the courage to say or do the difficult things?
  • And if you’re a leader, do you have the courage to create a culture that actually allows for people to fall on their face and get back up?
  • Brené has an amazing way of putting her researching into action with simple and applied strategies so I can’t wait for you to learn from her.


The Good Life – Mitch Albom – HERE

I read and LOVED Tuesday’s with Morrie. My daughter just discovered it 21 years after I did. Our discussion was amazing. What I love about getting to know Mitch’s back story is his unending GRIT!  How does a kid obsessed with making it in the music end up becoming an internationally renowned, best-selling author, journalist, screenwriter, playwright, radio and television broadcaster and…and yes, musician? That’s what we explore in today’s wide-ranging conversation with Mitch Albom(


Article –

21 lessons for how to get the most out of life, from a guy who retired at 50
Marketwatch -Jonathan Look HERE

I was going to detail the ones I like but there are too many. This has so many of the Stoic philosophies that I try to live by, which is probably why I’m sharing it.


My week living as a Stoic: like a Buddhist with attitude, but hard to do hungover – HERE


I can’t stop the news cycle, but maybe I can change the way I process it. Would the ancient teachings of Stoicism help?

The Roman Stoics believed that unhappiness was caused by trying to control events that we have little say over. The only thing we can control is our thinking. By practising Stoicism, we cultivate an attitude of “calm indifference to external states”. Virtues such as rationality and courage are prized.

Stoicism is an ancient Greek philosophy that preaches fortitude and self control. It was developed in the third-century BC and has had a revival in recent times with a range of books, online communities and YouTube channels.

Things are only bad if we think they are bad

Achieving your goals will not make you happy

Stoicism similar to Buddhism

As philosopher and author Nassim Taleb once wrote on the similarities between the two: “A stoic is a Buddhist with attitude.“Those details begin with how both systems seek to reduce suffering by helping us to better understand the world and how we interact with it.“For the Stoic, all happiness is internal.”

Difficult people have been around forever

“Say to yourself first thing in the morning: today I shall meet people who are meddling, ungrateful, aggressive, treacherous, malicious, unsociable. They are subject to these faults because of their ignorance to what is good and what is bad.”But Stoicism teaches us that all human beings are our relatives – we are like “two sets of teeth in the same jaw” – and when we meet hostility from others we should greet it with tolerance and affectionate care for them.


Finding Mastery; Conversations With Michael Gervais – Producer Marty Callner – HERE

I am Marty Callner! As I listened to Marty’s story, the things that resonated with me were; the desire to create, the attention to detail, the pre-work and research is key, dream big, don’t chase money – chase a lifetime body of work. I particularly love how he found the accolades unimportant and superficial. The pay off is great work that moves people. Give a listen if you want to know what makes me tick.

For Marty it all started with his learning to “dream big.”

His mom taught him that, “A man who doesn’t build castles in the air doesn’t build them anywhere.”

How cool is that thought?

Marty is a risk taker, an innovator, and to this day he’s looking for ways to reinvent himself.

The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Robert Green – HERE

I stumbled on 48 Laws and loved it. I liked the narcissist discussions in this interview. The Psychology Podcast has so many great thinkers on human nature, development, and interactions between people. DIG IN.

Today we have Robert Greene on the podcast. Robert is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The 48 Laws of Power, The 33 Strategies of War, The Art of Seduction, and Mastery, and is an internationally renowned expert on power strategies. His latest book is The Laws of Human Nature.   In this episode we discuss:

  • What is human nature?
  • How to transform self-love into empathy
  • The deep narcissist vs. the healthy narcissist

A few other great The Psychology Podcasts;
Project Grateful – HERE
Daniel Pink on motivating people – HERE


Why Every Man Should Study Classical Culture – HERE

Brett and Kate McKay | November 23, 2015 –November 6, 2018 A Man’s Life

1. Enhances your cultural literacy.

2. Allows you to take part in the “Great Conversation.”

3. Allows you to see the interconnectedness of ideas.

4. Instills virtue and morality.

5. Increased understanding of your government and founding principles.

6. Disciplines the mind.


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Jonathan Haidt – HERE

I’ve read, blogged and shared a bunch of Jonathan Haidt stuff over the past few years. His analysis of what’s happening in our Universities is really interesting to me. I caught in on an AEI interview and his theory of what happens to children between the ages of 9 and 11 aligns with what I’m seeing in schools at and around 5th grade. HERE is the AEI panel discussion or the embedded video below. We need some free-range kids at critical junctions.


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman  – Can science ever solve the mystery of the existence of God?HERE

Michael Shermer and Philip Goff  Michael is the founding publisher of Skeptic magazine, a monthly columnist for Scientific American, and a Presidential Fellow at Chapman University where he teaches Skepticism 101. He is the author of New York Times bestsellers Why People Believe Weird ThingsThe Believing Brain, and Heavens on Earth: The Scientific Search for the Afterlife, Immortality & Utopia. Goff is an associate professor in philosophy at Central European University in Budapest. His main research focus is trying to explain how the brain produces consciousness. His first book, which was published by Oxford University Press, is called Consciousness and Fundamental Reality. Goff is currently working on a book on consciousness aimed at a general audience.


