Monday, April 28, 2008

Fantasy Festival Collection still looking for new home

The Fantasy Festival Collection is still looking for a new home. Perhaps at a Renaissance Festival or other Medieval Festival. The collection contains 52 different plywood set pieces with lots of cool pictures. Call me at 970-484-4577 if you are interested in aquiring it. Pictures are availabe on my Flickr account
Dragon Head

Friday, April 18, 2008

Extreme Leadership Model Explained: LEAP

In Steven Farber’s book the "The Radical Leap: A Personal Lesson in Extreme Leadership", he lays out the principles for the Extreme Leadership model.  He uses the acronym LEAP to express this model.  It stands for Love, Energy, Audacity, and Proof.

Love – For an individual coming to the Extreme Leadership model from the business community you will likely look at this first principle as awful “foo-foo”.  It is likely that you are taking it in the wrong context.  What Steven Farber is talking about is love of work, love of community, or love of vision.  What he is really talking about here is passion and flow.  It is evident that individuals will work harder at things they are passionate about.  That this will lead to flow.  The Extreme Leadership model is about leading people into that place of passion and flow.

Energy – The Extreme Leadership model emphasizes the need for energy.  Although this is often a natural consequence of the passion and flow described by the Love principle, it is a necessary ingredient for the success of any endeavor.  The lack of energy is often an indication that the Love component has been lost.  In the Extreme Leadership model the goal is to lead a group into a positive feedback loop around energy.  It is to create a space where energy always spiraling upward.

Audacity – This principle of Extreme Leadership is about the unexpected.  Audacity can be defined:

  • Fearless daring; intrepidity.

  • Bold or insolent heedlessness of restraints, as of those imposed by prudence, propriety, or convention.

  • An act or instance of intrepidity or insolent heedlessness

It shows its self in several ways within the leadership process.

First, people are inspired by audacious acts.  They gravitate to the daring individual.  It is quite a bit tied to the hero myths.  The character Indiana Jones is an excellent portrayal of audaciousness that our culture embraces.  Everyone wants to be the hero.  When an extreme leader acts in a way that is perceived to be heroic, he earns credibility.

Second, ideas stick when they are simple unexpected concrete credible emotional stories.  Audacious actions and ideas often lead to these types of stories.  The audaciousness particularly feeds the unexpected part of the story.

Third, there is a fine but very clear line between audacious and obnoxious when it comes to actions.  Both audacious and obnoxious actions are often bold, insolent and run counter to convention.  Despite this people do clearly see the difference.  The reason for this is that obnoxious actions are always self serving.  Audacious actions are always in service of other.  As long as people can clearly see that your actions are in service of another person or a bigger cause, they will perceive your action as audacious and not obnoxious.


Proof – In the Extreme Leadership model proof is the difference between a leader and a poser.  The former being the individual who can deliver the goods, the latter being the individual who pretends to be part of the crowd.  Proof is about linking your words and your actions and creating a sense of integrity around your leadership.  It delivers the credibility you need to make your message stick and draw people to your activity.

Leadership Learning:

In this article I have explained the LEAP concept of the Extreme Leadership model.  In a future article I will explain the OS!M and the edge.  I highly recommend that anyone who wishes to be fully indoctrinated in to the Extreme Leadership model to read Steve Farber’s "The Radical Leap: A Personal Lesson in Extreme Leadership."

Thursday, April 17, 2008

OS!M alone may not be enough!

When talking about Extreme Leadership, Steve Farber, as late has been emphasizing the OS!M moment.  It is the at the core focus of his new Audio set "Extreme: Leadership: In Pursuit of the OS!MI must admit that pursuit of OS!M will get you to places you never thought you could go.  I know that from firsthand experience.  But it is only a means, and I have discovered more recently it is not always a means that gets you to your ends.

The floundering leadership project:

My "leadership project" as it would be called in the CTI world is the initiative.  Now I have been working on this idea in some form or another since 2005.  I also know that I have taken a break from it for February and March of 2008.    I was cranking up some great OS!M in January 2008 and things looked promising.  Then work stopped.  Why?

It became apparent to me that I was OS!Ming without the desired results. A typical OS!M activity to support Extreme Standardization was intended to build a network of allies. I would then make my sales pitch encouraging them to join the project.  The concrete goal was to establishing a board of directors. I would try to get some commitment of support as an ally to make the project vision come to life.  My response almost always was "that’s great Dave", "neat idea", or "let me know how it works out."

A relationship between Proof and Credible:

I recently read “MADE to STICK” by Chip and Dan Heath.  I specifically chose this book because I knew my message was not going through.  In the book they outlined the six criteria for a sticky idea. They are:







When I examined this list it became apparent to me that the one criterion that I was completely missing was Credible.  I was using my OS!M to get to meet people that could really make this project effective.  I was getting polite reception of the idea.  Yet it is apparent, that I am not a seen as a credible individual to pull off such a project.  I lacked one of the key ingredients in the Extreme Leadership model – Proof.

I have no credibility because there is no proof that my idea will ever catch on and work.  Since I realized that I was missing one of the key pieces to the LEAP model (Proof), I decided to re-examine where I was with relationship to the entire LEAP model.  What I found was since my January sprint I had lost Energy in the entire project.  Why?

Moving your stake and the Energy drain:

In the CTI world we talk a lot about establishing a stake that you or your project stands for and sticking to that stake.  As I was networking in January of 2008 I was getting a lot of great practical advice.  I was not getting much in the way of Audacious advice.  I was starting to apply more of this practical advice to the project.  In many ways the project was becoming more appealing as a sale to an investor.  That was great!  The only problem was, I was not as interested in the project in its new slick form.  For me the project was always about working from the grass roots up.  I recently realized that the stake had moved.  The movement was sight, but just enough to move it out of the center of my Energy field.

Leadership leanings:

That acting on OS!M is not enough.  You must embrace the entire Extreme Leadership model and stay true to the LEAP principles.  Without the Proof, you will not achieve your goals. 

Chip and Dan Heath discuss that it is possible to create your own credibility.  In future article I will discuss how I intend to create credibility and proof to support the Extreme Standardization Project.

Friday, April 4, 2008

The We Can Solve it Campaign Jumps to over 1 Million People

Al Gore has been spearheading a campaign to make Climate Change mitigation the top priority for government, industry, and individuals. He has been pushing his "We Can Solve It" campaign all last month trying to drive the number of people over 1,000,000 signed up to support and participate in this process. It is an amazing achievement and I was privy to the amount of work that went into driving this campaign. I say good work to all those involved!

Please join the campaign and add your voice to the choir at

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

If only Virgle was a real project

Something happened when I was a child. I was an environmentalist and loved the woods and outdoors. Then Regan began a campaign against the environment while I was in high school. I lost my faith that we humans were going to save our environment. I gave up on the earth.

I was a high school kid and very interested in science and technology. I grew up on Star Trek and Star Wars in the post Apollo era. As a result I decided that Space was where our future lies. I did not pursue becoming the environmental scientists in college. Instead I turned to Space and earned a Bachelors of Science in the Space Sciences.

I remember the time leading up to my decision for the Space Sciences. I was a geeky high schooler sitting on my bed reading non-fiction books about the planets and stars. The most interesting books I had were the ones on colonizing other planets and in particular mars.

So even though I can appreciate the humor of the Virgle April Fools Project, I am also saddened by the lack of progress humanity has made in this area. Frankly, I would find a good joke on the world to be if Google and Virgin actually turned around and did the project. Ah, I am back in my fantasies again.