October 31st 2006
Ever since the first time I boarded a plane, I’ve been amazed by the fact a plane that weighs so much and carries so many passengers can even get off the ground let alone fly so swiftly 30,000 feet in the air. It’s just amazing to me.
Whether I’m flying on a CRJ-700 – which can accommodate up to 70 passengers – or a 777-200 that can carry 268 passengers, I’m fascinated with each and every take-off.
Not only do these planes carry 70 to 268 passengers, but they have cruising (ground) speeds of 544 to 550 mph. That’s Incredible.
October 30th 2006
We’re free to choose and we often do.
Most people are either morning people or night people. Rarely do we find someone who is both a night and morning person.
We either like dogs or we like cats. Yes, there are “animal lovers,” but most times I find people who either like cats or they like dogs.
How about those who like rainy days and those who’d rather stay in when it rains…or those who prefer snow over the wet rain?
We all have choices and probably more often than not, we take them for granted.
Groucho Marx once said, “Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”As for me and my choices, I love early mornings, and don’t mind walking the dog in the rain.
October 27th 2006
I recently went on a daddy-daughter date with our six-year-old and we enjoyed a couple chocolate shakes, as well as a trip to the bookstore, which we both enjoy doing from time-to-time.
As we started to leave the ice cream shop, I placed a couple dollars on the table for a tip, and started to head for the door when my daughter said, “Wait Dad, I want to leave my money too.”
I said, “That’s okay, KJ, I already left a tip.” She said, “That’s okay, Dad, I want to leave my money too,” as she reached into her wallet, took out two pennies, and placed them on the dollars.”
Of course I smiled and so did Kennedy, as we exchanged a high-five.
It’s moments like this that I’m thankful to be a father and able to enjoy a priceless moment with our daughter.
October 26th 2006
I recently read a quote: “What could be more important in life than to know in our hearts that in everything we have tried to do, we have done our very best.”
Do you coast or give your most?
When it comes to effort, each of us holds the keys.
October 25th 2006
I read the other day where a company has created sports caskets. I’ve worked in sports a long time, have participated in sports even longer, and although nothing should surprise me after all these years, I must say, reading the article and seeing the sports casket picture made me shake my head from side-to-side.
It brings a whole new meaning to sports fanatic.
October 24th 2006
I checked into a Doubletree recently and soon after receiving my key and directions to the elevator, the receptionist handed me an envelope with a warm chocolate chip cookie.
For those of you who have stayed at a Doubletree hotel, you know this experience first-hand. The cookies are thick, warm and the chocolate chips melt when you sink your teeth into them.
As I took my second bite into the cookie, I read the writing on the envelope which said: “Why a cookie? Simple. Cookies are warm, personal and inviting. Much like our hotels and the staff here that serves you. So, many years ago we decided to start giving our guests fresh-baked cookies at check-in, as a symbol of our unique kind of hospitality and commitment to comfort. In other words, we think cookies are the perfect way for us to say, “Welcome.”
I like it and think it’s a great way to say “Welcome.”
How do you and your business say “Welcome” to your clients or guests? Is it warm, personal and inviting like the Doubletree’s cookies?
October 23rd 2006
Whenever I’m traveling on business and I flag a cab at an airport, I’m usually pretty quick to roll my luggage to the back of the cab, flip the trunk open and place my bag in the trunk.
However, this cab driver beat me to it. He nabbed my bag, and quickly placed it in the trunk as I looked at him surprised that he beat me to the punch.
He just smiled.
I then went to get in the back seat and he was right there to close the door behind me. Not something I’m used to when I get in a city cab no matter where I travel, but I could tell this guy was different than most cab drivers.
When he sat down, he asked where I’d like to go, and then followed with the question “Business or pleasure sir?” I said, “Ah, business.” He said, “Great!” as he signed a blank cab receipt (saving me from asking for one when I paid) and handed it to me with a smile, “Here you go.”
I smiled back and said, “Thanks.”
He had the newspaper in the back seat, asked if I’d like to know the forecast for the next few days, and even asked if I’d like the air conditioning adjusted.
I couldn’t help but be impressed.
Now, the real test was about to come, though. You see usually when I’m in a cab; it doesn’t take long for me to respond to emails on my Blackberry, and I start to feel a bit nauseous from the cab driver jumping from lane-to-lane.
A few minutes passed, though, and nothing happened. This guy was as smooth as could be; almost as if he was trying to avoid bumps or any quick movements. He was actually a Blackberry friendly cab driver – a first for me.
That clinched the deal for me. This guy was tops on my list of cab drivers – great customer service and Blackberry friendly. It just doesn’t get any better than that!
October 20th 2006
Are you parked in a comfort zone? Will you attempt something new today? Do you wake up each day motivation to try something new, or learn something new?
If so, good for you! If not, why not?
Why not attempt the impossible? Why remain in our comfort zone? It’s just so easy isn’t it? We wake up and do the same thing over and over and over again.
Someone once wrote, “To achieve all that is possible, you must attempt the impossible. To be as much as you can be, you must dream of being more. Your dream is the promise of all you can become.”
