What is your story?

I have never met anyone who won every battle they fought or who got through every altercation unscathed. As mere mortals, we experience plenty of successes and failures. We regularly witness or experience both personal and business tragedies but in most cases we manage to persevere. The question is – how will we carry the scars of battle?

The key, in my opinion, is how we choose to view and tell our story. When a tragedy happens, do we take it as confirmation of our own failings, or do we look for lessons that we can learn from the episode? It’s never easy and I don’t want to trivialize the emotion of the moment or the …

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Fire or Hot Air. Which Do You Have?

How will you do in 2012?  I think the key to your business’s success is pretty simple.  It all comes down to execution.

For many, this is easier said than done.  You’re either  going to dig deep inside and turn the switch from pilot light to ON or you will move through 2012 with a lot of talk about what you need to do.

Step 1:  Ignite the pilot light

Step 2:  Turn the switch to on

Step 3:  Prepare for lift off

Step 4:  Set your sights on immediate …

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Walking in Another’s Shoes

The Napa Valley is a buzz with harvest in full swing.  I recently had the opportunity to join a grape harvest crew.  Let me clarify, my camera and I followed along to observe  the hospitality team  jumping in and helping the vineyard crew with grape picking.  It reminded me of the times when I was a kid and would get real excited about getting to do a “grown-up” task.  The anticipation was always more exciting than the actual work.  Sure, the first hour was fun but …

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Do what you can

One of my friends has terminal cancer.  No further chemo is possible, and his oncologist has referred him to a pain management specialist.  I feel helpless that, medically, there is very little that can be done.  He is such a brave, kind, and wonderful person; he does not deserve this.

In my hours of pondering my friend and his situation, what finally came into my mind was “BRAT”.  For those of you who, like me, have a fussy stomach, you might know that “BRAT” is medical shorthand for a diet of bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast.  This is generally recommended for …

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Playing favorites

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No, I am not talking about betting the horses, although the results of this kind of playing favorites can result in some pretty serious losses.  What I am referring to is the tendency of parents to favor one of their children over another.  In my experience, when this topic comes up, virtually all parents will stoutly maintain that they treat all of their children the same.  However, from conversations that I have had with family and …

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What drives you?

We are confronted with a myriad of choices all day, every day. Ranging from what time to set the alarm, to how to spend our evenings, to which organizations we support, every decision no matter how big or how small, has an impact on our life. Our most limited resource is time. Choosing to be involved with one cause means that we have less time to support another one. Taking on a particular project means that another project must be postponed or eliminated. Getting up earlier means that we should set an early bedtime or pay the price the next day.

When it comes to priorities, sometimes …

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How Will Your Sun Set?

Retirement, future

Looking into the future, I wonder what retirement will look like.

What about you?  What do you want to do?  Will your time be filled with travel, helping in the community or just not having a schedule?  All of the above sounds like a start but what else?  Obviously, I am not ready to retire because I am still worried about having a list to check off.

Recently we had a family vacation in Maui.  My kids are young adults which made this vacation …

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How much is that doggie…

As some of you may know from my blog earlier this year, I am currently in the process of looking for a Scottie puppy.  When I think back on how my family acquired pets in my youth (via a newspaper ad, a friend, or a local pet shop), I am both appalled at how naïve we where then about entering such a long-term relationship and mentally exhausted by the amount of effort now involved in finding a good purebred dog.

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Sailing Away from the Storm

What direction are you sailing?  The wine industry is showing positive signs that the storm has passed and a bright future is just beyond the horizon.  However, I don’t think the industry can fall into a false sense of security that it is going to be the good old days again.  I have heard a lot of chatter that the customer has changed.  They are looking for a deal or not purchasing.  I think there is something else at play.

The day of order-taking is over!  The perception of value …

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Losses and gains

On looking back and moving forward, by Terry Hollenstain.

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