What qualities does a leader have?
He or she is happy, optimistic and a problem solver.
So says Dr. Dale Henry, a Tennessee-based educator, trainer and speaker, and owner of Your Best Unlimited training academy.
Henry’s speech, given at the Leadership Cumberland graduation ceremonies in Crossville, Tenn., Aug. 23, 2016, was titled, “Look Before You LEAP – For the Landing Spot.”
Henry says that despite those desired qualities in a leader, we all tend to be whiners.
When we have difficult decisions to make, our first question tends to be,”Whose Fault Is This?” Who is to blame for the difficult circumstances we are in.
Casting blame takes valuable energy away from solving problems.

We tend to gravitate toward, “the world is going to hell in a handbasket,” instead of “the future looks very bright.”
Let’s take Henry’s three characteristics and break them down.
First, being happy is something that doesn’t always come naturally. Often, we get thrown curve balls in life and, when we get enough curve balls thrown at us, we tend to lose our happiness. Leaders tend to look beyond circumstances toward what’s good in their lives, and focus on that. So, happiness is not always natural. Sometimes, we have to work on being happy.
Optimism has much the same quality as happiness. If one watches the TV news, reads newspapers etc., one finds optimism stealers galore.
Whether it’s a natural disaster, humans behaving badly or overzealous actions on behalf of one’s beliefs, it’s not easy to be optimistic about the future.
Yet, there is so much good going on unnoticed. Amid disaster, there are people giving their time, talent and treasure to help. Amid criminal acts, there are people bringing those responsible to justice. Amid overzealous actions, there are calm and reasoned voices attempting to deal with the problem.
As individuals, we must be leaders. We must see what is good in our lives and focus on that.
Solving problems can be much more difficult than casting blame.
When a tough decision is before us, we must remain calm, rational and curb whatever emotion we bring to the problem. We must take each solution and weigh all aspects. We must look for the potential good in any bad situation.
Our natural tendency is to whine We must recognize that tendency and overcome it by dealing with what’s next, instead of what was. We like to wish we could go back to what was, but when we can’t, we must realize that our only option is to move on. We should do so with the utmost happiness and optimism.
If you are a happy, optimistic problem solver, or believe you can become one, and are looking for action you can take to better your life, message me.
You can perhaps become a person who will not only have done that, but also have helped others do the same.
As has been often said, the windshield has a better view than the rear-view mirror. Continue to look forward, knowing you can make YOU better. If you focus on making you better, others will see it and follow you. That will make your community, country and the world better.



#investors #publicprivate #impactinvesting
Who will solve the great problems of the nation and the world?
Will it be governments or private citizens?
Or, will it be a little of both?
It was thought that private citizens would never solve anything unless they can make money – gobs of money.
Governments, on the other hand, don’t have any money, but spend it anyway, sometimes futilely.
New York Times columnist David Brooks discussed the new concept of “impact investing.” That is private money going into investments that attack some of the world’s problems. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution published his column Feb. 3, 2015.
Brooks says that the private market, prone to devastating crashes and producing widening inequality, combined with gridlocked, ineffective government aren’t getting the job done.
So a group of smart people with opposable minds – part profit-oriented and part purpose-oriented – have created organizations that look a little like businesses, a little like social-service providers and a little like charities – or some mixture of the three, Brooks writes.
They are creating new impact funds, social stock exchanges and include players like Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse. The first wave of this sector was led by Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Now you have an array of capitalist tools ranging from B Corporations like Warby Parker, which gives free glasses to the poor, to social impact bonds. Brooks writes. He quotes at 2010 report by the Rockefeller Foundation and JPMorgan that says impact investing capital could amount to $1 trillion by 2020.
So what’s happening here? Did government failures in helping its people make wealthy people feel guilty – guilty enough to accept a potentially lower profit to help lots of people?
Capitalism is a marvelous institution that has gotten a bad rap. People are beginning to realize that it’s not how rich you become that matters, but how you become rich. Did you do well by doing good? Were you helping others succeed as you were succeeding? Once you’ve achieved success, did you hoard all your gains, or did you use them to help those worthy of your help?
It’s clear not everyone is going to get rich. But there are many vehicles out there that allow ANYONE to get rich. For one of the best, visit Check out a model in which success only comes by helping others succeed.
Think back to the days when you were young, and just starting out in the workforce. You probably had an entry-level job for, say, a small business. When the time came for you to move on to other things to better your life, how did your boss treat you when you left? Was he wishing you well, telling you he was proud to have you work for him and offer any lifelong assistance (not necessarily financial) that you might need? Or, was he the type that was upset that you were quitting and leaving him short-staffed? The former likely was a pleasure to work for, because he looked out for you, and you, in turn, made sure you did your best for him. The latter likely had employees who were indifferent toward the boss, didn’t care whether his business succeeded and probably worked under a good deal of stress.
If you become a boss, which kind would you like to be? If you become an investor, which kind would you like to be? People who work hard on being better people tend to have success follow them. Those who don’t, and still achieve success, probably have lots of current and former employees, who got relatively little in return, to thank.


When you, or someone close to you, runs into a problem, what’s your first instinct?
Is it to find where the fault is, or to find a solution?
Comedian Bill Cosby, in a televised routine, talked about, obviously from a male perspective, how your wife is NOT your friend. She is your wife.
Cosby cites the example of a man whose car broke down in the middle of the night, somewhere a distance from home. Whom should he call first: his wife, or his friend?
The friend, Cosby asserts, will first ask: “Are you all right?” Then, he will ask, “Where are you?” Then, he’ll say, “I’ll be right there.”
His wife, on the other hand, will first tell him, “I told you to get that car fixed.” You can imagine where the conversation goes from there.
It begs the question: when you are confronted with a problem, do you instinctively act to solve it first, or do you instinctively look for whom to blame for it first?
Some circumstances are avoidable. Some are not. Some you can prevent. Others you can’t. The point is, you identify the type of circumstance you are in AFTER you act to get out of it.
Leadership expert and author John Maxwell, and perhaps others, have said that we either succeed or learn. We should use our failures as learning experiences. But those lessons should come after we have acted to correct what is wrong.
Certainly, the Cosby routine is funny. We all have to laugh at ourselves. Many spouses are friends. But if our instinct is to blame first, and solve later, we will find more success if we can change that in ourselves.
Getting laid off from a job is likely not your fault. If it is, you probably have more things to correct. If it is not, don’t wallow in who’s to blame for your circumstances. Act to change them. What you do after the fact IS your doing. Wishing things were as they had been is wasting your energy. Just presume those days will never come again, and move on to bigger and better things.
Be a realist, but only for a second. Realize that the past is past and the future is yet to come. Then, dream about what you want your future to be.
Realists tend not to dream, so that’s why you should only be realist for short periods, when circumstances hit. You are realist when you believe the good old days are gone. Then, resume your dream about the good things yet to come.

Today, there are many vehicles that can help make dreams a reality. For one of the best, visit You may realize your dreams quickly or slowly, but your dreams are there for the taking if you want to work for them.
Getting back to Cosby’s advice: if your car breaks down in the middle of the night, call someone who will take care of the problem first, without a lecture. Then, think about what you might have done to prevent it, so you can minimize or eliminate that situation again.
In life, you can follow Cosby’s advice by, as many leadership and motivational experts urge, RESPONDING to circumstances, rather than REACTING to them. Responding is positive. Reacting is negative. Solving is positive. Blaming is negative.
Be positive. Know that whatever circumstance you are in, the best life ever could be just around the corner, if you act and think correctly.