Monday, September 18, 2017

Profound Words Beat Profanity

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Resiliency SpeakerI’m throwing down the foul flag. The use of profanity and sexuality explicit words must go. It is a mockery of intelligence to think that such low level language carries greater weight than words of substance and thought. We call them four-letter words because they require little education. I would say they are used by fourth graders but that would be an insult to nine year-olds.

Years ago, I’d get to my office at Amelia Island Plantation in Florida very early. It was the best time to prepare for the work ahead. Every morning, two of the fourth-grade boys waiting for the school bus would come into my office to chatter away.  On this particular morning, they came in quite agitated.

“Quick, Eileen. Teach us some bad words. The kids at the bus stop are using them and we don’t know many!”

“Hey kids—it takes zero intelligence to use bad words. What if I teach you BIG words that actually means something and will confuse the heck out of your tormentors?”

My little friends high-fived each other and waited for my instructions.

Here is what I told them to say:  “Your bellicose verbiage and outlandish diatribe speaks volumes about your potential IQ.It might be time to reconsider what you are spewing.”

I explained what it meant and they repeated the words until they had them memorized.  I told them to state the sentences and then just walk away from the bullies.

The next morning, they ran in full of glee, telling me it worked and that the bullies were scratching their heads. I couldn’t help but remember a great Dorothy Parker line, “In a battle of wits, I never argue with an unarmed man.”

So, two points here: first, if you have no clue as to what I taught my nine year-olds to say, best start boning up. But second, do not accept the language that is streaming at us. Register your strong disapproval—whether in written or in verbal form. Insist that you will not tolerate or listen to such foul words. If they work for someone, write their manager. If you know the parent, tell the parent.

It would do ALL of us a world of good to hear profound thoughts instead of profane.


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Monday, September 11, 2017

Disaster Recovery for Resiliency

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

resiliencyAs I write this, Hurricane Irma is chewing up the ocean on a relentless track toward Florida, having devastated most of Barbuda, crashed into the Leeward Islands, engulfed Puerto Rico, and who knows what will happen with Haiti and the Dominican Republic. The eastern seaboard of the US is holding its breath. 

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Monday, September 04, 2017

Seven Secrets Move Workouts into the Workplace

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Workplace Performance“Where do you get all your energy?”  That’s a question many of us are asked as we finish leading an intense management retreat, conducting a training session, or keynoting a major conference.  My answer, after I jokingly say, “Drugs!” is “Exercise”. 

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Monday, August 28, 2017

Oglala Sioux Teaches Language

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Professional SpeakerOur road trip this summer took us on the eastern side of Glacier National Park in Montana. Vast ranch lands stretched for miles with rolling green, wildflowers, and rising mountain views. Much of the land was owned by cattle barons.  But, thankfully, other pieces belonged to the various Indians ensconced on their reservations: Blackfeet, Sioux, Shoshone, Cheyenne, Kootenai, Flathead Salish, Crow, Gros Ventre and Oglala Sioux. 

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Diversity Sparks Life into All

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

DiversityFor weeks, I’ve watched this man walk three VERY different dogs. I figured he is a paid dog walker. But today, when I finally asked him, I discovered that the dogs belong to his three children. Apparently, each child got to select the dog of their choice. 

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Monday, August 14, 2017

Ritz Carlton Has Gone To The Dogs!

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Resiliency ExpertIf you have a 4-legged pooch and live anywhere near Laguna Niguel, CA, you might mark your calendar for August 24 and September 28 from 5-8 pm.It’s the cleverest bit of marketing I have seen in a long time AND there’s a good cause to boot! 

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Monday, August 07, 2017

Resilient Employees Start with Right Recruiting

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

resilient employeesMy mother always said, “To end well, you must begin well.” Of course, she was talking about how you separated clothes for the washing machine or how you chose vegetables at the market. But it’s also true when it comes to creating a resilient, sustainable workforce.The questions you ask in the recruiting phase will help both you and a potential employee determine if you have the right fit for your organization. 

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Monday, July 31, 2017

Radical Resiliency Meets Radical Hope

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Radical Resiliency is the term I coined to redefine “resiliency” as something that–for humans–is far different from the notion of “bouncing back”. Rather, it is the ability to grow through challenge or opportunity. Radical resiliency also requires an element of intelligent optimism—not the pie-in-the-sky-cock-eyed version but rather a reframing of possibilities.  

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Human Kindness is not Dead - It IS RESILIENT!

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

Given the vitriolic verbiage that spews from twitter feeds, angry demonstrations, and from protesting groups, my heart often sinks into concern that we have lost the human characteristic of compassion.  

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Monday, July 24, 2017

Why You Need a Community

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer

professional motivational speakerI just returned from five days with my professional colleagues at the annual National Speakers Association conference in Orlando. Despite freezing meetings rooms, Florida storms, humidity, and sleeping rooms that refused to cool off, I am so grateful I went.Why? My community!

Like all of us in a specific profession, we are a practice community family. No one except my NSA colleagues understand the demands of travel, the need to constantly research and improve, the wacky audiovisual glitches that happen all too often, the clients who ask for one thing and then look for something else, and the great joy of a standing ovation and the agony if you don’t quite hit the mark.

But there’s something else that a practice community offers: feedback. I believe this is true in all professions. A caring community doesn’t just offer thoughts for improvement, but probably more important, a caring community validates what heart and soul we bring to our work.

I know for me, I am often so close to what I do, I do not realize the positive impact I have had on a fellow speaker. Thus, it’s really easy to slip into place where you wonder if what you do even matters.

How can I relate the surprise and joy when Linda Larsen, CSP, CPAE told this audience that I approached her decades ago, looked her in the eye, told her she was tremendously talented, and affirmed her work.I barely remember that event but to Linda it was a profound moment. This past week, as I stood on the stage next to the panel I was facilitating and heard Linda say this, I started to cry.

Here’s the deal.  Linda did not HAVE to share any of this. Her decision to open up in front of 100 or more colleagues was not only kind, but it filled a place in my heart. This event was YEARS ago but it mattered deeply to her. Frankly, it mattered even more to me.

What would it take for all of us to take the time and specifically tell people about how they have touched us? Can you imagine the joy that could resonate --- joy that could warm even the coldest meeting room.

Thanks, Linda!


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As a Resiliency Motivational Speaker Eileen loves working with all groups. She has found great synergy with health care audiences and long term care (from personal experience), educators ( As an award-winning educator, she went from teaching kids to grown-ups—who are still like kids), and women’s leadership groups(because she is one!).