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Wally Bock

A Charlie Plumb signature story. Thanks for sharing it here. Is a great guy and a great speaker. He will also tell you, if asked, that the Stockdale Principle, beloved of Jim Collins is the point of view of Adm Stockdale, not all of the POWs. Charlie thinks optimists are people who both understand what they're facing and believe that things will work out right.

Becky Robinson

Great encouragement for a Sunday afternoon. Thanks, Steve.

Phil Higson

There's nothing like the power of a simple story to get across a fundamental message so thanks for this Steve. For me the importance of the story is that it reminds us of how much our 'success' is dependent on the efforts of others. One of my favourite stories is one we quote from Warren Bennis. It shows the value of focusing on others, rather than ourselves:

"Warren Bennis, a leading thinker on leadership, tells an old story about the difference between the two 19th-century British political leaders, William Gladstone and Benjamin Disraeli. It was said that, when you had dinner with Gladstone, you left feeling he was the wittiest, most brilliant, most charming person on earth. But when you had dinner with Disraeli, you left feeling that you were the wittiest, most brilliant, most charming person on earth."

The Thankful Manager
"Is there someone you owe a debt of gratitude to? Take the time to say what it is that they do/have done for you. Build an attitude of acknowledging and valuing the contribution of others. More widely this can be applied to how we show our appreciation of what others around us do. A thankful manager is someone who is able to recognize, accept and receive from others. Often being able to receive, places us in a position where we have more to give!"

Steve Roesler

Wally and Beth,

It seemed to me that these stories are no longer being shared, yet exemplify--in the most simple and profound ways--the principles of leadership and recognition.

Glad it rang a bell.

Steve Roesler


Thanks for weighing in with that one. Isn't it amazingly powerful when we choose to make someone else the genius?

David Hinde | Orgtopia

Your story reminded me of something a monk at a local Buddhist group I go to here in London said. He ran an exercise where we had to think of all the people that had contributed to our life over that one day and mentally thank them. We started off thinking of the wife, our partner, our kids etc. He however went alot further, thanking the bus driver that had driven him to the hall, the person who ran the shop he bought his lunch from, even down to the mortgage company that provided the loan for his appartment! We all pointed out that these people weren't doing these things for his benefit but for money. He just kind of smiled and said it didn't matter, they had still contributed to his day and needed to be thanked.
It was quite a change of attitude for me, but I've tried to use this mindset as much as I can since then, and it certainly makes me feel far more tolerant and appreciative of the world I live in.

Kind regards

peter vajda

In relation to David's point, we can take the Buddhist practice one step further...to thank those who supported us to consciously look at our shadow side...and grow from that introspection...the driver who cut me off, the rude salesperson, the person who didn't hold the elevator door when I had my arms full, the spouse/partner who I felt "judged" me inappropriately, my colleague about whom I felt envious or jealous....all these folks are agents who support our growth and evolution....IF we are conscious enough to see them in that role...they also deserve a debt of gratitude, but it takes an emotionally and spiritually maturing person to consciously see this dynamic...we are all interconnected for a reason...my reactivity is never about anyone or anything "outside" me; it's always about "me." And becoming aware of our shadow side is a huge step in our personal and professional growth.We can, if we CHOOSE, be grateful for those who support us on this aspect of our journey.

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