Have you got a “self-actualized personality? A new test brings Maslow’s ideas into the 21st century – HERE
By Christian Jarrett

Next, he reworded some of Maslow’s original language and labelling to compile a modern 30-item questionnaire featuring 3 items tapping each of these 10 remaining characteristics: Continued freshness of appreciation; Acceptance; Authenticity; Equanimity; Purpose; Efficient perception of reality; Humanitarianism; Peak Experiences; Good moral intuition; and Creative Spirit (see the full questionnaire below and take the test on Kaufman’s website; our report on the findings continues underneath).


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Dr. Plomin – How DNA Makes Us Who We Are – HERE

Because I’m in the education field I found this discussion fascinating. Kaufman challenges Plomin on some of the Nature v Nurture research that has been debated for years. The role of early education jumped out at me in this discussion.

  • The genetic influence on television viewing

  • How virtually everything is moderately heritable

  • The effects of extreme trauma on the brain

  • How the abnormal is normal

  • The potential for misuse of genetic information to select children for particular educational tracks

  • Recent research on shared environmental influences on educational achievement

  • The “nature of nurture”

  • The role of education on intelligence

  • How teachers can and cannot make a difference

  • The genetics of social class mobility

  • Free will and how we can change our destiny



These Are the 4 Most Important Things I’m Looking for When I Interview Job Candidates

From Jobs, a Flipboard magazine by presb888

After conducting hundreds of interviews, I’ve learned just how much these things matter. Rapidly scaling your…

Read it on

1. Mission and values alignment.

The fundamental thing I look for in any candidate, regardless of department or level, is alignment with our company’s mission and values. We’ve taken a lot of time to define exactly what our company has set out to do in the world, and the five traits and qualities that we feel are most important.

Anyone who wants to join our team should demonstrate that those same things matter to them.

To test whether a candidate fits this qualification, think about what living your values and mission would mean for someone in that particular role in your company. Ask questions that get to the heart of how they think about those things and what they’ve done in relation to them in the past.

2. A problem-solving mindset.

In a rapidly scaling business like ours, the challenges we face day-to-day are often new and ambiguous. Most roles require someone who can remain graceful under pressure and think independently.

Another useful skill is the ability to put structure around problems — the ability to take an amorphous issue and think about it in a systematic way.

Situational interview questions, in which a candidate describes how they would handle a hypothetical scenario, are useful in teasing out problem-solving abilities. The person’s conclusion is important, but pay just as much attention to the thought process they used to reach it and how they defined the problem.

3. A clear vision about how they fit in.

Few jobs today require order-taking automatons. For every position, I am looking for candidates who demonstrate leadership qualities and a sense of vision for themselves, their team, and the company. Even if the role doesn’t involve leading an office or a department — today — the team member will likely lead a project or a process at the very least.

You can ask the person about their leadership style and goals, but you’ll also want to pay attention to whether they demonstrate other skills and traits you expect a leader in your organization to have — for example, how they think about mentorship or whether they learn from their mistakes.

You should also evaluate the person’s perspective about the business and its capabilities, an understanding of the broader field, and a view about how to succeed with those factors in mind.

4. Strong communication skills.

This may seem like a basic one, but it’s hard to overemphasize just how important good communication skills are. To be successful in many roles, you need to be able to communicate in the right way with many different types of stakeholders.

Interviews are good opportunities to assess someone’s communication skills. Are they clear about what they are looking for and how that aligns with the role they’ve applied for? Are they honest? Do they avoid giving superficial answers? Do they know who they are and what they want, and clearly and consistently communicate this throughout the interview process?

An interview is an opportunity to determine whether a job candidate is a good fit for an open role — and vice versa. By focusing on these four areas, you can hone in on a few of the things that matter most to the success of both the candidate and your company.


Why we need both science and humanities for a Fourth Industrial Revolution education – HERE

As more computers equal or surpass human cognitive capacities, I see three broad purposes for education:

  • Most obviously, to instil thequality STEM skills needed to adequately meet the needs of our ever-more-technological society;

  • Just as importantly, to instil the civic and ethical understanding that will allow human beings to wield these powerful technologies with wisdom, perspective and due regard for the wellbeing of others;

  • To find much more creative and compelling ways to meet these first two needs across a far wider range of ages and life situations than has traditionally been the case in our education systems.


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Dr. Flynn – HERE 

Dr. Flynn is literally the pioneer in intelligence and G Factor. Well worth a listen in particular their discussion on Charles Murry (of Bell Curve) and meritocracy. Flynn sort of debunks the Murry thesis on black-white intelligence. Family plays a major part in intelligence. EXPECTATIONS are the key!

