A leadership development resource

from the Institute for Leadership Excellence & Development Inc.

Thanksgiving 2002

On the Horizon This Month:

"Thank You"
Two powerful words... and a challenge.

Special Offers from the Institute
Working on your 2003 training budget? See how the Institute can help you maximize your investment.

Andy's Talking About You on the Radio!
I was a guest on the Michael Dresser Show on 11/27. You can still catch the interview on the archives! Click here for details.

A World of Thanks
Subscribers around the world answer, "What am I thankful for?"

Brain Teaser!
Take a break to enjoy this Brain Teaser in the Fun section!


An excellent audio program to help you get a grip on all the demands of work and life. Click on the cover above for details.


Stop being overwhelmed by your e-mail! Click on the cover  to get my new e-book on reducing e-mail clutter.



This is one of the best tools I've purchased in the last 12 months.  Every leaders has to do planning, brainstorming, and facilitating.  This tool is a MUST in your software library.  Click on the box above to get it now!



  [Thank You]  [Special Offers]  [Radio]  [A World of Thanks]  [Links]  [Fun]  [I LEAD Online] 




Welcome to the Thanksgiving edition of Horizon Time

  • "Thank you."  Two powerful words.  As the United States celebrates a Thanksgiving Day holiday, the lead article this month challenges you to make this holiday season a time of thankfulness--regardless of where you live.

  • Stop wasting your training dollars! Check the Special Offers feature for how the Institute can help you maximize your training investment in 2003!

  • "What are you thankful for?"  A simple question asked to thousands of you around the world earlier this month.  This edition's Interview with an Expert features you!  Check out the inspiring, thoughtful, some times controversial responses from subscribers like you, all over the world.

  • Also, I talked about you on the radio!  Click here for details!

  • Finally, check out this month's Brain Teaser in the Fun Stuff section!

I bet there's a friend, family member, or colleague that would be encouraged by this edition of Horizon Time.  How about forwarding this copy to them? They will join the more than 3,500 subscribers from all over the world who read each edition of Horizon Time.

Thank you for the opportunity to pour into your personal and professional life. God bless you,

Andy Kaufman

Speaker, Author, Consultant

President, Institute for Leadership Excellence & Development Inc.



The Thankful Leader

By Andy Kaufman

What are two of the most powerful words in the English language? There are good candidates…. “Forgive me.” “I’m sorry.” You can likely think of others.

How about “Thank you.”

Each November Americans celebrate a rather unique holiday. We call it Thanksgiving Day, a holiday set aside to express thankfulness for all our blessings. Though some just treat it as a day off work or school, it is typically a day known for spending time with family and friends, eating, perhaps watching football, and overall relaxing.

Thankfulness and Leadership
“Thank you.” Two powerful words, but what do they have to do with leadership?

I fundamentally believe that some of the most miserable, unhappy leaders are those who do not have an attitude of gratitude. On the flipside, some of the most contented, well-respected, successful leaders I know are people who regularly make a habit of expressing thanks.

Extinguishing Thankfulness
A sense of thankfulness is often extinguished when we take things for granted. Many of the people closest to us have not heard us express the deep, sincere thankfulness they deserve. It’s not that we don’t, in general, appreciate them. But the familiar can often breed a carelessness that leaves a spouse, child, parent, employee, customer, or caregiver without the gift that true thankfulness provides. The familiar can keep us from recognizing the miracles of our heartbeat, the awe of a sunset, the freedoms we enjoy, or the infinite value of a newborn baby.

Whether you are an American or not, let’s make these last weeks a time of giving thanks, and giving it in abundance.

Fueling Thankfulness
Ever notice how and when we say “Thank you?”

If you’re walking toward the door to a building and someone opens it for you, the polite response is, “Thank you.” If your car is stranded on a remote road on a freezing cold, stormy night and someone stops to lend a helping hand, you use the same two words, but with a deeper expression. If you happened to be on the top floor of a hotel that had caught fire, without exit, too high to jump, and were passing out from the smoke and were suddenly rescued by a firefighter, you would use the same two words but the expression is nothing remotely similar to the other scenarios.

The difference? I suggest there is a direct correlation between how dependent we are on someone and the depth of the thankfulness we express.

Think about it. We could have opened our own door to the building. It was thoughtful, but we could have done it ourselves easily. In the stranded car, it was certainly more of a jam, but with a cell phone and credit card, we could have been OK. The hotel fire was truly a desperate situation. Short of certain severe injury or death by jumping, we were truly dependent on someone else to bail us out.

