Could You Be A Leader?

As I have read books from various business leaders such as John Maxwell and Orrin Woodward, both one of the world’s top 25 Leadership Gurus I have noticed that they are consistent in their messages. Each has their own message and own style but you can readily see that these leaders do not vary in their beliefs. Unlike many politicians who send one message to one group and a quite different message to another group to collect votes, these leaders stay true to their beliefs. This is very refreshing in a day when there is such confusion around truth, and when everyone seems to want to vent their opinion (even when there is no substance to back it up).

It is also interesting to see their peers. Take a look at just some of the Worlds Top 25 Leadership Guru’s and see if you recognize any of these names;  John Maxwell, Stephen Covey, Ken Blanchard,  Ram Charan, Mark Driscoll,  Anthony Robbins, Rudy Giuliani,  Jack Welch, Jim Collins, Tony Dungy, Meg Whitman, and Orrin Woodward.  I’m sure you recognize some if not all of these names.

Who are most peoples peers? Who are yours? Are they positive or negative? Do they uplift or tear you or others down? It IS interesting to note that although all of these men and women are accomplished in their fields, all are controversial in one way or another. That’s one of the things that set them apart. They are not doing what everyone else does.  They do not follow the crowd. For example; John Maxwell originally was a Pastor in a church and today is the #1 leadership expert in the secular world, Rudy Giuliani the former Mayor of New York during the September 11 World Trade Tower attack stood up and led NYC and gave the country hope during our countries most trying time has been criticized on his handling of the crisis, Jack Welch the former CEO of GE was call “Neutron Jack” because he fired so many people to do what best selling author Jim Collins called “getting the right people on the bus and the wrong people off the bus” yet in doing so built it into one of the most successful companies in the world, Meg Whitman as CEO of e-Bay led it to become one of the worlds most recognized names was criticized from both the left and right when she ran for Governor of California as being incapable to lead the State of Calif. Tell me a leader who hasn’t been criticized and I will have to question whether they really lead something worthwhile.

I hope as you begin or continue on your leadership journey that you have the courage of your convictions to stay the course even in times of opposition.  That is one of the qualities that make a leader a leader.

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Our Failing Education Systems

Speaking of life and leadership, I read several interesting articles on the failure of our institutional public school systems to provide the quality education necessary to prepare our children to compete in today’s competitive environment.

An interesting article entitled The Great Debate on American Education by Oliver DeMille of The Center for Social Leadership discusses how many recognize the need to make change but cower in timidity to make the necessary changes to improve our failing system.

Former business and science reporter for the Washington Post and Best Selling author Malcolm Gladwell author of the books Tipping Point and Outliers as the DeMille’s article states, “suggests the leadership right now in many arenas — including education– is occurring outside the main stream.”

It is obvious why. Here in Pennsylvania an article in the Commonwealth Foundation states that there are “nearly 82,000 Pennsylvania children trapped within the 141 worst performing schools” “Germantown High School in Philadelphia where the school homepage touts its mission as providing all students with the academic, technological & social skills needed to be productive & contributing citizens in our society.”  The reality is quite different as the school in “2009-2010 had only 8 percent of its 11th graders reaching proficiency in math and only 17 percent reaching reading proficiency.” Rather than failing the teachers they are rewarded with tenure and a retirement program that is far above the private sector.

Main stream is not working. We can debate all day long, but it will take the courage of leadership, or a leadership revolution if not in our government then in our parents to do what is best for our children

Orrin Woodward – My Personal Experience

Over the last 4 years I have had numerous opportunities to meet and interact with Orrin Woodward. In fact, in early 2009 I made the decision after much thought and discussion with various business leaders to work personally with Mr. Woodward. My wife and I at that point had 30+ years experience in the Networking field. We had been successful in the field and did not take our decision lightly.
In the last several years since my decision to work with Orrin Woodward I can honestly say I have seen him exhibit nothing but honorable behavior. Our meetings and conversations have been open and frank. His advice straight forward and without hesitation. In 30 + years of business experience I have worked with many different business people and I can say without hesitation that Orrin Woodward is the real deal. He is honest and I trustworthy because I have seen him when taking the easy way out would have been acceptable, but he isn’t about doing what is acceptable but what is right, a rare quality today.
If you are considering working with the TEAM or LIFE business I can attest to the integrity of Orrin Woodward, the TEAM and the LIFE business. I have staked 30+ years of my business career on the line to work with Orrin and the TEAM and LIFE business and have not been disappointed.

Hello World!

I write this blog as my first to thank Orrin Woodward for his leadership and vision to launch a company called LIFE, to take the purpose of an improved life and give anyone who wishes to improve their life the opportunity to do so, along with the financial incentive to pay it forward.

As some of you who have been with TEAM know these last several years HAVE been life changing….. No I would have to say life transforming. GOD has provided us with an opportunity to go from GOOD TO GREAT and we have accepted that undertaking. Not only do I feel we now have the opportunity to accomplish so much more, but because of the challenges we have faced and the wisdom of the leaders who have come together, it has brought to me a new enthusiasm and energy for the future.

I have to share with you a book you must read. In fact it would be a great book to have any of your leaders who question any challenges we might have faced or will face, and why can we move forward with such confidence and enthusiasm.

The book is called In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day” by Mark Batterson

If you have ever traveled to Africa and seen the Lion up close and personal as they say, one of the “Big Five” and “King of the Jungle”, it will give you a much greater appreciation for what I am about to share from this book;

“Normal people run away from lions. They run as far away and as fast as they possibly can. But lion chasers are wired differently. GOD always uses our past experiences to prepare us for future opportunities. But those GOD-given opportunities often come disguised as man eating lions. And how we react when we encounter those lions will determine our destiny. We can cower in fear and run away from our greatest challenges or we can chase our God-ordained destiny by seizing the God ordained opportunity.”

Many of us in this new LIFE business myself included could live a comfortable life, but life was not meant to be lived comfortably but to have meaning. What better meaning could we have than to change our lives and the lives around us to live a better, more fulfilled life? We in America are facing a culture in decline. Around the world there is struggle and uncertainty. I believe there has never been a better time to help to improve ours and the lives of those around us. You can’t change the world by yourself, but in changing your life and then another, maybe one person at a time you can eventually change enough lives to perhaps change the world. LIFE provides opportunity to change that one life at a time.

As we face this future we can live in fear or live by faith. I choose Faith. Because as Mark Batterson wrote, “as I look back on my own life I recognize this simple truth; the greatest opportunities were not the scariest lions. Part of me wanted to play it safe, but I’ve learned that taking no risks is the greatest risk of all.

Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, the Policy Council of TEAM and LIFE Leadership, along with their leaders have a vision to impact 1 million lives in 5 years. I look forward to this meaningful journey with these courageousLion Chasers.