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"Writing on the Wall"

I recall applying for an internal management position at my then place of full-time employment almost thirty years ago. My friendly competition included two candidates, both of whom, I often professionally supervised on an informal collegial basis at their request. Of the three applicants, I was the only one to have been credentialed with a doctorate and all of the requisite job-related experience by comparison. “On paper,” I thought I was the “obvious choice” but I soon realized that I was mistaken because the job went to the least qualified person. I was shocked and requested a meeting with one of the adm......
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Redundant Systems

There is a “rule of thirds” which skilled mariners utilize to assess how far out into the deep blue sea they can go before they run out of fuel and can no longer safely return to their port of departure. Use a 1/3rd to get to where you are going, use 1/3rd to return from whence you came and keep a 1/3rd in reserve in case you run into any unanticipated problems, detours, delays or systems-malfunctions. The crucial lesson to be learned is to always be prepared for the unexpected by expecting that Murphy had the right idea when he proclaimed tha......
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“It’s Only 8 Hours, Sonny Boy!”

It was just a part-time job during the summer between my third and fourth year of high school. Not quite 16 and I was the designated quality-control inspector at a major tool manufacturing company in Chicago. Much to my genuine surprise, I was given with the sole discretionary authority to shut down the production line if there were any problems identified or even suspected by my youthful eagle-eye. Although I took great pride in my work and sought to always do my very best, I must confess how much I thoroughly loathed my job! Worse still, I could not for the......
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Infrastructure

What carpenter in their “right mind” would begin to build a house by starting with the roof?What parent would give their 6 year old keys to the family car before they could ride a bicycle?What employer would promote an entry-level worker to a key executive position on the first day of hire? In the absence of “infrastructure,” you ain’t got nothing!Infrastructure means investing in the basics from the bottom-up.The “basics” are the foundation stones upon which a structure can emerge. Infrastructure can be something as innocuous as getting a good night’s sleep...On a comfortable bed and pillow...With clean bedding and a warm blanket in......
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"Mop's Here..."

He was a “full-bird Colonel," of Napoleonic stature, always with an enormous Churchill in his mouth. The highest ranking officer of our army medical reserve unit and the rest of “the brass,” along with the rest of the troops, held him in singular high regard since he was the only soldier amongst us who had direct combat experience having previously served in a “real” war. I was barely 18 years of age and only a lowly Private assigned to the tedium of “shuffling paperwork.” Not quite comfortable in my new military uniform, I couldn’t help but notice how “the old man” sparkled in h......
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Good Servers

A “good server” provides a “good service” by filling a need and, thereby, rendering a valuable service “good and true.” “Good servers” provide “good service” and serve their end-user, client or customer very well, indeed! “Bad servers” leave a bad taste in the mouths of all those they fail to properly serve and none are well-served. Without “good servers” “good service” is not provided and goods or services will not be good. With “good servers,” “good service” is provided and goods and services will be good by all those who are served. “Good servers” are necessary to every service-delivery system, without which, the delivery system fails to deliver......
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Silver Linings

Depression among the elderly. The thought assaults the senses. One conjures images of wintered, diminished existences: life as relentless despair. See the dispirited old man, once proud and vital, now sad eyes glazed and emptied; the fractured, frail widow, demoralized and destitute, incapable of making basic decisions she too long deferred to others. The images fade to futility, bleak loneliness, and resignation - a living death. Depression is not an inescapable denouement of aging. We are no longer fated to dysphoric obsolescence. Indeed, more than ever, seniors live longer, vital and productive lives, filled with joy and purpose. Conversely, depression ......
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