My friend and Successories® founder, Mac Anderson, once said, “The right words can engage the brain and bring an idea to life.” Mac loves quotes and I do too. Here’s the way I see it: One day a specific inspirational quote may do nothing for you and have absolutely no meaning. Then strangely enough, the very next day—because of whatever you may have experienced in your life—it suddenly hits you squarely in an “AHA”-type moment, making the message a meaningful revelation. After being surrounded by so many wonderful quotes and inspiring messages for more than a decade at Successories of Hawaii, it’s difficult to narrow down, but here’s twenty-one I’d like to share:
Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. –Napoleon Hill
- Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value. –Albert Einstein
- You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. –Wayne Gretzky
We become what we think about. –Earl Nightingale
- Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. –John Maxwell
- Winning isn’t everything, but wanting to win is. –Vince Lombardi
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. –Maya Angelou
- People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing. That’s why we recommend it daily. –Zig Ziglar
Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, “What’s in it for me?” – Brian Tracy
- Happiness is not something readymade. It comes from your own actions. –Dalai Lama
In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure. –Bill Cosby
12. Baseball is the ideal forum for teaching the art of failure; the very best fail to get a hit seven out of ten times. — Sam Dunn
- Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. –Martin Luther King Jr.
- Do what you can, where you are, with what you have. –Teddy Roosevelt
- The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me. –Ayn Rand
- You can’t be grace if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you. (Mary Tyler Moore)
- It’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years. –Abraham Lincoln
Change your thoughts and you change your world. –Norman Vincent Peale
- Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn
- The only way to do great work is to love what you do. –Steve Jobs
It is through the way you serve others that your greatness will be felt. –Dr. Linda Andrade Wheeler
On May 21st, I’ll be one of the guest speakers at the Toastmasters International (Aloha District 49) 2011 Spring Conference. While I’m not a member of Toastmasters International, it is widely known that it’s THE club to join if you want to develop your presentation, speaking and leadership skills. When I was first approached by a client of mine (for whom we did staff training) to speak at this conference, I felt honored, but a little apprehensive at the same time. For me, speaking in front of a group composed of ambitious people who are there because they are actually interested in becoming better speakers was a bit intimidating. Nevertheless, I’m excited and looking forward to it as a “shared” experience–I’m going to share my “school of hard knocks” perspective on perseverance and learn from them, as well as their other slated speakers. In fact, Toastmasters has already taught me a few things. In perusing their website, I found their “10 Tips for Public Speaking”. Here’s what tips nine and ten have to say: “…concentrate on your message and your audience”, and “…your speech should represent you — as an authority and as a person.” Just the appropriate advice I needed…
Over the past six weeks, our training division at SuccessHawaii has been under contract to the Hawaii State Department of Education, Facilities Management Branch. I am proud of the work we accomplished together, but I am even more satisfied knowing the quality of people we have representing us in this critical function of state government. These are highly motivated employees who are responsible for the design, development, and maintenance of our public school facilities.
In quick retrospect, the past month has been a hectic one. In looking back, it was the participants within each of these focus groups, which we had the good fortune of working with, that made all the difference. In a nutshell, these highly-qualified professionals (i.e. architects, engineers, and former businesspeople) are an amazingly positive and dynamic group of people that work so collaboratively together.
We started this process by conducting five (5) focus groups with the various branches that fall under the Facilities Management Branch within the Office of Business Services. We followed that up with a half-day “Summary” session in which we assisted them as facilitators to boil-down a ton of input from the previous five sessions. In the end, all the various stakeholders negotiated many options to arrive at their agreed upon mission: “We take a vision and give it form through collaborative solutions to build opportunities for student achievement.”
On reflection, it has been a mini-marathon of very rewarding training workshops that achieved the goal set forth from the start. And today we completed the final, all-day training session with nearly 70 participants. Now, as I sit at my computer to debrief my thoughts, I’m taken back to my days as an athlete way-back-when. I can recall those days of giving everything I had physically and mentally, to play at peak performance. At least, to my abilities. Whether we won or lost was never the issue, it was whether you knew that you gave it your “all”. In this latest training series with the DOE, I confidently walk away knowing that we did give our very best and that’s the bottom line. Finally, consider this relevant quote on excellence from legendary coach, Vince Lombardi:
“….I firmly believe that any man’s finest hours – his greatest fulfillment of all that he holds dear – is that moment when he has worked his heart out in good cause and lies exhausted on the field of battle – victorious.”
The following post comes from an ongoing training/consulting project we have with a large client organization here in Hawaii. We are in the midst of developing the custom-designed training curriculum, which began with a strategic planning and leadership training session. The Story of The Geese is a part of our “teamwork” module. It provides a perfect example of the importance of teamwork and how it can have such a profound effect on a team.
