S3 E36 — Placebo, Meaningful Coincidence or Just Feeling Lucky

Luck is a form of superstition. We already mentioned how Carl Jung coined the term synchronicity, which he described as “a meaningful coincidence”.  Some evidence supports the idea that belief in luck acts like a placebo, producing positive thinking and improving people’s responses to events.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): The first idea that comes to you may indeed be the best one, but come up with more anyway, if only for the accompanying thrill of heading into unexplored directions.” Aries

Hi and welcome to Thursday’s Episode 36 in Season 3 of  My Paradoxically Normal Year” on this 29th day of April in the spring of 2021 — which is a three-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic year and then in the pandemic year, and now months after.

The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book

Table of Contents

Previously from Season Three, the Paradoxically Normal Year

S3 E35This Ain’t No Zemblanity; S3 E34Why You’re Susceptible to Subliminal Suggestions Like …; S3 E33Do Meaningful Coincidences Really Exist?

Related from Season Two, The Pandemic Year

S2 E36Turning Lemons into Margaritas; S2 E35Was this Pandemic Year a 1-Off or New Way of Life?; S2 E34Why Is This Kicking Off the 4th Industrial Revolution?; S2 E33What Happens When Your Business Collapses?

Related from Season One, The Normal Year

S1 E36Day 36 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E35Day 35 of My 1-Year Experiment ; S1 E34Day 34 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E33Day 33 of My 1-Year Experiment

Context

In the Report’s Conclusion Section of The One-Year Natural Experiment we’ve covered meaningful coincidences and synchronicity, now it’s about their second cousin,  serendipity or happy accidents as in unplanned, but fortunate discoveries. Diving deeper into Wikipedia I found luck. 

Isn’t that what we all hope for? Yeah, I thought so and that’s why this section of the natural experiment’s conclusions is:

Do I Feel Lucky?

Harry Callahan: You’ve Got To Ask Yourself One Question: ‘Do I Feel Lucky? ‘ Well, Do Ya, Punk?

There’s Dirty Harry and Harry Bosch.  While Michael Connelly’s  Detective Harry Bosch doesn’t believe in coincidences I just read a passage in “Black Box” where he drew energy after getting lucky — he knew reporters follow a story which leads to another and another or to a trusted source.

“But Bosch stayed positive.  He’d gotten lucky with Pistol Pete and the serial number.  There was no reason to think it wouldn’t hold. 

Of course, Harry had a run in with his newer Lieutenant a page or two later …

“So much for his luck holding… he felt that more than his luck suddenly ebbing away.  His momentum and positive attitude were eroding. It suddenly felt like it was getting dark out.”

We talk about luck in improbable, negative or positive terms as random or chance events beyond our control which occur all around us.

Luck is a form of superstition. We already mentioned how Carl Jung coined the term synchronicity, which he described as “a meaningful coincidence”. 

Some evidence supports the idea that belief in luck acts like a placebo, producing positive thinking and improving people’s responses to events.

Richard Wiseman did a ten-year scientific study… concluding, to a large extent, people make their own good and bad fortune.

His research revealed that, Lucky people generate their own good fortune via four basic principles. 

They are skilled at: 

          • creating and noticing chance opportunities, 
          • making lucky decisions by listening to their intuition, 
          • creating self-fulfilling prophecies via positive expectations, and 
          • adopting a resilient attitude that transforms bad luck into good.

We’ve heard from two Harrys, a Michael, a Carl and a Richard.  What say we turn our attention to four of my favorite Steves?

Evidence

You know Zahnny, I have to disagree with your opening premise.  I could agree if you added “but there are certainly ideal tribes which I call Talent Cultures in organizations, and (this is a big and) if you know which of 16 Talent Profiles you can claim, then you can more easily select the best and worst organizations and growth stages to pursue. 

To your second Holiday Tau observation — yes, organizational change happens slowly and, thank you that fact alone provided years of consulting fees for me in mature companies heading towards decline, but desperately wanting to reinvent themselves.  

“5”  Steve Zahn, 51: “There are no ideal groups, though it’s fun to imagine things being better. Organizational change tends to happen very slowly; changing yourself is relatively quick and doing so will affect the entire group.” Scorpio

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

Which way should I interpret your TauBit of Wisdom, Steve?  My first take more easily fit this passion project, especially as I write up my natural experiment’s report.  But now rereading it — probably influenced by Zahnny — I might reclassify it from practical, project and task orientation to how I went about my role as an external consultant and an intrapreneur in those declining organizations.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): Because you want to make your work the best it can be, you’re willing to entertain new ideas. You’ll banter, twist and play around with your resources. Changes and add-ons will take it to the next level.” Aries

WTF G&G?  How lucky am I?  All three of today’s Holiday Tau, yours included, describe what was foremost in how I approached my professional career and peeled away the onion layers to find the simplest answer to complicated challenges. Thanks, Steves.

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61:Complex problems may not require complex solutions. However, finding the solution that works may be a long and winding journey that seems complicated indeed! Regardless, stay in it for the long haul and the satisfying end.” Virgo

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @KnowLabs suite of digital magazines jumps from 8003 to 8068 organically grown followers

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • “Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge” by E.O. Wilson, an entomologist who studied colonies of ants for their insights.  But didn’t stop there, according to The Wall Street Journal, “A dazzling journey across the sciences and humanities in search of deep laws to unite them.”
    • “True Believers,” the novel by Kurt Andersen (which seems to precede Fantasyland)? I like how he goes back and forth from now to the ‘60s in which the main character is writing a memoir, but needs “Okays” from her friends who had been hiding a secret for 40+ years that could ruin their careers?  Like, what’s my equivalent?
    • “Disappearing Through the Skylight” by O.B. Hardison, Jr. which proceeded “Consilience” by a decade.  Hardison’s been described as a polymathic renaissance man who wrote, “… Nature has slipped, perhaps finally beyond our field of vision.”  What does it mean for “… science, history, art and architecture, music, language, ultimately, for humanity”? This one provides missing chunks of understanding where we came from and where we’re going.
    • I enjoy any of the Harry Bosch detective books in the series authored by Michael Connelly.  “A Darkness More Than Night,” described “A strange constricting feeling filled his gut. He didn’t believe in coincidences… (It) was a coincidence that even a believer in coincidence would have a difficult time accepting.”So much for detectives, tying up loose ends, relying on their hunches and reordering data, information and witness first hand accounts. 
    • Or, in “Black Box,” Connelly’s latest Harry Bosch adventure he writes, “But Bosch stayed positive.  He’d gotten lucky with Pistol Pete and the serial number.  There was no reason to think it wouldn’t hold.”  Of course, Harry had a run in with his newer Lieutenant a page or two later … “So much for his luck holding… he felt that more than his luck suddenly ebbing away.  His momentum and positive attitude were eroding. It suddenly felt like it was getting dark out.”

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trips

S2 E73 — WorkFit: Chopping Off 12 Losers at the Intersection of Speed and Independence

So, what does mean when only one out of the list of 13 original worse fit organizations remained on the list of when independent identity intersected with a rapid pace as a dozen vanished?

“5”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): The day is marked by a resilient spirit of independence that has you preferring your own company, keeping your own council, deciding for yourself without worry or need of any outside reassurance.” Pisces

Hi and welcome to Thursday’s Episode 73 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 2nd day of July in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E7220 Niche-Specific Opportunities Found After Making Soul Crushing Mistakes; S2 E71 My Top 13 Worst Jobs of All TimeS2 E70Persistent Failure

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E73Do You Need a Little Leo da V Time Too?; S1 E72It’s Taken so Long, I Could be Wrong; S1 E71Isn’t There a Placebo for This?; S1 E70Lingering Fear My Cover Was Blown

Context

This is a continuation of “Volume Two Manuscript — WorkFit” a work-in-progress.

It all began with the future of talent development.  I facilitated a human resources task force that listed 19 trends out of 100 that they felt would impact the composition of employees in companies of the future.

They evaluated generation X, Y, and Z demographics together with baby boomer statistics. 

They considered the increase in free agent preferences and globalization with new technologies including alternative energy. 

They sorted each of the 19 written on post-its into four clusters on the conference room wall and then free associated about the unique story each cluster told. 

Finally, they drew a box for each scenario so they could better see boundaries differentiating one from another.

And it became easier to flesh out a vertical line in the middle and a horizontal line. 

Those lines intersected in the middle like a “+” where the internal smaller boxes touched each other.    

Pretty soon the team saw the two outer vertical borders of the four boxes representing higher degrees of one dimension and the same for outer horizontal borders.  

So stories emerged along the vertical axis “+” which corresponded to an identity ranging from independent on the top and affiliated at the bottom.

And, along the horizontal “-“ axis the pace or speed on the left hand-side and time-for-mastery on the right hand-side.

Are you thinking what I was thinking?  

Now back to me.  What if we combine the two sets together and sort the 20 better and 13 worse positions I already identified to figure out why? 

So we’d have a High Degree of Independence at the top and a Higher Degree of Affiliation at the bottom. 

And a Higher Degree of Speed at the left margin and a Higher Degree of Mastery at the right hand margin.   

Here’s the display of my 25 of my 33 positions resorted first by the combination of three dimensions: high degrees of independence, speed and mastery.

I keep the original number for each opportunity and identify whether they came from the original worse or better fit lists.

First I consider 7 of 25 combining high independence and speed.

High Independence & Speed High Independence & Mastery
6.   Vocational Rehabilitation Services: Worse Fit
23.  Organization Development — Technology: Better Fit
24.  Startup — Quantum Learning Systems: Better Fit
25.  Director Continuous Improvement: Better Fit
26.  Organization Development — Tech Company: Better Fit
30.  Venture Guidance: Better Fit
32. Consultant — Product Development Merger: Better Fit

To refresh your memory from the previous episodes, I include snapshots of situations I encountered for each.

High Independence and Speed 

Better or Worse Fit?

