TLP142: Grace - A Leadership Aspiration


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By Jan Rutherford and Jim Vaselopulos, Jan Rutherford, Jim Vaselopulos, and Experts on leadership development. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Jim and Jan start the show by paying tribute to Jan’s late mentor who exemplified the virtue of gratitude. Also discussed are ways to improve positivity, the power behind finding things to be grateful for, and practical suggestions for expressing gratitude.

Key Takeaways

[1:46] At the funeral of his mentor, MG Bud Ahern, Jan reflected on how grateful he was to have Bud in his life. Bud was a civil engineer in the Air Force, a teacher, an athlete, a scholar, and foremost, a philosopher.

[8:14] There are meaningful people and events in our life that we are grateful for, but sometimes it’s just a simple gesture or moment that can make us feel the most grateful.

[8:44] It’s important to light the way for others to show them what we can be grateful on a daily basis for.

[11:02] Two ways to improve positivity is to write a note to someone expressing your gratitude and to keep a journal of the positive things that happen throughout the day.

[12:18] Four points from All I Really Need to Know I Learned In Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum:

  1. When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic. Hold hands and stick together.
  2. Be aware of wonder.
  3. Goldfish, hamsters, and white mice and even a little seed in a styrofoam cup, they all die and so do we.
  4. The biggest word of all: look.

[13:56] It’s important for leaders to make sure their team is focused on what’s important.

[16:06] Make sure you circle back and say thank you to those that help you along the way.

[17:56] One of the ways we can express gratitude in a profound way is to listen to people.

[19:26] The human touch is still exceptionally powerful as is a handwritten note.


  • “What’s a good life, and are you living one?” -Bud Ahearn
  • “Are you ready to face your hypocrisy?” -Bud Ahearn
  • “For whose good do you serve?” -Bud Ahearn
  • “When we express gratitude, problems that were impossible become plausible.”
  • “Nothing makes people feel more valued than being listened to.”

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