Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

Spoke regarding grassroots innovation

November 23, 2009

On November 18, 2009, I led a discussion entitled “Grassroots Innovation: One Pebble Creates a Ripple.”  The event was one in the EMC Leadership & Innovation Speaker Series, which meets at EMC in Silicon Valley.

I presented a “recipe” for grassroots innovation (and other endeavors), based on a Direct Outcomes thinking tool. I discussed two histories, one (the creating of the Palos Verdes Estates Shoreline Preserve) in which I provided a pebble and one (Pacific Gas and Electric’s early to mid 1980s company-wide innovation program known as the Office Technology Project) in which I had various roles regarding “ripples” and “creating new pebbles.”

Audience-suggested discussion involved topics including …

  • LUC – The law of unintended consequences.
  • Converting problems into opportunities.
  • Moral responsibility.
  • Timing, regarding pursuing innovations.
  • What constitutes an “innovation?”
  • Is the term “innovation” overused?
  • Are people “saturated” with too many ideas?

I note that there is a blog noting “10 Principles of Pebbles” –

I appreciate the contributions of the committee the organized this event.  It developed the “pebble and ripples” title for the event.  Sheryl Chamberlain (of EMC) hosted the meeting and helped involve the audience.  Mike Alvarado provided suggestions for setting expectations.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz


Co-produced video “From Outrage to Outcomes – Let’s produce pivotal progress!”

August 28, 2009

On August 27, 2009, LectureMaker posted a video featuring my presenting From Outrage to Outcomes: “Let’s produce pivotal progress!”.

There is much that society, businesses, and individuals need and want to achieve.

I hope many people will learn from, use, benefit from, and teach the presentation’s recipe for producing pivotal progress.  The presentation indicates needs for new progress (in education, healthcare, transportation, and politics and governance; throughout society; and specific to individuals), discusses why progress seems so hard to achieve now, provides the recipe, illustrates uses of the recipe, encourages people to act, and notes means for obtaining help.

From Outrage to Outcomes - "Let's produce pivotal progress!"

From Outrage to Outcomes - "Let's produce pivotal progress!"

I will be happy to help foster communities that form to take positive action.

Also, perhaps people will consider sponsoring follow-on videos regarding specific challenges, opportunities, and means to improve how society and individuals try to achieve results.

Ron Fredericks (of LectureMaker) added considerable value by making suggestions about the presentation’s content and my delivery of that content, by adding effects to the video, by tuning the technical quality of the images and sounds, and providing a web-presence home for the video and related comments.  I recommend people contact him to explore producing high-quality videos.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Attended showing of “Ronald Reagan: Rendezvous with Destiny”

August 28, 2009
On June 26, 2009, Helen Buckholtz (my spouse) and I attended a screening of the film “Ronald Reagan: Rendezvous with Destiny” at the corporate headquarters of Jelly Belly.  I appreciated themes (in the introduction of the film, in the film, and question-and-answer after the film) including clarity of purpose, resolve to achieve significant goals (including economic recovery, dissolution of the Soviet Union, and restoration of optimism among Americans), achievement of goals, and willingness to negotiate and compromise to achieve goals.

People who introduced the film included Herman Rowland (of Jelly Belly) and Newt Gingrich and Callista Gingrich.  The film was produced by Citizens United Foundation / Citizens United Productions.

Before the screening I had a brief opportunity to meet and talk with Newt Gingrich.  I provided him some suggestions that might ‘make a difference’ for America.

Also, I am pleased to recall that Helen and I previously met people featured in the film. 

