Change, Creativity, and Curiosity

Last week I wrote about change, asking ‘what can you change?’¬†Tuesday morning I did a keynote for the Division of Student Affairs at Texas State University. Their Vice President, Cynthia Hernandez, gave me the title, “Embracing Change and Enhancing Creativity” which she apparently got from my website. I decided I’d share a bit of that…

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Degrees of Freedom

I’ve been thinking about the concept of ‘degrees of freedom’ recently. It’s a term I’ve used without thinking about it to mean the level of choice we have in our decision-making, usually in the context of leadership and organizational life. It turns out that there’s no real definition for that usage – that I can…

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Realized Potential

Occasionally, I look at prior newsletters from UTSA and UT Austin to trigger ideas about topics, but today, as I am on the road, I’m going all in and just reprising an oldie. This is from the UTSA newsletter in August of 2009 and I’ve left in the UTSA specific references. Max De Pree is…

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Complex Organizations, Complicated People

Years ago, President Powers at UT Austin was invited to speak to a group of people who supported the various ministry groups located around campus – ministers, rabbis and imams. The Provost and I were invited to attend and, unexpectedly, we were asked if we wanted to speak. Difficult to say no in those circumstances.…

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Start Where You Are

Regular readers of this blog may have discerned that I have subscribed to a lot of newsletters. Some of them are new – I just subscribed to Matthew Dicks daily newsletter. Others, like the Ripples newsletter and A.Word.A.Day, I’ve been reading for many, many years. Daily, weekly, monthly they appear in my inbox and bring…

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It’s the Mondayest Tuesday Ever

I saw this quote on Facebook yesterday. Unfortunately, I don’t remember who posted it to give credit, but it seems appropriate even though this is Wednesday. Yesterday wasn’t a bad day, not even mildly difficult actually. But last night as I was getting ready for bed, it hit me – it was Tuesday, not Monday.…

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Fun Professional Development Is Not an Oxymoron

I learned early in my career, as an RA I think, that I don’t believe in the concept of mandatory fun which is an oxymoron if there ever was one. You know what I mean, that after-hours get together that is supposed to create camaraderie, but is unlikely to make anyone happy – other than…

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What is the New Normal?

Oh so many years ago, it was February when I joined UTSA and the campus was in the final stages of developing a ten-year strategic plan. That fall, every division and college or school was asked to create a five year plan that was directly in line with the overall campus program. In one way…

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Working on the High Wire

Working on the High Wire

Several years ago, I was sitting at lunch with a group of college deans as we interviewed a candidate for the position of Vice President for Business Affairs. The candidate asked us what we liked about the current VP who she knew was both liked and respected on campus. I don’t remember what the deans…

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Understanding Budget

Today I decided to try a new way of coming up with a topic for the newsletter – Writing Topic Tarot. No it’s not really a thing, but it’s how I picked today’s topic. A few years ago, one of my ideas for a book was a series of essays about various lessons I have…

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