Wednesday, December 15, 2010


One of the things I love to know is the origin of words. It seems to tie together history, languages and culture.
Just found a fascinating word that we all have used or done at some point...


Originally this word had nothing to do with snooping.

Eavesdrop started off literally: first it referred to the water that fell from the eaves of a house, then it came to mean the ground where that water fell.

Eventually, eavesdropper described someone who stood within the eavesdrop of a house to overhear a conversation inside.

Over time, the word obtained its current meaning: "to listen secretly to what is said in private."

So, I guess if you "eavesdrop" you're a big drip!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010, remembering...

In his first Thanksgiving proclamation as president, Ronald Reagan wrote: "America has much for which to be thankful. The unequaled freedom enjoyed by our citizens has provided a harvest of plenty to this Nation throughout its history. In keeping with America's heritage, one day each year is set aside for giving thanks to God for all of His blessings. … "As we celebrate Thanksgiving … we should reflect on the full meaning of this day as we enjoy the fellowship that is so much a part of the holiday festivities. Searching our hearts, we should ask what we can do as individuals to demonstrate our gratitude to God for all He has done. Such reflection can only add to the significance of this precious day of remembrance. "Let us recommit ourselves to that devotion to God and family that has played such an important role in making this a great Nation, and which will be needed as a source of strength if we are to remain a great people.
A great statement from a great statesman.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


(picture taken by Jill Thornton)

"All Beginnings Are Hopeful"

Dan Miller

This is a quote from the president of Oxford University, spoken to the entering freshman in 1944, in the midst of a world war. This is a concept that we have seen confirmed throughout history. In working with people going through change, I am often struck by the discouragement, frustration, and frequent anger and resentment they share.

I have come to recognize however, that those feelings always tell me that the person is looking backward, at something that has already occurred. As soon as we are able to create a clear plan for the future, those feelings quickly begin to dissipate and are replaced by hope, optimism and enthusiasm. In all my years of coaching, I have never seen a person who has a clear plan and goals who is also depressed. They just don't go together.

We are now in a new "season" as a country. While there are lots of opinions on the political and economic fronts, it seems to me that people are in general more optimistic and hopeful than they were a couple of months ago. Saturday Joanne and I stopped to pick up a video cord at Best Buy, and the crowds were heavier than right before Christmas. I am being overwhelmed with people who want to launch new businesses - releasing ideas they've had for years and they are excited that now is the time.

And the anticipation is not just an American phenomenon. My analytics show that in the past year our website was visited by people from 76 countries. It seems people everywhere are looking for new beginnings.

Viktor Frankl, in his wonderful little book, Man's Search for Meaning, relates his observations of people in the German concentration camps. Age, health, education or ability could not predict those who survived the atrocities there. No, rather it was only those who believed that there was something better coming tomorrow who were able to survive and ultimately walk away from those camps.

Feeling discouraged? Miserable in your job? Just lost your business? Draw that proverbial line in the sand. What appears to be the end is actually a new beginning.

Welcome the new beginning tomorrow! "All beginnings are hopeful."

Published April 29, 2009.

Description: Miller is today's leading authority and personality on careers and 'Work You LoveTM'. As bestselling author of 48 Days To The Work You Love, and now No More Mondays, Dan reaches over a million people every month ia his newsletter, podcast, and blog with the best trends and opportunities in the workplace and small business. For more information, visit

Monday, July 12, 2010

"We're A Friendly Church!"

Most of the time, I have found that churches that laud themselves for being a friendly church actually aren't.

It seems that their "friendliness" is evaluated by how friendly they are with each other.

All you have to do is walk into that church, as a visitor, and you'll be able to determine quickly if they are indeed the "friendliest church in town."

Thom Rainer, president and CEO of LifeWay Christian Resources published an excellent article titled "The Friendliness Factor." You can find the entire article at

Rainer states... "People are drawn to genuineness. They can spot manufactured friendliness a
mile away. Make eye contact. Get their name. Spend a minute with them. We’ve all heard the saying that kids spell love t-i-m-e. Well, so do grown-ups. Spend some time getting to know them. Often, unchurched individuals find themselves at church for the first time because of a personal crisis.
Genuine friendliness can be a huge factor in them returning to the church and, ultimately, accepting Christ as Savior."

This friendliness factor is not automatic. You have to intentionally train and motivate people to identify, approach appropriately and give the
kind of welcome that causes the visitor to feel truly welcomed and genuinely cared about.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Guts to Guard the Gate

Great quote from Larry Osborne...
"The best time to reduce conflict is before it breaks out. The best way to do that is to keep contentious people (and those with an ax to grind or competing ministry vision) off the leadership team. I look at it this way: If I don’t have the guts to guard the gate, I have no right to complain about who’s in the pen."


The American workplace is dramatically changing. The traditional “Dolly Parton…Working 9 – 5” is ancient history. I just checked out a copy of Michael Gerber’s book Awakening the Entrepreneur Within: How Ordinary People Can Create Extraordinary Companies. Wide ranging reading and studying all kinds of different academic disciplines is a passion and pleasure of mine. The focus of Gerber’s book fits well with a recent email newsletter from Dan Miller

You're already self-employed

In last week’s newsletter I talked about how smaller companies offer most of the new jobs. What are those “jobs” likely to look like?

Work models are changing. The traditional 8-5 employee is becoming a less common model of work. We are rapidly approaching the time when only 50% of the American workforce will be “employees.”

50% of American workers will soon be:

· Free-lance workers

· Consultants

· Contingency workers

· Independent contractors

· Temps

· Entrepreneurs

· Electronic immigrants

These are legitimate, growing and profitable work models. Different perhaps from what we are used to, but real opportunities nonetheless. If you are determined to get a traditional 8-5 job with benefits, you are looking for a shrinking work model. If you can flip hamburgers, make French fries, restock the ketchup, and sweep the floors, you can get a “job.” But what if you have a highly developed skill in:

· writing proposals

· mediating conflicts

· analyzing data

· or setting up demonstrations?

Or maybe you are talented in:

· auditing financial reports

· training

· handling complaints

· or coaching individuals.

Maybe your talents shine in

· designing websites

· managing Twitter and FaceBook updates

· writing press releases

· and creating compelling videos.

You will find that 95% of the companies out there are not large enough to hire you to do just that one task. Thus you will be expected to go back to being the generalist. OR – you could find 8 or 10 companies that would love to use your specialized skills in that area – 1 day a week, or 2 days a month. Can you adapt to the new model of work?

AND – you may find it’s easier to find the 8-10 mini-jobs rather than the 1 big traditional (pay me take care of all my needs) job. In today’s workplace we’re all “Self-Employed.” Whether you choose to have one customer or several is not as big a leap as you may think.