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    Blog Index
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    American Leadership

    With American leadership around the world recently gaining attention on the campaign trail, I was asked by the 92nd Street Y, Campaign for the American Conversation program to comment on a video clip from a 2010 conversation featuring the late great author and commentator Christopher Hitchens who was being interviewed by Oxford University Professor Tariq Ramadan and Laurie Goodstein of the New York Times on the positive impact America can have on other countries. Here is what I said:

    I think the true power of the United States is evident in that few are concerned about whether it is easy or difficult to live here. While there are wide ranging differences and divisions on politics, public policy and the like, we believe as a country that freedom of ideas, expression, and individual choice should be celebrated. This is true even when we do not share or even endorse the details of another person's expression. That is power. It is, in fact, the inherent power of the open system we've adopted in the United States that makes the American conversation so compelling and energizes the global desire to share the very freedoms we often take for granted. Here's
    the clip:



    Apple of Our Eye

    There’s wide spread speculation that Apple will release its new iPhone; that is, the iPhone5 in mid-September. Online blogs, chatrooms, and technology forums are abuzz with speculation on when, how, and what Apple will unveil to satisfy legions of Apple enthusiasts eagerly awaiting the new version of the mobile phone that revolutionized digital music downloads and has so beautifully integrated many of our activities including managing contacts, organizing appointments, instantly capturing photos, and taking notes. The iPhone more than any other device ushered in a new category, smartphones, making us more productive and the phones indespensible to our lives and careers aided by scores of third-party developed software applications. Anticipation for the latest Apple products is so significant that analysts believe Apple’s recent downgraded financial performance is evidence of millions of users speculating that a new iPhone is imminent and thus believing it wise to delay cellphone purchases and upgrades until an official announcement from the entertainment powerhouse. Just imagine being in a position where millions wait to purchase your expensive product and readily trade in models just a few years old to get the latest version. You don’t even have to sell them. They sell themselves. Keep your eyes on Apple. Steve Jobs may be gone but the company still knows how to create anticipation and desire for its great, stylish, and empowering products.


    What You Do Saturday Afternoon Shows Up For Years to Come

    This has been a quiet, reflective Saturday here in New York and I thought I’d share this with you. I have spent more Saturdays than I can remember catching up on work. Sometimes that means a little writing, reading, organizing and even having a meeting. While that might sound like I don’t know how to relax, I can also say that the professional work I’ve done on Saturdays, over the years, has often created the bigger payoff. You see, you must be willing to work when everyone else is having fun – at least some of the time. That’s how you get greater results than others. And that’s how, you get more done. As I look back on the last ten years or so, I can directly trace new income, more impact, and greater fulfillment to going the extra mile on a Saturday. Things slow down a bit, you can often focus and concentrate better, and you can approach your work in a more relaxed way. Give it a go. Make Saturday count. Then, go have some fun.


    The Key to Economic Growth

    This week’s news about slow growth in the U.S. economy is going to be met with the usual posturing. Politicians will declare that we must “get this economy going,” and advocate policy changes they say will result in a return to prosperous times. They’ll blame the other political party as “having no new ideas” and being responsible for the lack of economic growth. But what most politicians will not tell you is that they don’t create jobs, no matter what party they’re in, and that changes occurring in our global economy resulting in millions out of work and topsy-turvy markets over the last five years are permanent. In reality, most politicians are pandering to the public, sometimes knowing that advances in technology, shifts in the way we work, greater demands for highly educated and highly skilled workers, and to top it off, rapid globalization means a new world order. We have become a nation and indeed a world of soloists where self-reliance is the tune that tops the charts. Learning how to change your thinking and change your approach to your career and become more entrepreneurial, no matter what the economists say is the only stimulus package that will have long-lasting effect on the livelihood, financial independence, and wealth of you and your family. You must cultivate your unique talents and abilities and learn how to pitch and package them in a competitive world where the competent and confident leader wins. Your personal economy will only grow when you do. Get my program, “Create Your Own Economy” and begin the process. It’s the master key that will unlock your prosperous future.


    What Is Winning?  

    It’s a given: If you ask most people whether they would like to win they’ll say “yes,” without hesitation, but how often do we truly examine what we mean by winning?

    The current economic environment does not have many believing at their core that they can win. I believe the people who are marketing the recession are the ones winning. They have many individuals and companies retreating even though many of these people don’t know why they are doing so.

    I hear so many people talking about “the environment,” but to me that’s a code word for a world psychology they are afraid to go against. You see this is why it is hard for so many people and companies to win. They think “the environment” matters and are more concerned with the conclusions developed by others than the positive conclusions they can create through true leadership thinking.

    Let’s examine what winning is; winning is the process of reaching a goal -- usually while overcoming the impact of opposing forces or adversaries. It requires that you “play” within an established set of rules and aspire toward an expression of your best. Most important it requires that you know what your true obstacles are. This is where most miss the mark.

    I don’t think that most people or companies really know what their true obstacles are. They think it’s the economy, or the Dow Jones Averages, or some other economic indicator. I believe that is nonsense. There are always people and companies winning. In reality, for those companies not winning, they are the enemy. The opposing force or adversary is actually the way they think.

    The common notion of beating others to a pulp is not what I mean my winning -- though I must admit that winning in a particular situation will undoubtedly cause one side to conclude that they have lost. Nevertheless, winning is much more of an internal process rather than an external process. A true winner must overcome the internal adversary of fear and doubt. I’m talking about the little voice that repeatedly says, “Times are hard,” “Companies are folding,” and “The economy is bad.”

    By definition, winners have obstacles. To be a winner you must apply your best “in the game” while someone or something is trying to prevent you from winning. Many think of winning as a situation where a person, company, or group merely dominates over another, but it isn’t how you stack up as compared to another person but rather how you stack up as compared to your potential that matters.

    Winning is not something that happens by chance. Winning occurs when a person or company decides to win.  It is not about the competition – it is about you, an individualistic and highly specific process. So the next time you are wondering if winning is possible in your life, career, or business, forget about the environment. Tackle the enemy within. You can still win!

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