Recognizing Our Dependence
We don’t often talk about being dependent. To the contrary, we seem to be trained from youth to be independent. Isn’t leadership about learning to stand alone when necessary, thinking independently instead of just following the crowd?

Indeed. Yet the true leader recognizes they are truly dependent, and probably more than they realize without taking time for reflection.

Stop and try a little exercise. Grab a piece of paper and something to write with. What are 10 things you have a high degree of dependence on… things that if they were not there your life, your success, or your satisfaction would significantly be impacted.

Do it now before continuing.

Did that take long? Any surprises?

Chances are you included things related to your health, your faith, people closest to you, perhaps your country, customers, or the stability of your job or business.

We fool ourselves by not recognizing our incredible dependence and inter-dependence as leaders. This deception can lead us to take people and things around us for granted, leading to a lack of thankfulness.

In a world filled uncertainty, there are countless things we have to be thankful for. I have the breath to be alive right now, without a guarantee of another heartbeat. I have an incredibly loving wife and three amazing children that bring joy beyond my wildest dreams, far more than I deserve. I am surrounded by family, friends, and neighbors that support and encourage and pray for me. And I have the peace and joy that come with a genuine faith in a God who provided a way for dependent souls like me.

What are you thankful for?
That’s my story. What about yours? What are you thankful for?

I asked that question to many of you and was overwhelmed with responses. In less than 24 hours I had hundreds of responses from all over the world, from England to Romania to South Africa to Malaysia to New Zealand to Texas. Some sent family pictures. Others sent stories that will melt your heart. Some struggle with being thankful right now.  Don't miss these!

Make this holiday a season of “thanks giving”
I believe there a need within every one of us, regardless of age, nationality, race, or religion, to express thankfulness for our blessings—we just need to take the time to do so.

Check out the outpouring of thanks from readers like yourself. You will truly be inspired and spurred on to take action on this edition’s challenge. Whether you say “Thank you”, “Gracias”, “Merci”, or the same powerful words in a different language, make this a holiday season of recognizing your dependence and giving thanks. It will truly be an incredible end to the year, for you and those around you!

P.S. Join me on the radio on Wednesday, November 27. I'll be talking about you!  Click here for details.

Have a great one!

Andy Kaufman

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Special Offers from the Institute

Develop Leaders

in Your Organization in 2003


Leadership is a process.


It's not a class or retreat.  You can't go to one of these and come back a Certified Leader.


Oh, you can bring back a diploma, I suppose.  But that doesn't make you a leader.  Leadership is a process.  Leaders are only developed over time.


How important is leadership development?  I teach there is a direct correlation between the sustained success an organization enjoys and its overall "leadership bandwidth." 


Technology becomes obsolete. Brands can be displaced by competition more easily than ever.  When changes rock your organization, it's your organizational leadership capability that will help you navigate the challenges successfully (or crash you against the rocks).


Since leadership is a process, don't invest your training dollars on a leadership development class.  Invest it in a process.  Our process.


Here's what we can do for you:

  • You select your group of leaders for the process.  Some organizations enroll their "Top 10"--the top 10% performers.  Others enroll employees they think are their future leaders--the bright stars of the coming days.

  • I discuss with you and/or your training coordinator overall goals you want to achieve by the end of the process.  This planning process leads us to a shared understanding of what success looks like.

  • We then look at what training options you already have.  I encourage you to keep using what is working, and supplement it with offerings from me. 

  • The selected leaders participate in a series of assessments. Some of these are self-assessments while others are assessments filled out by peers, staff, bosses, and sometimes even clients.  These assessments provide insight to help customize a training plan for the organization and each participant. In addition, the assessments can provide the feedback participants need to improve to understand their effectiveness.

  • Participants then attend a series of targeted, interactive workshops. Classroom training is supplemented by some tele-seminars as well (minimizing time away from the office and expense).

  • It doesn't end there!  Powerful reinforcement material is provided after the sessions to help participants live the learning.

  • One-on-one coaching is conducted monthly throughout the program.

  • A final assessment at the end helps provide hard numbers on improvements made during the program.

Training customized to your goals.  Assessments to tailor learning to needs.  Workshops that really transfer skills.  Reinforcement to help live the learning in the real world.  Coaching to guarantee it works.


We guarantee you will raise the leadership capabilities of participants.  This is a process that will work for you--we guarantee it.


What should you do next?  If you make training investment decisions, contact me today to learn more.  You can reach me toll-free from the United States at 866-88 I-LEAD or via e-mail at andy@i-leadonline.com.  If you have a person or group who serves you by coordinating training decisions, please introduce them to me by forwarding this newsletter to them with your recommendation.


