When Dave Kerpen’s book The Art of People was released I read it cover to cover, but one of the cool things about the book is that each chapter ends with actionable items you can do to put the book into practice. I thought it would be wise to revisit each chapter with a little more thought and intention, and a blog project was born. Here are a few of my favorite posts:

I finally “get” the rustbelt

I don’t know if it comes from my own feelings of being misunderstood as I was growing up, my mother’s wisdom in parenting, or some combination thereof, but I really strive to understand people and withhold judgment. It’s just a part of the fabric of who I am.

It may not always take the form of a cup of coffee with a difficult person (although I do love coffee), but I make a point not to dismiss people out of hand without trying to understand them. Read more…

It’s not about you

This week’s challenge is to be interested instead of interesting, which is great because I’ve never been convinced that I’m interesting, but I’ve found most other people are. The FAST action steps suggest having a few “one-sided” conversations where you just listen and ask questions without offering any information about yourself. The suggestion is to do this with a relative stranger, as well as someone you know. Read more…

How I met Dave and other cool people

First off let’s set the record straight. As far as the larger world is concerned I’m a nobody from the middle of nowhere. My family is ordinary people who have lived in the same Ohio town for over 100 years. I come from generations of proud entrepreneurs, trailblazers, and civil servants, but most people in the world at large have never heard their names or mine.

Interestingly, being a little nobody from nowhere has had its perks. Small towns have worked like an analog LinkedIn for thousands of years, so I learned a few things that help me in a digital world back when networking was only face to face. Read more…