365 Days of Leadership: International Guide Dog Day

April 29th is International Guide Dog Day, the day we celebrate the love, patience and service that guide dogs provide to millions of persons all over the world. One of my favorite Guide Dog organization is Leader Dogs for the Blind. Working in association with Lions Clubs International and other agencies, Leader Dogs for the Blind invests an average of $35,000 into the training of service animal who is paired with a visually impaired person. This animal is paired with the visually impaired person at no charge.

Locally, Norma Campbell works at the state representative for Leader Dogs for the Blind. Read Norma’s full story at Western Kentucky Life Magazine.

Be thankful for the work of people like those at Leader Dogs for their dedication to helping others. If you want information about donating to the organization or becoming a puppy raiser, visit the organization’s Facebook page.

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Cubicle Day

April 28 is Cubicle Day. Whether you actually work in an office with a cubical system or the cubicle is the metaphor one uses to describe their life, it is the representation of uniformity and standardization that Americans simply cannot stand . Now, don’t get me wrong, I like knowing what I can and can’t do. Uniformity and standardization are good things. Without organization, our world would be chaos, but the cubicle suggests that your life begins and ends within this sterile little space which defines what you do, not who you are.

My cubicle is always barren. It is that way on purpose, because my public work does not define me. It is part of my life, but not my entire life. The beauty of life exists outside the walls of my confinement and I love breathing in the air of freedom that 5:00 p.m. brings. Work is a necessary evil, because money is a necessary evil. To be truly happy, one should find what they love to do, then figure out a way to make money doing it. (As long as its legal!)

So, get up, get dressed and go do what you have to do, but remember that your job is not who you are.  The cubicle suggests that we can’t (or shouldn’t) aspire to anything more…and that’s a load of crap.

Cheers!

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Tell a Story Day

April 28th is Tell a Story Day.

“Tell a Story Day is celebrated in the United States, Scotland and the United Kingdom. The aim of the day to get participants telling, sharing and listening to each others stories. It is a celebration of the art of oral storytelling in all of its many forms, whether it be fiction or non-fiction, a tall tale, or folklore. The stories may be told from memory or from a book. Events can be held in community centers, churches, homes and gardens, hospitals, libraries, schools or more unusual venues!” (https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/tell-a-story-day/)

Story telling is as old as humankind. History was celebrated through oral tradition. In fact, some books in the Bible came from the oral traditions of the tribes of Israel, handed down from orator to orator. With the advent of the internet, we have forgotten that story telling isn’t necessarily about reading, but about the personal connection we get when we engage the story-teller her/himself. We feel the emotion. We understand the context. We can infer emotion from pronunciation, body language and emphasis. A story comes alive when orated or read aloud.

We share a bit of our souls when we tell stories. We see a bit of the soul when we hear them. Tell a story to someone you love. They will appreciate it.

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Pretzel Day

April 26th is Pretzel Day. Personally, I am a fan of the big soft, chewy, toasty, salty goodness that is only a jumbo pretzel. I’m not a fan of the little crunchy ones…too much salt, too dry and weird. It is a good thing that we have variety, but too much variety can tempt us. Just because we can do something, or we can have something, doesn’t mean we should.

Being an adult means learning when to resist temptation. It isn’t easy with all the choices that one has. I can attest to my own weaknesses, especially when I walk into a Whole Foods Market! Perhaps that is why we indulge when we get older. Our children are grown and we can indulge our temptations. As long as what you covet doesn’t hurt yourself, your family or others, I say… go for it! A little indulgence never hurt anyone, just be cautious of the line between indulgence and excess.

Cheers!

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: International Marconi Day

April 25th is International Marconi Day.

