Welcome to the New Cafe

 

Today is a new day.  I am re-launching the Jim Kennedy Leadership Cafe.  Over the past year, I have written here and elsewhere about how my role as a parent has shaped my leadership philosophy.  The response that I received was nice but it was clear that people wanted to know more about my role as a parent.  Specifically, readers wanted to know about my life as a special needs Dad.  My goal is to serve you the reader so if that is what you want, then that is what you will get.  I am honored to serve you. Continue reading “Welcome to the New Cafe”

Fathers are Critical to a Child’s Education

Four benefits of being actively involved in your child’s education.

This article was originally published in The Good Men Project on April 29, 2017.

I have always been involved in my children’s education.  Frankly, I don’t know any other way.  Growing up, my parents always stressed the value of an education and were always active in my schools.    Because of work responsibilities, they may not have been the class parent, but they made sure that they kept in contact with my teachers to make sure that I was always doing my “job.”  To them, a good education was the key to a better life.  At the time, I thought my parents were overbearing and like most children, sometimes I would rebel.  Later, after finishing college and beginning a career of my own, I saw the wisdom of their words.  As a black man, I would have few career options without an education.  My education allowed me to have career choices that have had a huge impact on my economic well-being. Continue reading “Fathers are Critical to a Child’s Education”

There is a Leader in You

Photo courtesy of iStock.com/dvest

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on March 15, 2017.

I recently published my first book titled Discerning God’s Purpose:  A Father’s Journey from Tragedy to Triumph.  Right after it was published, I scheduled some book signings in order to promote the book.  At one particular signing, a woman came up to me and asked that I autograph her book.  While I was signing the book, she asked me what my motivation was in writing the book.  I replied that I hoped my words would inspire those who read it.  She said, “no I mean what motivated you to write the book in the first place.”  I thought for a few seconds and then pointed in the direction of my oldest daughter and said, “My inspiration came from her.” Continue reading “There is a Leader in You”

Do You Really Want to be a Leader?

Photo courtesy iStock.com/Carlosphotos

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on February 8, 2017.

For the past few weeks, I have been hosting live Facebook video segments called “Ask the Author” where I answer questions that people have about my latest book, Discerning God’s Purpose:  A Father’s Journey from Tragedy to Triumph.  Some have compared my book to one by Pastor Rick Warren called The Purpose Driven life:  What on Earth Am I Here For.  While I am obviously flattered with the comparison, I tell people that while the concept is similar, my book is actually a book about leadership.  While I do talk about my faith in the book, the central focus is how discovering my purpose made me a better leader. Continue reading “Do You Really Want to be a Leader?”

4 Ways to Define True Success

Photo Courtesy of the author/CrowzArt Designs

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on January 11, 2017.

I was born at the beginning of what is known as Generation X.  Growing up, my idea of success centered around acquiring and achieving stuff.  I wanted a well-paying career, a nice home, a fine car (a Benz or a BMW was a must), be able to afford annual vacations to some Caribbean island, and in general living a life of luxury.  Oh sure, I wanted a family (in the 1980s, the average family had 2.5 kids so that is what I imagined), but that always took a backseat to my career aspirations.  I thought happiness was about acquiring more stuff.  The more stuff you had, the happier you were. Continue reading “4 Ways to Define True Success”

4 Ways That Becoming a Parent Made Me a Better Leader

African American Father and son spending time together.
Photo courtesy of iStock.com/pixelheadphoto

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on November 30, 2016.

Like all working parents, I have sometimes struggled with balancing my responsibilities to an employer versus my responsibilities as a parent; however, make no mistake – my responsibilities as a parent will always come first.  Like most men, I initially assumed my role in life was to be a provider for my family.  When I looked at various career fields, my primary criteria was potential income instead of where I could best serve.  After college and a tour of duty in the military, I started my career in the technology field and quickly rose through the ranks.  Soon I was in management with ever increasing levels of responsibility.  From the outside, I was on a very successful career path but on the inside, I was searching for my purpose.  I was successful as a manager but had yet to learn the true meaning of leadership. Continue reading “4 Ways That Becoming a Parent Made Me a Better Leader”