Di(a)mon(d)s in the Rough

In listening to the “Di(a)mon(d)s”—Robert Diamond, recently resigned CEO of Barclays Bank (one of the largest banks in the United Kingdom and the 25th largest company in the world) and Jamie Dimon, still enthroned CEO of JP Morgan Chase (the largest bank in the United States, as measured in assets)—testify in front of their respective controlling government inquisitors, I could not help but feel a little sympathy for the two.  More importantly, though, I wondered, as I frequently do when I hear of people at Read more

July 12th, 2012 0 Comment

What’s Behind the Numbers?

Numbers tell a lot.  On Monday of this week, as members of the military read the names of the dead from each war going back to WWI, I stood and counted each from this small, suburban Philadelphia community, noting that this community lost as many soldiers in Vietnam as it has, thus far, in the war on terror.

On Tuesday, on NPR’s Morning Edition, the First Lady cited two telltale statistics: an American child spends an average of 7.5 hours a day looking at a screen Read more

Introverts Unite…Separately

The second half of last century saw the spawning of research that uncovered the differences in how boys and girls learn.  It revealed the ways that most teachers encouraged boys’ learning and discouraged girls’.  As a result, enlightened educators and schools changed and adapted curriculum, pedagogy and more.

During this same time frame, we also came to understand the unique needs of adult learners, and pedagogy shifted yet again. Having male and female and adult and traditional-aged learners in the same class became, and remains, a Read more

Simple Questions

I am troubled by how little we learn from other people’s mistakes.  Perhaps it is arrogance that leads us as individuals and leaders of organizations to think that we are smarter than others, we could never…  But, truth is, the vast majority of us aren’t smarter than others, and we could do whatever.

There is no loss of stature or pride to say, “Oh, what a mistake that person/organization made.  Let’s just take stock to make sure I/we am/are not risking making that same mistake.”  The Read more

Who put the Moron in Oxymoron?

My sister’s second career is as a fifth grade teacher in a Washington, DC public school.  She is just starting the unit on the Civil War, and this year, as she has done for the last four, she introduces the unit by talking about oxymorons.  Each year, some of her students know what an oxymoron is; some don’t.  She gives the usual examples, jumbo shrimp, good grief, sweet tart.  This year, she found a new example that we both found quite amusing:

This time next year, Read more

Makings of Great Leaders

Recently, my brother became the CEO of a rather large, international, publicly traded company.  And when I received my first e-mail from him over his new signature, I was a little surprised to see that he was still using the diminutive version of his name.  So, I shot him an e-mail back saying I would have thought he’d now switch to his “real” name.  His response came back equally quickly, stating, “God, no.  Imperious, egocentric corporate cultures are the hobgoblins of hurting companies.”

My brother and Read more