“To commemorate the Nobel laureate’s achievements, fans use HF radio to make direct point-to-point contact between stations, relying on the same technology Marconi developed and utilized in his time. Although nowadays the Internet is the medium of choice for global communications, the idea behind International Marconi Day is to keep the spirit of invention alive. The event also provides an exciting throwback to the days when a connected planet Earth was but a bold dream and only a few exceptional people, such as Marconi, saw the value in it.” )https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/international-marconi-day/)

The internet is an extension of Marconi’s invention, but it is vulnerable. Without electricity, the internet ceases to exist. Radio needs no such silliness. Transistor and crank radio make communication possible anywhere, anytime. In the case of an emergency, we listen to radio. When the world acts, we listen to radio. When we look for reliable and accessible information, we turn to radio.

Marconi did more than give us radio, he gave us the world.

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Pigs in a Blanket Day

April 24th is Pigs in a Blanket Day….sorry…I got nothin’.

Wait, I do have something…

“Pig In A Blanket Day encourages the consumption of ‘pigs in blankets’ – small pork sausages (or chipolatas) wrapped in bacon or pastry, and cooked until crispy. Chinese and eastern varieties more closely resemble mini sausage rolls.” (https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/pig-in-a-blanket-day/)

Every culture has a food like this. Food brings us together and crosses cultural boundaries. We share our differences and our similarities through food. So grab some bacon, find something to wrap then invite some friends over and have a party!

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Lost Dog Awareness Day

April 23 is Lost Dog Awareness Day. Our hearts break when our canine friend is lost. Through no fault of their own (and don’t get me started on those “lost” dogs which were “lost” on purpose), these faithful companions are separated from their pack. They feel lost and abandoned.

Thank goodness for organizations which help connect families with their pets. Thank goodness for the people in the world who care about and for those without a voice.

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Administrative Professionals Day

April 22 is Administrative Professionals Day. the day we honor support staff for the hard work needed to keep our businesses moving forward. The “boss” may appear to get all the attention, but rest assured that without a competent support staff, s/he would be nothing.

The old saying goes, behind every great leader is a great staffer (yea, OK, that’s not how it goes, but I believe in equality). The saying remains true. Their may be no “I” in team, but there is certainly a central hub of an organization and in most, this hub is centered about the administrative professional.

So dig in your pocket and drag out some fold. Give it, get it or have it delivered, but make sure your administrative support staff knows how much they are appreciated. You will be amazed at the improvement in productivity. Who knows, they might even reciprocate on Bosses Day.

Cheers

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Kindergarten Day

April 21st is Kindergarten Day.

Kindergarten Day celebrates the birthday of Friedrich Froebe who was born in 1782 and started the first kindergarten in 1837, in Germany.

Despite being popular in Germany, the Prussian government outlawed the schools in 1851. Froebe died a year later and it wasn’t until 1860 that the Prussians relented and allowed the schools to continue. 1873 saw the first public kindergarten opened in the United States, in St Louis. (https://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/kindergarten-day/)

I believe that Kindergarten teachers are most remarkable people. We might not remember our first day of kindergarten, but we can remember the first day of school for our children. The kindergarten teacher meets each child with a smile and a nod of encouragement. As parents leave amid a torrent of tears and tantrums, the fearless kindergarten teacher remains and turns these torments into triumphs.

I’m not sure what kindergarten teachers are paid but I assure you, it isn’t enough.

Cheers!

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Connie Hanner is a PhD student in non-profit organizational leadership and a veteran of both non-profit and for-profit organizations. Visit her leadership website at http://www.conniehanner.com. Find her on Face Book, Linked In and follow her on Twitter.

365 Days of Leadership: Chinese Language Day

April 20 is Chinese Language Day.  In addition to be the most widely spoken language in the world, Mandarin Chinese is also my favorite take-out food.

A beautiful written language, the Chinese characters take years to perfect.  The art of writing is practiced and revered in the culture. Not so much here.  Westerners are lucky to put two sentences together coherently.  Sad but true. Perhaps it is because the written word is part of the tradition of the Chinese people as a collective culture, where Westerners admire the  individual. We put more emphasis on transmitting a thought with 140 characters, never mind the beauty of the writing itself.

Perhaps we should look at tradition not as something to be diminished, but something worthy to cherish. The ability to write may once again come in handy.

cherrs!