Dov Siedman, author of the book, “How,” says there are basically two kinds of authority in the world: formal authority and moral authority.
The former can be (pick one: taken, granted, elected, appointed). The latter must be earned through respect from those over whom one has authority. He’s not talking about COMMANDING respect, he talking about gaining true respect through leading by example and giving the people what they want and deserve.
New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman referred to Siedman in a June 2013 column about protests in Turkey. Friedman says Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has lost the respect of his people. He says they don’t want to overthrow him, as has been done, or is in progress, in other Muslim countries. They just want him to know that he is making or changing rules about religion and other things, and they don’t like it. They just want him to, as Friedman puts it, back off.
But Siedman’s work can be applied to other parts of life. In fact, Siedman’s company, LRN, advises CEOs on how to gain more moral authority within their organizations.
Think of any work situation. Is your boss (pick one or more: overbearing, incompetent, cheap)? Do you hate going in there, but have to so you can put food on the table? If you were in your boss’ shoes, how would you run the place?
You don’t gain respect by edict. You earn it by your behavior. Think of it this way: if you were in your boss’ shoes, would you think you’d have a better, even more profitable operation if the people working for you genuinely respected you? If they talk at lunch, or after work, are they maligning you or are they admiring you? If you already have some authority over people, even your children as a parent, you need to be concerned about that to a great degree.
Sure, you are going to take some actions that not everyone will like. But if you have their respect overall, they will understand why you did it and work with you. It makes for a much smoother and, if it’s a business, generally a more profitable operation.
The other advantage of leading by example, and behaving so those on your team respect you, is you say less to them. They will follow what you do. Words can be misunderstood or misconstrued, but actions provide much clearer meaning.
If you are starting, or want to start, your own company, think about Siedman’s work and earn moral authority from the employees you ultimately hire. They will thank you for it by their actions. And you might actually enjoy giving priority to THEIR success first. It will pay you dividends that are worth more than money.
If you want to start a company, even if you are working for someone else, visit You should be able to spend a little time building your fortune without interfering with what you are already doing.
If you are a boss, test out your moral authority. Go to lunch with your folks, or meet them after work. If they welcome you, you may already have moral authority. If they find reasons not to include you, you know you have work to do.
If you don’t care what they think of you, you have some thinking to do. It could take you a long time to earn their respect. In fact, you may have to do it gradually as newer employees join you. It takes lots of energy to be a dictator and hold power when those below you hate you. It takes far less energy and stress to earn moral authority.


There’s no such thing as status quo.
Glenn Furuya, says that in his book “The Little Book With 50 Big Ideas on Leadership.”
We think of status quo as a comfort zone, presuming we are comfortable.
We think of status quo as “the way things are,” as if there is little we can do about them.
We might even think of status quo as a good thing – if, of course, we have it good.
But Furuya says that if we are not growing, we are wilting. There is no such thing as status quo.
Sure, we are not plants. Plants either grow or wilt. They don’t suddenly stop growing unless they are getting ready to die.
But if you look at it from a mental, spiritual or attitudinal perspective, we all want to grow. And, if we stop, even if we have it good, ultimately we will begin to wilt.
Some of us see executives get fired, only to think that they can just sit back because they got paid handsomely to leave. A few may do that. Most will not. They will find something else that will challenge them. Status quo is their enemy. Growth is their friend.
Pro golfer Phil Mickelson finished second at the 2013 U.S. Open tournament. It is the sixth time he’s finished second. He’s never won the tournament, and one might observe that he got paid handsomely each time he finished second. It’s better than finishing back in the pack, as Tiger Woods did at the 2013 U.S. Open.
But Mickelson will not be satisfied with second. He’ll keep going back to the U.S. Open every year as long as he’s able, and as long as he believes he can be competitive. He was not happy with second place, and it wasn’t for financial reasons. It’s all about the desire to win. Second place isn’t exactly wilting, but Mickelson’s been there and done that. It’s time to win.
Most people accept the status quo, even if they don’t like it. They fear taking on something that will get them out of their comfort zone, unless they are forced to. They may hate the status quo, but it’s the “devil they know.”