Thanks!  I look forward to helping you achieve the results you can through developing your leadership talent!


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Andy's Talking About You on the Radio!

I was a guest on the Michael Dresser Show on Wednesday, November 27.  You can hear Michael streaming live around the world by going to the show's web site:  www.MichaelDresser.com.  Check out the archives to listen to the interview.

Michael and I talked about the "World of Thanks" responses from Horizon Time subscribers  Check out Michael's archives to listen in!. 

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A World of Thanks


"What are you thankful for?"

That's the question I posed to Horizon Time readers around the world.  The response was incredible!  So incredible that I could not include all of them in this single edition.  However, I did promise that all responses would be published, so you can click here to see them all on my web site.

You are in for a treat.  Sit back, browse the inspiring, encouraging, hope-filled responses from leaders just like you from all over the world.

A special thank you to the hundreds of people who replied!  Make sure to forward this note to the loved ones, co-workers, or others that you recognized!  It will make their day!

Without further comment, here is "A World of Thanks"!

Lori McKenzie
Providence, Rhode Island, USA
I am very thankful for having my aunt Karen in my life -she has been diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) and she was told that she would be dead within a year. Granted she can't do much and she can't talk (we have a board with letters and she points with her eyes) but she is still here. She has taught me so much about perseverance and I admire her for that. I pray to God everyday that she can get through this horrible disease and I just treasure the time that I can be with her. Thank you

Lynn MacEwen
Jacksonville, Florida, USA

I am most thankful for the everyday miracles....for the things we normally take for granted. My dear brother-in-law had a massive stroke in mid-July and this has made me so aware of everything good that we don't take note of in our daily lives. It took him six weeks to re-learn how to swallow, so I treasure the ability to take a cool drink of water. Instead of a 15-minute struggle with braces and unresponsive limbs, I am able to stand up from my chair in an instant. I can check my e-mail, drive my car, open doors, read a book. I move without pain. I laugh at jokes, work mutually with associates to develop a good work product, come home at the end of the day and relax. If we take a moment, we can certainly come up with all the "big" things that enrich our lives, but I think we need to take it a step further and recognize that every moment represents a small blessing and a reason to be thankful.

Lake Zurich, Illinois, USA

Thanks for the note and the opportunity to let you know what I am thankful for this year. My wife and I have been married for 15 years, but have not had any children of our own. We have been involved in foster care for five years with intent to adopt if any of these children became available for adoption. Although we had had eleven foster children in our home for varying lengths of time, none were free to be adopted. Then child number 12 arrived, a sweet 6-year-old girl. Within three months she became available for adoption and on July 15 became our daughter. Kristen is a wonderful completion to our family and we are very thankful.

Happy Thanksgiving to you.


Well, I am thankful for the sun that shines and the moon that glows at night. I am thankful for my husband and the two most beautiful children that would have not been possible without him… as they look at me they have his eyes… as they speak they speak his voice… and they move the way he does. I am thankful for my faithful friend that greets me each time I arrive at home bounding and barking like I was her long lost friend. I am thankful for the peaceful moments when I can reflect all that is good in my life. I am thankful for life.

Mariana Bucurescu

I am thankful because Jesus died for my sins and raised to save me. I am thankful for His love, care and protection. I am thankful for my family, because I have loving parents who raised me, for my loving husband, for my three children and the list can continue, but it may be too long to write it here in this message!

Schaumburg, Illinois, USA

I used to be most thankful about the small things that made my life pleasant, like visiting with my children, watching cardinals at my birdfeeder, and the smell of the air after a thunderstorm. Recently I've taken less for granted, and have become more thankful of the peace and freedoms I have because I am a citizen of the United States.

Warren and Arlene
Phoenix, Arizona, USA

My wife Arlene and I are so thankful to be born in the United States and to live under a constitution that provides Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness to us, to our seven children and to our nineteen grandchildren and all who follow. What a great privilege it is to live each day as a free people, free to speak and live as we choose and free to love and serve each other and our creator God and his son Jesus Christ without fear of persecution.

Gina Schwalm
Michigan, USA

I am thankful for a gentle kiss from the one I love, huge smiles from my nieces and nephews when they see me, a tear of pride from my parent, a few laughs with my friends, a few pokes from my brothers, a big hug from my sister, a lick on my face from my dog, acceptance from a stranger, and my freedom.