  • Flynn’s attempts to clarify intelligence and its causes
  • The g factor, and what gives rise to it
  • The validity of multiple intelligences theory
  • Intergenerational trends (the “Flynn effect”) vs. Within-generation trends
  • The “social multiplier” model of intergenerational trends in intelligence
  • The multiple causes of black-white differences in IQ
  • Charley Murray and the meritocracy thesis
  • Transcending the politics of intelligence research
  • The dangers of suppressing ideas and research
  • The 20% wiggle room of autonomy on IQ tests
  • The difference between internal and external environment
  • The impact of having a “family handicap” on SAT scores
  • Toward a more humane society


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Anxiety and Fear – Dr. Ellen Hendriksen – HERE

Her latest book is called “How to Be Yourself: Quiet Your Inner Critic and Rise Above Social Anxiety.”   What is your real self?   What is social anxiety?   What is the opposite of social anxiety?   What’s the goal of therapy to treat social anxiety?   How to be comfortable when you are “caught being yourself”   The importance of self-compassion   The difference between introversion and social anxiety   Techniques to overcome social anxiety   The Orchid-Dandelion Hypothesis   The relationship between the highly sensitive person and openness to experience   The importance of going out and living your life first, and letting your confidence catch up   The importance of turning attention “inside out”   How perfectionism holds us back   The importance of “daring to be average”   The myth of “hope in a bottle”   Gender differences in the manifestation of social anxiety


How To Become An Effective Leader – HERE

1. Know your concrete guideposts.

For others to like you, they must know you. For them to know you, you must know yourself. Every likable CEO has foundational principles for who they are and the person they desire to become. These are concrete guideposts that shape their thinking and their decisions. When you communicate these guideposts, others are attracted to your leadership and your core values.

What are the concrete guideposts that guide your decisions in leadership and life?

2. Be curious about other people.

In How to Win Friends and Influence People, the notable Dale Carnegie stated the importance of being “genuinely interested in other people.” Every CEO should make it a priority to be curious about their team and the people they meet. Any one person has the ability to teach you something. When you are curious about others and seek to learn what they can show you, it often leads them to like you.

How curious are you about others? What’s the one thing you might be interested in learning about any person you meet?

3. Grow yourself and your outlook.

People are attracted to people who focus on their own growth and development. Growing CEOs have a different outlook on life and experiences because they continue to stay fresh and up to date on the newest thinking that is changing the marketplace. People like to learn from these leaders.

What experience has allowed you to grow your outlook in the last six months?

4. Be diligent about acts of thoughtfulness.

Many times, likability is a direct result of thoughtfulness. Though you don’t read about thoughtfulness in many business books, it’s a key element to good business and to developing a likable personality. Thoughtful acts of kindness such as writing notes, acknowledging great work, or offering words of affirmation can go a long way in developing a friendly spirit.

How diligent have you been lately at performing acts of thoughtfulness?

5. See the best in others.

People like to be around people who see their potential. There is an old saying: “When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow bring out the best in ourselves.”

One complaint that many leaders and CEOs receive from their key staff is that they only focus on the negative or on what needs to be improved. Although it is essential to focus on improvement, it is equally as important to find and elicit the best in others.

Can you name the best ability of every person on your team?

Here is an essential truth that leaders would be wise to embrace: You will never become the best leader you can be until you become a likable one.

Forbes Coaches Council is an invitation-only community for leading business and career coaches. Do I qualify?

I am the CEO of the CXP – CEO Experience. My mission is to provide resources to leaders who desire to learn fast to lead further.


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – Organization Theory and Meaning at Work – Dr. Wrzesniewski – HERE

Another interview with a giant in their field. Dr. W has spent a life looking at Organization Behavior and the intersection on work and fullfillmnet. I liked the ongoing reference that Scott makes to Maslow and how deep these two got on his hierarchy of needs. I particulary enjoyed the discussion on faith and spirituality in being fully actualized. Dr. Wrzesniewski is a professor of organizational behavior at the Yale School of Management. Her research focuses on how people make meaning of their work in difficult contexts, such as stigmatized occupations, virtual work, or absence of work, and the experience of work as a job, career, or calling. Her current research involves studying how employees shape their interactions and relationships with others in the workplace to change both their work identity and the meaning of the job.   Topics incude:   – The definition of meaning   – The four main sources of meaning   – Spirituality as a potential source of meaning at work   – The way work allows us to transcend the self   – The definition of calling   – How to find your most meaningful calling   – The importance of “self-resonance”   – The difference between consequences and motives   – What is job crafting and how can it help you increase your calling?


