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Emily is incredibly fortunate to occasionally contribute her stories and thoughts to the Lift Blog maintained by some management and leadership experts she deeply admires, Bob and Ryan Quinn from the University of Michigan and the University of Virginia, respectively. This father/son pair wrote a book entitled “Lift: Becoming a Positive Force in Any Situation” that inspires the blog. This week, Ryan posted a blog that started to analyze an experience Emily had while trying to progress efforts for large scale environmental education and engagement. Ryan takes a first pass at understanding whether or not it matters if people believe in climate change… in this conversation and analysis- maybe it doesn’t.

Click here for the story/ analysis

Edmund Burke said…

“Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.”

A good friend of mine recently emailed me his retelling of a story he heard elsewhere. Here is what he wrote:

…The father was a decorated WWII Air Force veteran whose bomber went down. Everyone on the plane lived, however. The son asked his father “what were the men on the plane doing as it fell?” and the father responded, “bellyaching and crying.” The son said he could understand doing that, but then asked “What were you doing?” To which the father replied, “FIXING THE PROBLEM. Crying never fixed a goddamn thing.”

(Pardon the language.)

I read this story the first time, snickered a little, and hastily filed it somewhere in my brain with all of the other snicker-worthy quips from feisty curmudgeons. Somehow my brain revisited and realized that the father/veteran in this story was far more than snicker-worthy. Behind the abrasive tone, there is content worth considering, deeply in fact. What could I learn from him the veteran as an advocate for sustainability and student of positive organizational scholarship?

Given that this is all I know of the story, please forgive (and hopefully enjoy) the assumptions, creative license, and inference I make about the context. View Full Article »

Theory U

From the executive summary of the book found on the website: “We live in a time of massive institutional failure, collectively creating results that nobody wants. Climate change. AIDS. Hunger. Poverty. Violence. Terrorism. Destruction of communities, nature, life — the foundations of our social, economic, ecological, and spiritual well being. This time calls for a new consciousness and a new collective leadership capacity to meet challenges in a more conscious, intentional, and strategic way. The development of such a capacity would allow us to create a future of greater possibilities.”

An important part of changing the world is changing what we see and pay attention to…

Go here and sign up for their daily emails.

They may accumulate in your inbox, but when you finally get to them you’ll be happy you signed up.  It might be impossible not to be happy about it.

Here is an excerpt from this article about our close friend Cynthia, who is changing the world through changing the way people move water.

“The problem hit home for Cynthia Koenig, Umich Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise MBA/MS ’11 , during a William Davidson Institute fellowship in South Africa. Moved by the health and socioeconomic effects of the water crisis, Koenig launched a nonprofit organization (turned social enterprise) to help distribute a locally available water transportation tool. In order to address the issues of poor quality control, corruption, and limited geographic distribution, she soon found herself at the helm of Wello. The social venture manufactures and distributes the WaterWheel, a 20-gallon drum that moves four to five times the amount of water possible using traditional methods of collection and carrying.”

She is the visionary but works with countless others to see her vision come to life.

Check out Wello’s website here:

Buckminster Fuller said…

“”You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”

Zach Bonner, a 6th grader from Tampa Florida, believes we all have the ability to make a change in this world if we just try. Sound like the same ole idealistic drivel afforded by youth? It’s not. Zach IS changing the world and has been for years now. What can we learn from him?

From his foundation’s (Little Red Wagon Foundation“) website

The past 4 years Zach, wanting to get other kids involved in community service and draw attention to homeless youth, started hosting an event called 24 hours. This event brings together kids from across Florida to simulate being homeless for 24 hours, raising funds, supplies and awareness.

In November of 2007 Zach walked 280 miles from Tampa to Tallahassee in order to bring awareness to the 1st ever National Homeless Youth Awareness Month.

October 17th he set out on another 280 mile journey from Tallahassee to Atlanta to once again draw attention to Homeless Youth and also raise money to build a home through Habitat for Humanity for a homeless family.

Summer of 2009 Zach completed his walk from His House To The White House.

So in 2010 he is planning a Coast to Coast walk in which he will involve other kids and help fund their ideas to help homeless youth.

Raymond Williams said…

To be truly radical is to make hope possible rather than despair convincing.

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