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Civility is boring

…from the press’ perspective. That’s what Barack Obama says in his book, The Audacity of Hope:Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream (2006), talking about politics today.

Rather than write several blog posts inspired by the book, I’m giving you eight excerpts I highlighted. I encourage you to think about how they apply not just to this country but to your workplace.

We are distracted by the petty and trivial.

We chronically avoid the tough decisions because of our inability to work collaboratively.

Behaviors that express our mutual regard for one another: honesty, fairness, humility, kindness, courtesy and compassion.

Twin strands in tension in every society and in every individual:
the individualistic and the communal
autonomy and solidarity

…the quality of authenticity, of being who you say you are, of possessing a truthfulness that goes beyond words.

In sum, the Constitution envisions a road map by which we marry passion to reason, the ideal of individual freedom to the demands of community.

Frustration boils over and leads people to turn on each other.

Just as too many corporate managers, shielded from competition, had stopped delivering value, too many government bureaucracies had stopped asking whether their shareholders (the American taxpayer) and their consumers (the users of government services) were getting their money’s worth.

I recommend the book. It’s an interesting insight of the thinking of the man who is now president. Where he got the title for the book is interesting but I’ll leave that for you to find.


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