Helen Buckholtz, Ronald Reagan, Thomas J. Buckholtz

Helen Buckholtz, Ronald Reagan, Thomas J. Buckholtz

Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, George H.W. Bush

Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, George H.W. Bush







Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Margaret Thatcher

Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Margaret Thatcher


Gerald R. Ford, Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Dennis Hastert

Gerald R. Ford, Helen Buckholtz, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Dennis Hastert







Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Attended discussion regarding priorities for the Obama administration

December 22, 2008

On December 3, 2008, I attended a panel discussion regarding The New Administration’s First 100 Days – So Much to Do … What to Do First?  Panelists were University of California, Berkeley, Professors John Quigley, Henry Brady, Daniel Kammen, and Robert Reich.  The event was sponsored by the Goldman School of Public Policy.  The panel moderator was Jim Marver, a GSPP graduate and chair of the School’s Board of Advisors.

 The panel provided useful insight regarding the state of the United States and regarding opportunities and challenges facing the forthcoming administration.  I recommend people view the discussion.

 I would like to thank Professor (and now-former Dean) Michael Nacht for inviting me years ago to serve on GSPP’s Board of Advisors.  It is a privilege to serve this outstanding educational and research institution.

Jim Marver, John Quigley, Daniel Kammen, Robert Reich, Henry Brady

Jim Marver, John Quigley, Daniel Kammen, Robert Reich, Henry Brady

Annette Doornbos, Patrick Windham, Arati Prabhakar, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Helen T. Buckholtz

Annette Doornbos, Patrick Windham, Arati Prabhakar, Thomas J. Buckholtz, Helen T. Buckholtz

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Interviewed for TV participants in Monta Vista High School DECA

November 9, 2008



On November 6, 2008, Frank Jewett and I interviewed for an Issues Today TV show 6 people key to an innovative program catalyzed by Monta Vista High School (Cupertino, California, USA) marketing teacher Carl Schmidt.

DECA is an extracurricular business-and-marketing oriented program for high-school and college students in various countries.  Carl Schmidt is pioneering the concept of extending the high-school program to include internships, in businesses, for students.

Guests for this TV show were Carl Schmidt, Jean-Marc Patenaude, Ashley Chen, Jade Lipscomb, Kay Poon, and Derek Wong.  Jean-Marc is President/CEO of FireEar.  Ashley Chen, Jade Lipscombe, Kay Poon, and Derek Wong are Monta Vista DECA members who interned with FireEar recently.

Carl described DECA and the internship program.  Jean-Marc described FireEar.  Everyone talked about the students’ experiences.  The students were especially enthused about what they learned and the value such may have for them going forward.

I would like to applaud Carl Schmidt for creating this internship program and for his determination to offer the concept for use in many other schools that have DECA programs (as well as his work to encourage schools that do not have DECA programs to form DECA programs).  He provided apt questions so that Frank and I could help these Issues Today guests tell their story.  He says he anticipates using elements of the show to introduce and market the internship concept to many relevant people, including at a forthcoming meeting in Southern California.

I appreciate what such innovation and grassroots initiative can accomplish, in part because I was a beneficiary of the Palos Verdes Peninsula Science Club (which my father Joel Buckholtz catalyzed when I was in the seventh grade) and in part because of other endeavors (such as the early 1990s United States nationwide grassroots movement to improve governmental service to the public, which was conceived of by the General Services Administration’s Frank McDonough and for which I [as a GSA Commissioner] served as a federal-government champion and spokesperson for the movement’s first 3 years).

I would like to thank Gloria Guenther and the VC ~ Private Equity Roundtable (indirect reference) for taking key steps toward making possible this Issues Today show.  She was in the control room during production of the show and reported that the show worked out well.

The show was produced in conjunction with the City of San Jose’s (California) CreaTV and is scheduled to be presented on San Jose cable channel 15 on Wednesday, November 19, at 7:30 P.M.

For more information about Monta Vista DECA, see Monta Vista DECA .

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.


Guide for developing service innovation initiatives and roadmaps

July 15, 2008


Recently, each of Dr. Jim Spohrer (IBM) and Prof. Stephen (Steve) Kwan (San Jose State University) discussed “service innovation roadmaps” (SIR) with me.  I understand that some countries have developed or are developing such documents.  Permit me to offer guidance (“Guide Your Service Innovation Initiatives”) for a “do it yourself” approach to guiding service innovation endeavors and developing a service innovation roadmap – for a person, a company, a university, another type of enterprise, a nation, or all of society.  The guidance is based on premises that service features helping entities succeed, that people can anticipate needs of clients of service, and that people can develop SIRs that emphasize “what people need” as well as “how people can develop new infrastructure and practices upon which to base service.”

