Author: CummingsRL

A Tragic Valor: Defense of Prachuap Khiri Khan

Imagine in the early hours of December 8th, 1941, instead of hearing the crowing roosters and soulful songs of morning birds, while fishermen hawk their catch off of their moored boats, you hear the hum of troop transport boats and the sharp report of gunfire. Under the dim light of a waning moon, mostly covered

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5 Reasons You Should join…or start…a book discussion group

You’ve probably seen the ads of how big CEOs read 60 books a year. That’s marketing hype, but it’s true that leaders should constantly up their game with knowledge. So, why not join, or start, a book discussion group? Here’s some benefits: Meet & make new friends. Social interaction improves our well-being & longevity. Meeting

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The Patterning Instinct: Understanding Meaning From Culture

Culture shapes values, and those values shape history. Jeremy Lent, The Patterning Instinct:A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning This is the central thesis of Jeremy Lent’s book The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity’s Search for Meaning. Why is this relevant to you? Because everything we do, in our own work, play,

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Understanding Interdependent/ Independent Cultures

Key to living & working in multi-cultural environments is understanding the Why of different values & behaviors. Parenting styles differ significantly between Interdependent & Independent cultures. Cross-cultural psychologists examined parent-child interactions in poorer rural Cameroon & India, compared to middle-class German pairs. The agricultural Cameroonian Nso and Indian Rajput cultures shared a style that promoted

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How We Learn Culture, Values, & Behavior

Human relations aren’t easy. Understanding the ways in which we develop our values, which affect behavior, can help deal with the complexity of human interaction. Much of what Western-trained behavioral scientists think they understand about culture, values, & behavior is based on a very narrow data set of WEIRD people—Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic. A

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Rolling Tire Change: Safety Attitudes & Culture

When expatriate supervisors or advisors are working in foreign cultures, they need to understand & appreciate the local environment.  Attitudes toward what risks are acceptable can be diverse. We need to implement & enforce standards, but should also be patient in not blaming people who have been immersed in high risk-tolerant cultures.  Working on fail-safe

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Circe’s Transformations: Art Images of the Greek Sorceress Through The Ages

Before Madeline Miller’s hit book Circe intrigued me , I was unfamiliar with this Greek goddess. It turns out that she’s been an inspirational muse for artists through 2,500 years! In fact, browsing the evolution of her representations makes an excellent study in culture and art. It seems her beauty and power over nature and men

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Leadership Isn’t Built on Good Intentions

Historian Jacques Barzun’s observation about the last 500 years of Western civilization applies to more than just general society & culture. “The point at which good intentions exceeded the power to fulfill them marked for the culture the onset of decadence.”  At the individual leader level, we can’t get by with merely good intentions. We

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