The Story of The Geese
This fall when you see geese heading south for the winter flying along in the “V” formation, you might consider what science has discovered as to why they fly that way.
As each bird flaps its wings, it creates an “uplift” for the bird immediately following it. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds at least 71 % greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own.
Whenever a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go through it alone. It quickly gets back into the formation to take advantage of the “lifting” power of the bird in front of it.
If we have as much common sense as a goose, we will stay in formation and share information with those who are headed the way we want to go. We should be willing to accept their help and give our help to others. It is harder to do something alone than together!
When the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back into the formation. Another goose takes over and flies to the point position.
It is sensible to take turns to do the hard and demanding tasks. It pays to share leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent on each other’s skills, capabilities, and unique arrangements of gifts, talents, or resources.
The geese flying in formation honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.
People who are part of a team and share a common direction as well as a sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another and lift each other up along the way.
The Importance of Encouragement
We need to make sure our honking is encouraging – Words of support and inspiration help energize those on the front line, helping them to keep pace in spite of the day-to-day pressures and fatigue. In groups and teams where there is encouragement, production is much greater. ‘Individual empowerment results from quality honking’.
When a goose gets sick, wounded, or shot down, two other geese will drop out of formation with that goose and follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out on their own, or with another formation to catch up with their flock.
The Importance of Empathy and Understanding
Albert Schweitzer tells the story of a flock of wild geese that had settled to rest on a pond. One of the flock had been captured by a gardener, who had clipped its wings before releasing it. When the geese started to resume their flight, this one tried frantically, but vainly, to lift itself into the air. The others, observing his struggles, flew about in obvious efforts to encourage him; but it was no use.
Thereupon, the entire flock settled back on the pond and waited, even though the urge to go on was strong within them. For several days they waited until the damaged feathers had grown sufficiently to permit the goose to fly. Meanwhile, the unethical gardener, having been converted by the ethical geese, gladly watched them as they finally rose together and all resumed their long flight. For this reason, I aptly named this article: “No Goose Left Behind”.
Finally, if we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by our team members in the good, as well as, the challenging times. So, the next time you see a formation of geese, remember…it is a REWARD, a CHALLENGE and a PRIVILEGE to be a CONTRIBUTING MEMBER of a TEAM.
Quality guru and bestselling management author (“In Search of Excellence”), Tom Peters, recounts the story of a man who approached robber baron and American financer J. P. Morgan with an envelope, and said:
“Sir, in my hand I hold a guaranteed formula for success, which I will gladly sell you for $25,000.”
“Sir,” J. Pierrepont replied, “I do not know what is in the envelope. However, if you show me, and I like it, I give you my word as a gentleman that I will pay you what you ask.” The man agreed to the terms, and handed over the envelope. Morgan opened it, and pulled out a single sheet of paper. He gave it one look – a mere glance – then handed it back to the gentleman. And then he paid him the agreed-upon amount of $25,000! On that sheet of paper, were two things:
1. Every morning, write down a list of the things that need to be done that day.
2. Do them.
Clearly J.P. Morgan benefited handsomely from this advice. The point of this anecdote is that you can too. Oftentimes, we ourselves know what we must do. Yet, just simply knowing what needs to get done is the easy part. If you’re like me, you have your list of things to do. It represents our action items, plans and declarations. But taking action is the tough stuff. When you think about it, that’s the trademark of every successful person.
“If you want something done, ask a busy person to do it.”
We all know that it’s easier said than done. Ultimately, we have to just do it and taking baby steps daily is a great start.
The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will.
In his book, “The Common Denominator of Success”, Albert Gray says, “The common denominator of success–the secret of success of every man who has ever been successful–lies in the fact that he formed the habit of doing things that failures don’t like to do.”
As the $25,000 solution illustrates, one needs to keep it simple, but taking action and “doing things that failures don’t like to do” is the trait successful people share.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Lao-tzu, The Way of Lao-tzu
Chinese philosopher (604 BC – 531 BC)
“Success is a peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.” –Coach John Wooden
I vividly recall my mom, Dr. Linda Andrade Wheeler, preparing for one of the many corporate training seminars she did when we partnered in business together at The Human Connection, Inc. It was in the early 90’s and one of the handouts to be shared with seminar participants was legendary Coach John Wooden’s, “Pyramid of Success” motivational program (a faded copy still remains in my research file, but here’s a new, printable PDF). Wooden tied success not to achievement, wealth or fame, but to how close a person came to their potential.