Four Habits Of Highly Ineffective Companies – HERE

What are the characteristics of these highly ineffective companies? Here are four of them:

    1. They fail to adapt to the reality of the changing environment: In other words, leadership is satisfied with the status quo.
    2. The leaders of these companies are in a state of denial: They are resistant to change. They don’t realize that the competition is out there getting ready to disrupt them. They don’t believe they can be disrupted. This is a very dangerous way for a leader to think.
    3. They have adopted a “heroic” leadership model – employees are waiting for directives and instruction from above: The focus of this concept is on the employee. Employees are waiting for their leaders to tell them what to do. They won’t act on their own. They are corporately paralyzed. It could be due to fear. It could be due to lack of training. More than anything, they lack empowerment. And who’s to blame? While the spotlight is on the employee, the leadership is at fault for creating a culture in which good people, who are capable of doing good work, aren’t allowed to exercise their creativity and initiative.
    4. They have an overreliance on hope: There is an old saying, “Hope is not a strategy.” You can’t hope your way into success. When good things happen, it usually isn’t because of hope. It’s because of preparation and planning, which sets a company up to adapt and accept opportunities that come its way. Another old saying, “Luck is preparation meeting opportunity,” is not about hope or luck at all. It’s about positioning and being ready to move when the opportunity presents itself. The company that is relying on hope may be waiting a long time for it come around.

Companies that are highly effective take the opposite approach.

  1. They don’t settle for the status quo: They don’t sit idle. They consistently look to move forward and improve. They know that they must stay relevant to their customers, or they will be disrupted by a competitor.

  2. Leadership knows the customers and the competition: They have a pulse on the marketplace. They listen to their customers and observe their competitors. They make the necessary moves to stay relevant to their customers and push to stay ahead of the competition.

  3. They have an empowering culture: Leadership recognizes that some of the best ideas are going to come from the people who do their jobs day in and day out. They not only listen to their customers (point No. 2 above), but also to their employees, and give them permission to make good decisions for the company.

  4. They are proactive in seeking opportunities: Akande quoted the great philosopher (and comedian) Milton Berle, who once said, “If opportunity doesn’t knock … build a door!” They don’t wait – or hope – for success to come to them. They go after it.


The Psychology Podcast – Scott Barry Kaufman – The Path To Purpose – HERE

I’ve been fascinated with the role of a leader and communicating purpose in an organization. From Maslow to Frankl the desire to for humans to strive for purpose in their life is a powerful motivator.  Dr. Damon’s most recent books include The Power of Ideals, Failing Liberty 101, and The Path to Purpose: Helping Our Children Find Their Calling in Life.   In this wide-ranging discussion, we cover the following topics:   –

  • The definition of purpose   –
  • The role of values in purpose   –
  • The difference between purpose and meaning   –
  • Vicktor Frankl’s “will to meaning”   –
  • How purpose is a late developing capacity   –
  • The difference between purpose and resiliency   –
  • The paths to purpose among young people   –
  • Methods for developing purpose   –
  • Moral commitment among moral exemplars   –
  • Purpose among leaders   –
  • The importance of taking “ultimate responsibility” in life   –
  • How we are leaving young people unprepared in a civic society


These Are the Skills That Your Kids Will Need for the Future (Hint: It’s Not Coding) – Inc. HERE

The jobs of the future will involve humans collaborating with other humans to design work for machines, and value will shift from cognitive to social skills.

Understanding systems

The subjects we learned in school were mostly static. Two plus two always equaled four and Columbus always discovered America in 1492. Interpretations may have differed from place to place and evolved over time, but we were taught that the world was based on certain facts and we were evaluated on the basis on knowing them….

So kids today need to learn less about how things are today and more about the systems future technologies will be based on, such as quantum dynamics, genetics, and the logic of code. One thing economists have consistently found is that it is routine jobs that are most likely to be automated. The best way to prepare for the future is to develop the ability to learn and adapt.

Applying empathy and design skills

While machines are taking over many high-level tasks, such as medical analysis and legal research, there are some things they will never do. For example, a computer will never strike out in a Little League game, have its heart broken, or see its child born. So it is terribly unlikely, if not impossible, that a machine will be able to relate to a human as other humans can.

The ability to communicate complex ideas

Much of the recent emphasis in education has been around STEM subjects (science, technology, engineering, and math) and proficiency in those areas is certainly important for today’s students to understand the world around them. However, many STEM graduates are finding it difficult to find good jobs.

On the other hand, the ability to communicate ideas effectively is becoming a highly prized skill. Consider Amazon. Though it is one of the most innovative and technically proficient organizations on the planet, a key factor to its success its writing culture. The company is so fanatical about the ability to communicate that developing good writing skills are a key factor to building a successful career there.

Collective Unconscious

Jung believed the human psyche comprised three components – the ego (the self,) the personal unconscious, and the collective unconscious.

Jung ascribed the “collective unconscious,” to be universal “types” of personas found in all humans; akin to an ancestral consciousness. Jung noticed that all humans possessed central themes and ritualistic behaviors that were common to all mankind.


He describes archetypes as unconscious psychic counterparts manifested in people’s lives; these emerge seemingly out of nowhere or when prompted by precipitating events.

Here are the descriptions of some of these universal archetypes which apply to the subject of personality disorders, particularly narcissism:

 The Ego:The true self.

 Shadow:The part of a person that is split off from the Self; the dark side of the real self; if a person is empathic, kind, and compassionate, his shadow has callous disregard for others; is fearsome and despicable. “not an activity of the individual but something that happens to him” (Jung, 1959). Complexes have shadow selves.