6.  Vocational Rehabilitation Services— Three private companies offering B2B services for insurance companies.  Didn’t like opposing sides.  Close micro-management. Clients had back injuries and required work modifications or a transition into a different job classification — Worse Fit

23. Organizational Development – Technology — Climate for Innovation, (A fast-paced, innovative culture that attracted the best of the best. Our motto was simply, “It’s better to seek forgiveness than to ask permission.”) World Class Manufacturing, Skunk Works, Trends and What ifs to find value during high change, Mergers and Acquisitions — Complex, Disruptive, Accelerated Changes, Just-In-Time, Safari. two different immune systems develop equal and opposite anti-bodies over five years, but especially in the first 18 months of selling something that even we didn’t understand — Better Fit

24. Startup — Quantum Learning Systems — Safari, Organizational Learning to accommodate speed of disruptive innovation, anticipating new opportunities and rapid learning as a basic skill set for reinvention — Better Fit

25. Director Continuous Improvement — Spearheading the introduction of continuous improvement and needed a director to manage facilitators from all functions. Its corporate immune system and talent culture reflected their preferred seat of the pants high pace flavor of time-to-market product introduction. Product managers wanted to know with was more important, driving revenue or scheduling yet another series of non-productive meetings — Better Fit

26. Emerging Desktop Projector Company— 200 employees generating revenues of roughly 200 million dollars required a full-time director of organizational development and training. It provided the challenge of high degrees of disruptive innovation, independence and speed. Introduced me to tools for capturing new knowledge creation for product development teams short staffed with critical talent — Better Fit

30. Venture Guidance —Prepped potential startup entrepreneurs to seek investments from a a group of entrepreneurs and former executives who agree to pledge $50,000 each as seed or A-series funding.  In a deck of 10 slides after being coached by us individually, they’d have to stand and deliver to a group of us roll playing the sharks and throwing them curve balls and challenging their assumptions — Better Fit

32. Consultant — Product Development Merger — Advised two former competitors to define gated product development process with input from all stakeholders from innovative idea to manufacturing — Better Fit

Next time we’ll focus on my worse or better experiences in organizations whee I operated with higher degrees of independence and mastery.

Summary for High Independence and Speed  

So, what does mean when only one out of the list of 13 original worse fit organizations remained on the list of when independent identity intersected with a rapid pace as a dozen vanished? 

I rated Vocational Rehabilitation Services as a worse fit, because I had transitioned from more traditional professional psychology positions into a newly privatized services offering, largely spun out of insurance companies that had written workers compensation policies for employers in the State of California. 

My professional training downplayed the business development and sales emphasis that new companies require quickly to grow. 

It just wasn’t for me.

Evidence

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“5”  Steve Howey, 42:With your attention pulled by recent developments, it may be hard for you to concentrate on work. Devote yourself to the repetitive, tedious and necessary parts. You’ll be most productive while mentally processing life.” Cancer

Boy, that’s true for me.  How about you?  But, we introverts don’t mind the isolation so much as do the extroverts who tend to socialize for their energy replacement.  Just give me some time to concentrate on this manuscript and I’ll be happy.

“4”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:Don’t worry about starting things off on the right foot. Just lean forward and see which foot sticks out to prevent your fall. That’s what progress is — a precarious tilt; catch yourself; right yourself; repeat.” Virgo

Given that I’ve become more vertically challenged until I can get this damned left-knee replaced, I’m not too thrilled with this TauBit of Wisdom.  It hits too close to home.

“4”  Steve Kerr, 54:Why do you like the hard challenges? They practically demand you grow stronger. You want to be a force of nature, not a victim, acted upon by other forces of nature.” Libra

Really?  I do?  The challenge needs to capture and sustain my attention or else I lose interest rapidly.  I do look for patterns so I can anticipate the direction of forces important to decisions in my life.  It’s just my nature.

“4”  Steve Aoki, 41: You have your choice of routes today. As a rule, the bendy roads are more exciting and more dangerous. It’s all about sightlines. None can see around the curve. How comfortable are you with uncertainty?” Sagittarius

This reminds me of a story Joel Barker told illustrating anticipation with open filtering.  Maybe on the bendy road snaking outside of Jerome, Arizona on the route to Sedona, a convertible screams around the curve obviously enjoying the freedom of the road. Driving a bit more cautiously, but heading in the opposite direction a local with his elbow hanging out the drivers window sees them approach.  As they barely squeeze past the convertible driver yells “Pig!”. To which the local yells back, “Go to Hell!” and watches the convertible in his rear view mirror, muttering to himself.  And just then he crashes into the pig crossing the road.

“5”  Steve Nash, 45:There’s someone who gives you undivided attention and places the focus exactly where it matters most to you. A solid case could be made for the premise that this is the very definition of love.”Aquarius

How should I rate this TauBit of Wisdom?  Let’s see, how about a “5”?  She’s looking over my shoulder isn’t she?  Doesn’t matter, Emma the Baroness is the very definition of love.  Right dear?

“5”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): The day is marked by a resilient spirit of independence that has you preferring your own company, keeping your own council, deciding for yourself without worry or need of any outside reassurance.” Pisces

So, which day isn’t marked by this kind of spirit?  

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 4073 to 4231.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E72 — 20 Niche-Specific Opportunities Found After Making Soul Crushing Mistakes

Why did these employment opportunities land on the this list?  A feeling of independence or affiliation?  Or allowing for creative expression? Or trying and succeeding at something new?  See for yourself.

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:The pro is just an amateur who has made and recovered from many mistakes. Your personal life will benefit from the application of a few marketing principles, particularly, knowing your niche and differentiating yourself.” Virgo

Hi and welcome to Sunday’s Episode 72 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 28th day of June in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E71 My Top 13 Worst Jobs of All Time; S2 E70Persistent Failure; S2 E69How Can You Tell Who’s an Engineer at a Party?

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E72It’s Taken so Long, I Could be Wrong; S1 E71Isn’t There a Placebo for This?; S1 E70Lingering Fear My Cover Was Blown; S1 E69Anniversary Trip of a Lifetime Deep in the Heart of Tuscany

Context

This is a continuation of “Volume Two Manuscript — WorkFit” a work-in-progress.

Up next I list 20 of my better fit jobs and clients I’ve engaged with in contrast with the 13 worse fit in my previous episode.  The key question is what was it about each project or employer that discouraged or inspired me.  

Let’s turn to the better fits now.

Worse Fits Better Fits
1.   Manufacturing 14.   Bank CD Conversion Tracker
2.   Gas Station Attendant 15.   Good Humor Ice Cream
3.   US Army 16.   Graduate Student Assistant
4.   Auto Insurance Agent 17.   Graduate Assistant Internship
5.   Retail Sales Big Ticket 18.   Vocational Rehabilitation Services
6.   Vocational Rehabilitation Services 19.   Artist — Cards, Poetry, Photos
7.   Professional Training Company 20.   Information Preneur — InFox
8,   Independent Contractor Outplacement Firms 21.  Research & Development — Career Change
9.   Consultant Life and Mutual Fund Company 22.  Trainer, Management Development
10. University Extension Instructor 23.  Organization Development — Technology
11. Consultant Leadership Academy  24.  Startup — Quantum Learning Systems
12, Director Electronics Distribution Company 25.  Director Continuous Improvement
13. Consultant Professional Services 26.  Organization Development — Tech Company
27.  Knowledge Management — Brand Company
28.  Knowledge Media Business
29.  Key Executive Advisor
30.  Venture Guidance
31. Consultant — Defense Company Spin Off 
32. Consultant — Product Development Merger
33. Advisor — Executive MBA Program 

Better Fits

Why did these employment opportunities land on the this list?  A feeling of independence or affiliation?  Or allowing for creative expression? Or trying and succeeding at something new?  See for yourself.

14. Bank — Challenge of manual to technology operations. Problem solving. detective following a pattern of clues. No paper work. Solved, move on, keep my mind engaged.

15. Good Humor Ice Cream — Variety, independence. nothing in common 

16. Graduate Student Assistant — Never received great grades in under graduate classes; more serious after the Army — more autonomy, flexibility, enjoyed research and knowledge work.

17. Graduate Assistant Internship — Working for the State of California half time and professional services startup 50%.  First job in psychology field.

18. Vocational Rehabilitation Services — The more interesting patients were cops, firefighters and sheriffs who filed stress claims. Set up the first behavior modification steps to more objectively evaluate patients and group job club reinforcement for self-placement while marketing not selling. Exposed to Outplacement.  Something new.

19. Artist — Cards, Poetry, Photos — Creative expression combining my new found love of photography with prose and poetry.  Considered creating a line of greeting cards and posters.  

20. Online Membership Start Up Information ‘Preneur based on ways of “making money while you slept”. Money in your mailbox. Experimenting with personal computer. Named it InFox for Information Exchange 

21. Research & Development — Career Change — Field testing my approach — tried to sell to Orange Coast and Coastline Community Colleges. Orange County the Association Training and Development

22. Trainer, Management Development — Research, trends and past information interviews. Internal Outplacement – sold it and got permission. Learned on the job — improve quality, introduce new technology, teach and facilitate sales teams (I know, right) and at corporate headquarters send high potential managers in the developmental pipeline to university executive programs for rounding out.  I learned large-scale organizations resist change like an immune system does. Developed and refined my skill and talent to package new ideas — newer ways of doing things better — than the tried and true, especially during a decline when hundreds of employees receive their pink slips on Fridays.  Oh you need a plan A for thriving in the good times and a plan B for surviving in the dark times.

23. Organizational Development – Technology — Climate for Innovation, (A fast-paced, innovative culture that attracted the best of the best. Our motto was simply, “It’s better to seek forgiveness than to ask permission.”) World Class Manufacturing, Skunk Works, Trends and What ifs to find value during high change, Mergers and Acquisitions — Complex, Disruptive, Accelerated Changes, Just-In-Time, Safari. two different immune systems develop equal and opposite anti-bodies over five years, but especially in the first 18 months of selling something that even we didn’t understand.

24. Startup — Quantum Learning Systems — Safari, Organizational Learning to accommodate speed of disruptive innovation, anticipating new opportunities and rapid learning as a basic skill set for reinvention.

25. Director Continuous Improvement — Spearheading the introduction of continuous improvement and needed a director to manage facilitators from all functions. Its corporate immune system and talent culture reflected their preferred seat of the pants high pace flavor of time-to-market product introduction. Product managers wanted to know with was more important, driving revenue or scheduling yet another series of non-productive meetings

26. Emerging Desktop Projector Company — 200 employees generating revenues of roughly 200 million dollars required a full-time director of organizational development and training. It provided the challenge of high degrees of disruptive innovation, independence and speed. Introduced me to tools for capturing new knowledge creation for product development teams short staffed with critical talent.

27. Knowledge Management — Brand CompanyStrategy and Brand Consultancy. We crashed our models together — learning and development, knowledge creation, media production, internet communities, advertising and marketing. We pioneered a way of capturing the essence of a brand on digital video, searched through audio tracks for the touch points and reused portions of the interviews for orienting new coders hired at accelerated rates.  

28. Knowledge Media Business — Three of us tried to make a go of our pioneering efforts to capture the new knowledge being spun off so it wouldn’t fall through the cracks for Paradoxy-Moron organizations.  But the market didn’t support it and we had to go our separate ways.

29. Key Executive Advisor — Heading up the regions outplacement for C-suite services paid for by their former company. I covered delivered individual and group facilitated services for offices throughout the Southern California Region from San Diego to Woodland Hills, Pasadena and West LA.  It dawned on me that who you knew made the most difference for people at this level I created an online community for information and insight sharing and of course for trusted referrals.

