Four year old kids laugh 300 times a day — something that takes the average 40 year old over two months to accomplish

Listening to Stanford Business School Professor Jennifer Aaker interviewed on NPR’s Hidden Brain podcast about her recent book with Naomi Bagdonas Humor, Seriously, I was riveted by this comment: The average four-year-old child laughs 300 times a day, while it takes the average forty year-old-adult nearly two and a half months to laugh 300 times.

How is that we all have an immense inherent capacity for laughter, yet somehow that part of us gets turned off? I’ve got a hypothesis about the macro problem, as well as initial thoughts about the antidotes. Let’s start with the later.

It was 5am…


Art remix by Koty2. https://www.instagram.com/koty2/
Art remix by Koty2. https://www.instagram.com/koty2/

Amanda Gorman’s call for light captured America. “For there is always light / If only we’re brave enough to see it/ If only we’re brave enough to be it.” It was just the right clarion call for the times, coming from a young woman whose artistry was deservedly supported with patronage.

America needs a cultural rebirth and a new vision for what is possible, not unlike how Europe needed a cultural “rinascità” (“rebirth”) to rise out of the stagnation of the Middle Ages. …


Image: Pfizer Medical Team

Why “Head-Driven” Leaders Are Struggling

By Marco Annunziata & Peter Sims

Do you feel a bit lost right now? Blindsided?

This sudden pandemic has changed life virtually overnight, and what got us here won’t get us out of the situation we find ourselves in.

This moment has undermined and derailed one of our most tried and trusted leadership styles: the “head-driven” leadership style that had become the dominant paradigm, heavily analytical and data-driven.

We live in a data-hungry, analytical society. Whenever we face a problem, we look for data, we turn to mathematical models for guidance.

Hit by the Pandemic, we have done the same…


“Legend says when a phoenix rises from the ashes, she is even more beautiful than she was before she burned.” by Erica Drinkard

Our Gods aren’t celebrities. We needed a cultural reset.

In this historic moment, when stresses and anxieties run high, my wish for you is for self care, community support, and love. And, some perspective.

We are not victims. A moment like this was bound to happen, as they have often throughout history. These are the moments to reflect upon who we are, and who we want to become.

I’m not an economist, but if you step back and take a look, the world is awash in debt. Global public and private debt is about $260 trillion, while global GDP is $90 trillion annually.

That is not sustainable.

The environment…


End the cycle by building an A-team of friends

Credit: David Madison/Getty Images

In college, I dreamed about getting into Stanford Business School. That seemed like the ticket to a successful and good life. Then, in 2002, when the then dean of admissions called to tell me I had been admitted, I hung up and cried — it felt like the culmination of years of schooling and hard work, stress, and determination.

If only true “success” were as simple as attaining big goals. Sadly, nearly 15 years after graduating, I’ve come to believe that institutions like Stanford Business School are breeding grounds for unfulfilled lives.

What astounded me at our 10th reunion was…


Power is increasingly becoming horizontal rather than vertical

For generations, power, status, and often even our identity was tied to our employers. If you worked for GE, McKinsey, Goldman Sachs, or Microsoft, the global brand name conveyed prestige and was a primary calling card to credibility and social status — all of which allowed you to progress in your career and get things done.

This era is different. For many, it’s no longer considered cool to work at Goldman Sachs or McKinsey. It’s cool to be an entrepreneur, a social entrepreneur, or to work for a hot tech startup. It’s cool to be ex-Goldman or ex-McKinsey and have…


If we don’t go back and give back to where we came from, none of our glittering accolades or innovations in Silicon Valley will be worth a damn

I was lucky enough to meet Bill Campbell in 2005 when I interviewed him for a book. As he did for so many, Bill generously offered to mentor me when I finished the project, and he coached me through some big career questions. In the years that followed, including over many beers at the Old Pro bar in Palo Alto at Bill’s “TGIF” Friday happy hours, one thing was clear: Bill never forgot where he came from.

Despite his successes in Silicon Valley, including as CEO of Intuit, an Apple board member and confidant to Steve Jobs, and mentor to…


Photo credit DonkeyHotey

I originally posted this blog on the Huffington Post in December 2011. Re-posting without comment:

At a time when American citizens crucially need to be better informed and educated about numerous institutional crises, I was only mildly entertained the other night when Donald Trump was being interviewed by Piers Morgan on CNN.

As many know, Piers Morgan got his start toward fame in the United States on Trump’s show The Apprentice, but that admirable loyalty aside, I have yet to speak with any serious media leader or journalist who thinks we should be listening to Donald Trump. And, yet, there he was with the CNN banner underneath reading: “Trump: Candidates Want My Ideas.”

Okay. Let’s…


Source: Harvard Business Review

Are you living in a “new power” world or still stuck in the old?

Marc Andreessen’s oft-used phrase “software is eating the world” has become a business mantra, and is the Andreessen Horowitz website tagline. That’s understandable. Technology is eating the world, and a lot of industries, not just jobs, something we see every day at Parliament. And, if technology hasn’t eaten your job yet, it might soon. A recent research report from McKinsey & Company estimated that 45% of work activities could be automated by existing technology.

None of this is news.

If you worked in music industry ten years ago, you’re probably unemployed or work in a new industry today because any…


We got on an old rocker’s tour bus and went around America to find out

America is at a crossroads. Duh. We’ve been here before, about every 25 years or so. My Uncle Joe is a logger, and is a font of wisdom including: “We’ve forgotten who the boss is in America. The citizens are the boss!” Alexis de Tocqueville would be proud to hear this and saw the same spirit in the 1800s when he journeyed from town to town along the East Coast, yet he would also likely be pretty worried about America today. …

Peter Eagle Sims

Founder, BLK SHP; Cofounder, Giving Tuesday; Author, LITTLE BETS & TRUE NORTH

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