 Magician:In the shadow it can be used to deceive, distract and manipulate by altering perceptions of reality (Barlow, 2016). It is the boundary crosser; a person who violates societal rules, mocks authority, is fond of breaking rules; can be described as crafty, cunning, manipulative. The magician is the master of illusions.

 The Vampire:A sub-complex that does the bidding of the Magician. The vampire often appears to be a distant and detached, disinterested onlooker.

 The Bad King: A sub-complex that does the bidding of the Magician. The bad king is like a mini dictator.

 The Innocent:A sub-complex, appearing normal, which does the bidding of the Magician as well as the other two sub-complexes. The Innocent is the persona that is most like a child; he engenders others’ sympathy; tends to be naïve, and ignores reality.


25 Documentaries That Will Change Your Life – Esquire – HERE

These documentaries are powerful, shocking, heartbreaking, and intense, and each will expand the horizons of the viewers open to learning more about the world


These 18 Documentaries Have Shocking Endings That Will Shake You To Your Core – Buzz Feed – HERE

We asked the BuzzFeed Community for the most shocking documentary ending they’ve ever seen. Here are the OMG-inducing results.


4 Habits of Ultra-Likable Leaders That Are Hard to Find – Inc. HERE

1. Every good leader turns away from arrogance.

Because society places so much value on external accomplishments, appearance, and self-aggrandizement, the virtue of humility is mistakenly viewed as soft or weak–it’s the skinny kid who gets sand kicked on him by the neighborhood bully.

The Washington Post reports that, according to a 2016 College of Charleston survey, 56 percent of 5th and 6th graders believe that “the humble are embarrassed, sad, lonely, or shy.” And when adults are asked to recount an experience of humility, “they often tell a story about a time when they were publicly humiliated.”

That’s the perception of humility. And nothing could be further from the truth.

Groundbreaking research by Bradley Owens and David Hekman, as reported by The Post,  concluded that a humble leader doesn’t believe success is inevitable. “He constantly tests his progress. He revises and updates plans, in light of new situations and information. Acknowledging he doesn’t have all the answers, he solicits feedback. He encourages subordinates to take initiative. He prefers to celebrate others’ accomplishments over his own,” states The Post.

2. Every good leader soaks up the wisdom of others.

Smart leaders stretch their knowledge beyond intellectual pursuits. They continually evolve by soaking up the wisdom of others, acknowledging that they don’t know it all. Remember this quote?

If you’re the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.

You must view yourself as a small fish in the great big pond of life–seeking out connections and appointments from those further down the path than you in order to master new things.

3. Every good leader practices patience.

A leader who practices patience and is slow to anger receives far less attention and acclaim than a charismatic leader with a commanding presence but a short fuse. Yet the former has the clear edge.

In one 2012 study, researchers found that patient people made more progress toward their goals and were more satisfied when they achieved them (particularly if those goals were difficult) compared with less patient people.

4. Every good leader is self-aware.

In a study reported by Harvard Business Review, teams with less self-aware members substantially suffered; they made “worse decisions, engaged in less coordination, and showed less conflict management” as opposed to more self-aware individuals.

Self-awareness is crucial in leadership roles. Self-aware leaders look at the whole picture and both sides of an issue. They tap into their feelings and the feelings of others to choose a different outcome to solving organizational or personal challenges.

Daniel Goleman, the foremost emotional intelligence expert, once said:

If your emotional abilities aren’t in hand, if you don’t have self-awareness, if you are not able to manage your distressing emotions, if you can’t have empathy and have effective relationships, then no matter how smart you are, you are not going to get very far.


10 unmistakable habits of utterly authentic people – The Ladders  – HERE

They help others to be their authentic selves

Authentic people don’t expect others to play a role either. They don’t make people feel as though they have to fit into a certain mold or to project a certain image to be a part of their lives. Their commitment to being authentic gives other people the freedom to live authentically too.

They let go of negative people

Authentic people have too much self-respect to put up with people who treat them badly or have ill will toward them, and they have too much respect for other people to try to change them. So they let go — not out of anger, but out of their need to be true to themselves.

They express their true feelings and opinions, even when they’re not popular

Authentic people don’t live a go-along-to-get-along lifestyle. They’re simply not capable of acting in a way that’s contrary to what their principles dictate, even if there are repercussions. They prefer not to lie to other people, and they especially can’t lie to themselves. This means that they’re willing to live with the repercussions of staying true to themselves.

They are confident

Much social anxiety stems from the fear we have of being “found out.” We’re afraid that somebody is going to discover that we’re not as smart, experienced, or well-connected as we pretend to be. Authentic people don’t have that fear. Their confidence comes from the fact that they have nothing to hide. Who they appear to be is who they really are.

They prefer deep conversations to meaningless chatter

Eleanor Roosevelt nailed this one. She once said, “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” You won’t find authentic people gossiping about others or giving their opinions on the latest celebrity scandals. They know all of that stuff is nothing more than cultural trappings, and they choose to talk about things that matter.

