Sharing Three Things About Sharing Things …

SharingSharing  … it’s something I do a lot of on various social media platforms.  

Sharing is sort of the lingua franca of our online world.

This morning, as I was reviewing some of my platforms and daily reports, I noticed several nice up-ticks in others noting and  sharing what I have shared, and said aloud, but to myself “Well, that’s nice“.

My wife asked me what was “nice” and I responded “Nothing important” … but, of course, it is.  

My sharing ranges across  areas such as leadership development, social science, and human behavior.  I eagerly glean nuggets from psychology, sociology, learning theory, critical thinking, popular culture, religion, politics, and social media usage and strategy.  

I enjoy in-depth academic articles, pithy short essays, and images, both photographic and cartoony.  I am addicted to aphorisms, sayings, and quotations.  I share images, charts, articles, blog posts, and whatever else captures my attention and makes me think “Well, this is interesting …”.

I always get a little “feel-good” tingle, when I see that someone else has found enough value in what I share, whether my own thoughts or those of others.  One can become addicted to that feeling.

Here are three solid reasons off the top of my head about why I share ….

Sharing Cake1)  I HELP OTHERS …

When I post something, I am usually trying to do one of two things:  1)  Share something I believe is potentially useful for the other person, or  2) Share myself through being open about my attitudes, positions, beliefs, and values.  

If someone else finds value in what I share, I win.  If someone else understands me more fully because they see what I see as positive or negative, I win.

I am trying to be more intentional about including a brief statement with my sharing to clarify why I believe this specific link, story, or image is of value to others.


As an information junkie and self-avowed life-long learner, I find that the act of sharing information tends to reinforce several things for me:  1)  the content I am sharing, 2)  the source of that content, and 3)  the possible value, because I do not share something unless I have determined that it has value for me.  

The second step is to decide whether what I share may be helpful to others. In doing this, I grow in my ability to critically evaluate things.   

I do not always share things I find acceptable or in agreement with my views or approach … sometimes I share things that reflect attitudes, beliefs, and values opposite to those I hold.   If we only pay attention to what reinforces our beliefs, we do not learn or grow.


When I share something, especially if it is something I truly value, others often respond.   I am constantly excited and sometimes pleasantly surprised that something I shared has touched another, either professionally or personally.

We are designed to connect with one another.  Social media and, the sharing that infuses is simply one of the ways in which we share ourselves with each other.

Yes, face to face is the ultimate connection, but we live in a very large world and some of my strongest connections are virtual.    While I may never breathe the same air or stand on the same ground as another, I can still look for points of commonality with that person.

Connection is not an “either/or” issue, but an issue where multiple channels exist to enhance our relationships and connections with others.  So …

What do you share with others?

Why do you share with others?

How do you share with others?

Feeling pretty OK about sharing my thoughts with you all in the Heartland ….


Image:  from

Painful Scenes …

This little video has been making the rounds over the past few days, but I just managed to squeeze in a look-see on Sunday afternoon … and it left me wishing a few things …

I wish I had passed it by … watching this was one uncomfortable and even painful experience.  I was almost immediately overwhelmed

I wish I could say that this is just humor … but like most truly humorous things, it has the absolute ring of truth about it.  I found myself putting real names to the characters as the story unfolded.

I wish that this was not the way meetings, planning, and collaboration between groups goes, but I know that it all too often is exactly how things go.  I can almost taste the discouragement that we are not further down the road in listening to each other, understanding and analyzing problems, and in leadership.

The man in the middle is the one for whom I reserve special enmity … he is the epitome of a poor leader and the worst aspect is his total obliviousness to his own inability to effectively lead.  Never gets the reality of what is being discussed, is clueless regarding how to manage discussions effectively, and does not respect those whom he leads.

Sorry, I had been expecting a cute little video about silly things that happen when workers get together.  Instead I got a strong dose of reality … and a refreshed resolve to get busy doing something about this.

I just don’t want them to need to make more videos like this about real workplace life in the Heartland ….



Guest Post: Lessons From China

Lessons-from-China_3dI am Beau Sides, the founder and president of Global Partners in Life, a non-profit organization that helps orphaned children, special needs orphans, and disadvantaged youth with educational, humanitarian, and medical needs in China. Since 2004, Global Partners in Life (GPiL) has been giving for the purpose of enabling young lives to prosper. As a businessman, teacher, humanitarian, and husband I enjoy making life better for those around me, and I enjoy people. My passion is to serve others, and doing so as the president of Global Partners in Life has been a mission and a joy.


