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Ideas for people pursuing an empowered life,




Two wealth management theories

I was reading my dog-eared copy of "The Neotropical Companion", John Kricher's great primer on the American rainforest, to look up some plant lore before a corporate team-building trip to Costa Rica. The last chapter envisioned the state of the primary jungle by year 2000 and his predictions were dismal. So I checked the book's publication date and went looking for recent facts to see if he'd been right.

Things are worse than he thought. The Earth's tropical forests are under unrestrained assault.

I read many articles about causes and they invariably suggested need and greed. One year 2000 newspaper report declared that 10% of the Planet's plant species were in immediate danger of extinction. Remembering the message in the Sean Connery movie "Medicine Man" - that we are destroying medicinal plants before even knowing what they could heal -, I shuddered. Then I realized we can no longer afford a strictly economic view of the world. We need a more creative way of managing wealth.

To need and greed as causes of the problem, I'll add « ignorance ». Many business leaders and entrepreneurs don't realize that there are two ways of managing the economics of creating wealth. Harvard Business School calls them «Theory E» and «Theory O». Theory E (economic) is management based on extracting economic value from an operation for the shareholders. Theory O (organic) is management based on growing an organization's abilities and enhancing its performance in the marketplace.

An organization's direction, activities and dynamic will be quite different for each these theoretical pursuits. The strictly economic model drives a mindless race for the last resource. The organic way champions continued growth and adds a human dimension to endeavour.

Here are 8 other areas where they differ: The leadership style of theory E adherents is top-down and directive, while O-leaders favor empowered structures and teams. E-people push the "lean and mean" approach but theory O adopts a dynamic wherein one learns to be "wise and adaptive". Lean and mean organizations often end up with cronyism that suffers from stagnation while wiser structures adapt to circumstance with appropriate flexibility.

Theory E consultants help companies design economic models and strategies to predict outcomes but theory O consultants coach people on personal growth strategies that map outcomes. It seems that - throughout the organization - the E focus is to reduce costs. The O focus is rather to invest in « creative capital ». While the former has a motivational thrust that is purely financial. the latter's motivation is both financial and educational. The Theory E goal is to reap greater share value but Theory O has a whole other outlook: it wants to add value to its shares.

What also becomes apparent is that the pursuit of "profit first" shapes individual paradigms. Theory E people tend towards "either/or" and "bottom-line" thinking. Theory O people fashion "win-win-win scenarios" and have a more global mindset. I noted that both of these resource management theories have pitfalls. Theory E is shortsighted and subject to the law of diminishing returns. O-managed companies are subject to predators, parasites and the limits imposed by "economic numbers".

The theory O's wisdom is apparent in the understanding of that old tale about killing the chicken that lays the golden egg. A rainforest is more than jungle and even more that "the lungs" of the Planet. It's the repertory of most of the Earth's diversity. It holds most of the fibers that compose Nature's intricate web... "life"; it's the "bio" in biology. If we lose too many more fibers, life's fabric-weave will unravel and collapse. Already Earth is reacting. The climate is altered.

In year 2000, Theory E insurance companies paid out more in disaster claims than during all of the '90s combined. And things are getting worse. Have you experienced the rainforest? If you do, you'll love it as I do and want to help save what's left. Do you love life?



«Win-Win-Win Thinking» is a creativity tool that lets us consider the impact of an idea, concept or action on the all the players - and other parts - involved. The 1st Win refers to the person doing the exercise, the 2nd refers to othrers in whatever is being examined and the 3rd to the whole that those parts compose. Simply, the exercise examines "common interests and mutual gains" so that everyone (or everything) concerned can profit from a proposed scenario. You'll find the details here.



"The Way of the Jaguar-kings" is our best adventure and the most awesome time you'll ever experience. If you are in any way interested in your own potential, in creative development and in Nature's power and magic, look into this outstanding 2-week educational tour. Nature and Sorcery.

Arrive in San jose and visit sites in Costa Rica's Central Valley before crossing the Andean paramo into the mystic Southern zone. Here you'll explore the rainforest, a cloudforest, a millennial pine forest, hot springs, waterfalls, jungle rivers, mangroves, Pacific beaches and much, much more. You'll discover what ancient sorcerers knew about « deep wisdom » and empowerment. See the daily itinerary by clicking here.



A while back, I wrote about how an eclectic reading habit can boost creativity. In that spirit, check out the winners of the "UTNE Reader Magazine Awards 2001".