Lanarkshire, Scotland


Leslie Nolin-Izzo

I am thankful for the fact that I, unlike millions, will sleep in a warm dry bed tonight. I will eat healthy food and drink clean water. I am thankful that I can read and write and that I had the choice of receiving an education. I live in a country that is and will remain free. I am thankful for my parents who took the time to raise myself and my siblings with solid, selfless values and ensured we would have the courage to speak out for those who could not. I am thankful for my husband and children for whom life would not have near as much color or warmth. Happy Thanksgiving!

(Learn more about Leslie and John Izzo’s speaking and consulting business at www.izzoconsulting.com)

John Chmela
Chicago, Illinois, USA

I am thankful for my freedoms (past, present, and future). In America, we pride ourselves on being free. We can freely travel across our countries borders without constraint. We enjoy freedom of speech and religion. And each year, the number of freedoms that we enjoy becomes greater and greater.

We honor those men who fought (and often died) to secure of freedoms. People are fighting right now so that you and I can remain free. Today, I am especially grateful for the number of “new freedoms” that are being introduced into the world. Computers give us the freedom to communicate in ways that we would not dream of just a few years ago…and at blinding speeds. Thousands of scientists, researchers, and inventors are working right now to create new freedoms for me and you in the future (and especially for those people who have a disability).

We don’t often reflect on it, but one of the most extraordinary gifts that God has bestowed on Americans…is our freedoms. God Bless America.

(Learn more about the groundbreaking work that John is doing with the Jim Mullen Foundation at www.jimmullen.com)

James Mohr
Illinois, USA

I, of course, am thankful for a wonderful wife, a beautiful six year old daughter, other family members and friends. But, most importantly I am thankful that I am able to have a personal relationship with the Creator of the Universe and His Son, Jesus Christ who is alive and well in my life. He truly loves me and counsels me in my every moment though His inspired Word, the Bible. Who could ask for more?

Don Carius
Washington, Illinois, USA

I am thankful Gladys and have gotten to spend over 62 years together and for our good health. Also, how thankful I was that I returned home from 14 months in France, Holland and Germany in WWII unscathed. And last, but not least, for our four children and their families.

Bill and Therese Bulger

I am thankful to see another day, I am thankful to open my eyes to see the new day. I'm thankful to be able to get to my feet even though it may have been painful. I’m thankful that once I got to my feet I had someplace to go. I'm thankful that once I got where I was going I will be compensated; the rest of the issues are just minor irritations because the big things went well!

(We developed that set of words after I had a heart attach 14 years ago. This is what helped me keep a positive attitude to be able to heal and then reverse a lot of the issues that caused the heart attack)

Mark Gunn
South Elgin, Illinois, USA

I am thankful for His boat. Sydney and I have four children under six. They are Gillian (5), Graysen (3), Trevor (2) and MerriMac (8 weeks). Our house gets a little crazy each night around supper time. At the table, Sydney and I catch ourselves "observing" together the four little people God has given us and their very unique personalities. We are thankful for the gift of children.

Since our second daughter arrived God has taught us a lot more about Himself and ourselves. Our second daughter "Gracie" has Down Syndrome. Our activities frequently revolve around what is happening in her life whether it's therapy, doctor's visits, etc... This year during the week of Thanksgiving she is having heart surgery. It is tough to be thankful during this time, but the "process" has taught me over and over that these are not my kids. They belong to God. That makes enjoying the moment much better. He must provide for them all they need in this journey. It's His boat, His ocean, His wind, His waves, His compass... all His. To see what I mean read Mark 6:45-52. Read carefully.


Thank you Canada for accepting us more than 50 years ago as refuge, when we had to escape from communism, leave our dear ones and our home (Slovenia, Yugoslavia---people were sent back from camps in Austria and Italy and killed by communists in different grottos), to stay alive and start a new life!

Jaimee Cecile Niles
Orange County, California, USA

I am thankful for the beauty in the world which I continually am amazed about in nature, people and spirit.

Joy Mathew
Bangalore, India

I am thankful for everything - for the life given to me, for my family and friends, for my country, for my professional success, for the peace in my heart, for every moment given to me, for health, for the little comforts and joys of life ..... for God's presence in my life.

St. Louis Park, Minnesota, USA

What I am thankful for is here at work the way everyone works so well together. Regardless of what is happening in the news, there is a team effort to help each other get our product out, even with all the different races, nationalities, and religions, we all realize it's what on the inside that counts. That is what I am most grateful and thankful for.

JB Collingsworth
Dallas, Texas, USA

What I am thankful for is that I am a believer in Jesus Christ which coupled with living in America gives me more freedom and opportunity than I could ever deserve.