Formerly, I served in the tech world successfully as a manager for IBM. As my interest in Chinese culture grew, I served on numerous teaching tours as an English language instructor at a Chinese university and other business and language schools in China and earned the title of teacher. In China, teacher is a lifelong title of honor which I will always appreciate and cherish.

There are many examples of how respectful students at the university in China were to me. When I would call the students names for attendance, they would have a unique way of raising their hands with an almost spiraling motion and say “present” not “here.” Also, if I asked a student a question, they would stand to answer my question, and they wouldn’t sit down until I told them to.

Our classes were about 2 hours long, so we had a ten minute break half way through the classes. One day a student didn’t return when class started, but I saw her standing outside the door. She was looking at me, so I motioned for her to come in, but she wouldn’t. I thought there may be a problem, so I went to the door to check on her. She was almost in tears and she was so apologetic for returning late, and she wouldn’t reenter the classroom until I assured her it was OK. After class she handed me a note apologizing again for being late, and she assured me it would never happen again.

It was interesting that the students called me teacher. I have learned that once you are a student’s teacher, you are always considered their teacher. It has been more than 10 years since I taught some students, and they still send me documents and papers to correct for them. I am blessed to communicate often with some of them, and I have even met some of their children!

About the Author

Beau Sides is the founder and president of Global Partners in Life, a non-profit organization that helps orphaned children, special needs orphans, and disadvantaged youth with educational, humanitarian and medical needs in China. He is also the author of Lessons from China (April 2014), a fictional story of a young woman who moves to China to teach English, only to discover that she has some lessons of her own to learn. Available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Follow him on Twitter @beausides and visit his website –

Self-Awareness and Serendipity …

Mirror Image

The Most Challenging Leadership Skill of All | (via Leadership Freak)

Click the title above to read a useful post by Dan Rockwell, AKA The Leadership Freak, which is actually a review of StartUp Leadership, a fascinating book by Derek Lidow that talks to the personal side of leadership … 

Lidow provides five leadership characteristics, all of which are important, but his choice for the most challenging (and I would add most important) is Self-Awareness.  

Self-Awareness is not just seeing yourself as others see you.  Self-awareness is seeing yourself as you truly are … both what is visible to others and what is known only to you.

I completely agree with this distinction because self-awareness for anyone is the key to dealing effectively with their own behavior, thoughts, and emotions, which in turn is essential for them to effectively lead others.

Interesting, but really no surprise that earlier today, I shared Seven Reasons Leaders Get Dumb, another post from the Leadership Freak, which addresses the negatives effects of power on a leader.   This post is based on a chapter from yet another good leadership book launching this week.  You will hear much more about The Idea-Driven Organization by Alan G. Robinson and Dean M. Schroeder, as the week progresses.

Here’s the link:  Self-awareness is essential, because it mitigates the effects of power.

Loving a busy early spring Monday morning with a large dose of serendipity in the Heartland ….


Dan Rockwell (the Leadership Freak) is one of the best thinkers about authentic leadership I know of these days.  Almost every one of his posts is a short jewel of solid thinking about how to effectively influence and lead others … one of my daily “Must Reads”.

Alan G. Robinson and Dean M. Schroeder are award-winning authors, consultants, and educators. They are the co-authors of the bestseller Ideas Are Free: How the Idea Revolution is Liberating People and Transforming Organizations. Between them, they have advised hundreds of organizations in more than twenty-five countries around the world on how to improve their creativity, innovativeness and overall performance.

Learning To Lose …

Fail“We must learn how to lose before we learn how to play.”

Author unknown, but it was not me.

One of the most discussed aspects of our current educational system which many now see as flawed concerns the “self-esteem” movement of a few years ago.  While the motives and the aspirations were worthy, the real attempts to make everyone feel good about themselves backfired.

As a society, we have diluted the concepts of hard work, competition, and the idea of how to lose gracefully.

Not everyone wins every time you play the game.

Every effort does not deserve recognition.

Showing up is important, but does not earn a trophy.

Losing without losing your cool is one darned important life skill and it is one many of us lack.

So how does one lose gracefully? Continue reading