There’s a great place of respite from the weight of world events and dispiriting local noise, and that place is the garden. Even the soil itself has been recently shown in studies to bring energizing catharsis to one’s spirit. To that end, Winter Sowing (WS) is one of the most joyful and hopeful tasks I do after packing away holiday decorations. That gardening and spending time in nature is restorative, especially for chronic stress, is now illustrated in science. So here we are in prime season for Winter Sowing: January – February. This post features ten (10) lessons I’ve learned about the process. If you are new to Winter Sowing, also check out the basics of why, how, when, what and where to Winter Sow in my SlideShare below.
Post-pandemic planning and work: It isn’t just about the money in this survey of 4K+ workers who want better work-life balance and will change jobs if they cannot get it:
A new survey from the flexible and offsite/remote jobs site FlexJobs is out with results from over 4,600 workers about their jobs, careers and what they are looking for next. The number one reason people want to change careers is to be in a job or field with a better work-life balance(56%), ahead of a higher salary (50%). Other reasons respondents listed included:
Wanting a more meaningful or fulfilling career (49%)
To expand their professional skill set (43%)
Lack of advancement or growth opportunities in their current career (27%)
Approaching retirement and looking for a career change as a “second act” (19%)
A few decades ago I came home thoroughly exhausted from my day at work. I was bone tired, and signaled my goal to take a rare 20 minute nap before dinner while my husband kept an eye on the kids. Then, the most remarkable thing happened. As I found myself outside looking at a few weeds in a flower-bed next to the driveway, I thought I’d pull a few out and then take that nap. What happened? Thirty minutes later the bed was weeded and every trace of tiredness was gone. Vanished. It was like mother earth had injected me with some kind of energy tonic as I dug in the dirt.
This is a departure. This is my first lifestyle article, written for the purpose of celebrating what has been and still is a lifeline for many in these days of the Covid pandemic. Learning about gardening and enjoying the journey of developing a beautiful, well-kept garden is healing and deeply, almost mystically restorative.
What wins the race? It is the leadership quality and finesse of multiple factors that wins, not the novice conceit of speed, or the number of hours of practice. From the book, “Inner Speed Secrets: Mental Strategies to Maximize Your Racing Performance,” by Ronn Langford and Ross Bentley share insights into the nuances that also apply to leadership.
How do leaders make sense of things, especially difficult, urgent, strategic things that may include shock, pain, tragedy, as well as stress and churn? There are many lessons learned about continuously verifying and updating our information, our data, and the need to clarify, test and refocus on our organization’s purpose. The 2021 update of this is seen in the passing of former Secretary of State and General Colin Powell and his lessons learned involving the data he trusted leading to decisions on the Iraq War.
Featured: Five key concepts and supporting research and tools will help you lead through adaptive change in a VUCA world, one that is Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous, as presented in Mexico City for CPA firm leaders at the Russell Bedford International conference, yet applicable for any leader.
Leadership skill is built upon skilled listening, including listening to yourself for health and wellness. Busy leaders know intellectually that taking care of yourself is how you are best able to take care of others. The challenge, in this part three of our series, continues to be putting this principle into disciplined, regular practice. Leadership coaching, as my clients have told me, has helped leaders:Continue reading “Seven Ways New NonProfit Leaders Succeed the First Year on the Job”
Like a well-played symphony, when nonprofit leaders partner well with their board, staff and volunteers, magic happens. Though a board of directors or council holds ultimate legal and fiduciary responsibility, true success requires a solid partnership between the chief executive officer (or staff officer) (CEO / CSO) and chief elected officer, a board chair or council president.
It takes courage to listen. Whether it’s a first or fifth transition to a new leader role, these non-profit leadership lessons learned are timeless. Pause, reflect, choose (from horse-guided leadership & learning.) In your first months, resist the urgent and not important tasks and follow these practical steps to ensure your success.