Living in More Than One World

The Blog of Bruce Rosenstein

Putting Drucker into Action in Iowa

What drew me to the brief profile in the Des Moines Register about Michelle Hankins Cook, a manager for Norandex Building Materials Distribution, was her response to Words to Live By: the Peter Drucker quote “The best way to predict your future is to create it.” But what I found even more interesting was how this and other themes of the bio represented areas of living in more than one world covered in my book, including varied and fulfilling outside interests, family, volunteerism, mentorship, leadership, meaningful achievements and challenging work. Her background includes  being both an airplane pilot and lead singer in a rock band.…

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The Economist, Education and Wendy Kopp

For an insightful British take on education in New York City and elsewhere, see Off to School, on The Economist’s education correspondent uses the occasion of chairing an education conference in New York City to also visit various schools there and in nearby Newark, NJ. There are some quotes from an interview with Wendy Kopp, the founder of Teach for America, and a visit with a TFA alum to speak to current TFA teachers at a Bronx middle school. In Jim Collins’ recent Inc. magazine interview, he called Kopp “my entrepreneur for this decade.” He continued, “Her organization is truly an entrepreneurial creation that is out to utterly transform education.…

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This ( column will change your life…according to Oliver Burkeman

How can you resist a column called This Column Will Change Your Life? The latest from Oliver Burkeman in The Guardian (where he is also a reporter), deals with positives and negatives regarding habits and routines. Sometimes the regularity of the routines causes the benefits derived to be diminished. “But there is one way,” Burkeman writes, “to get the best of both worlds: develop habits and routines that are designed to disrupt your habits and routines, and keep things fresh.” This could entail weekly self-reviews of your work, which even though being another form of routine, still gets you out of your daily routine for awhile.…

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Predictions of Personal Happiness

Can we really predict the things that will make us happy? How does that relate to how much time and effort we allocate to various activities in life? Art Markman, a psychology professor at the University of Texas at Austin, addresses this in “Delusions of grandeur II: Overexcited, overanxious, and ready for action,” for his Psychology Today blog. Markman’s post references two other psychology professors: Harvard’s Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness and Tobias Greitemeyer of the University of Sussex.

Also worth reading is a short piece in the May-June 2009 Foreign Policy, The Next Big Thing: Happiness, by Swarthmore College psychology professor Barry Schwartz, author of The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less.…

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Po Bronson on Your Future

Po Bronson, author of the best-seller What Should I Do With My Life?, has a thought-provoking piece in the April issue of Fast Company, What Should I Do With My Life Now? His book presented a number of case studies of people who made significant changes in their life. The new article provides a realist view for people contemplating such changes in the current troubled economy. It’s based on six myths of personal transformation, underpinned by the fact that dream jobs, fulfillment and responsibility are all attainable, but they will not come easily.…

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Jim Collins, Peter Drucker, and more for Entrepreneurs

Many of us will have to become more entrepreneurially-oriented as we move deeper into the 21st century. In that spirit, be sure to check out the April, 30th anniversary issue of Inc., especially for the highly informative interview with Jim Collins. Jim is well-known for his books Good to Great and Built to Last, and he wrote the forewords for Peter Drucker’s Management: Revised Edition and The Daily Drucker. He references Drucker in his interview, which is about the state of entrepreneurship, and especially the entrepreneur, in the past, present and future.

There are lots of other things worth reading in this issue and on the magazine’s website, including The Business Owner’s Bookshelf, a list of 30 books that should be helpful whether or not you own a business, or think of yourself as an entrepreneur.…

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The Claremont Music Connection

Everything is connected. But one connection that took me a long time to make was between the lovely city of Claremont, California (Peter Drucker’s home and site of the Drucker School), and rock music. I have traveled to Claremont – which also contains a stretch of Route 66, not far from the Drucker School — a number of times since 2002 for research on my book. But it wasn’t until last year that I discovered how many great musicians come from Claremont.

Two members of one of my favorite ‘60s bands, Kaleidoscope, David Lindley and Chris Darrow, live there.…

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Happiness: Points to Ponder…

In the ongoing spirit of rethinking and reframing our lives, it’s worth reading Paul B. Farrell’s gentle advice in The Zen Millionaire’s 14 Secrets to Happiness on He references such diverse sources as Warren Buffett, Charles M. Schultz (creator of Peanuts), Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi (author of Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience; formerly based at the Drucker School) and the Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh.

It echoes and builds on advice he gave in a similar column in August 2007, Crash course for ‘happier millionaires’. Farrell includes a reading list of 10 books to set you on the road to happiness, including Flow, the Dalai Lama’s The Art of Happiness (written with Howard C.…

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Win Wenger on Problem Solving

An ongoing theme of my blog is how we can continually think of our personal and professional lives in different, more productive ways. Techniques of creative problem solving are often useful shortcuts at helping us get unstuck. In the mid-1990s I took a creative problem solving continuing education course at Georgetown University with Win Wenger, a creativity guru and author who is also based in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. I enjoyed the course, and have stayed in touch with him over the years.

His organization, Project Renaissance, is a great source for information on many creativity and thinking-related issues.…

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Staying relevant over many years…being a Renaissance Person helps

The concept of the Renaissance Man (or woman, for that matter) is closely related to living in more than one world. This type of person uses their talents in a variety of ways, engages in continuous learning, and moves among many different types of people and organizations. One of the best examples from history is Leonardo da Vinci, who seems to grow more popular each year. I’m continually fascinated by what keeps people relevant over a period of many years, as Peter Drucker managed to do. Randy Dotinga of The Christian Science Monitor analyzes Leonardo’s ongoing pop culture status — and in particular his importance to science musems — “Museums push to decode Leonardo da Vinci.” Readers of this blog should definitely enjoy Michael Gelb’s classic book How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci.…

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