Our Italian Migration Story Part 2: The Cachemire

Five years after his mother's death, my great grandfather Leonardo Demma was becoming a man. He was just five feet three inches tall, with broad shoulders and a lean muscular build. His wavy hair was jet black and his eyes were dark brown and set deeply behind bushy black eye brows. His olive skin became … Continue reading Our Italian Migration Story Part 2: The Cachemire

Our Italian Migration Story Part 1: The Promise

Modern Italy was not a unified country until the mid-nineteenth century, and unification was hard-fought. In 1860, a charismatic leader named Giuseppe Garibaldi led a rag-tag militia and finally removed the French Bourbon occupiers after two hundred years of brutal tyranny. The movement was named after the militia's battle cry - Risorgimento! Garibaldi turned over control … Continue reading Our Italian Migration Story Part 1: The Promise

Management Skills: Firing Yourself

Have you ever seen a new guy come into your organization and quickly rise above everyone else's performance? Not all new guys are shooting stars, but every now and then a new golden boy, a real Captain America, shows up. The boss is fast to validate his brilliant hiring decision by pointing out the achievements … Continue reading Management Skills: Firing Yourself

The Failure Of Our Government

I was angry and embarrassed to hear about the failure of the finance super committee. The group of six democrats and six republicans was tasked with reaching an agreement that would improve our federal budget by $1.2 trillion over ten years. In other words, from 2012 to 2021, the United States is projected to spend … Continue reading The Failure Of Our Government

Management Skills: Be Strategic

In three weeks I'll be finished with my last MBA class, the strategy capstone. I never thought of strategy as something limited upper management. Sure, big decisions are made in the big offices, but I always felt I could affect the big company through little actions in my part of the organization. Strategy begins with … Continue reading Management Skills: Be Strategic

Submissive, Assertive, and Aggressive Management

An employee shows up to work slightly out of dress code. He is wearing a midnight blue shirt when the policy clearly states only light-colored shirts are acceptable. I find that if the manager says nothing he will communicate that the new acceptable standard is to be out of dress code. If he screams and … Continue reading Submissive, Assertive, and Aggressive Management

The Symphony: Reacting to the Death of Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs died this past week. I heard the sad news in my car, and was surprised by how much it upset me. When I got home, I read his now famous speech given in 2005 at Stanford's commencement. Steve spoke with gravity and struck a somber tone for a graduation. Having survived his first … Continue reading The Symphony: Reacting to the Death of Steve Jobs