Pro Bono

Pro Bono is a Latin term meaning “for the good.” This expression came to mind as I read an essay by G.K. Chesterton comparing two groups of people: the miserly and the thrifty. Thrift, Chesterton argues, is a virtue while the miserly life is miserable.

A thrifty person is one who maximizes resources for their thriving and the thriving of those they may serve. “Thrift,” Chesterton says, “in itself is always a thirst to make all things thrive, animal, vegetable, or mineral; to make them prosper and produce; to prevent their being wasted, or, in other words, destroyed.”

The thrifty person multiplies her resources. The miser hides all within their reach. The miser’s resources rust and rot behind a facade of being thrifty. But thrift seeks thriving. A miser guards, saves, protects, buries, resources keeping them from doing any good at all. Their treasures waste away tucked in the pristine cell of a savings account. They will be divided among strangers one day.

The miser is like the control freak, in the end they loose what they crave most. The person obsessed with control ends up losing control not gaining it. The person obsessed with accumulating and saving money ends up wasting it not saving it. As Chesterton teaches us, “the miser is not a more thrifty man but a much less thrifty man, for he wastes money more than a spendthrift.”

Are you miserly or thrifty? How are you using your resources to help others thrive?

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On Leading Without a Title

How can you lead without a title? That’s the topic I was recently asked to speak on at a leadership event for college and high school students. What does it look like to lead from the middle of the pack?

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Eggs & Incandescent Lights

It’s a rivalry that is as old as the time clock. Who is a harder worker: the morning person or the late night person? Who is more productive: the office grinder or the café dweller?

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The Mouse or the Permit: Process & Productivity

In Ohio it is illegal to catch a mouse without a hunting license. Why does such a silly law still exist? While most homes aren’t overtaken by rodents, I’m guessing no one is getting a permit to set a mouse trap. Why? It’s a process over product issue, in my opinion.

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An Eye for Leadership

Recently a friend challenged me to begin writing about the intersection of creativity and leadership. As I originally shared with him, I’m sure my leadership expertise could fill a single blog post, but likely not much more. Now that your expectations have hopefully been adequately lowered, here’s my first (and perhaps only) blog post on “Right-brain” leadership.

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