30. Venture Guidance —Prepped potential startup entrepreneurs to seek investments from a a group of entrepreneurs and former executives who agree to pledge $50,000 each as seed or A-series funding.  In a deck of 10 slides after being coached by us individually, they’d have to stand and deliver to a group of us roll playing the sharks and throwing them curve balls and challenging their assumptions.

31. Defense Industry Commercial Spin Off — To commercialize electron-beam sterilization of fruits and vegetables and hamburger meet to extend their shelf life.  Doctors had invested after a round of salmonella outbreak.  He had another client which was reinventing itself trying to both innovate and control their product development process. I learned that the talent cultures that inhabit defense contractors are no way the talent cultures that you need to commercialize a startup.  

32. Consultant — Product Development Merger — Advised two former competitors to define gated product development process with input from all stakeholders from innovative idea to manufacturing.

33. Advisor — Executive and Healthcare MBA Program — A decade which I view as a field test or a laboratory for the content in these second volume books. I proposed a curriculum to the Director for him to review and meet with me.  “Why would anyone choose to come back to school for an executive MBA (and spend over $100,000 over two years) when you’ve got all they’d ever need in this curriculum?

So, yes I admit at this point I wanted to know for myself and for others I would advise, just how do you match your talents to opportunities that bring out the very best in you so you can succeed over the course of your career(s).

But, there’s the flip side.  The perspective from the employer and client side as well.  We’ll turn to what Human Resource Executives discovered next.

Evidence

“5”  Steve Zahn, 51:Should you impart your exact vision, or should you be more collaborative? The art is in what you leave out. When in doubt, choose space and let people fill it with their imaginations.” Scorpio

Boy, as you scan down the list, doesn’t this describe what drew me to each of them?  Collaboration. Imagination.

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“3”  Steve Winwood, 71; Stevie Wonder, 69; Stephen Colbert, 56: Don’t worry about being original today. You already are and cannot help but be. Copying work you admire will prime you for eventually creating your own masterpiece.”  Taurus

I selected this TauBit, not for today, but for how I operated in those better situations that required something newer, but maybe not bleeding edge new.  As an idea packager, I needed access to better ideas which meant original research.  It meant throwing out a wide net.  It meant copying and note taking.  It meant rearranging and recombining.  It meant all of those processes coming together for creating new knowledge and innovation. 

“3”  Steve Carrell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: There’s a world of difference between what people say and what they do. Your comprehensive understanding comes from observing others in action, all the while knowing that each move speaks volumes.” Leo

Sure, in the same way a detective interviews witnesses with low stress questions at first and then builds to more difficult queries while all the time observing their reactions.

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:The pro is just an amateur who has made and recovered from many mistakes. Your personal life will benefit from the application of a few marketing principles, particularly, knowing your niche and differentiating yourself.” Virgo

Ok, so I’m definitely an amateur.  “Mistakes” is my middle name, so paying attention to marketing principles within the pipeline I need to activate couldn’t hurt, eh?

“4”  Steve Aoki, 41: You are wise to the fact that urgency is usually a disguise people use to get more quickly to the result they want. Take back the power. Do things on your timetable, not theirs.” Sagittarius

In one way this TauBit of Wisdom comes naturally to me and all you other introverts out there, right? In another way too many people who I won’t name want the answer, but not the understanding.  You know they’re hungry for the meal, but not the preparation by following a recipe.  If you aren’t careful, you’ll create a co-dependency if you cave in.  They’ll be back later wanting the same result from you.

“4”  Steve Harvey, 62:Different languages exist within the same language. You listen to what people speak and speak their language back to them, thus creating an atmosphere of trust.  Capricorn

Isn’t this at the core of active listening, which all of us consultants, coaches, psychologists and advisors practice?

“5”  Steve Nash, 45:You’ll find yourself aware of your own presence and wondering who the ‘you’ is who seems to be witnessing you. In this way, you are similar to most of the great gurus and spiritual-seekers who have walked this earth.” Aquarius 

Wait!  Gurus and spiritual-seekers wandering the earth?  I’ve noticed this phenomenon as I fill in these sentences today and over time as I obsessively kept a journal.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 4073 to 4231.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S4 E27 — Who Cares If It’s The Right Thing To Do Anymore?

They promoted the Pence Card as a contingency similar to the 1960 presidential election, in which two slates of electors were prepared pending results of a late recount of ballots in Hawaii

“5”  Steve Carell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: “To believe in your ability to sense what the right thing to do is and trust yourself to act accordingly promotes confidence in who you are now. For even more confidence, extend the same courtesy backward to Past You. No regrets.” Leo

Hi and welcome to Saturday’s 27th Episode in Season 4 of  Our Disruptively Resilient Year” on this 16th day of April in the spring of 2022.

We concluded the three-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed — during the “normal” pre-pandemic year compared to the pandemic year, and more recently to the paradoxically normal year. 

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season Four continues now within domestic and global chaos.

Previously in Season Four, The Disruptively Resilient Year

S4 E26What Happens If No One Asks a Question?; S4 E25Accountability?S4 E24Another Spooky Role to Play on the Outside

Related from Season Three, the Paradoxically Normal Year

S3 E27What the World Needs Now Before It’s Too Late; S3 E26Following Alice Down the Rabbit Hole; S3 E25 Art Lives Upon Discussion, Upon Experiment, Upon Curiosity …; S3 E24Reunion on the Edge of the Pacific Ocean near Legoland? Hell Yeah! 

Related from Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E27Why I Have to Keep Leo da V on a Leash and So Should You; S2 E26Rethinking the N-Word ; S2 E25Are You an Innie or Outie Thinker?; S2 E24Working Remote from KnowWhere Atoll;

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E27Day 27 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E26Day 26  of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E25Day 25 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E24Day 24 of My 1-Year Experiment

Context

If you haven’t been following along, the previous 6 episodes illustrate political turmoil in this Disruptively Resilient Year which add to our summary in S4 E18. 

Our last episode follows Trump’s announcement for the 2020 nomination after his election denying followers in the 6 battleground states lost when the red wave failed to materialize. Today we pick the continuing story with the “Pence Card”.

What started as the “Pence Card” floated as a legal theory by Ivan Raiklin in a two page proposal, then championed by National Security Adviser Michael Flynn tweeted to the former President.

Raiklin asserted then-Vice President Mike Pence had unilateral authority to reject electoral votes from states deemed to be fraudulent.

So Boris Epshteyn worked with Rudy Giuliani in December 2020 to persuade Republican officials in seven states to prepare certificates of ascertainment for slates of Trump “alternate electors” to be presented to Pence for certification. — Wikipedia

They promoted the Pence Card as a contingency similar to the 1960 presidential election, in which two slates of electors were prepared pending results of a late recount of ballots in Hawaii, according to Wikipedia sources. 

Both parties agreed to that recount, which ultimately resulted in John F. Kennedy winning the state, though the outcome of the election did not hinge on the Hawaii results. By contrast, in the case of the 2020 election, the stated need for slates of alternate electors in multiple states was predicated on persistent false claims of nationwide election fraud.  — Wikipedia

The Epshteyn Show

Epshteyn asserted the slates of alternate electors were not fraudulent and “it is not against the law, it is according to the law.”

In on the ruse, dozens of Republican legislators from Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin wrote Pence on January 5. 

All Pence had to do like the loyal former Vice President he had done many times in the past was to delay the January 6 certification for ten days.

When he did, those 5 key states would have time to replace the elector slates. 

Pence did not act on the request and that day also rejected a proposal made by Eastman:

That a vice president could simply choose to reject the electoral college results; a vice president’s role in certifying the results is constitutionally ministerial. — Wikipedia

Command Center

The Washington Post reported on October 23, 2021 that the Willard Hotel, was a “command center” for a White House plot to overturn the results of the 2020 election.

Epshteyn told The Washington Post in October 2021 

That he continued to believe Pence “had the constitutional power to send the issue back to the states for 10 days to investigate the widespread fraud and report back well in advance of Inauguration Day, January 20th.”

Epshteyn was subpoenaed in January 2022 to testify before the House Select Committee on the January 6 Attack, according to Wikipedia

Pence didn’t fall for the “Pence Card”  

But it was in that context, that during the January 5 meeting at the Willard Hotel, Eastmen laid out the details in his January 4 memo describing his theory that Vice President Mike Pence could refuse to certify certain state elector slates the following day, and hand Trump a second term instead.

Actually, there were two memos.  The infamous six-step plan and a second, a more extensive plan, with multiple scenarios for Pence to take to overturn Biden’s election according to Wikipedia:

    • The first memo described the constitutional and statutory process for opening and counting of electoral votes under the 12th Amendment and Electoral Count Act, alleging that the Electoral Count Act was unconstitutional. 
    • The memo further claimed that the Vice President, who also serves as President of the Senate and presides over the joint session of Congress, “does the counting, including the resolution of disputed electoral votes… and all the Members of Congress can do is watch.” 
    • The memo refers to the actions of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson during the presidential elections of 1796 and 1800 as evidence for this claim; some supporters of President Trump, such as Congressman Louie Gohmert, had falsely claimed that Jefferson’s counting of Georgia’s electoral votes in 1800 indicated that the Vice President could unilaterally accept or reject electoral votes.
    • The memo then laid out a six-step plan for Pence to overturn Biden’s election

Behind Memo Number Two

The second memo laid out a more extensive plan with multiple scenarios for Pence to take to overturn Biden’s election: 

    • The first section outlined fictional illegal conduct by election officials in six states (Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin). 
    • The second section again alleged that the Electoral Count Act was unconstitutional, and that Pence had the power to unilaterally accept or reject electoral votes. 
    • The third section referred to “7 states” and outlined various alternatives for Pence to take to overturn Biden’s election.
    • Slates of electors declaring Trump the winner actually were submitted from the seven states, but the National Archives did not accept the unsanctioned documents and they did not explicitly enter the deliberations.
  • If all went according to Eastman’s plan, Pence would have declared Trump the winner.  He would have won more Electoral College votes after the seven states were thrown out, 232 votes to 222.

Evidence

“3” Steve Zahn, 51: “We want what seems somewhat, but not entirely inaccessible. Complete inaccessibility inspires derision. Desire will be ignited where beauty meets the unfinished or unpolished. Rawness makes a thing accessible.” Scorpio

Can I be honest?  I just don’t know how to interpret this observation.  But, somehow I like it.

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

Today’s Holiday Birthday: 

You’ll experience many environments and get the best of every world. Chaotic challenges shape you; calm, supportive places allow for intensive, focused work. You are brilliant without trying to be or do anything other than what comes naturally. Someone will travel far to see you — the ultimate compliment.