Others, meanwhile, will always look to grow. They may live with the status quo for a while, but they will always be thinking of, or working on, making things better. They will look out for those opportunities to challenge the status quo. They will take some risk as needed. They will not settle for something they don’t like for the rest of their lives.
Are you that type of person? Are you looking to grow, and fear the status quo will wilt you? Do you feel you are slowly dying on the vine, but aren’t ready to be pruned off, burned or made into compost?
If so, visit You don’t have to drop what you are doing now, but you may see options to challenge the status quo that you may never have thought of. You might find the personal growth hormone – not a steroid, mind you – that you need.
As humans, we should be more like plants, but with the ability to think and reason – and continually grow. We may stop growing physically, or we may grow physically in places in which we do not want to grow. But the mind and spirit need to continually grow. Or, they will wilt.
There are lots of manmade things out there that will encourage us to wilt. Keep your eye out for the manmade mental fertilizer that will encourage us to grow.


Decades ago, starting a business was hard.
You needed money – either your own, or investors’.
You needed sophisticated and expensive marketing – a big cost.
All of the above was hard to come by. If you failed, chances are you were devastated. If you failed, you probably would have decided to take your skills and ideas to an employer and help make HIM rich.
Today, as Darren Hardy, publisher of Success magazine puts it, starting a business has never been easier.
In a 2013 audio from his series, Hardy points out that the Internet and social media and the related technology makes starting a business easy. It’s relatively cheap, because you don’t need a lot of that sophisticated and expensive marketing. If you have a good idea, and a computer, you can tell the world about your idea relatively easily.
Because starting a business is relatively easy, and relatively inexpensive, failure is not as costly. If one idea fails, try another one. Chances are, you won’t be financially devastated by your first failure.
If you are entrepreneurial, you can keep trying things until one works. Entrepreneurs know that eventually, if they keep trying, they will succeed.
Couple the ease of starting a business today, with the difficulties in the workplace. Job security is almost impossible to find. Companies are looking for, as New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman has put it, “cheap genius.” If they don’t find it nearby, they’ll find it somewhere in the world.
Your good ideas, taken to an employer, may be able to be replicated, even improved upon, by someone who will work for less money than you make.
If you are young and starting your career path, take a look at what you are good at, what you are passionate about, and think about how you could parlay that into your own business. There’s nothing wrong with working for someone else for a time, even a long time, especially if that person is helping you succeed. But chances are, if you are good at something, and are passionate about it, you’ll have the drive to strike out on your own if you choose.
Sometimes, it’s a matter of taking your passion and figuring out how you can use it to help others. Then, figure out how much others will pay you for helping them. If you are passionate about art, and have a talent for it, you don’t necessarily have to sell your drawings or paintings. But you might sell yourself as someone who could help, say, architects, stagers etc. Ideas, plus passion, plus drive might be a good formula for success in whatever endeavor you choose.
What if you have drive, but no ideas and no passion yet. Where do you go to find the idea and passion to which you could apply your great drive? There are many good business ideas already out there waiting for the people with drive to pursue them. To check out one of the best, visit All you need to be successful is the sense to see how good an idea it is, and the drive to share it.
Even though Hardy says it’s relatively easy to start a business today, whatever you pursue will require hard work. But if you are passionate, the work won’t seem so hard. As the saying goes, if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.
In these conditions, passion, plus idea, plus drive is the perfect formula. The passions and ideas can be found elsewhere. The drive has to be within you.


Jim Fannin has a favorite four-letter word.
No, there’s nothing vulgar about it, but he uses it with everyone he advises or coaches.
He discusses it at length in his book “Pebble In The Shoe.”
No matter what you have done – good thing or bad – you should always think of this word.
The word forces you not to rest on your laurels when you’ve done something good. It brightens your future when you do something bad. It allows you to correct mistakes, or proceed to add successes.
It doesn’t allow you to wallow, or over-celebrate. As certain as tomorrow follows today, the word ensures your future.
Love is a marvelous four-letter word, but that’s not what Fannin was thinking. Hate is an awful four-letter word, but that didn’t cross his mind either.
His four-letter word, which he uses to encourage after a failure, or curb enthusiasm after a success, is NEXT.
Think of the Disney World ads after the Super Bowl. Whoever the star of the game was gets asked what he’ll do next, now that he’s won the Super Bowl: “I am going to Disney World,” he says.
