A Father’s Advice: Run Your Race

I recently published an article in HuffPost Titled “A Father’s Advice:  Run Your Race.”  It contains advice that I gave my own children in discussing the recent ugly and hate filled events in Charlottesville and Phoenix.  My advice is to be mindful of what’s going on but focus on running your own race.


A Father’s Advice:  Run Your Race





There is a Leader in You

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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?

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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”

Leaders Molding Leaders

Leadership concept on cork board. Wooden office desk with a big mess
Photo courtesy of iStock.com/tumsasedgars

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on October 19, 2016.

As a leader, it is good to occasionally take time out to reflect on the impact that you have on those who surround you.  During difficult moments, sometimes leaders get down on themselves and think that what they are doing (or trying to do) doesn’t matter.  Well, I’m here today to say that you matter; not just for the moment but also for the legacy that you are leaving behind. Continue reading “Leaders Molding Leaders”

An Example of Servant Leadership

Diane and Melanie KW Austin
Diane Johnson, Melanie Kennemann, and Jim Kennedy/Photo courtesy of Melanie Kennemann

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on September 7, 2016.

My family moved to Austin, Texas four years ago to take advantage of educational opportunities for my special needs daughter.  Although I continued to commute back to the Washington, DC area for work, I knew that at some point, I would need to be in Austin on a full-time basis.  I wanted to transition to a career that would give me the flexibility to be a fully involved parent as well as the opportunity to chart my own path. Continue reading “An Example of Servant Leadership”

Reinventing Work/Life Balance

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This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on August 31, 2016.

An increasing number of organizations are rethinking the concept of work/life balance.  During the US economic recession of 2007-2009, companies found new ways of doing more with less.  The advancement of technology meant that a number of jobs that were abolished during that time are never coming back.  Technology advancements also furthered the concept that an employee is never really off the clock.  The American Psychological Association reported that more people are working on weekends, during vacations and even while they are out sick.  Researchers are reporting that the line between work and home has effectively been blurred and workers are reporting more cases of burnout due to chronic job stress. Continue reading “Reinventing Work/Life Balance”

Moving Forward

Cute little girl learning to swim with coach at the leisure center
Courtesy iStock.com/Wavebreakmedia

We all have a purpose.  It may not be to lead a nation, but it could be to simply lead a child.  One thing that is certain and that is:  whatever the purpose, there will be challenges in your path.  Our job is to grow as leaders so that we may fulfill our purpose.  In a recent interview with Complex Magazine, Tony Robbins said that one of the secrets to his success is that he never stops trying to improve.  “Either you grow or you die.”  Truer words were never spoken. Continue reading “Moving Forward”