The "Ecologist" won as both the best general reading magazine and the best science magazine; you'll find it by clicking http://www.gn.apc.org/ecologist. The best magazine on children was "Brain-Child" - found at http://www.brainchildmag.com.

The best news reporter is (again) "Mother Jones" - at http://www.mojones.com

To find the best magazine on the emerging new paradigm, check out "Resurgence" at http://www.resurgence.org. And the best spiritual 'zine was "Turning Wheel" found at http://www.bpf.org/tw1.html Have a fun read!!



"The analysis of data will not - by itself - produce new ideas." Dr. Edward de Bono

"The essential conditions of everything you do must be choice, love, passion." Nadia Boulanger

"Lack of money is not an obstacle. Lack of ideas is an obstacle." Ken Hakuta

"I must create a system or be enslaved by another man's. I will not reason and compare - my business is to create." William Blake

"The purpose of an organization is to enable ordinary people to do extraordinary things." Peter Drucker

"Leadership has no other focus except vision... no other direction except forward... no other destination except success." Gen. Norman Schwartzkopf



Students were discussing the events of September 11, 2001. Many opinions were offered on subjects like force, strength and power. One even suggested that America was so powerful that its attack of a smaller country was not less that bullying. After listening for a while, the consultant recounted the following Amerindian legend:

Long ago when animals spoke, a bear was walking along a forest trail. In those days, it was known that bears thought very highly of themselves and, because they are so big and strong, they seemed sure that they were the most important of all the animals.

As this one bear marched along kicking over big logs to look under them for food, he was acting very sure of himself. "There is nothing I can't do!" he said to himself.

"Is that right?" yelled a tiny voice. Looking around, the bear spotted a chipmunk looking up at him from the ground.

"Yes!" Bear confirmed, "Yes indeed I can do anything." And he reached out with one giant paw to roll over a huge log. "Look at how easily I move great weights. I am the strongest of all animals. I can do anything and other animals should fear me."

"Can you stop the Sun from rising in the East?" sneered Chipmunk.

Bear thought for a long moment. "I never tried it!" - He said and then paused for a moment longer - as if lost in thought - before continuing: "But I must say yes, I can stop the Sun from rising."

"Are you sure?" asked Chipmunk.

"Of course I am sure!" roared Bear. "Tomorrow morning the Sun will not rise. I, Bear, will stop it." And then he sat down, faced the East and waited.

The Sun set behind him for the night and still Bear sat. Meanwhile Chipmunk went into its burrow and curled up snug while snickering "How foolish that bear is."

By the time the early birds had begun gathering their worms, East glowed with the light of dawn. "The Sun better not rise today!", roared Bear forcefully, staring hard at the first light. "The - Sun - will - not - rise."

The Sun did rise however, as it always does. Bear was very upset but Chipmunk was delighted. "The Sun is stronger than any old bear.", laughed Chipmunk. He was so amused that he left his burrow and ran circles around Bear, singing: "The Sun rose, The Sun rose. Bear is angry but the Sun rose anyhow."

While Bear sat - incensed - Chipmunk kept singing and laughing and soon he was so weak that he rolled over onto his back exhausted. Then, quicker than catching a salmon in a river, Bear swiped out with his big paw and pinned Chipmunk to the ground.

"Perhaps I cannot stop the Sun from rising," he said, "...but I can stop you from seeing another sunrise."

"Oh, great Bear," pleaded Chipmunk, "...you are indeed the quickest and strongest of all the animals, please forgive me for being so disrespectful."

But Bear did not move his paw. "Mighty Bear", Chipmunk pleaded, "I deserve to die for doubting and teasing you and you are right to kill me but please let me pray to Creator before you do me in."

"Say your prayers then!" said Bear, "Your time on this Earth is now ended!"

"Great Bear," said Chipmunk, "I'd like to die in prayer but you are pressing down on me so hard I can hardly breathe. If you would just lift your paw a little bit, I 'll breathe and say my last prayer to the Creator, to He who made both great and powerful bears and foolish tiny chipmunks.

Bear did lift up his paw a little bit... and it was enough. Chipmunk wriggled free and in the blink of an eye, ran for his life.

Bear swiped at him as he darted away but was not quick enough to catch him. Only the tips of his claws reached and scraped Chipmunk's back leaving three long, pale scars. And to this day, all chipmunks wear those scars as a reminder of what happens when any small animal tangles with a much stronger one.

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