February 2015

The Problem With Email at Work

And Why Some Companies Ban Email at Work

I have been on a personal productivity "kick" for about the last two years. For several reasons.

1.  Lack of productivity seems to be on the increase. Work habits and a good work ethic is not a given.

2.  I became aware of the statistics about how the use of social media puts us in a constant mode of distraction and having our attention interrupted. This means personal productivity takes a big hit. The Internet has been described as an ecosystem of interruption technology.

Your Work Matters to God

A (Brief) Biblical Worldview on Work

1.  God Works and God Loves the Work He Does.

2.  God created us in HIS own image, that means we too are designed to work.

3.  God commanded Adam and Eve to work.

4.  The work they did was to be meaningful since it was their way of partnering with God to create a world of culture.

5.  Sin damaged, but not destroyed work.

6.  The damage of sin takes a myriad of forms. Work has become difficult, frustrating, less productive, at times oppressive, and the systems of ownership and distribution are certainly unfair and inequitable.

Doing Good Work

A Collage of Quotes to Inspire You
There are dozens and dozens of great quotes from people who truly love their work, who believe work is meaningful and worth doing very well.

None of these quotes is distinctly biblical, but each quote is highly compatible with a biblical view of work.

Tomorrow I will finish this week's thoughts on work with a few suggestions for a Biblical Worldview About our Work.

So here are the quotes:

Which ones do you most appreciate?

Are there other quotes you would add to this list?





The Diminishment of Work
If Henry Ford exalted work to a place it was not meant to have, today, there are many people who diminish work to a place where it loses it dignity and meaning.

I think it is easiest if I provide a number of quotes that illustrate this contemporary mindset.

Henry Ford: Work as Idolatry

When we fail to have a good theology of work, there are two main alternatives that emerge.

The first is seen in the quote from Henry Ford, one of the fathers of modern industrialization. This is Work as Idolatry. Work becomes supreme. Work is the pathway to sanity, self-respect, salvation, health, wealth, and happiness. Work is the New Savior. All else is subordinated to one's work. This also gives HUGE power to those who own the means and places of work. We are now dependent on them for our jobs, which is our work, and our salvation.

There are certainly those who believe this... but I think the second option is becoming more significant and that is tomorrow's post.

Seven Habits of Optimistic People

hope, faith, peace, loveIt is a fun fact how Seven Habits has become the title of many articles on many subjects. This of course is due to the highly influential book by Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. There isn't anything magical about the number seven, but there is something wonderful and powerful about OPTIMISM. 

The research tells us that optimistic people experience health benefits from their optimism (at least partly due to how they interact with stress and how they avoid negative behaviors that are harmful).

The research literature tells us that Emotional Intelligence, Positivity, Resonance, Relational Connectedness are all vital qualities for creating great work environments. 

Finding Emerging Leaders

Most organizations are on the lookout for emerging leaders.
Most organizations are in great need of good talent and talent with lots of potential to become great talent.

So what do you look for in emerging leaders and what do I look to build into emerging leaders. Here is one short (and good) list to shape and reshape what you look for.

How to Spot Future Leaders

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtion International


The Provocative God by Dan Lacich

The Provocative God, Dan LachichA Review and Recommendation

Here is a link to a book review I did on my Theoogy Blog - Ad Fontes. I wanted to provide this review for several different audiences, so today's post is a link to the review. 

The Provocative God: A Review and Recommendation.

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions International



Let the Old One Go and Embrace the New One (the New Year That Is!)

The old year has gone. 
Let the dead past bury its own dead.
The new year has taken possession of the clock of time.
All hail the duties and possibilities of the coming twelve months.
Edward Payson Powell

We learn from the past.
We honor and value the past.
We remember the past.

But we don't dwell there.
We don't remain stuck there.
We are not limited by the past.

Leaders Actually Solve Problems

There is more to leadership than circling problems.

Every now and then it seems this is what some people do. They circle problems. They talk about problems. They think about problems. They lament about the problems. They complain about the problems. They CIRCLE the problem and think they are doing something about it. But they aren't.