They don’t take anyone’s advice without evaluating it carefully first

It’s not that authentic people aren’t willing to take advice; they are. But they don’t put that advice into action just because other people have. First, they’ll run it through the wringer from a critical perspective so that they can be sure it makes sense for them.

They don’t complain about their problems

Complaining is what you do when you think that the situation you’re in is someone else’s fault or that it’s someone else’s job to fix it. Authentic people, on the other hand, are accountable. They understand that they — and no one else — are responsible for their own lives, so there’s no point in complaining.

They’re internally motivated

Authentic people don’t sit at their desks thinking, “Well, if my boss would just make this job worthwhile, I’d do a better job.” The carrot-and-stick approach just isn’t relevant to them. They’re motivated from within.

They make the best out of any situation

Authentic people have a very firm grasp on reality. When things don’t go their way, they don’t get trapped in denial, and they don’t sit around whining about how things should be different. They simply take stock of the way things are and, if there’s nothing they can do to change the situation, they figure out a way to make the best of it.

They don’t get stressed or upset when someone doesn’t like them

It’s never fun accepting that someone doesn’t like you, but a lot of times that discomfort comes from trying to figure out what you did wrong or how you can fix it. Authentic people don’t have that anxiety because they would never try to change themselves to influence someone else’s opinion. They accept that other people have a right to be authentic about their own feelings, even if those feelings are negative toward them.

Bringing it all together

Living authentically is a perpetual challenge that yields great rewards. It’s a noble path that you won’t regret following.


A Journalist Who Interviewed 585 CEOs Says They All Have These 3 Things in Common

From Leadership, a Flipboard magazine by Brendan Ho

The journalist who has interviewed CEOs for the New York Times for a decade shares his observations. If you’re aiming…

Read it on

1. Applied curiosity

Are CEOs smart? Sure, but maybe not in the way you expect. Most are bright, though plenty didn’t particularly thrive in an academic environment. Instead of being universally good at book learning, Bryant observed that most if not all were fiercely curious about the world around them.

“They share a habit of mind that is best described as ‘applied curiosity,'” he writes. “They tend to question everything. They want to know how things work, and wonder how they can be made to work better. They’re curious about people and their back stories.”

2. Comfort with discomfort

It’s not exactly breaking news that fighting your way to the top of a company involves plenty of hard work and sacrifice. But some aspiring CEOs fail to understand the full implications of that obvious truth. It’s not simply that you have to be able to take some lumps to get to the top, Bryant insists. To thrive as a leader you have to actually like the challenge and the pain.

“Usually, I really like whatever the problem is. I like to get close to the fire,” banking industry CEO Arkadi Kuhlmann explained in his interview. “Some people have a desire for that, I’ve noticed, and some people don’t. I just naturally gravitate to the fire. So I think that’s a characteristic that you have, that’s in your DNA.”

3. Focus on the present

You might think that most successful CEOs are super ambitious, and in many ways you’d be right, according to Bryant’s interviews, but the high-achieving leaders he spoke with had a very special type of ambition. Yes, they have big goals, but they don’t let those big goals distract them from whatever they’re currently working on.

The top CEOs Bryant spoke to “focus on doing their current job well, and that earns them promotions,” he writes. “That may sound obvious. But many people can seem more concerned about the job they want than the job they’re doing.”

“That doesn’t mean keeping ambition in check,” he clarifies. “By all means, have career goals, share them with your bosses, and learn everything you can about how the broader business works. And yes, be savvy about company politics… But focus on building a track record of success, and people will keep betting on you.”
7 Effective Ways to Destroy Your Company Culture Without Even Realizing It – Inc.  – HERE 
Building a great culture is simple but not easy. Here are 7 leadership behaviors to avoid like the plague.
Sloppy Talent Acquisition Practices
Inconsistent Reward Mechanisms
Behaviors That are Tolerated
Playing Favorites
Pulling the “Firing” Trigger to Slowly
Ignoring Your Star Players
Inauthentic Value Systems
How to Talk to Someone Who Refuses to Accept Reality, According to Behavioral Science – Inc. HERE
How to have a productive conversation with your local alternative facts fan.

First, build trust. You may disagree entirely with your conversational partner, but try to convey to this person that you share his or her bedrock values. Rephrase what this person is saying so that he can see that you understand where he’s coming from. In the case of the CEO who refuses to acknowledge a bad hire, you might convey that you too worry about the cost of recruiting. If your uncle won’t believe in climate change out of economic concerns, start by explaining you are also worried about unemployment.

Now, you’re all set for the real conversational ninja move — you need to show the other party that his beliefs are actually in conflict with his own values and goals, all without making him defensive. It sounds like a tall order, but Tsipurksy insists it is possible. Offering concrete examples of people who have changed their minds can help. So can suggesting that a person’s previous opinion was understandable given the information he or she had at the time.


After Studying the Lives of 724 Men for 79 Years, Harvard Reveals the 1 Biggest Secret to Success and Happiness

From Success & Motivation, a Flipboard magazine by Hetbs

Want to improve your success in life and business? The results of this 79-year old study…

Read it on

Social connections are good for us; loneliness really kills.