But the real “next” for that athlete is next year. You see, very few teams have gone to the Super Bowl in consecutive years. But that is always the goal. What will he have to do to get there? Certainly, after his trip to Disney World, he will begin thinking about it, and taking the necessary action to return to the Super Bowl.
In the National Football League, it’s tough to sustain that kind of success year after year. You might have the same people on the team, but injuries, age and other factors enter into play. The team might still be good the next year, but the other teams are even more motivated to beat them.
In sports, there is always “next” season.
Sometimes, life throws us curve balls. Even though they are hard to hit, we keep swinging. Success is not about taking what comes, it’s about dealing with what comes in the best way you know now. If you swing and miss, it’s OK. The “next” pitch might be a fastball down the middle, or another curve. Eventually, you’ll get a hit, even though it may not happen as often as you’d like.
Perhaps you’ll get a couple of consecutive hits. Great. Now, you look forward to that next pitch. You don’t sit on the bench and say, I’m done, or I’m out. You keep swinging.
A few types of mistakes can cost dearly. Most, however, are easily forgotten the “next” day.
The “next” day is a whole new turn at bat. Relish it, whether you struck out or hit a home run the day before.
If you are looking for new and different pitches to hit, visit You will learn the value of “next.” You’ll know that you can’t mess up so badly for so long that you won’t ever succeed. You’ll learn not to quit.
If you have something good, stay with it. Your “next” may be awhile in coming, or it may come tomorrow. If you need something good, keep looking. Your “next” is out there. You may not recognize it immediately, but eventually it will come to light if you keep looking for it.
N-E-X-T is a great four-letter word. Use it as a guide. It guarantees a future for you.


It takes all kinds to make a world, and those most successful people value everyone that helps them achieve success.
“When you make every client your favorite, you are bound to have a deeper connection with your clients, as well as have greater success,” says Gregg Steinberg, professor of human performance at Austin Peay State University and author of the Washington Post best seller “Full Throttle.”
“You will always have some clients whom you perceive as friendly and kindhearted.,” Steinberg said in a May 2013 column in The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.
But, “”everyone’s business has a few clients that simply get on the nerves,” he added. Your dislike for that client will eventually show through, and affect your business, he said.
Let’s dig deeper into Steinberg’s idea. Everyone that we interact with has good and bad traits. We just have to focus on the good traits, and let the bad ones roll off our backs. By focusing on one’s bad traits, we waste energy. Dislike, even hate, takes energy. It doesn’t improve anything. It doesn’t move us forward.
If a person is vital to our lives, or our businesses, we have to manage our emotions about them. We have to focus our energy on appreciating the good they do, and not waste a lot of energy focusing on what they don’t do for us.
Any relationship is like that. One cannot be blind to the flaws of another, but one does not have to focus on it. Focusing on the positive not only improves chances of success in that relationship, it also creates less stress.
Sometimes we witness true evil. We can’t help but expend energy trying to combat that. Though motivational speaker Andy Andrews tells us to “sweat the small stuff,” sometimes the little things that a person does that annoy us might not be worth sweating. Andrews also advises us to “smile when we talk.” If we do that consistently, we will focus our energy on the positive traits of those we come in contact with. The nagging little annoyances won’t bother us so much.
Success is treating each (pick one: client, coworker, friend, acquaintance, neighbor) as if they are just right for you. Seeing and focusing on the positive in that person will be reciprocated. Perhaps you will make each other successful, which is ideal.
If you want to make everyone you interact with successful, but are not sure how to do that, visit This may be the vehicle you have been looking for not only for your own success, but also to help others succeed.
Helping others involves giving, but sometimes the best thing you can give a person is a way to help themselves and others.
The more you give in that regard, the more those to whom you give the opportunity will pass it on. The more everyone passes it on, ultimately, the more successful people become AND the more people become successful.
The more successful people there are, the better place the world becomes. The more successful anyone becomes, the less energy is wasted on little annoyances. But to get to that point, you first have to make the effort NOT to focus on what annoys you. Focus on what you see that is good, and continue to feed that.
In short, don’t let the little stings cripple you. That creature who stings produces the honey that you love. The more honey, the more success.