Skip the Blame, Solve the Problem

 Blame

“Karen, I dropped Becca!”

It was our son-in-law calling my wife’s cell.

It seems that “Becca Boo”—her painful but triumphant Sept 21, 2012 birth story here—had hit her head at the Denver airport where we had just dropped the Lindeen family for an evening flight home to Wisconsin. As fathers have for a millennium, Erik had been tossing Rebecca up in the air while she giggled and grinned—till she slipped through his hands.

THUD.

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Know Your Purpose, Your Organization’s Mission—and Help the Homeless!

Homeless2
Photo taken by Rachel Greiman on a cold Denver, Colorado December day.

I have never been on a board, though I have surely been bored. In fact, I bore quite easily, so the thought of being bored on a board, well, that simply bores me. 🙂

But, I’ve been invited to join a board here in Denver, with my five-year term beginning in January 2014. And I don’t think it’ll be boring at all.

Do you know the Denver Rescue Mission? The Millers have been “friends of the Mission” since 1998. It’s a venerable (love that word!) organization founded in 1892, and it’s truly a mission on a mission with a mission. In fact, they have something every outstanding organization has:

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Work Like Woody: Be a Mood-Lifter!

I regret to inform you that if you have read QBQ! but not its companion book—Flipping the Switch … Unleash the Power of Personal Accountability Using the QBQ!—you’re missing out on some terrific stories! 🙂

One Flipping the Switch story is “Living Like Larry.” It’s about an outstanding TSA agent who makes a difference in the lives of travelers.

Our story today is about Woody, a corporate security guard, who, like Larry, causes each of us to ask The Question Behind the Question (QBQ):

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Young or Old, Entitlement Thinking Stinks

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John G. Miller – future QBQ! author – commanding a 1960’s “Fox Trac.”

The winter of 1970 in Ithaca, N.Y. provided perfect conditions for bombing around on our now vintage-looking Fox Trac snowmobile. Thus, the 11-year-old competent, confident, and cute commander of this carriage needed the proper winter attire. So my mom (riding in the cart with my brother) and I went shopping for a “snowsuit.” Much to my dismay, we found one. Yes, the hideous thing you see me wearing in the picture.

Really, Mom!? Neon yellow!? Can’t I get one in a man’s color like black, Navy blue, or rich chocolate brown!?

All my pleading for anything-but-yellow fell on deaf—but wise—ears. We came home with my new “banana suit” and, like it was yesterday, I remember why Mom chose it (and, no, it wasn’t so she could find me in a snowstorm!):

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When Seeking Change, Blame No Buddy

Purge: To remove what is undesirable; to cleanse.

Our son-in-law, Erik, husband to my speaking colleague, Kristin, must have one of the highest IQ’s of any person I know. One day, he challenged me with a question.

While chatting about music, a subject he enjoys immensely as a singer/musician at heart, a well-known group came up and I said, “Yeah, I have one of their songs on my iPod, but I don’t like it.”

After a brief pause, he asked this:

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Recipe for Holiday Stress: 21 Ingredients to Avoid!

Blessed are the flexible, for they shall never be bent out of shape!

Holiday Stress

The holidays are a special time for cooking, baking, and eating. New recipes, old recipes, Grandma’s recipes, Uncle Mark’s recipes, Mom’s recipes—and favorite recipes! We all have those dishes we look forward to every year. But here is one entree we do not want to serve:  

Recipe for Holiday Stress: 21 Ingredients to Avoid!

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No Excuses Driving: 13 QBQ! Rules for the Road

 Here lies the body of Jonathan J.,
Who died maintaining the right-of-way,
He was right, dead right, as he rode along,
But just as dead as if he had been wrong.

(“No Excuses!” – Ch. 9 of Flipping the Switch
"I almost lost my husband tonight," said Molly.

Bill is a professional driver. Bill drives people all around. Bill drives a lot. Bill picked me up at the Detroit airport and drove me an hour north to a hotel for my “Personal Accountability and the QBQ!” speaking engagement. Bill and I have a bunch in common:

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“But … it wasn’t my fault!”

“To DEFLECT is human, to REFLECT is accountability.”

@QBQGuy

Got spam? I sure do. Sadly, I’ve learned to tolerate it much of it, hoping it goes straight into my “trash” folder. But yesterday, I got a “spammy” email that looked and felt somewhat legit. From a firm selling phone services, the sender was Matthew and it started like this:

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