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Note proposed “job descriptions” seminar

July 15, 2008


Recently, I responded to an invitation to propose a human resources seminar regarding job descriptions.  I outlined a workshop that features the potential to generate and benefit from job descriptions that are reused for performance coaching and performance reviews.  Permit me to provide a copy of the proposal.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Interviewed for TV Andi Jobe of RSF-EARTHSPEAK

June 20, 2008


On June 19, 2008, I interviewed Andi Jobe, Executive Director, RSF-EARTHSPEAK for two Issues Today television programs.  Her organization catalyzes speech training for people who undergo, in various countries (other than the United States), corrective surgery for cleft palates.  Evidently, currently, many people who benefit physically and cosmetically from such surgeries do not learn to speak adequately.  After years of supporting teams that perform such surgeries and of innovative work, Andi developed Corrective Babbling, speech therapy techniques that parents now use to teach children to begin to speak.


Andi’s work features many instructive, inspirational aspects, such as …

·         Recognizing that a single intervention (e.g., surgery) may not completely adequately address an overall problem.

·         Developing innovative ways for people (e.g., parents) to take charge and effect solutions.

·         Developing grassroots communities sufficient to ‘make a significant difference.’

·         Adapting proven but evolving techniques to the needs of people in various countries, cultures, and circumstances.

·         Taking personal initiative, including to extend the beneficial impact of extant organizations (e.g., universities and governments) and of service supported such organizations.

·         Looking for and implementing synergies among organizations, initiatives, and societies.


I recommend that people learn more about RSF-EARTHSPEAK and consider getting involved.


The first of the two programs is scheduled to be shown in San Jose and Campbell, California (USA), at 7:30 Wednesday evening, June 25, 2008, via the Comcast Community Channel (Channel 15).  Frank Jewett founded Issues today approximately 13 years ago and was the primary producer and host for the first of the two programs recorded on June 19.  Emerson Dong (of Comcast) was the director.  Leonora Sea and Gloria Guenther played roles in connecting Andi Jobe with Frank and me.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.

Received a copy of “Succeeding through service innovation”

June 8, 2008


Recently, I received a printed copy of “Succeeding through service innovation – A service perspective for education, research, business and government.”

People interested in the vital topic of ‘service science’ might want to review this report, including its various recommendations (See, for example, the Executive summary and Part 5.) and its recognition of various challenges (See, for example, Appendices V and VIII.)  A fundamental premise of service science – people’s working together to create value for themselves and other entities – seems vital for essentially all individual, societal, business, educational, and other human endeavors.

Jim Spohrer (of IBM) asked me to provide comments on a draft report.  I was enthused to do so (See a previous blog for my comments.) and to provide an endorsement for service science.

Guangjie Ren (of the University of Cambridge) provided me the printed copy of the report.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.


UC Santa Cruz announces Leadership and Innovation course

June 1, 2008


The University of California, Santa Cruz, has posted an announcement that it plans to offer my Leadership and Innovation course via its Knowledge Services and Enterprise Management (KSEM) program.  The course is scheduled for late September through early November, 2008, at UCSC’s Silicon Valley Campus (at Moffett Field).

The KSEM program plans an ‘open house’ at Moffett Field for the evening of September 17, 2008.

I look forward to the prospects for teaching this course (number 20753) and contributing to the success of participants.  It was a privilege to teach a similar course via UCSC last year.  I believe the students demonstrated that they gained from perspective provided (including by themselves), discussion, Direct Outcomes achievement tools, and using the tools as part of homework and a project.

Click for information about Thomas J. Buckholtz.


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