The Gobbledygook of Management

A recent Gallup study on the “State of American Managers” states, “Only one in ten people have the high talent level to effectively manage others. Another two in ten have functioning managerial talent”. They go on to explain that the two in ten that show functional abilities can be coached and mentored, and will eventually …

What do genius spaces look like?

Do we still need books when we have the Internet? This question comes up from time to time and I wish I had a simple answer. To be fair it is not a simple question. I was listening to Walter Isaacson talk about his most recent book “Leonardo da Vinci” on NPR. I never knew …

The Magic of Astronauts and Libraries

One of the greatest joys in my life is getting to hear authors talk about their stories. This year I had the honor to listen to Astronaut Scott Kelly talk at the Unity Temple in Kansas City. Kelly set the record for the greatest amount of time in space for an American. He spent a …

Hop Around and Make Some New Friends (Community Building)

How does Johnson County Library, as a quasi-governmental agency, connect with other organizations? How do these connections build and strengthen a community? Are these connections beneficial to both entities, and how would you know? The adjacent possible is the concept that adjacent to both organizations and their visions there are possibilities. Substantial things that can be …

Community Building: Beware of Greeks Bearing Gifts

I have been reading “Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know” by E.D. Hirsch, JR. What I am finding interesting is the link between community and language. Over the last couple of years, we have worked on developing a Johnson County Library culture. The long-term bet I was making was that creating a highly …

Community Building: Cultural Literacy

What is the role of a citizen, and how does a citizen’s behavior shape a community, and then how does a community shape a nation? I have continued to be curious about the idea of the public library’s role in community building, as it is one of three strategic themes. Who has a voice in …

Community Building: Awkward Thoughts about Groups and Teams

Community Building: Awkward Thoughts about Groups and Teams I finished reading “The Awkward Thoughts of W. Kamau Bell”. It was totally awesome and I recommend it. He narrates the audiobook, where his timing and delivery are perfect. Why am I riffing on the title of his book when I am writing about groups and teams? …

For or Against Art

For or Against Art It was mid-week and if my memory serves me, early afternoon, and we are all sitting around a Formica table waiting for a few stragglers to drift in so the meeting could start. The content of the meeting is now a fuzzy memory As with most meetings, there was the ritualistic …