To thine own self be true…Got Integrity​?​

It was nap time in kindergarten and I lay on my mat in the dimmed room, staring at the ceiling. I wasn’t sleeping because I was listening to the quiet sobs of one of my classmates. She was close to me, so I finally decided to risk breaking the cardinal nap rule – no talking – and whispered, “What’s wrong?”. The muffled whisper came back, “I can’t tie my own shoes. I keep trying to learn but I just can’t!” More sobs. I whispered back, “I’ll teach you when nap time is over”.

When the lights came back up, with them came some free time. The two of us sat side by side on the floor. Slowly and repetitively, I demonstrated the process of shoe tying the way I had been taught. “Make the rabbit hole, the rabbit goes down the hole…”. She was really starting to get it when –

“Ann Marie!!”

Oh boy. I knew I was in trouble. I only got called Ann Marie when I was in deep do-do.

Continue Reading July 16, 2018 at 5:33 pm

Got Humility?

Leadership lessons from life.

When I was in my 20s, I wandered around India for a few months – the back packing, rail pass kind of thing that was popular at the time.

One day I was walking down the street minding my own business, when a group of young boys – maybe they were 6 to 8 years old – started throwing stones at me and yelling in their language, which of course I didn’t understand. Like most Americans traveling abroad, I didn’t bother to learn the about the native tongues of the country in which I was a guest (a failing I regret to this day). However, I can imagine what these youngsters might have been saying to me and I assumed it was because I am white. It could have been for another reason; however, this is not important to what happened next.

Continue Reading May 31, 2017 at 7:00 am 1 comment

Marketing and Sales. Yuck??

The word cloud is revealing. In his book, To Sell is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others, Daniel H. Pink (of A Whole New Mind fame) asked the following question in a survey; “When you think of “sales” or “selling”, what’s the first word that comes to mind?”

Then he clustered the responses into a “word cloud”, to visually represent how often any given word was used by respondents. Of the 25 most offered words, only 5 had a positive connotation. All of the rest were negative. While “pushy” was the biggest word in the cloud, “yuck” showed up as the close second most offered response. Pink concludes, “Selling makes many of us uncomfortable and even a bit disgusted. . .in part because we believe that its practice revolves around duplicity, dissembling and double-dealing.”

So if this describes your reaction to marketing and sales, you are not alone. Not by a long shot!

Continue Reading July 7, 2015 at 9:00 am

A Failure of Creativity: the Demise of Hostess

Regardless of how you feel about the company and its product line, there are business lessons to be learned here. Once so successful that most every American kid’s lunch box contained their products, they ultimately failed after 82 years of operation.


The answers are a study in what contributes to a successful enterprise. A core feature of the Hostess collapse was a failure of creativity.

7 questions to increase your business’ Creativity Quotient (CQ)!

Continue Reading June 26, 2013 at 7:54 pm 2 comments

From Success to Significance

What is your legacy? The lasting impact of your work, what you contribute to the world? Of the uniqueness that is YOU? We often think of legacy as a “towards the end of my life” thing. In fact, we are building our legacy – or our significance – every single day, either by intention or default. This particular Pocket Coach Card invites each of us to be more intentional about it; and to build our significance in the choices we make right now.

Continue Reading October 30, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Improving Business (and the World), One Person at a Time

One of the “secret weapons” for leadership development, productivity, employee engagement, and strategic growth in business today is professional coaching. And one firm that is cutting a swath of innovation and delivering unparalleled excellence in this domain is TurnKey Coaching Solutions. Dedicated to helping others, the partners believe that coaching is the most effective way to help people change their circumstances and reach their goals.

Continue Reading July 11, 2012 at 4:04 pm

I See You See Me

Something really interesting kicks in at this point; little critters in the brain called mirror neurons. As the name implies, it means that we “mirror” other people’s movements in our brains; and by watching someone else’s actions, neurons fire in the same way as if we were doing that exact movement ourselves.

Continue Reading May 14, 2012 at 8:32 pm

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