Traits of true leaders

November 26 2013

From small projects to antiquated institutions, organized groups benefit greatly from strong, reliable leadership. Yet despite the undeniable need for talented management, the skills and traits of effective leaders aren’t necessarily easy to find.

I’ve watched organizations as varied as religious institutions (think monasteries and churches), start-ups, small companies, government entities, and educational programs struggle beneath the weight of inept leadership. Whether you’re starting a business, building a corporation,…


Searching for simple

November 19 2013

Here in Nepal, I’ve found the best moments are often the simple ones: quiet street corners, afternoon coffee, morning walks to the monastery, sunsets on mountain peaks, smiles exchanged with neighbors, the look on a student’s face when they understand.

I can’t help but wonder what America would be like if more people embraced simple.

Keep it simple today.


Write a research paper: a lesson in empathy

November 12 2013

During the past week, I’ve taught my most advanced students how to write a research paper (for more about my time in Nepal, visit here and here). The sixteen- and seventeen-year-old monks have never heard the term research before, and words such as “references,” “introduction,” “outline,” and “conclusion” are new additions to their vocabulary.

When I first explained their assignment, their charming smiles hid…


On risk

November 05 2013

Risk frightens some people. It paralyzes others. Risk has stopped many people from doing incredible things.

Risk has also failed to prevent others from wholeheartedly chasing their dreams.

It might be worth asking whether risk is your fear dressed in disguise.

If risk wasn’t an issue, would your decisions change?