In essence, the Pyramid of Success consists of philosophical building blocks for winning at basketball and at life. According to John Wooden’s Pyramid of Success, there are 12 lessons in leadership. At the summit of the pyramid is “success”. Each of the blocks represents a trait that a person must possess in order to become successful in life just like in playing a basketball game. At the time, as a recent Bruin graduate (1989), I was both intrigued and proud to be remotely associated–however indirectly–with such a legendary motivator and strong Christian. During his long tenure with the Bruins, Coach Wooden became affectionately known as the “Wizard of Westwood. Continue reading
In her presentation last Friday, Dr. Linda Andrade Wheeler shared methods with the members of the Pearlridge Rotary Club by which they could better gear up for meeting the varied volume of changes that occur in their personal and professional lives. She emphasized that the uniqueness of each individual is his or her competitive edge and paramount to achieving “personal excellence”.
As she put it, “You are better at being yourself than anyone else”. Her primary message was really to convey the notion that how well people use their personal power, determines in large part their level of personal excellence, the quality of their relationships and eventually their lifestyle.
Two books from her repertoire were referenced in her talk and are available at http://drlindawheeler.com/:
1. Ain’t Life an Artichoke: It Takes a Lot of Peeling to Get to the Heart…The Best Part This book is about personal excellence–the process of self-discovery and a journey to your heart, which you must take alone to find your uniqueness. The process can be uplifting and bring a brand new perspective to your life.
2. The Power of Resiliency Bouncing Back in a Changing World “Resiliency”—is about being happy in spite of change—or maybe as the result of it. It’s about growing through life’s changes and bouncing back in spite of adverse situations.
For more information on Dr. Wheeler’s seminars and books, please check out http://drlindawheeler.com/
If you have an iPhone, this post applies to you. As a Mac user since my family started The Human Connection in 1987 (precursor to Successories of Hawaii), I have migrated from productivity tool, to productivity tool starting with FileMaker, to Entourage and now, hopefully for the long-haul, Daylite®. If you’ve been searching for the best productivity tools to help you keep track of your calendar, projects and daily to-do’s, I have a strong suggestion. While there’s a lot of app’s out there for the iPhone, I’ve found something that actually works well for me. As I have mentioned in a previous post on this blog, I am working on setting up the Getting Things Done®(GTD) system on my iPhone. To accomplish this, I am using the new Daylite® software. Daylite is a business productivity manager designed to help you manage your business and your team. With features such as project collaboration, shared calendars, task delegation, and sales tracking, Daylite helps you move your business forward.
Coupled with Daylite, Daylite Touch is a business productivity manager for the iPhone and iPod touch, designed as a companion to Daylite on the Mac. Winner of a 2009 Macworld Best of Show award, Daylite Touch helps you manage your business and your team, keeping everyone on the same page and helping you stay on track and deliver on time. I’ve been using it for a little while now and it has really helped me stay on top of things. Keeping track of all your tasks will help you avoid disorganization, stay motivated and be more productive.
BTW: I will not get any credit whatsoever for referring you; it’s simply to share it with you in the hope of helping. Check it out for yourself and let me know what you think. Here’s to your success!
In a recent seminar based on her book, The Power of Resiliency®, Dr. Linda Andrade Wheeler shared with her audience that, “it seems to me that in this age of instability, people are searching for something that is unshakable. They are drowning in information, but starving for knowledge and meaning. People want some foundation on which they can build a brighter future–a more predictable and dependable existence. I believe that foundation is their personal power — their attitudes, knowledge, and skills in controlling their lives in positive ways. When people feel in control of their lives they tend to feel better about themselves and others.”
Hearing Dr. Wheeler’s statement made me recall back to when we first began Successories of Hawaii in 1994. At the time, there was an explosion of methods for “time management”, “task management”, or “personal productivity enhancement” that were designed to teach knowledge workers efficient routines for dealing with this overload of ever-changing demands (e.g. Covey, etc). Most of the recommendations concerned concrete tools and techniques, such as using personal organizers, sharing calendars, etc. But it seems that people were seeking more than just physical tools and priority setting. Continue reading
Over this past weekend, we at The Wheeler Group LLC participated in the first-ever Personal Finance Expo here in Honolulu. The nonprofit Hawaii Council on Economic Education and the Hawaii Event Group hosted this well-received event. The two-day expo took place on Aug. 15 and 16 at the Neal S. Blaisdell Center and featured more than 30 seminars and a variety of exhibitions from both private companies and the government. The goal of the expo was to educate people of all ages about topics such as debt management, investments, retirement plans, employment and entrepreneurship and even the basics of starting a new business.
In my estimation, Kristine Castagnaro, and her team at The Hawai`i Council on Economic Education exceeded event expectations and did a wonderful job for bringing together participants and exhibitors as resource providers. We were fortunate to meet numerous people interested in learning more about our programs designed to help them with retirement accumulation–saving tax-deferred, as well as distribution planning through tax-advantaged programs. As we shared with visitors to our booth, we believe that annuities and insurance are the essential foundational elements of a diversified portfolio, and we believe in safety through guarantees and asset allocation.