New New New Leadership


Go to Kroger, Meijer, Wegman’s, Safeway, etc., and you can’t let your eyes move across 5 packages without seeing at least one NEW!!! emblazoned across the front.  If somebody popped a “New” sticker on you, what would be the product they’d be touting?


Tonight my wife is “all new.” She is hosting “The War Room with Jennifer Granholm” on the “newly re-branded” Current TV cable network.  She’ll air Monday through Friday from 9:00-10.  :00 PM, EST.  She will focus on the presidential election, some hot national races, and on the most promising advances in public policy in the laboratory of the states.  Kind of cool on the eve of her 53rd birthday, to start a whole new thing!

At a dinner party on Saturday night I found myself admiring my friends from the class of ’80 for their reinventions. One recently left a great professional career in marketing and finance to adopt and care full time for an infant – her first child at 50 years old! Another just got her Ph.D in clinical psychology at 51 years old – an entirely new career. A third has started an early childhood initiative in a low income housing apartment building she and her husband own, applying her Harvard degree in education in an entirely unexpected way.

If “new” attracts our eye in the grocery store, how much more are we energized by people in our work and our families who start something new.  It might be a great way to start a staff meeting today.  It might be a great way to engage your spouse.  It might be an energizing way to approach co-workers or customers.  Ask: “What can you create that means something really important to you, that’s maybe been playing at the back or edges of your mind; and that would probably add value to us around here as well?”

Or better ask yourself:  If I could stamp a “New” sticker on me this week or month or year, what would the product be.  I’ll bet moving towards it will help you to

Lead with your best self!


  • Lots of us have reasons to re-invent ourselves. Living longer, with a secure income from a previous career, and still having lots of energy and lots of interest in having a reason to get up every day and be part of something larger than ourselves as a contributing member of society, whether paid or not… or maybe ditched out of an industry that’s tanked and having to learn a new career like Occupational Therapy or CNC machining…

    It can feel sad or scary, but a 50-year-old today is very likely to be vibrant and able to make significant contributions to any endeavor for 20 more years! Why throw all that experience and wisdom away just because one needs to “re-tool” in relation to a changing economy? A 20-year old seldom plans out their next 20 years. A 50-year old would be wise to do so, and resources and specialists at one-stops like Michigan Works! are available to help.

    It’s not like before, where a high school dropout can go to work for one of the Big Three, make big money, and then retire with a gold watch after 40 years. Times have changed and we have to change with them, or become obsolete, like the old, old, old products on the shelf that have been replaced by a new, improved version.

    _The Flat Earth_ is a book that explains the background for how and why the world economy has changed, and the reasons why we all need to keep learning to stay competitive with people from other countries who are eager to keep up with changing times by studying, studying, studying, learning, learning, learning.

    You can like it and embrace it and go ahead and find ways to become NEW! NEW! NEW! …or moan and groan and whine and complain. Guess which option is more helpful.

  • In my coaching practice, I guide clients through their mid-career course corrections. Those engagements are exciting for these clients and their coach.

    Personally, I have branched out in creating self-coaching guides for career women through the pubication of books such as: “Women and Time,” “Women, Know Thyself,” “When Doing It All Won’t Do,” and “Decoding the Executive Woman’s Dress Code.”

  • I would love to stamp “NEW……and vastly IMPROVED” on the White House, with RON PAUL bering the inhabitant!! Followed by, “NEW, via REPLACEMENT” on all of Congress, cleaning out the status quo Repubmocrats and Democlicans alike. Time for a NEW ERA on Capitol Hill and Pennsylvania Ave.

  • Thanks, Dan. Great way to think about freshening one’s perspective and going towards the things that matter. Best of luck to Jennifer, too.

  • My body, especially the upper part. All they done in the last few years is grow and I feel like taking a knive and cutting them down to the size they use to be. Then I got this step family that always make some kind of remarks about them. Male and female. I could use a new and improve sticker for my body for I don’t feel like a freak. Then the rest of my body a sticker for for I don’t feel sick anymore. I don’t know if it’s a change of life but I wish it would pass already.

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