What problems are you dealing with?
What are you actually doing to deal with the problem?
How are you making changes about the problem?
How are you resolving the problem?

If you aren't resolving it, it really doesn't matter what else you are doing. 

Winston Churchill on Leadership: Work, Command, Create

Churchill on LeadershipWork Like a Slave!  
Command Like a King!  
Create Like a God

Winston Churchill has been a long standing favorite of mine. I spent a year where I used him as a historical mentor. I read quite a bit about him, although I never read many of his own books. At some time in the future, I know I would benefit if I took the time to read what Churchill wrote.

Leaders Have Tenacity

The most difficulty thing is the decision to act,
the rest is merely tenacity.

Amelia Earhart

It is hard to make a decision. It is hard to act. It is hard to get started. It may be the hardest. It may be.... I am not completely sure I agree with Amelia. But we are ballpark. It is hard and if you don't make that decision, nothing else matters.

But once you have made the decision, then you must have TENACITY. You must have a "stick-to-it-ness." You must persevere. You must stay the course. You must see it as a marathon. You keep one foot going after the next. You hang in there.

It is one thing to start, quite another to finish. 

Determination All Day Long Leads to Satisfaction at the End of the Day

It is that simple.

Wake up with energy, passion, desires, plans, commitment, eagerness, vitality . . . and seize the day, all day long. That is the way to ending the day with a sense of deep satisfaction. Keep that up for a season of time and you begin to experience more than satisfaction. You experience fulfillment and joy.

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions International


How to Achieve Your Goals

Eight Steps to Getting the Results You Want

Define it.
Know exactly what you want to get. Don't settle for just being active. Activity for a purpose. Activity that gets you where you want to go. So define where you want to go. Not just in theory. Not just in general. But specific, concrete, measurable.

Want it.
How much you really desire your goals. Are they just nice things you would like to have? Or are you passionate about those things. They MUST come to pass. You cannot imagine your work and your life without those things coming to pass. How much do you want it? How strong is your desire?

Quotes on Overcoming Obstacles

Leaders Are Those Who Overcome the Obstacles That Others Raise Up
Here are some great quotes on overcoming obstacles that came to me recently from one of the bloggers I follow. Obstacles are a frequent part of life. They may even be on the increase.

Some people use obstacles as an excuse not to try... or not try very hard... or try for a bit and then give up early. Not leaders. Leaders see obstacles as some of the raw material that helps define who the leader is and what kind of person the leader will be.

What obstacles are you currently facing?
What is developing in your life because of them?


Personal Productivity and Beating Workplace Distractions

You Beat Them or They WILL Beat You.
And if they beat you, that means they are beating your effectiveness, efficiency, and ultimately productivity.

One of those soapboxes I get on with leaders is how poor so many of us manage our time and priorities. What is partly invovled in this is our inability (or unwillingness) to do something about the constant flow of interruptions and distractions that come to us, especially via social media.

Creative Way of Making New Resolutions

Using Some of the Great Authors of the Past and Their Best Ideas

Sorry for the wrong link. I was checking out the site for a training conference in the Philippines to which I was invited... and must have copied the wrong link into this. It is corrected now. It will take you to the Brian Pickings article on resolutions.


Here was a wonderful article on the Brian Pickings Site.
It is Self-Refinement Through the Wisdom of the Ages:  15 Resolutions for 2015 From Some of Humanity's Greatest Minds.

Welcome to One Month After New Year's Resolutions

31 Days Later...
Chances are high that you have already broken your resolutions, and have already given up on some of those goals you set.

First - don't give up. It life was easy, if improvement was easy, if change were easy - we would all be perfect. None of this stuff is easy. It takes discipline, perseverance, and the power of good habits that have been built, step by step and day by day.

Second - failure is not the problem. It is your attitude toward failure. Too many people are afraid to fail, beat themselves up when they fail, and dont' know what to do when they fail. The good news is that every failure can be a learning opportunity.