Really?  Can’t wait!

“4”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “Life is bustling and you’ll do what you can. As for the rest, instead of saying “I don’t have time,” try more empowering language like, “this is not my priority right now” and feel like an absolute boss.”Aries

This is not my priority right now.  

“4”  Steve Howey, 42: “You’ve a talent for understanding just how much you can and should take on. It’s natural to want to distance yourself from a harsh reality or distract yourself from pain.” Cancer

Haha.  A life lesson I learned the hard way.  I never could estimate just how much time it would take to achieve a goal for a client in my consulting practice.  So crafting winning proposals was hardly my strength.  Then, you’re stuck with a contract that pulls more time and energy out of you than is necessary.  

“5”  Steve Carell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: “To believe in your ability to sense what the right thing to do is and trust yourself to act accordingly promotes confidence in who you are now. For even more confidence, extend the same courtesy backward to Past You. No regrets.” Leo

Wow, this like a novel took an unexpected twist at the end.  I felt I’d apply it to how Emma the Baroness and I roll our eyes at what isn’t right, but has been going on for Three Seasons now on the national scene.  But instead it’s a reminder to identify those hard won lessons from the past and not make it so hard on myself.  Here’s to the next manuscript!

“3”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72: “As you make more of a distinction between what you have to do and what you choose to do, you understand that the list of ‘have-to’s’ is actually quite small. You’ll examine your reasons for continuing with certain responsibilities.” Virgo

Somehow I feel cheated.  Here you started out with a great premise, and then it dissipated.  Really?  I hoped for more insight.

“5”  Steve Harvey, 62; Stephan Patis, 53;  Stephen Hawking (1943 – 2018): “Even though a job is nearly complete, the refinements take almost as much time as the job itself did. Tending to details is hard work, but also very worth the effort.” Capricorn

See, this is what I had hoped for on a day like today.

Holiday Theme for The Day: 

Albert Camus said it’s necessary to fall in love, “if only to provide an alibi for all the random despair you are going to feel anyway.” Can you think of times when you felt a certain way first and looked for reasons later? … The opposite directive — claim hope and watch it blossom in your life.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll

    • @KnowLabs suite of 36 digital magazines, according to my analytics, grew from 12559 this week to 12654 organically grown followers.
    • Orange County Beach Towns 216 viewers stopped by the week before.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life

Long-Form

    • “Here, Right Matters: An American Story” by Alexander Vindman. “We’d long been confused by the president’s policy of accommodation and appeasement of Russia, the United States’ most pressing major adversary. Russia’s president Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine, seizing the Crimean Peninsula, attacking its industrial heartland, the Donbass, from the capital, Kyiv. By 2019, little had changed, Russian military and security forces and their proxy separatists continued to occupy the Donbass. The biggest change was to Ukraine’s importance as a bulwark against Russian aggression weeks earlier, the White House had abruptly put a hold on nearly four hundred million dollars.” 
    • David Enrich begins his book with a suicide in “Deutsche Bank Dark Towers: Deutsche Bank, Donald Trump, and an Epic Trail of Destruction” and then meticulously details the bank’s Russian money laundering operations. Deutsche’s Russian business surged after revenues had fallen 50% due to the 2008 financial crisis. Putin’s Russia, poured in to Deutsche from deals it did with VTB Bank, linked to the Kremlin’s intelligence apparatus. Deutsche positioned itself as a crucial cog in “The Laundromat” by doing what couldn’t be done — processing cross-border transactions for banks that were too small  and didn’t have offices outside their home countries.
    • “Unthinkable: Trauma, Truth, and the Trials of American Democracy” by Jamie Raskin recalls one tragedy no parent should endure — the suicide of his son — and then a second tragedy at almost the same time — the insurrection on January 6th 2021, that terrified he and his congressional peers who were tasked by the Constitution to routinely oversee the orderly transfer of power from one former president to the duly elected new President. 
    • “A Warning” by Anonymous (Miles Taylor) written prior to the January 6th Insurrection as an insider’s account documenting how frequently the former President’s behavior and rage without any “guard rails” showed just how far he would go to win the next election at any cost while spinning lies and misinformation on top of each other.  
    • “Peril” by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa provides anecdotes, stories and inside reporting documenting the controversial last days of Donald Trump’s presidency, as well as the presidential transition and early presidency of Joe Biden. 
    • “Devil’s Bargain: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Nationalist Uprising,” by Joshua Green tracks the money behind the scenes leading up to the 2016 presidential election and the growing influence of Steve Bannon’s network of extreme nationalists.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E70 — Persistent Failure

I failed so many times at start-ups that I could pick apart most of their plans and presentations almost instantaneously.  But, that didn’t mean I wasn’t a sucker for ideas I felt would be sure hits.  Even after I left the SBA program I continued to meet and mentor some of my entrepreneurs.

“5”  Steve Kerr, 54:Stay aware, head on a swivel, as you make your way to the crossroads. Transitions are always a little more dangerous. The intersections of life hold potential for much good and bad fortune.” Libra

Hi and welcome to Friday’s Episode 70 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 26th day of June in the summer of 2020.

 

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E69How Can You Tell Who’s an Engineer at a Party?; S2 E68Take More Breakthrough Showers;  S2 E67Here’s What I Didn’t Know That Will Help You

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E70Lingering Fear My Cover Was Blown; S1 E69Anniversary Trip of a Lifetime Deep in the Heart of Tuscany; S1 E68Overcompensating for Disappointing Results?; S1 E67Don’t Misunderstand Me

Context

This is the continuing story of how I learned important lessons from the school of hard knocks. And it’s an introduction to my second volume of books I described in the previous episode. I had already changed careers and switched industries by following the future brought to us by technology companies.

Key Executive Advisor

He asked me if I’d be interested in becoming their Key Executive Advisor.  I learned I’d be heading up the region’s outplacement services for C-suite executives paid for by their former companies.

Clearly this was a major stretch for me.  Fake it until you make it, right?

Rose colored glasses again?  You bet.  I immediately envisioned a 360 degree opportunity.

Here’s how I sized up what I could do: 

        1. Advise executives by surfacing their unique value propositions, circulate creative briefs describing them, pitch  their 90-day plans during the round of interviews and hit the ground running after the negotiations. 
        2. Once hired, then have them assess the organization’s current team they’ve inherited against the new direction — with our organizational consulting services. 
        3. Have them define the missing talent necessary to execute their plan, engage us to outplace executives and managers that who no longer fit. 
        4. Recruit from us executives they’ve likely already met and sized up, that matched their new talent requirements.    

Rinse and repeat.

Easy for me to see, but I had nobody local to pitch it too.  

The headquarters was on the East Coast where those kinds of decisions were considered, approved, but more probably rejected and denied. 

Their motto I came to believe was stick to your knitting and hit your numbers within your own functional silos. 

So I washed my hands of the whole proposition and dug in to accelerate my learning about how to deal with executives.  Up until then, like sales, not a strength of mine. 

My suite of offices were completely different than space devoted to the majority employees from lower paying companies, cubicles with workstations and a generic phone.  

It mirrored the “mahogany row” they were ejected from — with an executive assistant just for them, with offices offering privacy with doors that closed.  We were selling a normalized service.  Come spend the same hours as you would working, but this time devote them to your job search. 

I delivered individual and group facilitated services at offices throughout the Southern California Region from San Diego to Woodland Hills, Pasadena and West LA.  

It dawned on me that for executives, who you knew and who knew you,  made the most difference for people at this level, so I created an online community for information and insight sharing which became a source for trusted referrals.

Just as I was hitting my stride the parent company had been acquired and after about 18 months began consolidating services, cutting back on rental overhead and getting rid of us six figure advisors in favor of those high volume cubicle contracts at lower rates.

Shocked into Venture Guidance for SBA

Usually I see these things coming.  

Not this time, though.  

Maybe because between advisory sessions, group work and regional office visitations I had been experimenting with writing my first blog, The Journal of 2020 Foresight.  

Having been outplaced again, I worked out of a rival’s outplacement office ironically resurrecting my consulting practice  while I spent half my time coaching wannabe entrepreneurs who sought angel funding helping them on their presentation, in much the same way it’s done on shark tank.  

I’d meet each person with a great idea, hear them out, conduct a preliminary intake against the criteria for receiving our free services provided by a budget from The Small Business Association.  

Instead of qualifying for a business loan at a vetted SBA bank affiliate that they’d have to pay back, we were there to vet their idea against evolving criteria provided to us by Tech Coast Angels — a group of entrepreneurs and former executives who agreed to pledge $50,000 each as seed or A-series funding.  

In a deck of 10 slides, after being coached by us individually, the wannabes had to stand and deliver to a group of us roleplaying the sharks and throwing at them curve balls challenging their assumptions.

I failed so many times at start-ups that I could pick apart most of their plans and presentations almost instantaneously.  But, that didn’t mean I wasn’t a sucker for ideas I felt would be sure hits. 

Even after I left the SBA program I continued to meet and mentor some of my entrepreneurs who failed to dazzle the Angels.

Defense Contractor to Disease Prevention Start Up

One of my former client reached out to be because he left the disk-drive company that built the corporate headquarters and experienced “Edifice Complex” curse.  He needed my help with his San Diego defense contractor client that struggled with a spin off.  

They tried to commercialize electron-beam sterilization of fruits and vegetables and hamburger meat to extend their shelf life — which definitely represented thinking out of the box, Jack-in-the-Box.  

Doctors had invested after a round of salmonella outbreak.  He had another client which was reinventing itself trying to both innovate and control their product development process. 

Too Many Product Innovations

I learned that the talent cultures that inhabit defense contractors are in no way the talent cultures that you need to commercialize a startup.  

And, instead of doing what I loved to do, facilitate more innovative ideas from all corners of an enterprise, too many ideas can be a bad thing.  

Especially if you don’t have a process in place to kill projects that go nowhere to free up resources — budget and talent — for higher probability minimum viable projects.

It was this last client who was located in the research park of the local university that required me to drive on campus for product meetings.  

One late Friday morning, after a Starbucks meeting near the John Wayne Airport,  I decided to take the afternoon off.  So I drove towards the heart of the campus, parked my silver gray 4 Runner in the town center and began aimlessly wandering. 

I strolled past outdoor restaurant tables filled with undergraduates and professors who like me were just enjoying another spring day in Southern California when a voice rang out, “Steve, is that you?” 

Synchronicity or Serendipity?

That simple question startled me and jerked me back from my daydreams to reality. I turned around, couldn’t zero in on the voice’s location and began believing I imagined it.

