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STUCK ON THE “WHAT”

January 11, 2010

An OP ED in this morning’s paper, aimed at taking an honest look at Afghanistan situation ended with a real thought jogger:

We are becoming very good at uncovering what went wrong—on 9/11, in Iraq, at Tora Bora, on Christmas Day 2009. We are not good at figuring out what the rapidly evolving terrorists who hate us are planning next.

That summary of the “what”, with little thought spent as to the “why” and the “what next” seems to me to be systemic throughout our world today. We focus on hind-sight, past experience, the proven truths of the 20th century and self-righteously make judgments in the context of our “glorious” past rather than the future – let alone the present.

This brought me immediately back to the Harvard Business Review “Spotlight on Innovation” I wrote about in my Dec 13, 2009 blog. Just a month ago, I made a commitment to reorient and look to the future…trying not to protect the status quo and to move forward to embrace a mission for change that would allow me to take risks and give me permission to make mistakes along the way.

I’ve spent most of the intervening month battling a lengthly illness, snow, ice, and cold, doctor appointments and an out-patient surgery. So have spent very little time figuring out how I was going to accomplish this change in thinking and move away once and for all from the tendency to protect the good accomplishments that have come before and focus on what lies ahead.

Despite minimal progress, I remain committed to this however, and think it is a worthy goal, not just for me personally, but for our industry, for our politicians and pundits, for our state, and for our American life. So I am recommitting to Associating, Questioning, Observing, Experimenting and Networking in order to improve my Innovative Abilities to better prepare for life in the 21st century.

Future success will be easier, I think, when there are more fellow travelers on this pathway.

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