Today a mind-blowing array of gorgeous old automobiles drove into Carmel and parked for a few hours on Ocean Avenue. They are on their way to the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance on Sunday. For an enthusiast, these are cars to die for.
We’re staying three blocks away from Ocean Avenue. I spent hours today obsessing over these rolling works of art. It was a great reminder that quality persists.
This post is not about cars. (If you’re a car nut, watch this space: there’s more to come. If you can’t wait, here is a slideshow of some of today’s beauties.)
Classic automobiles with staying power are but only a metaphor here. As I ponder what it takes for managers and leaders to succeed in the 21th century workplace (my present obsession), I find myself returning to beautiful ideas. They have staying power. Here are a few that bear repeating.
The art of progress is to preserve order amid change and to preserve change amid order. Alfred North Whitehead. (BALANCE)
Before you try to change something, increase your awareness of it. Tim Galwey
For the first twenty-five years of my life, I wanted freedom. For the next twenty-five, I wanted order. For the next twenty-five years, I realized that order is freedom. Winston Churchill.
The world can only be grasped by action, not by contemplation. The hand is more important than the eye… The hand is the cutting edge of the mind. Jacob Bronowski (ACT)
The world isn’t interested in the storms you encountered, but whether or not you brought in the ship. Raul Armesto
Those who face that which is actually before them, unburdened by the past, undistracted by the future, those are they who live, who make the best use of their lives, those are those who have found the secret of contentment. Alban Goodier
“99 percent of success is built on failure.” – Charles Kettering
“The ultimate creative thinking technique is to think like God. If you’re an atheist, pretend how God would do it.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
“The way to get good ideas is to get lots of ideas and throw the bad ones away.” – Linus Pauling
“One of the illusions of life is that the present hour is not the critical, decisive one.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
“Innovation opportunities do not come with the tempest but with the rustling of the breeze.” – Peter Drucker
“Imagination is more important than knowledge.” – Albert Einstein
“Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer injury to our self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their self-importance, learn so easily; and why older people, especially if vain or arrogant, cannot learn at all.” ~ Thomas Szasz
“One must learn by doing the thing. For though you think you know it, you have no certainty until you try.” ~ Sophocles
“If you put fences around people, you get sheep. Give people the room they need.” ~ William McKnight, CEO of 3M
Consider the frog and the scorpion. Give me a ride across the stream. But you will sting me and I will die, replies the frog. But then I would drown, argues the scorpion. The frog swims, carrying his passenger, feels an ominous sting. Why, he asks. Because it is my nature, replies the scorpion.
Learning is not compulsory… neither is survival. W. Edwards Deming
In a time of drastic change it is the learners who inherit the future. The learned usually find themselves equipped to live in a world that no longer exists. Eric Hoffer
Sixty years ago I knew everything; now I know nothing; education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance. Will Durant
“Formal education will make you a living. Self-education will make you a fortune.” Jim Rohn
You learn more quickly under the guidance of experienced teachers. You waste a lot of time going down blind alleys if you have no one to lead you. W. Somerset Maugham
“Education is the acquisition of the art of the utilization of knowledge. This an art very difficult to impart. We must beware of what I will call “inert ideas” that is to say, ideas that are merely received into the mind without being utilized or tested or thrown into fresh combinations.” Alfred North Whitehead
“Learning is not so much an additive process, with new learning simply piling up on top of existing knowledge, as it is an active, dynamic process in which the connections are constantly changing and the structure reformatted.” K. Patricia Cross
It is what we think we know already that often prevents us from learning. Claude Bernard
Sometimes the last thing learners need is for their preferred learning style to be affirmed. Agreeing to let people learn only in a way that feels comfortable and familiar can restrict seriously their chance for development. Steven Brookfield
A little learning is a dangerous thing. Alexander Pope
Every act of conscious learning requires the willingness to suffer an injury to one’s self-esteem. That is why young children, before they are aware of their own self-importance learn so easily; and why older persons, especially if vain or important, cannot learn at all.
“Students learn what they care about . . .,” Stanford Ericksen has said, but Goethe knew something else: “In all things we learn only from those we love.” Add to that Emerson’s declaration: “the secret of education lies in respecting the pupil.” and we have a formula something like this: “Students learn what they care about, from people they care about and who, they know, care about them…” Barbara Harrell Carson
Education’s purpose is to replace an empty mind with an open one. Malcolm S. Forbes
The great end of education is to discipline rather than to furnish the mind; To train it to the use of its own powers rather than to fill it with the accumulation of others. Tryon Edwards
Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. John Dewey
“We learn something every day, and lots of times it’s that what we learned the day before was wrong.” Bill Vaughn
“Knowledge is not a commodity to be traded between expert and novice. Rather, it is a construction of ideas negotiated by the learner in a social setting.” Rosamar Garcia
“Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information upon it.” Samuel Johnson (Performance support 101)
“There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge… observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination.” Denis Diderot
“The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.” Albert Einstein
“He who asks a question may be a fool for five minutes. But he who never asks a question remains a fool forever.” Tom J. Connelly
“The illiterate of the future will not be the person who cannot read. It will be the person who does not know how to learn.” Alvin Toffler
What we must decide is perhaps how we are valuable, rather than how valuable we are. F. Scott Fitzgerald
Consistency requires you to be as ignorant today as you were a year ago. Bernard Berenson
Man’s mind, once stretched by a new idea, never regains its original dimensions. Oliver Wendell Holmes