But haven’t I emphasized that particular moment when you realize all your hard work meets the probability that someone you’ve just met will recommend you for a position or client who has a need, but hasn’t yet crystalized the requirements until you walk in with a pitch? 

Yup, but for my ex-C-Suite clients I advised in the Key Executive program

But, this time it was for me.  

Another colleague wanted an update.  And, eventually asked if I wanted to work with her at the University in the Business School advising the Executive and Healthcare Executive students.  I aced the interviews with the team.

The Director approved a long-term retainer for conducting advisory services and for teaching seminars customized to Executive MBA students needs.  Basically, he wanted someone to create the program from the ground up.

The opportunity lasted for a decade which I view as a field test or a laboratory for the content in these second volume books.

I proposed a curriculum to the Director for him to review, “Why would anyone choose to come back to school for an executive MBA (and spend over $100,000 over two years) when you’ve got all they’d ever need in this curriculum?” he asked.  

We should probably keep this our own little secret, since the University is paying both of us he went on to say.

But enough about me. For today, haha.

Evidence

“4”  Steve Zahn, 51: “As the bees get nectar, they accidentally spread pollen. Do they know they are the reason the flowers bloom? Like the bees, you will unknowingly cause beauty just by doing what comes naturally.” Scorpio

So, we’re talking about an organic eco-system that’s interdependent, right?  So if for some reason bees die off then the flowers and vegetables don’t bloom and seeds don’t fall and — is this what we’ll be leaving for our grandchildren?

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “Of all the things you could wish for, an easy route won’t be one of them. It wouldn’t be wrong so much as just off-brand. You welcome the opportunity to get stronger and smarter through challenging work.”  Aries 

Haha, off-brand.  That’s a good one.  But I have to say I bore easily if my work hasn’t been complicated, complex or on the edge where the new knowledge you create and circulate, I check out.  But, every damn time? 

“3”  Steve Winwood, 71; Stevie Wonder, 69; Stephen Colbert, 56: You’re not afraid to answer the call of duty and, in fact, the best things you’ve experienced have happened because you both answered and went above and beyond such a call.”  Taurus

Really?  Not today.  So far, anyway.  I answered my call to duty years ago as an Army veteran, but I’m loathe to remember anything good that came out of it.

.“3”  Steve Howey, 42:Let no one, not even you, offer a limiting idea of what you’re capable of. You don’t know what you can accomplish until you accomplish it. Your tenacity knows no bounds.” Cancer

Hopefully you find this inspirational, uplifting and relevant for you today.  It’s not for me.  But, then it’s not my “official” Holiday Tau either.

“5”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:You have paid your dues and done your time. You showed up how they wanted, so you know what that’s like. Now, you’re inclined to do it your own way, to show up how you see fit. It works.” Virgo

It dawned on me that making a living as an artist probably won’t age well when I’m old and gray.  So with family responsibilities I chose to write on the side — to exercise my creativity on things I wanted to do in smaller time slots — at night, before work and at lunch.  Now with work out of the way, I am truly indeed seeing how it fits and works doing it my own way.

“5”  Steve Kerr, 54:Stay aware, head on a swivel, as you make your way to the crossroads. Transitions are always a little more dangerous. The intersections of life hold potential for much good and bad fortune.” Libra

Here’s the added caveat during a pandemic — who knows how long this transition to locked down mode will last and how desperate we may all become for a normal life once more, when none may available on the other side.

“3”  Steve Harvey, 62:You’ve already done the ‘dance like no one is watching’ thing and now you’re into the refinement of movement assumed by consummate professionals. Because if all goes well, someone will be watching.”  Capricorn

Over these initial chapters I’d conclude I became good at interviewing, because I assumed the view of an outside consultant.  And war stories they cared about flowed naturally from my lips.  But once the deal was signed or the offer extended I danced like everybody was watching as I faked it until I made it.

“5”  Steve Nash, 45:The thing you didn’t think you had time for will now be taking up many hours of your day. But if it weren’t good for your personal development, you wouldn’t feel so compelled to manage it.”  Aquarius

Isn’t there such a sigh of relief when you finally land a new job, discover how the internal weather blows, and master those obstacles thrown your way in the normal course of your assignments?  Yup.  It’s the same feeling I felt tempted to follow allowing my networking and marketing activities slip slide away.  Hey, I just landed a long-term retainer!  And then out of blue the flow you began coasting on dries up.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3911 to 4073.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E68 — Take More Breakthrough Showers

When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “The people around you may be too busy executing the action to pause and consider why they are doing it or whether there might be a better way. That’s where you come in — the witness with an objective overview.”  Aries

Hi and welcome to Sunday’s Episode 68 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 21st day of June in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E67Here’s What I Didn’t Know That Will Help You; S2 E66The Romance of a Good Humor Man in Detroit; S2 E65Pandemic Uncovered 11 Life-Changing Secrets You Shouldn’t Ignore

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E68Overcompensating for Disappointing Results?; S1 E67Don’t Misunderstand Me; S1 E66Do Your Proposals Lead to Contracts?; S1 E65Focus Your Mental Energy 

Context

This is the continuing story of how I learned important lessons by graduating at the top of my class from the school of hard knocks and is an introduction for the second volume of books I described in the previous episode.  

Company of the Year to Start Up

Four of us left to start-up a business to business (B2B) company that bottled the magic we performed believing that all other companies requiring reinvention through highly rejuvenated leaders would be beating down our doors.  

Wrong.  

Even though one of us had left an advertising agency kinda like “Mad Men” in favor of pursuing a physics degree we couldn’t get enough traction fast enough in the marketplace.

The dreamed lived on, but the opportunities failed to materialize.  

Paradoxy-Moron Wannabe

In your area of expertise, you’re a forward-thinker.  Trend-chasing would put you behind.

But, wait. Let’s take a moment ask an important question. How do you become a forward thinker if you don’t do what I’ve done over the years? 

Maybe not chase trends, but anticipate their impact on industries, client organizations, employers, investment portfolios, business decisions, career trajectories and major decisions I’ve faced at critical junctures.  

I learned I was the conceptualizer and co-intuitor addicted to trends and innovation and the new knowledge that emerged through application.  

Again, not the closer. 

 “What you’re standing in looks a lot like the river from yesterday and can be maneuvered as such.

I’m pretty sure I’ve already stipulated that I’m a fan of Steve Jobs, mostly for his brand of disruptive innovation — creating new rules for an older industry.  

It’s his spirit that reminds me of a quote, I believe came from Joel Barker originally:

Mastering new rules is like trying to cross a white-water river. If you can anticipate the whirlpools and the changes in the current, if you can anticipate the landing on the other shore, you have a much better chance of getting across that river successfully.

And I felt a strong pull towards what I’ve come to name the “Paradoxy-Moron” organization type.  A talent culture that thrives on high degrees of disruptive innovation, independence and speed.

Project yourself to the far future.  What you see there will help you create your best strategy.

I recently published “Knowing About New Possibilities Gives You More Choices. Check These Out” on my website, Know Laboratories: Thriving in an Age of Accelerating Uncertainty. 

The main point was:

When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth Industrial Revolution is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace.

But, I digress.

Learning Enterprise Initiatives

At the turn of the decade I transitioned from president-elect to president of the training and development association.  They were heady times for taking on the “Learning Enterprise Initiatives” forging alliances among corporate education, technical training schools, colleges and universities and community colleges.  

My focus as written in monthly columns for the association’s newsletter  had always been on the amazing future opportunities the new decade could bring.  And speculation about impending threats and opportunities for us in the “Learning Enterprise” and for the talent in our organizations.

I figured by “putting it out there” my next “Strategic Safari” opportunity would materialize.

But, instead for the next two or so years I joined a past-president and a former colleague in their training and development professional services firm so my family could eat and we could pay our mortgage.  

Avoid Supervisory Training Gigs

I learned the basic business model in the training business was all about you finding clients that need supervisory training, developing a customized curriculum from scratch but retaining the rights to what you developed for a previous client and then repackaging the offerings for your new client.  

That made sense to my growing knowledge management “Robin Hood” sense of repurposing what you’ve done to grow revenue.  

But, I also learned I wasn’t cut out to turn out and deliver supervisory courses for clients like a university hospital, a transportation agency, or even to three technology companies.  

I lost interest in management training  for slow moving mature organization types.  I craved the adrenalin rush of working in Paradoxy-Moron companies. 

It just didn’t satisfy the idea packaging talent I had developed when ideas were old and trending towards commodity knowledge.

Going in I didn’t know that the talent culture should have gone on my list of worst fit, or at least worse fit.  Definitely not best fit.

Outplacement for Retreading Downsized Managers

When I left I activated Plan B as an independent contractor delivering outplacement group training sessions and coaching at two firms. 

For the second firm I held down the fort while the founder underwent heart surgery.  Even he recognized my heart wasn’t in his business and his pressure to sell more than to deliver his service helped me self-select out.  

Local Disk-drive Technology Company

I was much more interested in conceptualizing which trends — demographic, social, technical, economic, political — through their interconnectedness —would produce major opportunities for new products, services and careers. 

And threats for those asleep at the wheel.

Luckily I caught wind of a permanent opening at a local disk-drive technology company working for my former client who led their corporate university function. He was spearheading the introduction of continuous improvement and needed a director to manage facilitators from all functions.  

 “Give yourself a break; you’re solving a problem even if you’re not aware that you are.  This takes time.

It gave me the opportunity to repackage what I learned up to that point time from facilitating teams, mentoring “non” trainers and develop my “reinvention and new knowledge creation” war stories like:

“What’s the most important thing you’ve learned?” she asked.  

“Take showers,” he said.  “Huh?” was her reply not quite sure if he was making fun of her or not.  He then explained the major breakthrough he and his team of co-conspirators couldn’t quite find was driving him nuts and keeping him at his incubator on many late nights.  

But, his phone rang.  It was his wife reminding him in that scolding way that only the loves in our life can that he was late for their date. 

He dropped everything he was doing in a panic and peeled out of the incubator’s parking lot. While showering to freshen up, something clicked in his unconsciousness or something he said, and it was like the world changing solution popped out as soon as the water hit his face. 

He grabbed a pen and his notebook even before toweling off.  His team couldn’t believe it.  His wife enjoyed their date together.  And the rest was history.

So shower more ofter.

Evidence

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “The people around you may be too busy executing the action to pause and consider why they are doing it or whether there might be a better way. That’s where you come in — the witness with an objective overview.”  Aries 

Once you reach his stage in life, living in Sarasota, Florida, my dad told me it’s like every day is Saturday to which I added, “And, every night is Friday night.”  So Emma the Baroness as Father’s Day hostess always says she missed out on conversations around our outdoor bar and barbecue as she brings out snacks from the kitchen.  She’s busy in a hostess way, within the pandemic constraints we all follow.

