It takes a community

It was 2003 and I was working at the U.S. Embassy in Ghana. I was a brand new officer with my eye on the ball. I made one of my first cold calls as a political officer to an office in the Ghanaian government. I dialed. A secretary answered the phone. “Hello,” I said, nervous, rushing my speech almost without breathing, “My name is Kerry and I’m calling from the American Embassy. May I speak with Mr. Mensah?”

Haste Not in Life

Haste Not in Life

“Good afternooooon,”the secretary sang in her wonderful West African lilt. Then an expectant silence.

I tried again. “Good afternoon, my name is Kerry and I’m calling from the American Embassy, may I speak with Mr. Menshah?”

“Good afternooooon,” the secretary sang out, “How are you?”

Deep breath. Finally, I remembered. I wasn’t in Washington anymore. Continue reading

Reflections on Steve Jobs

There’s a ton of information floating around about Steve Jobs.   Since last night,  I’ve been reflecting on his life lessons and what they mean for technology, design, management and personal leadership.  What it means to really commit yourself to a vision.  I’ve absorbed every kernel I can.

Yet, it’s The Onion that really brings it home:

Last American Who Knew What The Fuck He Was Doing Dies

Damn, the Onion is brilliant.  They know – they know our psyche!  They know our doubts.

I haven’t yet earned the right to write this irreverently in my own blog.  This is only our second time together.  It’s supposed to be inspirational.  Renewable Enthusiasm.  But maybe it’s time, on this second date, that I let you know that I’m the youngest child of family of Irish descent.  I’ve got red streaks in my hair.  I’m a Taurus.  Born in the year of the Ox.  I can be all diplomatic, but when it comes down to it…

Continue reading