While calling loneliness toxic, Waldinger said social connections made people happier and physically healthier. It made them live longer too.

On the other hand, he also said:

“People who are more isolated than they want to be from others find that they are less happy, their health declines earlier in midlife, their brain functioning declines sooner and they live shorter lives than people who are not lonely. And the sad fact is that at any given time, more than one in five Americans will report that they’re lonely.”

As companies become more distributed, allowing employees to work remotely, it seems important to ensure that teams stay connected. Collaboration tools, such as Slack (and all of its competitors) and Cisco Spark can be essential in minimizing isolation.

The quality of our close relationships matter.

Good relationships protect our brains, not just our bodies.

The study found that being attached to a relationship in your 80s is protective. Such people had sharper memories while people who were in relationships where they couldn’t really count on the other person experienced gradual memory decline.


The Results of Google’s Team Effectiveness Research Will Make You Rethink How You Build Teams 

From BK, a Flipboard magazine by Matthew Budd-KennyWhy hiring the best and brightest might not be enough It’s no surprise that Google, now part of Alphabet,…

Read it on

1. Psychological safety

As Google put it, psychological safety is based on a primary question: “Can we take risks on this team without feeling insecure or embarrassed?”

The researchers found it to be the most important factor, by far, that could determine a team’s likelihood of success.

Ultimately, people want to protect themselves from harm and negative judgments made by others. So, if coming forward with an idea or asking for clarification on a goal or task can damage our reputation, we are more likely to keep quiet for the sake of professional self-preservation. Professionals, including entrepreneurs, often fear being wrong, and having an idea shot down with bravado can often bring that fear to the surface.

2. Dependability

When it comes down to it, no one likes working with someone who can’t be depended on, and having an unreliable team member is guaranteed to cause problems, regardless if the person is not otherwise toxic.

To be a dependable team, all of its members need to complete their tasks on time and to the expected quality standards. Without that, the entire group will struggle, regardless of whether some are willing to pick up the slack.

3. Structure and clarity

Google also identified another good business basic as being particularly relevant: structure and clarity.

Employees need to clearly understand their role within the team, any current plans, and business goals that affect their work. Without this, workers may have a difficult time identifying who is responsible for what, why certain actions need to be done, and what the broader objectives happen to be. Cumulatively, this leads to uncertainty that can harm the team’s ability to focus on what matters and cover all of its duties.

4. Meaning

In a world where cultural fit has become increasingly important, it’s no surprise that those who feel personally connected to the business and their work are more likely to excel. People who are passionate about the company’s mission experience higher levels of job satisfaction, which ultimately improves performance.

5. Impact

Beyond finding the work meaningful, the most talented teams also believe that what they do matters in a real way; that their contributions provide value and support positive change. This makes the day-to-day feel more important, as employees understand how their assigned tasks impact more significant goals in a fundamental way, making even tedious work seem valuable.

By creating teams that possess the five traits above, you are setting them up for success. So, instead of focusing solely on hard skills and education (even if the candidate has a degree from an Ivy league school), examine the personalities of your employees and make sure that they come together in these key areas. That way, they’ll be primed to exceed expectations, innovate, and work like a well-oiled collaboration machine.


Why Leadership Development Programs Don’t Work (And What Does)

From Leadership Pipeline, Engine Or Investment, a Flipboard magazine by Brendan Ho

Leadership development should be approached like a fitness routine. Companies in the United States spend more than $14 billion each year…

Read it on

What is a more effective way to develop leaders?

Leadership development should be approached like a fitness routine. If you truly want to get into shape, you must work at it. A few training sessions per year isn’t going to lead to lasting results. Leaders need to commit to ongoing efforts to develop their capacity to lead.

If a leadership development program is going to be effective, it will require a proper assessment of the organization and its leaders to uncover dysfunctional behaviors. The training should be based on what is actually happening in an organization, not on a standard framework or workbook.

Perfectly timed insights will make more sense to the leader, and they can immediately and permanently put them into practice.

Leadership development should also focus on business outcomes. Think of business outcomes you need to achieve, such as hitting your annual revenue goal. What’s getting in your way of achieving the goal? Are there any dysfunctional behaviors that are putting that goal in jeopardy?

Effective leadership development programs will surface these types of issues and equip leaders to deal with any and all dysfunctional behaviors that are putting that outcome at risk.

And here is the really good news. A leadership development program focused on delivering real-time guidance on overcoming actual challenges in your company will help you achieve your desired business outcomes.

Even more, you will have teased out dysfunctional behaviors, and created peak performance leadership, teamwork, and culture along the way. That is the enduring value and will make all the difference.


The Difference Between Leadership and Management

From LEADership, a Flipboard magazine by Penny

A common question with a simple answer that will help you with each As a professor of leadership and management and author of a bestselling leadership…

Read it on


Managers deal with behavior and things you can see.

Effective management results in compliance. The person you manage does what you instruct.

