Nan S. Russell
Author & Speaker

All posts in July, 2016

truthIt was his perception that caused the outburst. “Why aren’t there any managers in these sessions? Why aren’t they required to attend, too?” he challenged.

Hired to provide workshops on building trust in a workplace lacking it, I answered his question to the extent I could during that first session, “It’s my understanding that everyone is attending,” I offered. “But let me find out for sure and get back to you.”

Confirming at the break that indeed, everyone on staff would be attending one of nine scheduled sessions, he balked. “Yeah, that’s what they’ll tell you,” his anger perceptible through his tone, “but I haven’t ever seen it.”

By the end of the week, he was not the only staff member posing the question. If a direct supervisor (continue reading →)

Winning at Working 

Candle_flame_(1)I’m a colleague of Nan’s. And, I often post on Current Musings about work, life and the intersection of the two. Like many people the past few weeks seem full of unanswerable questions, confusion and sadness. In my search for some perspective, I typed – kindness – into google. Here are several of my findings:

According to Merriam Webster, kindness is defined as having or showing a gentle nature and a desire to help others.

A refrain in a popular song, Hands by Jewel – “In the end only kindness matters, In the end only kindness matters.”

And, several insights from experts and thought leaders:

“Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” – Plato

“No matter how hard the past, (continue reading →)


chameleon2With an unusual ability to change the color of its skin, the chameleon is a lizard-family celebrity. Brown. Green. Blue. Yellow. Red. Black. White. This anomaly for changing colors provides the lizard camouflage, but contrary to popular belief, it’s not done as a camouflaging response. Rather, skin change reflects the chameleon’s reaction to temperature, light, and mood. Its color change communicates responses to stress, excitement, temperature, lighting, other chameleons and environmental influences.

We react to our moods and environments, too. People, pressure, or stress can cause us to respond in a way to fit in, be recognized or go-along to get-along. Sometimes our responses appear to others like color changes. Our decisions or actions seem out-of-character. I know I’ve had a few of these in my life. In fact, when I think of the choices I’m least proud of, (continue reading →)

In the Scheme of Things, Life