Laurie Guest
DeKalb, Illinois, USA

I am very thankful for opportunity to do what I love to do for a career. I quit my health care administrative job this year and now speak professionally full time. It takes my husband, grandparents and support network of professionals to be able to pursue this dream. For that I am oh so thankful.

(Learn more about Laurie’s speaking business at www.laurietalk.com)

Phil Laskowsky
Lisle, Illinois, USA
I'm thankful for many things these days (including having a job in these turbulent times), but if I had to narrow it down to any one thing I'd have to say being part of a close and loving family would be the winner. I have two wonderful kids who give countless hours of enjoyment (there's some aggravation in there too, but we won't get into that here), and a beautiful wife who has truly taught me the meaning of family and unselfishness. I can't even imagine where I'd be if I didn't have them. It's actually nice that you asked me this question because I don't think I stop and realize often enough how lucky I am. So, thank you for asking.

Jose' M. Martinez
McAllen, Texas, USA
I am thankful for being ALIVE. I did not write my own book so it was written for me at Parkland and Baylor hospitals where several surgeries account for the miracles experienced. GOD continues to perform miracles TODAY and I am thankful each day I wake up, pretty healthy. To GOD be the glory!

Howard Andruejol
Guatemala, Central America
I am surely thankful for the beauty of life and its purpose. As a youth leader and trainer, I firmly believe that every decision we make is setting an example on dealing with success or failure to future generations. Therefore our positive attitude and commitment to growth is a major value.

(Learn more about Howard’s work at www.liderazgojuvenil.com)

Chicago, Illinois, USA
I’m glad to be alive, and for all the great medical progress of the 20th century (that should continue in the new century, assuming we survive this century).

Marisa Oliveira
Peniche, Portugal
In Portugal we don't have a Thanksgiving day. But I want to say thanks to those who believe in me. That is very important for me in this right moment. I started a business, but my family don't give me any support. They don't believe in me... so I'm passing for a bad period. I want to thank you for "being here"... for giving me some lights. Thanks. I want to thank God for being alive!

John Albiston
Scotland, United Kingdom
I am thankful for my right to live, to be free from war and strive. I am thankful for my family and friends who love and care for me. I am thankful for my home that provides me comfort and warmth. I am thankful for my freedom, my right to worship how I please without worrying. I am thankful for that God who gave me life.

Linda Witt
Schaumburg, Illinois, USA
I am thankful that I have been able to raise my children in a free country, that they are healthy and that they have turned into caring, loving, responsible adults. I am also thankful that we all have jobs to go to everyday.

Julie H.
Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, USA
I am thankful for m relationship with Jesus Christ and that HIS WORD is in my life as a love letter to me.

Hal Rich
Illinois, USA
I have so much to be thankful for!! My wife, my family, my friends, my health… However all of that would not matter if I did not completely understand my true Identity!! - a COG!! -a true Child of God because of my belief in Jesus as the Lord of my life.

Happy Thanksgiving!

To see all the responses from around the world, click here!  Thanks to all the readers who responded!

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Recommended Services
Below are some companies whose services I recommend for your consideration.

Leadership Links

Each edition I include links to help in your personal and leadership development. Here are the links for this month!

"Four Steps to Banishing Your Fear of the Pink Slip", by Andy Kaufman, Wall Street Journal's Career Journal.  WSJ's Career Journal picked up this former Horizon Time article to share with it's readers around the world!

"Leadership From Below", by Patricia Wallington, CIO.com, October 15, 2002. Leadership talent exists throughout the corporate food chain.  Learn to develop leadership at all levels.

"Harry Kraemer's Moment of Truth", by Keith H. Hammonds, FastCompany, November 2002. Leadership in a crisis.  Harry is one of my CEO heroes.  See how he handled his crisis....

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Fun Stuff

Here is this month's brain teaser, courtesy of Braingle.com:

Holiday Destinations

Last year some of my mates went on holiday. Bridget went to Barbados, Louis visited Mauritius, Victoria went to the Seychelles. Kath ventured into Asia and visited Nepal. Raj, looking for adventure set out to Bosnia-Hertzegovina while Sofia loved Bulgaria. Nic told us he loved his visit to Cyprus. Botswana was seen by Ron and Rob had a safari in Kenya. George had two holidays, one in Guyana and the second in the Camen Islands.

Of course by now you will know where my mate Don went, won't you?

Click here to see the answer.

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Copyright © 2002, Institute for Leadership Excellence & Development Inc. (I LEAD)