Tuesday, November 06, 2007

How Do You Change the World?

How are you changing the world? Okay, maybe “changing the world” isn’t your goal. Then, how are you making a difference in one person’s life? A group’s life? A community’s life? A city’s life? A state’s life? You get the point!

I really do want to know. I am interested in learning what everyone is doing. I know Troy Worman really does a good job of spreading the word about charities and other honorable events/organizations (like this one or this one). So, what does everyone else do?

Okay, there is also a small ulterior motive (yes, there is something in this for me). I am taking a graduate leadership class from Timothy Johnson, and he has assigned a final paper entitled “How I Will Change the World Through My Leadership?” I know what everyone is thinking: “Taking a leadership class from Tim Johnson is a scary thought;)” Seriously though, the class has been very enlightening!

I’ve got to tell you that I am learning a ton of stuff about my leadership abilities through Tim’s class, through this blog, and through self-reflection at work. I’m also learning a lot about who I want to be and who I want to emulate in the future. But, I’m looking for more firepower, more knowledge, more anecdotes. I want to know how others are making a difference, so that I can begin to make decisions that will make a difference!

So, will you indulge me on this one? Let me know how you are changing the world (or at least making a difference), by leaving a comment for me below. I appreciate any and all help!

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Anonymous said...

Eric - nice approach to the final paper. I think what you are doing alone is a major step. I can't believe the networking you've done. I remember having a class with you earlier and I think blogging somehow helps with the real time interactions as well as the virtual ones.

Eric Peterson said...

Bob - The last 2 months have been amazing. All the people I've been in contact with. Hopefully, those relationships will grow.

I remember our last class as well. It's too bad we hadn't entered the fabulous "blogosphere" back then. It's been good getting to know you better!

Your blog looks great! Keep up the good work!

Drew McLellan said...


It sounds so daunting, doesn't it? How will I change the world?

And perhaps a little arrogant too. Who the heck am I to think I *can* change the world?

I wrestled with this question quite a bit as I turned 40 a few years ago. What would my legacy be? What mark would I leave.

For me, my daughter is my biggest legacy. How she impacts the world is partially due (I hope) to my influence.

But beyond that...I decided that it was a cop out to say the world was too big to influence. I decided to ask a different question.

"How can I be a significant value/benefit to my slice of the world?"

That felt less "Justice League sized" if you know what I mean. I decided that I could serve best if I focused on fewer things (boards, charities, causes) and went deeper with each of those.

Since then, I have initiated the Non-Profit Make Over project (a local non-profit gets a year of marketing etc. services to the tune of $75,000) and Age of Conversation, along with my other board responsibilities.

I think we are capable of much more than we think we are. We just have to ask the question in a way that inspires us to find our answer.

Good luck!


Eric Peterson said...

Thank you so much for your insight! I appreciate it. It's a lot easier for me to figure out how I can change things in my "circle of influence," but beyond that is where I struggle.

I don't think it's too much to say that we can influece and change the world. But, yes, you are right that it sounds like a very daunting task! But, I am always up for a challenge!

Thanks again for stopping by and sharing. I appreciate it.