A BETTER MOUSETRAP

The phrase “build a better mousetrap” turned into a metaphor about the power of innovation and is frequently taken literally, with more than 4,400 patents issued by the US Patent and Trademark Office for new mousetraps, with thousands more unsuccessful applicants, making them the “most frequently invented device in U.S. history.” Five “better mousetrap” books

read more

THE FOUR-LEGGED STOOL

Most teachers, many parents and some students are aware of the three-legged stool concept and practice in schools.  The three legs are teacher, parents & student.  The teacher represents the school, the parents represent themselves and their child and the student can hopefully represent himself or herself to the extent possible.  Too much practice in

read more

A GIFT FOR THE GRADUATE

Think about 3.6 million high school graduates this Spring who have spent 13 or more years in school.  They have been tied to a curriculum that has good intentions for expanding the student’s world of knowledge, understanding and skills requisite for a good education.  How then do you answer the  question, “What are the marks

read more

LIFE IS FRAGILE, UNPREDICTABLE

About six years ago I wrote the following article based on a letter to a friend of mine who was about to give a commencement speech.  For those us who have done that on more than a few occasions, we know that it’s hard to come up with something that’s worth listening to at a

read more

SCHOOLS: TARGETS OR SOLUTIONS?

As of this writing, March 22, 2018, there have been 18 school shootings since the beginning of the year. This is Day 81 which means one shooter every 4.5 days has used a school as the object of what seems like unresolved and untreated anger, or frustration, and/or isolation. We say that the mental health

read more

TEACHING AGAIN LEARNING

I am excited to start teaching on Monday after a hiatus of a few years in the formal context although informally, I have continued “teaching” and “learning” in a variety of settings. In a recent interview where the lead question was “What Is Your Purpose In Life” the second question was “How Am I Living

read more

SILK TIES & COFFEE STAINS

No, it’s not about coffee stains on your favorite tie. It’s about two separate stories told by one of my favorite management gurus, Tom Peters. He and I exchange quips via Twitter from time to time and a recent one reminded me of these stories of customer service and how they apply to organizations, certainly

read more