“4” Steve Winwood, 71; Stevie Wonder, 69; Stephen Colbert, 56: There’s a pang of longing for something different. You don’t have to be somewhere new to experience another place. You can create the effect with an alternate point of view.” Taurus 

Within our pandemic restrictions, you might enjoy what started out as a roadtrip from San Diego to the northern boarder of California and turned into regional stories of places to visit, places to live, and places where you invest.  It’s all there in just two of my 35 digital magazines — “California Tip to Tip” and “Western Skies and Island Currents”.

“4”  Steve Smith, 30: When traveling to a new place, it helps to know the customs there. Places and people are the same in this regard. Each person has a culture, and learning another person will keep you deeply involved today.” Gemini

And, if you work for an employer the customs and culture you encounter vary by Organization Type and the Stage of Growth (or decline) that organization grows into.  This manuscript explores the four basic types and stages which attract people like you.  Stay tuned.

“3”  Steve Howey, 42:Your humanity and the kinship of humans will be a strong theme of the day. You’ll regard your fellow travelers as partners, whether they happen to be your family, friends, co-workers or strangers.” Cancer

COVID restrictions preclude face-to-face family at today’s Father’s Day celebration like last year.

“3”  Steve Carrell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: Watch, listen, study, contemplate… these are the directives for an interesting life. Your mental powers will be even brighter than usual to help you see deeply into simple things.” Leo

Sure, it’s what I do and it’s what led me to writing this manuscript.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3911 to 4073.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E65 — Pandemic Uncovered 11 Life-Changing Secrets You Shouldn’t Ignore

Or, you would work for someone else in a specific location — at a headquarters, in a division, a region, an office … but the key was at their place of work.  Then came the pandemic just as the driving beat of AI platforms and tools swept through. Employers and executives tasted for themselves the flavor of working remotely.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “Be on the lookout for ways to repurpose the past. Discarded scraps from one project/relationship/era can be reworked and turned into something new.” Aries

Hi and welcome to Thursday’s Episode 65 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 18th day of June in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E64Let the Beers and Weekend Partying Begin; S2 E63Easier Than Finding His MacBook Air Password?; S2 E62 — “Shh. Did You Hear That?

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E65Focus Your Mental Energy; S1 E64 — Father and Son Rituals out of Storage; S1 E63Day 63 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E62Next Reality?

Context

So if I’m honest I’m drawing from last week’s focus on my legacy and my search for wisdom (Volume Three Manuscript) to fill in with some reworked experiences that better fit this passion project in progress, “Volume Two Manuscript”.

This is the second volume of books.  The first volume described how to discover where to live.  And a path to follow, the knowledge path.  I originally distinguished what you would learn by choosing either to work for yourself independently which could free yourself up to live anywhere your heart desired, instead of where the jobs were and the employers were located. 

Its theme was how to live, love, work, play, invest and leave a legacy.  

Or, you would work for someone else in a specific location — at a headquarters, in a division, a region, an office … but the key was at their place of work.  

Then came the pandemic just as the driving beat of AI platforms and tools swept through. Employers and executives tasted for themselves the flavor of working remotely. 

Superior advantages of mastering knowledge work

Whoa, they discovered this way of working, well worked for them — making them more productive and efficient.

The implications for all of us — the intended consequences and unintended consequences — as individuals it is better to have been mastering knowledge work rather than service work or manual work. 

Why?  For two reasons.  You have options that others don’t have.  

You can remain employed during disruptions like a pandemic which forces physical distancing at your home in your neighborhood with or without partners, spouses and children who require daily bandwidth and homework assistance.  

The newer normal translate into inconveniences, frustrations and the time to reflect and enjoy deeper bonding.  

So, that’s one.  

Free to move about the country

The second is, if you can work remotely aren’t you also untethered from having to live where you do right now?  Aren’t you free to move about the country and still remain employed?

While the second book in the first volume examined all the ways you can become a ‘Preneur they all rely on variable income.  

You needed to master a sales process which translates well to media channels and subscription business models.  

Not all of us are cut out to succeed. I know this much about me, I’m not.

But if you are already employed, already have the tools necessary to provide value to your employer while working remotely like all the other knowledge workers delivering distributed work, then head out on the highway and follow 11 steps to the quality-of-life you want and deserve.

My distinguished career began with jobs I hated, but I didn’t know why.  It ended with me advising executives and executive MBA students not to make the same mistakes I had made over the years when I knew why.  

But, that’s not entirely true.  

What I discovered wasn’t they should avoid the jobs and organizations and stages of growth that I did.

Or even find the positions in specific types of talent cultures that brought out the very best in me, because they were the best fit.

That’s what I did. 

But, to understand the “why” that made them tick and pursue their own best fits working with sixteen different talent tribes at the intersection of seven dimensions.

Evidence

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “Be on the lookout for ways to repurpose the past. Discarded scraps from one project/relationship/era can be reworked and turned into something new.” Aries  

How can you separate your work life from you life life? Your work life consumes at least eight hours out of every day Mondays through Fridays if you let it.  Your life life provides the context.  Who was it?  Maybe John Lennon who sang something to the effect that life happens when you’re busy making plans.  So if I’m honest I’m drawing from last week’s focus on my legacy and my search for wisdom (Volume Three Manuscript) to fill in with some reworked experiences that better fit this passion project in progress, “Volume Two Manuscript”.

“5”  Steve Smith, 30: Study and cultural exploration will bring you good fortune. You will feel determined to do your unbiased research, and you will refrain from forming an opinion until you have all of the facts.” Gemini

In this case the cultural exploration focuses on talent cultures you find within certain types of work and client organizations and which may be about to move through a new growth stage which requires a transformation from the past. All covered in my “Volume Two Manuscript” in progress.

“4”  Steve Carrell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: You’ll have ideas, and you need the right people to bounce them off of. People who absorb your energy and agree with you are not good bouncing prospects. Look for the hard and deflective types.” Leo

In the beginning, I collaborated with a small team as an offshoot from the Orange County Development Roundtable (OCDRT) who met weekly.  We bounced ideas off of each other to sharpen elements and discard others that just didn’t make sense.  From those humble beginnings a framework emerged and a theory I further developed and tested over a decade with hundreds of Executive MBA Students who had been in the workforce for at least seven or eight years.

“4”  Steve Harvey, 62:The research suggests that improving your weaknesses, while noble in intent, is far less effective than leveraging your strengths.”  Capricorn

We can thank Peter Drucker for this truism.  But he went further and advised managers, leaders and executives to find talented people who excelled at what you didn’t and delegate assignments to them as a way of further developing their strengths through experience.

“3”  Steve Nash, 45:Because of the complexity within the crevices of the human heart, people fit together unexpectedly and in ways so particular that they would be impossible to duplicate.” Aquarius 

Unexpectedly, maybe.  But in my work experience fitting together people from a diverse set of talent profiles leads to better team results after forming, storming, norming and performing processes.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3808 to 3911.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E64 — Let the Beers and Weekend Partying Begin

And, by coincidence I heard my name called out as I walked past another set of outdoor restaurant tables.  I spun around.  A middle aged caucasian woman in her late 40s or early 50s sporting a short, no muss hair style dressed in a brown professional power pantsuit waved in my direction.

“5”  Steve Howey, 42:You are in a proactive mode and will lean into your gift for imagining, organizing and executing your next move. There are at least two key happenings that today’s plans will smooth right out.” Cancer

Hi and welcome to Sunday’s Episode 64 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 14th day of June in the summer of 2020.  

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E63Easier Than Finding His MacBook Air Password?S2 E62 — “Shh. Did You Hear That?”; S2 E61Pink Behind the Reflections

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E64 — Father and Son Rituals out of Storage; S1 E63Day 63 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E62Next Reality?; S1 E61 — Investment of Time and Effort

Context

Last week I focused energy for writing several chapters which illustrate my situations and scenes for my memoir, and this week I turn to fleshing out evidence for my second volume devoted to “Working”.  

One day in my consulting career after a late morning meeting with a client at a Starbucks on MacArthur Blvd, near the airport with three names — SNA (Santa Ana), Orange County and John Wayne — I took the less traveled path back to my office.  

Doing things differently to satisfy your own curiosity will be lucky for you.

I parked my silver green 2000 Toyota four wheel drive 4-Runner with the black side wheel trim in the University Town Center across from the University of California, Irvine’s campus in a 45-minute spot near the entrance to Trader Joe’s, Pete’s Coffee and Tea and the meandering open patio which opened up with tables and a fountain and more store fronts. 

With no particular destination in mind, I began wandering in the warm noon sun which felt good on my back.  

I wondered if the consultant, we nicknamed “Be Cross”, whose arm I twisted to lead my volunteer board through strategic planning up in Big Bear at a board member’s cabin, still maintained an executive suites office in the 10-story professional building that anchors mixed use ventures. But, I have to say I wasn’t curious enough to actually enter the building, trace my finger over building tenets and ride the elevator to find out.

I passed tables with students taking a break, asking each other what plans they had for the weekend with many calling it quits on an early Friday afternoon.  Let the beers and weekend partying begin. Students, right?!

And, by coincidence I heard my name called out as I walked past another set of outdoor restaurant tables.  

I spun around.  A middle aged caucasian woman in her late 40s or early 50s sporting a short, no muss hair style dressed in a brown professional power pantsuit waved in my direction.

I hate times like these when you know the person, but from a different sphere of your life and you can’t place her face with her name.

Steve, it’s me, Nancy.  She wanted to know what I’d been up to since she left the firm where we offered outplacement services a mile or so from the multi-named airport to take a training position at a start-up beginning its emerging growth stage just before the Great Recession took hold.

Still with Right?  

I’d been hired by another Steve, who had been a corporate trainer at a competitor tech firm in Irvine, but now ran the management consulting office.  In my role I advised “Key Executives” while they waited for their generous severance packages to expire after a year or two before considering their next move.

No I told her remembering after about a month or two after she left I did too.

Nancy wanted to know what I’d been up to.

 So I told her about advising startup businesses who wanted to pitch angel investors for venture funding, coaching an HR executive who spun out of a San Diego based defense contractor into a startup applying their electron beam technology into a commercial marketplace, teaching leadership workshops about managing and developing teams based on their Myers-Briggs temperaments, and finally co-authoring “Adapt! How to Survive and Thrive in the Changing World of Work.

We traded quick have-you-heard-from so and so’s, but had to stop because her salad order arrived as did the woman professor’s sitting across the table from her. 

Nancy introduced me to the professor with a more dark, severe, no nonsense style — the kind she could shake dry while dressing and rushing off to her first class of MBA students.

“Listen,” she said, “can I get one of your business cards I might have something you might be interested in.”