October 19th 2006
Are you someone who takes notes? Whether you’re in a class, seminar, meeting with a client, or just want to remember something, do you take notes?
I’m a note taker. I’ve always been a note taker ever since I can remember. I tell people, “If I don’t write it down, I may not remember it.”
There are plenty of examples to validate that fact!
Michael Howe concluded in a 1970 study that students were seven times more likely to recall information one week after it was presented if the information had been recorded in their notes. Howe argued that “the activity of note writing per se makes a contribution to later retention…”
I don’t know about you, but I know I’m seven times more likely to remember something if I write it down.
October 18th 2006
Do you ever think about the things you learn each day?
My wife and I frequently ask our kids, “So, what did you learn at school today?” or when we’re coming home from church, we’ll ask the same question, and the kids share what they learned.
For whatever reason, as I listened to the exchange between my wife and our kids the other day, I realized this questioning stops as we get older. There’s no one to ask us as adults, “So, what did you learn today?”
It’s a great question, though, and a question we should continue asking ourselves even as adults.
So, what did you learn today?
October 17th 2006
Our kids are always eager to share what they learn. There are times they’re so excited, I’m not sure if they will ever stop talking.
Gab, gab, gab, gab!
There was a time in certain situations that I found it easy to shut them out when I was focusing on work, or watching a game on TV, or just “not in the mood” to hear them ramble on about something, which at the time, I didn’t think was all that important.
Luckily for me, though, I’ve learned over time – thanks to our two oldest kids who’ve taught me more than they may ever know – to enjoy each and every exchange…whether it’s a short exchange or a long-winded story.
I’ve learned the hard way, though, because as our kids have grown older, it’s been a lot harder to pin them down, connect, and share in a meaningful conversation…similar to how they found it difficult at times to have that meaningful conversation with me.
So now, when our kids try to get my attention – it’s much easier – because no matter what I’m doing, I stop and listen intently to what they have to share, and enjoy the moment.
Just one of the many lessons our kids have taught me!
October 16th 2006
Good news sports fans HDTV, plasma and DLP television prices have fallen, and as much as 50 percent since last year.
You still have a few months of college and professional football, and basketball is just around the corner for those of you who have been itching to upgrade your television.
October 13th 2006
It’s Friday the 13th and there are some people who think this is a day of bad luck.
What do you think?
I’ve been involved in sports an awful long time, and have witnessed many superstitious rituals during that time by coaches and players.
But, just as I didn’t take much stock in superstitious rituals when it comes to sports, I don’t take much stock in Friday the 13th being a day of bad luck.
In fact, I’m feeling pretty lucky! How about you? Are you feeling a bit superstitious or lucky?
October 12th 2006
As baseball’s regular season wrapped up last week, we had the opportunity to experience a lifelong dream of mine and a recent request from our daughter – a Cubs game in Wrigley Field – and although all Cubs fans are once again saying, “Maybe next year,” it was a special day .
I knew it was awesome when we walked into Wrigley and my six-year old daughter looked around, smiled from ear-to-ear and jumped into my arms. As we hugged, she whispered into my ear, “Dad, I can’t believe we’re here. Thank you.”
Those are the moments that make being a father very special for me; when our kids are happy and enjoying life’s experiences.
It was raining pretty heavy, but 15 minutes before the Cubs ran onto the field, the rain stopped and the sun appeared. Our daughter looked at me, still sporting a grin, and said, “God knows we’re here and said, ‘let there be sun,’ and there’s the sun.” My wife and I just started laughing and Kennedy said, “What? It’s true. Look,” as she pointed towards the sun.
Rain or shine, we were bound to have a good time, and who knows, maybe next year will be the Cubs year to win it all. If they do, there’s a good chance we’ll find a way to be there.
October 11th 2006
I often wish I’d write down all the funny things I hear kids say. They’re hilarious and most times they don’t even know they’re being funny. They’re just being themselves and expressing what’s on their mind.
Take for instance the exchange between a seven-year old son and his Mom, whose family happens to be close friends of our family:
The mother had to attend two baby showers this past Saturday, so she explained to her seven-year old son that she was sorry she wouldn’t be able to attend his soccer game because she needed to attend the baby showers.
She communicated how she wishes she could be there, hopes he plays well, and let her son that his father would be there to cheer for him.
The son looked at his Mom and said, “Well, at least Dad made the right decision.”
Oh, too funny!
October 10th 2006
You likely heard the news this past weekend that a child born in Mississippi was named ESPN, pronounced Espen, according to the parents.
My first thought was this has to be a first. Wrong!
As I read the story, I learned there are three other children who have been named ESPN – two in Texas and one in Michigan – in 2005.
Now that’s brand loyalty!
October 9th 2006
Coke and Pepsi came up with a couple one-of-a-kind formulas for its soft drinks.
Many have said, “I wish I owned that formula,” or “I wish I invented that formula.”
