Executives engage in conversations with me on topics high on their agenda because of the 10,000s of hours of consulting experience I bring to the table. They value the fact that I have seen literally hundreds of businesses, worked with literally hundreds of managers, and observed literally hundreds of organizations in their specific ways of functioning – or dysfunctioing.
Some time this week, it will have been 2,000 days since I started my own consulting practice. Even if I had only worked on two out of three of these days, and never more than 8 hours per day (both of which are probably underestimations), the total time I spent on doing what I do for work will by now have surpassed 10,000 hours. By common wisdom, these 10,000 hours equal the achievement of me really knowing what I do – “the level of mastery associated with being a world-class expert – in anything”.
Friday, January 20th, 2017, will be remembered as the day on which Donald J. Trump was sworn in as the 45th president of the United States. Just like his predecessors, he used the occasion to give an inauguration speech (the full text of which can be found in many places, for example here, provided by The Washington Post [retrieved Jan 21, 2017]). Over the coming days, weeks, months, and years, much will be talked and written about the contents of this speech and its consequences for life in America and beyond.
We all carry stuff around with us. Some of it is material, tangible, and more or less heavy, bulky, or cumbersome. Some of it is immaterial – which doesn’t necessarily make it any lighter. Most of the time, I write about the latter. This time, however, I’ll write about what’s actually in my bag when I take off for work.
A rupture is haunting Europe. Less than 36 hours ago, half of a country at the heart of the continent voted to leave the common institutional framework known as “European Union”. Of course, everybody reacted (and is still reacting), from established media to social networks, from financial markets to cash machines in remote places, from politicians all over the world to the proverbial woman (or man) on the street. There are those who cheer and imagine a series of further -exits, prefixed by almost any imaginable letter in our European alphabets.
So now it’s the year of the monkey. For some, even more specifically, it’ll very soon be the year of the male fire monkey. Firstly, therefore, happy new year to those who feel that their year is starting now: May it be colourful, melodious, rose-scented, gentle, and infused with a fine taste of ginger and honey. Secondly, then, it seems high time to reflect on the leadership lessons our simian ancestors have been trying to teach us for thousands and thousands of years, while we were too busy to listen, totally absorbed in our own evolutionary journey.