No need to agonize about your choices today because there won’t be any wrong paths, just paths that get there a little sooner or later.

I took her’s and placed it in my light blue casual dress shirt breast pocket after we hugged and I shook the professor’s hand while immediately forgetting her name.  

That’s me.  Great at faces, horrible at remembering names.  Even after saying them mantra-like over and over again.

Oh, well I tried.

If I am honest, I was oozing into an early weekend vibe.  I continued on with my meandering past the professional building, checking out women students in halter tops, and restaurants and shop windows.  

On a whim when I hit the opposite end of the center, instead of returning by retracing my steps I decided to follow my nose and walk up the switchback cement ramp installed for handicapped folks to what had been the heart of the campus as I strolled across “Campus Avenue”.

Evidence

“4”  Steve Zahn, 51: “In a parallel universe, secluded from the routines, pressures and responsibilities of everyday life, there’s an oasis you’ve built for yourself out of your own curiosity and interest. Visit and become revitalized.” Scorpio

I don’t know about a parallel universe, but this COVID-19 pandemic provides fewer “outside distractions”, but for an introvert like me the outcomes are the same, except for the visiting and revitalization in person.  I do confess that I may follow my curiosity and interests to a greater degree.

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“3”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “You have a different experience of the world than any creature who has ever walked it. You’ll be met with appreciation as you share your unique insights with someone you trust.” Aries  

So you’re saying I’m like a snowflake, unique in every way?  Haha, the second part of this TauBit remains to be seen, but I’m not holding my breath.

“4”  Steve Winwood, 71; Stevie Wonder, 69; Stephen Colbert, 56: People need to hear your version of the story, but you’ve held back because you want to get the sentiment just right. It’s worth putting work into, but don’t overthink it.” Taurus 

The sentiment, hmm possibly, but just recalling the scene does require a lot of work just bubbling it up from memory aided by extemporaneous notes.

“5”  Steve Howey, 42:You are in a proactive mode and will lean into your gift for imagining, organizing and executing your next move. There are at least two key happenings that today’s plans will smooth right out.” Cancer

Sometimes work on one project can be applied to another.  You know I’m working on two works-in-progress.  The first about work and the second about a broader legacy.  I believe the legacy aka “Volume Three Manuscript” adds color with stories about what I learned and taught, my original research aka “Volume Two Manuscript.”

“3”  Steve Kerr, 54:Normality can be an anxious dictator. Hit pause and step back. The wider view shows a much broader range of ‘normal.’ Step back again and there is no ‘normal’ at all.” Libra

So I rated this lower than a “5” because we left normal last year.  We have no choice so far during this second season but to hit pause.  The wider view must include a personal scenario assessment which unfolds from Deloitte and Salesforce meant for business and the society in which business works as the pandemic turns “normal” inside out.  I guess the broader range might answer how long and how intensely will we citizens be effected?

“4”  Steve Nash, 45:You’ll come across those people you seem predisposed to like. They speak your language, share your values, get your humor. There’s more connection to look forward to in the future.” Aquarius 

I’m taking the essence of this TauBit to mean from within the mentors I recruited for the business school and those colleagues I worked with over the years.  

“5”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): To take advantage of one opportunity, you have to leave all other experiences behind. You hardly ever think of what might have been, but today, a slight glimpse at an alternate path will intrigue you.” Pisces

Not so much for today, but this TauBit of Wisdom didn’t make sense for me when I first encountered the truism that you can’t move forward into new beginnings until you close down endings.  You have to put down past baggage first before you can travel lightly into your future.  As I write chapter drafts recounting the highs and lows in my life and at work, it is true I’m finding intriguing glimpses of tributaries I could have taken going with the flow.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3634 to 3808.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E60 — She Began to Weep…

Curiosity drives discoveries in science and innovation.  It pushes knowledge forward.  But, predictability and certainty favor the status quo and our homeostasis because without them our mind grinds to a halt. So what can you do?

“5”  Steve Howey, 42:When the solution eludes you, tackle it backward, inside out or upside down — any other way than the usual. What’s needed is a fresh approach.” Cancer

Hi and welcome to Sunday’s Episode 60 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 7th day of June in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E59See What You’ve Been Missing; S2 E58Check Back in 18 Months; S2 E57Science and Medicine or Politically-Motivated Misinformation? 

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E60Overlapping Cycles of Life; S1 E59Where Did All the Dillon Millennials Go? Eureka!; S1 E58Judging a Stroll from the Hotel Santa Barbara to the Lobero Theater; S1 E57More or Less in the Know

Context

So, if you’re an introvert like me, then you understand how the forced solitude brought on by this Pandemic gives me the wonderful opportunity to work on my neglected manuscript I’ve been calling “Volume Three — a Legacy.”

Here’s an excerpt from the first draft or Chapter One .

AJ noticed him heading her way. “How’d you sleep?” she asked sitting in the kitchen as the sun rose in the East chasing the last moments of gray away.  Except for the gray she felt in her chest.

“OK, I guess, well no not really.  It’s just so weird sleeping in my old room.” Shaggy replied as he walked on the still shiny dark brown laminated wooden floor from the living room and past the long teak table in the dining room where all the family gatherings took place — Thanksgiving, especially Christmas Eve and Christmas Day — into the glaring California illuminated morning light.

“Coffee’s ready,” she said.

“Oh, OK, great.” Shaggy mumbled. He rubbed his tired eyes and turned left into the white u-shaped kitchen with white cabinets surrounding stainless steel dishwasher, stove, microwave and refrigerator.

Following his nose sniffing out the early morning fragrance just past the refrigerator on his right he mumbled something that AJ couldn’t hear as she sat in “his seat” with her back to the ever brightening morning streaming in through the sliding glass door.

“You wanna sit here?”

He opened the only unattached white cabinet on the opposite wall which hung above the light gray backsplash next to the white bay window behind the sink and next to the kitchen table.  He grabbed a dark blue mug, spun and headed back to the coffee maker.

“No, thanks.  I’m gonna just sit on the couch for a minute or two and sip this Folgers.”

Timing was off.

AJ landed at John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California from her home with Darin in Winter Park, Florida in Orange County where it is normally three hours later on any day of the week, especially on this one.  

The one she hadn’t been looking forward to.

Which is why she was up first.  Why she had tossed and turned in the other guest bedroom at the top of the stairs. Why she laid awake with a deeply sad feeling beginning three hours earlier at 3:30 am PST.

Shaggy walked past the blonde oblong wooden kitchen table to AJ’s left to the first of two matching couches that separated the kitchen from the family room in one big room.  

He could see himself in the mirror display on the opposite wall as he padded the few steps deeper into the room and stopped turned left and found his spot on the first couch facing the second butted up to the light gray painted wall and the mirror displays.

The smaller mirrors distorted his image.  

And being 6’ 4” and under these circumstances this morning the distorted reflection mirrored his internal morning fog.

AJ rose from the kitchen table deciding to join him instead of talking to his back.  She slid down the small space between Shaggy’s couch and the fireplace next to the patio door walked 6 or 7 steps on gray tile hearth into the family room and maneuvered herself carefully around the round dark wood coffee table that now separated her and Shaggy.

Her view back into the kitchen would be the money shot if she and Shaggy decided to put the place on the market.  To her left the original white cabinet doors along the floor hid blankets for winter viewing of the big black screen TV from each couch when the California temperature dropped into the 50s.  Brrr. Except for anybody else not living in Florida or California.

They hid board games from childhood and all kinds of things that would eventually require sorting and boxing, not something she was prepared to entertain at this moment.

And the original bookshelves displayed pictures of the two blond brothers, Shaggy and Jazzy, AJ’s photoshoot near high school graduation.  And, books and plates and CDs, and a wine rack and more pictures and photo albums and ….

“Remember when Jazzy was a baby and you could hold him in the crook of your arm between you hand and elbow?” she asked out of the blue.

“No, not really. I was only four when he was born at Hoag Hospital, but I do remember you visiting every summer,” Shaggy said. 

To AJ’s right on the end table next to the wicker basket on the floor for collecting “The Los Angeles Times” newspaper Jazzy loved to use for starting a fire was a photo showing AJ in a white wedding gown smiling and a slice of a backdrop from the Outer Banks hotel where she and Darin tied the knot and Shaggy celebrated with a canoe filled with beer followed by his gigantic migraine dwarfing hangover the next morning — actually afternoon.

“I remember the back yard before they changed it.  It didn’t have the tan slope stone walls, but I think the black wrought iron railing stretched across the back from side to side.  And there used to be giant ficus trees in corners and a small round cement patio surrounded in grass,” she told Shaggy.

“Yeah,” he said.

That’s where they tossed a whiffle ball and played catch until probably Shaggy began hitting the ball with the big red plastic bat over the fence and down into the slope on purpose.  

“Somewhere there’s a picture of all of us in front of the tree on the grass around here I bet,” she said. “And probably that one where we four kids posed in front of the then white front door on the red brick entrance.”

“I remember when our parents threw that karaoke party when Jazzy graduated high school and I graduated college and you and Darin flew out for the Mexican foot catering affair.”

“That’s the one where Darin tipped over the container of margarita salt on the grass which killed it in no short order, right?  Dad never let him forget.  He once wrote on a birthday card that to commemorate the occasion they had a brass metal plate made up engraved with the date and his name and …” she began to weep.

Evidence

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

Today’s Holiday Birthday:  

You’ll be called on to do something you haven’t done before. You’ll be both inspired and inspirational. A group will form around your leadership as you apply past experience to figure things out. Results beyond your expectations will come at the start of the new year. Your family grows in March 2021.

OK, let’s check back in 9 months!

“5”  Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “It only takes one connection to make your personal life go from being a stale routine to an inspired journey. You’ll make that connection today and a transformation will occur in the weeks to come.” Aries  

So you’re saying this connection is an antidote for pandemic cabin fever?  That transformation … will it come from a person kind of connection or from a answer that has eluded my pursuit?

“4”  Steve Smith, 30: You’ll be gifted with an emotion that is one click beyond passion and desire: rage. Rage doesn’t have to be angry or negative, but it’s always powerful, and best focused on what’s important to you.” Gemini

OK, this TauBit of Wisdom scares me and intrigues me.  How do you focus it without doing irreparable damage?

“5”  Steve Howey, 42:When the solution eludes you, tackle it backward, inside out or upside down — any other way than the usual. What’s needed is a fresh approach.” Cancer

Thanks for breaking the log jam.  I just couldn’t figure out how to start this manuscript.

“4”  Steve Carrell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: Whomever you align yourself with, you grow to be more like. It isn’t necessary for you to have a personal relationship with your role models. You get to choose them from the whole wide world.” Leo

There’s such a long list, but one of the most influential is Toffler (see immediately below) and more recently Kurt Andersen who wrote “Fantasyland” which is both an update and a framework in which to view Future Shock.