Have you ever thought about creating your own formula? I don’t mean to compete with Coke or Pepsi, but simply to be successful in life; in all you wish to achieve.
Do you have a formula – strategy or plan – for your personal success?
What could your formula, strategy or plan be?
I think Ross Perot said it well when he said: “Most people give up just when they’re about to achieve success. They quit on the one yard line. They give up at the last minute of the game, one foot from a winning touchdown.”
So Perot’s formula for success might be summed up in one word, persistence. As Napoleon once said, “Victory belongs to the most persevering.”
According to Babe Didrikson Zaharias, “The formula for success is simple: practice and concentration then more practice and more concentration.”
Benjamin Disraeli’s believes “The secret of success is consistency of purpose,” and Brian Tracy believes “Successful people are simply those with success habits.”
Whether you believe Perot said it best or you like the simplicity of Tracy’s success formula, it would be well worth your time to create your own success formula, or you could adopt and commit to one of the formulas above. Either way, it would be a wise investment of time.
Ron Goch, The Telios Group
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October 6th 2006
Do you ever wonder what kind of role model or example you are to others?
I sure do, and more than ever these days as our kids grow, mature, make their own decisions, and take on the day-to-day challenges that all of today’s youth face daily.
It seems like our kids have it much harder than we did growing up. Maybe it’s just me, but the peer pressure and opportunities to take a wrong turn seem to be more present – no matter where we live – than ever before.
My wife and I often talk about the decisions we make, how we’ve raised our kids, and we’re hopeful we’ve developed a good foundation for them to make the right decisions at school and when they’re on their own.
Whether you’re a parent, boss, co-worker, sister, brother, friend, neighbor, son, daughter, or peer, we’re all setting an example for someone.
What will be the example you will set today?
October 5th 2006
Do you make a fashion statement with your jeans? My favorite pair of jeans is my wife’s least favorite jeans. They have too many holes to count, but no worries, each are patched so the way I see it, there are no holes.
They’re the most comfortable pair of jeans I own, and I’ve owned them – along with the rest of my limited number of jeans – for many years.
According to James Sullivan, author of “Jeans: A Cultural History of an American Icon,” Jeans need celebrities and celebrities need jeans.
I can relate to needing a comfortable pair of jeans. My wife has tried unsuccessfully to toss my jeans versus patching them one more time, and I just can’t part with them. Why should I buy a brand new pair of jeans I need to “break-in” when I can simply patch my “premium” pair?
Oops, I’m getting ahead of myself here. See, James’ book examines the relationship between celebs and “premium” jeans.
I’m not sure my faded and well-patched Old Navy jeans would be considered “premium” to others – definitely not to my wife – but trust me, they’re “premium” jeans when it comes to comfort.
So the next time you think about tossing those old jeans of yours because they have a hole in them, consider adding a patch or two and you’ll be well on your way to owning a pair of “premium” jeans.
October 4th 2006
I recently took a weekend trip with some friends and our rental car came with the “Never Lost” navigation system. I’ve actually spotted this in other rental cars I’ve used from time-to-time, but being in a hurry and not wanting to mess around with learning how to use a navigation system, I never turned it on.
Well, that would have been the case again while on this weekend trip with some friends, however, as I drove, my friend who was riding in the passenger’s seat was intrigued and hit the power button about 30 second after he sat down.
I’m guessing he was also that kid in class that asked a lot of questions.
But, I must admit, I’m glad he turned on the navigation system, just as I’m sure many students were pleased when he asked a question they were afraid to ask the teacher.
What we discovered is the “Never Lost” system – which I’ve fondly named Nellie Never-Lost – is awesome. It’s easy to program and use, and it’s dead-on right when it comes to directions, which is something I usually need help with when traveling in another state…and even close to home!
I read the article Drivers of tomorrow won’t get mad at traffic, they’ll get around it in the USA Today, and I’m not sure why they state “tomorrow,” because this is something we all could use today.
Do yourself a favor – as my friend did for me (thanks Steve!) – and turn on Never-Lost navigation system in your next rental vehicle and let Nellie Never-Lost get you to your hotel, meetings or if you’re having more fun than me on your trips, the beach! Safe travels!
October 3rd 2006
If you were asked to rank where the United States ranks in terms of business competitiveness, where do you think the U.S. stacks up?
According to a World Economics Forum, Switzerland is No. 1 in the world, while the USA slipped to sixth! That’s embarrassing.
Rounding out the rest of the top five are Finland, Sweden, Denmark and Singapore, and seven through 10 are Japan, Germany, the Netherlands, and Britain.
October 2nd 2006
I recently read the article Driven to Succeed that featured TV host Montel Williams and it shared how he is driven to succeed and he’s always been an overachiever. The article is an interesting piece on Williams, who is an author, actor and entrepreneur, and who continues to be motivated each and every day to not only succeed, but make a difference.
Williams, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis – an incurable, progressive neurological disease – in 1999, says “I have MS, but MS does not have me.”
He takes 70 pills each day, works out rigorously, and likely is an inspiration to many. I hope you’ll take time to read the article.