“Manager” does not have the same impact as “Teacher” and “Coach” (Had a conversation with L, an employee now a manager elsewhere…”)

L was one of my Sales Reps.  During the time she reported to me, she was agreeable and enthusiastic.  Her texts and emails to me were a lot of exclamation points and expressions of gratitude.

Now she is a Buying Manager for one of our clients.  And it is funny communicating with her.  The exclamation points and the enthusiasm have gone.  I’d never ask her for business in a million years (that’s not my style), and honestly have never made an unsolicted call to her, but she did call and offer us business which was nice.  But when she talks to me she has that robotic and neutral voice that so many Buying Managers have.  

Honestly, it’s disheatening in many ways.  I could care less about her business, but I do invest a lot of time and energy into my employees (I truly care) and I hear things like “Best boss ever” (which I take with a grain of salt considering they have a vested interest to say that when working for me) but 9 times out of 10 when they leave I don’t get/hear much from them again.  

When I taught and when I coached, it was different.  Even years later, my grown students still saw me as teacher and former players saw me as coach.  But management doesn’t mean the same  – its impacts aren’t as permanent.

I am fighting the urge to wonder why I care about my team so much.  But then again, I do owe it to them the do the best I can while they work for me.  And recently I was contacted by a company who’d spoken to my former employees who’d mentioned I was a favorite boss of most people who report to me.  So maybe the impact is there, just not visible.  And I don’t do it for the visibility, I do it because I care.

Human nature is funny.  

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“Manager” does not have the same impact as “Teacher” and “Coach” (Had a conversation with L, an employee now a manager elsewhere…”)

No winners in property disputes – amazing we struggle to share 57M miles, but will only get worse

I think the last thing I’d ever do is pick a fight with a disgruntled and traumatized person who recently lost his land. unfortunately a couple did this and paid the ultimate price. This story could make a Coen brother film but is truly tragic all the way around.

http://www.heraldnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?aid=/20160417/NEWS01/160419180/1038/Hunt-on-for-2-brothers-suspected-of-killing-Arlington-couple&template=MobileArt

It is amazing to live on a planet that has 57,308,738 square miles of land , which means every person has a king-bed sized space to call their own (more than this for couples). Were there property disputes 50,000 years ago when only 10K humans shared the planet? Probably. That’s probably why early humans migrated away from Africa in the first place.

Regardless, this is a sad story for all of the participants. 😦

No winners in property disputes – amazing we struggle to share 57M miles, but will only get worse

“Button, Button” by Richard Matheson was an awesome story turned into a Twilight Zone episode and should be mandatory reading for every person in the world

I first read “Button, Button” in 1994 when teaching High School English. I’ve never forgotten the story, and should be mandatory reading every single grade school classroom in the world, as we live it every single day of our lives.

In the story, a woman is given a box with a button on top.  She learns that if she pushes the button, two things will happen.  First, she will be given cash (I believe it was 10K, which in today’s dollars would probably be 100-200K).  Second, someone in the world that she would never meet otherwise will die.  The question is, would she push the button to cause a random stranger’s death in return for cash?

I love this story, and it’s a powerful theme we face every single day.  For example, if we buy inexpensive but fashionable clothing, we are choosing to endorse companies employeeing low-wage poverty-stricken sweatshop workers (e.g. see “Life in Debt” about workers in Jamaica).  If we watch NFL football, we are allowing billionaires to exploit the largerly lower class, who give up their bodies and brains and job security for a shot at a season or two in the NFL (very few players end up rich).  If we allow CxOs to pay themselves millions of dollars in bonuses while employing working poor by shopping/eating at companies who employ these CxOs, if we continue to allow Boeing and Safeway and Apple and Amazon and Walmart and Alaska Airlines and Ford and so on to continue to control our government,   if we allow for-profit companies to control our healthcare and food supplies, etc etc etc – we are pushing the button.  

So many times, all of us are pushing the button — allowing unseen people to live in misery so we can have something — we are pushing the button.

I’ve gotten better about pushing the button.  I am wearing lulu lemon gym clothes from three seasons ago, I buy my fruit from the local farmers market and my groceries from the locally owned market (although both are more expensive), we grow a lot of our own herbs, I give food to the homeless I see on the street, and I’ve cut down on my NFL watching.  You literally can’t pay me to shop at Walmart, and I take the bus instead of driving.  I have a long way to go, and I will continue to try to get better.  

“Button, Button” by Richard Matheson was an awesome story turned into a Twilight Zone episode and should be mandatory reading for every person in the world

Loved “Iverson” documentary

It was wonderful to watch this documentary. Allen Iverson was fun to watch and frankly heroic – if racist hillbillies put me in prison when I was a teen for being black and famous, and if educated talking heads were always judging me after I’d survived the projects, I’d be resentful and pissed with a huge chip on my shoulder. But I’ve always thought he seemed pretty loyal, fair, scrappy and wise when I listen to the message he is actually delivering. So it was a great video to watch in my opinion, although I’m sure the people who need the themes the most will miss the point 🙂

Loved “Iverson” documentary

Think I’d defend a lightning quick point guard by not watching the ball and doing boxing drills

It is incredible watching Kenny Anderson take apart Duke in this video. It was fun to watch but must have been torture to defend him.

How would I defend someone impossibly shifty with the ball, and lightning quick, when it seemed impossible to guard him. I think if I were assigned to him I’d ignore the ball – I’d only watch him, since the ball is part of the illusion, like a pickpocket distracting prey. And I think I’d prepare like a boxer would – work on timing and reaction drills, and wear him down over the game with body blows (not literally, but bumping him a lot away from the ball, and having the forwards putting extra little bumps on him). I think you’d have to mentally prepare like a boxer, too – spend the day or two up to the match envisioning yourself sticking to him, imagining him going this way or that and sticking to him. Of course, it is easy being an armchair coach – if he did that to Bobby Hurley and Coach K, I have a hard time imaging I would’ve stopped him :).

The hardest part of being a defender for me was discipline – I had stamina and quickness and loved to run and to pester everyone, which meant I was liable to get distracted and bored and harass others while my man would disappear to another part of the court. Of course, I usually played my best against the Kenny Anderson’s of the world because I made it my mission to stick to them. It was the good but not great players who’d burn me because my attention wavered.

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=W4Wzbfu7WJA

Think I’d defend a lightning quick point guard by not watching the ball and doing boxing drills