“4”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:Your famous adaptability will kick in. From the outside, your behavior may look illogical, but there’s definitely a method to your madness. When an unusual situation crops up, an unusual reaction is warranted.” Virgo

Should this be true about me, I feel the need to honor Alvin Toffler who alerted me to disruption and how to adapt or accommodate changes on the horizon.

“4”  Steve Aoki, 41: Passions build slowly. At first, you don’t even realize what you want. When leanings turn to yearnings and become undeniable in their message, it’s a blessing that doesn’t feel like one.” Sagittarius

Who can resist such a phrase, “learnings turn to yearnings”?  But the point of the message mystifies me, why doesn’t the blessing feel like one?  It’s still early in the day, so maybe it will be revealed in the evening or late afternoon.

“5”  Steve Nash, 45:Emotional skill and intelligence can be earned through both negative and positive experiences. Today will bring scenarios you will use as examples of what to do and what not to do.”  Aquarius

Well, of course I’d rate this TauBit of Wisdom a “5” given what it looks like we’re being trapped in for the foreseeable future. So take some time to review the Deloitte and Salesforce sponsored scenarios. 

“3”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): The possessions that you get the most value out of are the ones you use every week and maybe every day. As for the others, the more you can let go of, the lighter you’ll feel.” Pisces

So that would be describing the 500 pieces jigsaw puzzle sitting for days now on our dining room table?

Holiday Forecast for the Week Ahead:  

Curiosity is a slightly uncomfortable state of mind, as it relies on the tension between knowing and not knowing. The tension is resolved with an answer. So tenacious is our need for answers that our brains will just fill in the blanks with anything that enables us to push forward. 

The human brain craves certainty. 

Without it, we are paralyzed. Certainty facilitates action, commitment and movement. Where there is no certainty (and reality offers very little of it) humans do the next best thing; we make a good guess and come up with a theory that will allow us to go onward. If to assume is human, then not to assume is superhuman. Anyone can say, “I’m right,” and live to defend that. But it takes humility, higher thinking and a willingness to be uncomfortable inside the tension of curiosity to go to the next cognitive level — to question, wonder, revel in mystery and leave the loop open to possibility.

Whether or not today’s forecast gains currency over the next 7 days, I believe the insights ring true for me — curiosity drives discoveries in science and innovation.  It pushes knowledge forward.  But, predictability and certainty favor the status quo and our homeostasis because without them our mind grinds to a halt.  Without answers we jump to guesses and theories and conspiracy theories, unless you are the rare person who focuses the unresolved tension onto the next higher cognitive level.  

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3634 to 3806.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip

S2 E59 — See What You’ve Been Missing

“You know the sensation you get when you look back on old photos? Be happy now. Cast worry aside. Trust time. It will handle so much for you.”

“5”  Steve Aoki, 41: Eventually, you’ll be able to handle more and move faster. But this is still the early stages. You’re still learning, and you won’t regret taking the time to learn it right.” Sagittarius

Hi and welcome to Saturday’s Episode 59 in Season 2 of  “My Pandemic Year Natural Experiment” on this 6th day of June in the summer of 2020.  

“The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book”

Table of Contents

Season One and Two are a two-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed during the “normal” pre-pandemic and then in this unfolding pandemic year.

Previously in Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E58Check Back in 18 Months; S2 E57Science and Medicine or Politically-Motivated Misinformation?; S2 E56What Iffing 

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E59Where Did All the Dillon Millennials Go? Eureka!; S1 E58Judging a Stroll from the Hotel Santa Barbara to the Lobero Theater; S1 E57More or Less in the Know; S1 E56It’s Frickin’ Summer and So Are You

Context

When will we be able to travel?  When will we be safe?  Enjoy this week’s episode:

Feeling Frustrated and Exhausted? 39 New Photo-ready Memories for Summer

Aren’t we all yearning for those special summer moments? Beach vacations. Back country adventures. Family road trips. Fishing and floating trips.

Practice the art of anticipation.  Sometimes looking forward to fun and sun is almost as good as the experience itself.

Remember, while we’re getting closer to re-openings we here on the Atoll don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately.

The Tau: Week Ending 6/6/20

Tags: Beaches, Canyons, Climbing, Deserts, Festivals, Forests, Hiking, Islands, Lakes, Mountains, Parks, Regions, Resorts, Rivers, Road Trips, Seas, Trails

Instead we hope our articles inspire your bucket list ideas for future memories!

But, today there’s no reason not to join our growing group of 3783 followers …. 

See what you’ve been missing.

Check out this week’s headlines pulled from our daily “Top 30 Digest” delivered, “Fresh from the Labs. Literally bottled and set adrift from KnowWhere Atoll.

Where … ?

Mountains, Rivers and Lakes

          • The Natural Swimming Hole At Emerald Pools In Northern California Will Take You Back To The Good Ole Days
          • The Best Kayaks for Fishing and Floating
          • Back To The Great Outdoors: Climbing Tahoe’s Via Ferrata
          • The Best Things To Do In Mammoth Lakes During The Summer
          • Is South Lake Tahoe open for visitors? The city won’t fine you, but the state might
          • What A-Basin Looked Like on Day One of Its Reopening

Pristine Treks

          • ”These Bay Area parks and beaches just reopened their parking lots””
          • Parking lots at 144 California state parks reopen”
          • ”Backcountry Must-Do: Liberty Cap”
          • ”Quintessential Nearby Adventures”
          • ”The Redwood Canopy Trail At Trees Of Mystery Is Northern California’s Newest Aerial Adventure”
          • ”Bald eagles return to nest in Orange County neighborhood”
          • ”With fire season ahead, Eldorado National Forest enacts campfire restrictions”
          • ”The Grand Canyon will reopen this summer. Here’s how it will go”

Deserts, Slopes and Ranges

          • Echo at Rancho Mirage by Studio AR&D
          • Sanitas Brewing Co. Reopens This Weekend After Shutting Down Roving Beer Truck
          • George R.R. Martin Joins Investor Group To Buy & Restore Sante Fe Southern Railroad
          • Terrific Time Capsule! Designer Arthur Elrod’s ’60s Vision Still Pristine in Palm Springs
          • Where To Find Colorado Restaurants Open for Dine-In Service 

PCH Regions

          • Weigh In on Santa Barbara’s Wildfire Protection Plan
          • Magical Field of Light in Paso Robles
          • Rams employees help with cleanup effort in Santa Monica
          • Image of Santa Cruz police chief, mayor kneeling packs a punch
          • ”‘It is heartening’ Long Beach overwhelmed by volunteers helping clean up after looting
          • The Best Beaches in Southern California
          • Ventura County to extend stay-at-home order while continuing to ease restrictions
          • Coronavirus concerns: Half Moon Bay Pumpkin Festival canceled for 2020
          • Face Masks Are a Simple Gesture of Shared Respect
          • How To Spend A Perfect Weekend In Quaint Ojai, California
          • America, unmasked: The public health nightmare I witnessed on Santa Monica beaches this week

Islands and Currents

          • Sea, sand and social distancing: Caribbean reopens to tourism
          • Dogged pragmatism’ needed to save Ocean: UN Special Envoy
          • With Tourism Halted, Hawaii’s Housing Market Takes a Big Hit. Can It Bounce Back?
          • The Art Of Anticipation: Hawai’i Is Still Here For All Of Us
          • Hawaii is effectively closed to visitors, but here’s how to support it from afar
          • 10 Reasons Why Hawaii Offers A Safer Vacation In A Coronavirus World
          • Between two storms: Caribbean braces for hurricanes in coronavirus era
          • The Perfect Weekend Getaway: Catalina Island From Los Angeles
          • Caribbean flights: When can you fly to Caribbean? Rules for Jamaica, Barbados and more

The Tau 12 Months Ago 

If you don’t take the opportunities that come, you’ll regret it.  If you do take them, and they wind up being foolish, that’s still better than having no story to tell.

Holiday Mathis, Creators Syndicate Inc.

Evidence

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“4” Steve McQueen (1930 – 1980): “The urge to complain is a natural reaction to frustrating circumstances, though the mature response is to move past words and into solutions and action.” Aries

Let’s hope these quality-of-life destinations inspire you to plan, rather than add one more thing to how frustrating and angry you may feel during this extraordinary disruptive time.  Is the end in sight?

“3”  Steve Greene, 34; Steve Guttenberg, 61; Stephen King, 72:Mistakes are not only opportunities for growth and mastery; they are the best relationship glue there is. Nothing will go wrong without producing an obvious upside.” Virgo

Not feeling this one today, although who can argue with the sentiment if you are a glass half full person?

“4”  Steve Kerr, 54:The requirements of the day are pretty awesome. You don’t have to solve problems or answer questions. You don’t even have to ‘just be you.’ All you have to do is relax.” Libra

Sure, it’s exactly what summers and Saturdays are for.  

“5”  Steve Aoki, 41: Eventually, you’ll be able to handle more and move faster. But this is still the early stages. You’re still learning, and you won’t regret taking the time to learn it right.” Sagittarius

It’s all about the burden of the unexpected when normal expectations just aren’t met.

“4”  Steve Harvey, 62:You’ll bring together the best of all worlds — a spiritual person with a practical point of view. Your open mind will lead you to test theories and run with what works.” Capricorn 

Who can fill those shoes?  I’d be flattered if someone thought it would be me.  But, overall if there is an underlying theme to Season Two and a reason for me to continue my natural experiment into a second year, it would be exactly that combination — wisdom and practicality.  Or what Benjamin Franklin supposedly pursued — practical knowledge.

“3”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): To accept differences and tolerate others is only level one. The next level is a celebration of diversity. A world where we honor not only our own traditions but everyone’s could be heaven on earth.” Pisces

Who politicizes mask wearing as preventative medicine during a pandemic.  Which of the four scenarios we are tracking will describe our path forward?

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll 

    • @knowlabs followers of one or more of my 35 digital magazines organically grew from 3188 to 3634.

Foresight

Quality-of-Life 

Long-Form

    • Saw the movie, didn’t realize that one of my favorite authors, Michael Connelly — his detective Hieronymus (Harry) Bosch book series and Amazon Prime series — also wrote, “The Lincoln Lawyer” which I just finished. Gotta tell you I can’t not see his lead character (Mickey Haller, Bosch’s half brother) as anyone else but Matthew McConaughey. 

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by: Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate

CENTER FOR KNOWLEDGE CREATION AND INNOVATION

The Knowledge Path | Know Laboratories | Knowledge Banking | Knowledge ATMs | Western Skies and Island Currents | Best West Road Trip