Managers’ influence comes from authority. To improve as a manager, improve your ability to give instruction.


Leaders work with emotions and motivations. They are less tangible than behavior, but equally systematic.

Effective leadership results in desire. The person you lead wants to do what you motivate.

Leaders’ influence comes from emotional and social skills. To improve as a leader, develop your social and emotional skills.

Key differences

Extreme cases help illuminate the difference.

Leadership without management is dreaming. A team with leadership but no management is lucky to get jobs done.

Management without leadership is the DMV–bureaucracy without passion. A team with management without leadership rarely excels, nor do people like working in it.

Key similarities

Both involve motivating and influencing others. But improve with experience. Both are necessary.

Which should you develop?

You don’t personally need both, but a team with complex goals does.

If you lack one and the team needs it, you can find someone whose skills complement yours to do what you lack.


If You Want to Succeed, You Need to Hit Rock Bottom First – Inc.  HERE

None of us ask for life’s greatest challenges, but that doesn’t mean we can’t benefit from them.

1) It Could Be Worse


Few things sound more cliche when you reach what feels like rock bottom, but there is incredible power in realizing that whatever it is you’re dealing with you may have had to deal with something much worse. According to Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s COO and author of Option B: Facing Adversity, Building Resilience, and Finding Joyabout the sudden death of her husband, “it’s very counterintuitive to try to recover from tragedy by thinking about an even worse tragedy, but it’s a very powerful lesson because it gets us to gratitude for what is still good in our lives.”

2) You Are Much More Resilient Than You Thought

When the world seems to have thrown the absolute worst it has at you this is one of the most important things to keep in mind. One thing that we can all be assured of is that the longer we live the more often we will have to reach into that well of resilience. Of course, it’s easy to say that resilience is a choice, but what prevents us from making that choice is most often the fear that doing so somehow minimizes the loss. We need to grieve, it acknowledges the magnitude of a loss. But grief and resilience are not a zero sum proposition. They can coexist if we allow them to.

According to the American Psychological Association resilience isn’t about overcoming grief, instead it’s about adapting “in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress.” I define it in even simpler terms. Resilience is the ability to grieve without turning your grief into regret.

3) Don’t Sidestep The Pain

The best piece of advice I ever received about dealing with adversity came from a friend who had seen more than her fair share of adversity. I was going through a difficult period and complaining mostly about how I was unable to overcome the pain of the situation I was in. Not only did I feel as though I’d failed at the situation but I was compounding it by feeling like a failure for not being able to stop the pain. What she told me has stuck with me. Very simply it was, don’t try to run away from the pain. Instead sit in it and ask, “What is this experience and the pain trying to teach me.”

4) Don’t Judge

Nowhere are we quicker to pass judgment than when it comes to judging ourselves. I’ve especially noticed this among entrepreneurs who are ruthless at blaming themselves when something goes horribly wrong. You may very well have made a bad decisions, hired the wrong person, blown the negotiation, dropped the ball, not followed your instincts, and, as if that’s not enough, now you beat yourself bloody as a result. It makes little sense.

If you knew someone who was the single most important person in your life or your company and they made a horrible mistake I doubt that your first response would be to start flogging them for it. There’s always time to ask what you could have done differently, it’s called learning. However, the less you judge yourself the more likely you will be to take the next risk, and the one after that. We don’t stop moving forward because we’ve faltered. We stop moving forward because were afraid. Withhold the judgment, learn the lesson, and, if success is your objective, expect to have to repeat that same cycle many times over again.

5) Keep Reminding Yourself Of What You’ve Learned

Lessons aren’t of much use if we keep repeating our past patterns. Life isn’t an academic test where the simple knowledge of how to solve a problem is enough to get the grade. It’s about putting into practice what you’ve learned. One of the best ways to do that is by writing a long letter to yourself that captures exactly what you were feeling and what you learned from your adversity. When you find yourself falling into a past pattern read that letter again. One of the most amazing things about adversity is how often we forget what it felt like. In some ways that’s a good thing, otherwise we might never take another risk. But when we recognize the patterns that created the problem emerging once again it’s a good idea to remind ourselves of what it felt like and what we learned because of it the last time around.

6) Give Yourself Credit

When you were in grade school you’d likely jump through flaming hoops to get praise and a gold star. Well, learning and growing only gets harder as you get older. And, in case you hadn’t noticed, often there’s nobody around handing out gold stars. Acknowledge your own efforts and resilience. Celebrate the lessons you learned. After all, you earned them.

7) Let It Go

I’m not going to suggest that you forget those times that you hit rock bottom. They are powerful reminders of what you have achieved and invaluable parts of who you are. They have shaped you and strengthened you. That isn’t the “it” you need to let go of. What you need to cast off is the very human desire to go back and make things right, to somehow get a do-over, especially now that you know better. Every moment spent wistfully thinking of that is a moment you do not get to spend applying your hard won lessons to what’s right in front of you.

Or, as J K Rowling, the wildly successful creator of Harry Potter, once said, “Rock bottombecame the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.”