It is the morning after the election and I stayed up until 2 AM to be sure I knew who our next President would be. As I watched the television all those hours I was gratified to see enthusiasm and passion—this was not a lukewarm response to a challenge. It was a passionate and exuberant response to an opportunity to help shape a bright future.
My ancestor, John Adams, was the 2nd president of the United States. He was the only founding father who never owned a slave. When I think of our founding fathers, with all their differences, how they came together in a powerful way and built a country—a democracy—I think, how can we not come together and make every challenge an opportunity?
Now, the morning after, we learn the high percentage of women, young people, and ethnic racial groups who turned out and made this such a powerful, inclusive experience for all of us.
I am smiling this Wednesday morning even though they tell me today New York will be hit by a snowstorm at 3 o'clock.
I’d like to share a few notes on one of the highlights of 2012: TEDxMidAtlantic Be Fearless, hosted by the Case Foundation. Young, energetic people—all saving the world—gathered in D.C. October 26-27 to share ideas. No podium or lectern, no hand held microphones. Only a square red carpet, and a low stage I loved.
I decided not to be formal. I asked the audience if I could share with them the defining moment of my life that determined the person I am, the leader I have become. I asked the audience to think about a defining moment in their life while I spoke. Everyone has one.
The audience's response was so moving for me. Afterward, I caught the 2 pm train back to New York city, bought batteries, locked the door of my 48th floor apartment and came out 6 days later. For those still suffering in the wake of Sandy, my thoughts are with you.
Wishing you peace this November.
To Serve Is To Live,
President and CEO
The Frances Hesselbein Leadership Institute
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PROFILE IN INNOVATION: Sseko Designs
Each month, we profile innovative sources—a person, organization, service or program—to inspire and inform our network.
“You've got to walk outside your life to where the neighborhood changes.” -Ani Difranco
Liz Forkin Bohannon has fully embraced the business ideology of consumerism and marketing, catering to a growing niche market of highly educated consumers with a greater appreciation for and awareness of materials, manufacturing and the philanthropic benefits of ethically resourced and produced goods. Bohannon knows that a product's story is what rescues it from anonymity, and breathes life into it.
Sseko Designs, producer of funky, stylish sandals—with a story—has one of the most innovative offerings in the fashion industry.
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A few lessons learned from the Institute's October 18 Global Webinar (REPLAY coming soon!)
"It's not about US, it's about THEM."
"The most important qualities of great leaders are those of humility and empathy."
"Never deviate from your values."
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