What We Encountered At Jerusalem’s Wailing Wall

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For the last 10 days, we’ve been filming around Israel for The Museum of the Bible in Washington, DC. We’ve interviewed archeologists, researchers, antiquities dealers, and filmed artifacts that date back to Abraham. We’ve also been to the most remote archeological sites, as well as deep into the Palestinian territory to film the remaining community of Samaritans. But no matter how far back into history we go, how deep into the desert, how remote the location, or out of contact the people, we can’t get away from

What George Washington Can Teach Us About Productivity

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Biographer Ron Chernow, discussing his outstanding life of George Washington, recently mentioned how important “focus” was for our first president. Chernow said that at the beginning of his presidency, “[Washington] couldn’t seem to sit down for dinner without 20 people being there—strangers sponging off his generosity, eating his food, drinking his wine. Washington had to create barricades if he was going to be able to function as president. . . . He saw that he needed to

A Funny Look At Why Paper Isn’t Dead

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Sometimes we forget that in the swirl of gadgets, productivity apps, and mobile devices, paper is a long way from being dead. Maybe that explains why notebooks like Moleskin and Field Notes are more popular than ever.  Particularly as a creative medium, even with mobile devices or an iPad and stylus, there’s something about working on traditional paper.  As you can see in this commercial, at least the French get it:

Government Technology Looks Better on Prime Time TV

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As the Obamacare website continues it’s botched roll-out (in November HHS reported that 30-40% of the back end isn’t even built yet), I’m reminded of the massive gulf between what we see of government agencies on prime time TV and the apparent reality. Just watch a few episodes of “CSI,” “NCIS,” “The Blacklist,” or “Hawaii 5-0” to see just how sophisticated the government computer systems are portrayed. Distorted, massively out of focus pictures can be instantly corrected, the most trivial personal information from decades ago can be

Are Distractions Damaging Your Career?

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Here’s the facts:  A University of California, Irvine study revealed that employees working in open-plan offices (cubicles or around big tables) were interrupted 63% of their time at work. Employees with offices were interrupted 49% of the time. After each interruption, it took 25 minutes for the cubicle employees and 26 minutes for the office employees to get back on track. However, typically, employees turned to 2.26 OTHER tasks before getting back to the original task from which they had been interrupted. Which means,

People Don’t Get Online Church – And Here’s How to Fix It

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I received an interesting note from Joe Hayes, head of the TV and video ministry at Redemption World Outreach Center in Greenville, South Carolina. At Redemption, the Sunday online worship service is succeeding way beyond expectations. Since so many churches have an online video feed of their live service on Sunday – and yet very few do it well – here’s 4 tips from Joe that might help:

The Influence Lab is Here!

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You’re one of the first to see our new nonprofit initiative called “The Influence Lab.” As you scroll through the website, you’ll see what it’s about, but essentially, our goal is to radically re-think global missions in the digital age. The truth is, the vast mission effort is still based on a 200 year old model. But in an age where other countries send more missionaries to the US than the US sends out, our goal isn’t to send people from here, it’s to

Are You Creating or Consuming?

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I fly a lot – way too much for normal people. As a result, I get to see the extremes of human behavior. I joke that I’m a magnet for crazy people on airplanes. Usually, if there’s a wacky passenger on board, they’ll set next to me. As a result I’ve seen every weird habit, OCD trait, and activity you can imagine. On my last flight I sat next to a guy who had to wipe down his knife and fork for 2 minutes before he could use them.  But the thing I see most often are

Technology Is Allowing Companies to Start with Fewer People

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Maybe now is the time to start that project you’ve always dreamed about.  A recent Kaufman Foundation study indicates that start-ups are being launched with an average of only 4.9 employees – down from 7.5 in the 1990’s.  It’s a long term change brought about by more sophisticated software and technology that allows entrepreneurs to farm out tasks to computers rather than humans.  It may sound like bad news for workers, but the truth is, it’s helping create

Obama Gets Technology. Leaders, Do You?

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Anyone in leadership – or who is trying to find their voice in the culture – needs to become a student of the way Barack Obama used technology to get his message heard by millions of people.  His digitally savvy campaign was adept at connecting to and activating key audiences, and that strategy could also be applied to religious organizations, churches, non-profits, and business.  Obama’s speed at responding through technologies like