Would you rather – Lead or Follow?

TED Talk has been around for a while – since 1984 to be exact.

This is an extract from TED.com:

“TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today covers almost all topics — from science to business to global issues — in more than 100 languages.”

I have gleaned much inspirations and insights from there.  I appreciate the brevity of talks. Small easy to chewable chunks, that I can easily remember.  Additionally I appreciate the practical suggestions and ideas as well.

I have probably have watched far too many times on one particular TED Talk: Simon Sinek – “How Great Leaders Inspire Action” – I would highly recommend you to watch the presentation (18 mins).

Below is a rough summary of the presentation:

What gives the great leaders their edge? Why were Martin Luther King, Wright Brothers, & Steve Jobs successful when others have access to similar resources and conditions? The thing these leaders have in common is summarised in the ‘Golden Circle’.

  1. What – every organisation should know this
  2. How – some know this – their differentiating values, or intellectual property
  3. Why – only the best know this – why their organisation exists beyond a profit

The best organisations can explain and sell the ‘why’ first, and use this to inspire others. People don’t buy what you do, but why you do it. Using Apple as an example, their sales statements starts with their “why” – they design differently to push the boundary. Once you accept their why, you trust them to build anything for you – a computer, an MP3 player, phone. Other quality electronics companies known for 1 product (eg Dell computers) struggle to sell anything else, because they are only known for what they make not why.

The most central parts of the brain control behaviour – this is what people speak to when they answer ‘why’. Answering ‘what’ deals with fact, figures, but still might not feel right on gut feeling.

Simon gives the example of the Wright brothers against Samuel Pierpont Langley. Samuel had all the usually be the recipes to success on his side – money, market conditions, and a well educated and connected team. But while Samuel was driven by wealth and power, the Wright brother’s team were motivated by the idea of changing the course of history with powered flight. The Wright brothers achieved flight first, and Samuel immediately quit once the goal of being first was out of reach.

Different people are comfortable to adopt new technology at different times. The early adopters take up the first 15-18%, with the mainstream being the next 68%. The mainstream need the early adopters to try it first, on gut instinct. This makes hitting 20% market share vital – hitting the tipping point where the mainstream will start to take up quickly. Early adopters are sold everything on the ‘why’ – they will adopt a poor quality product if they like the idea behind it.

People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.


Ultimate Caesar Salad

Recipe of the moment

One of life’s most enjoyable moment is to see your children grow.  How fast they grow! I wanted to share a special recipe I have personally enjoyed, my favourite I would say so myself – perhaps I am biased in a way – since this was prepared with a dash of inspiration from internet – by my daughter – Alexis.

I thought I would share this with all of you.  Here are the ingredients and steps.


  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 2 cups (500ml) croutons
  • 1/4 cup (50ml) grated parmesan cheeseUCS1


  • 1/4 cup (50 mL) vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp (10 mL) anchovy paste
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) each salt and pepper
  • 1/2 tsp (2 mL) worcestershire sauce
  • 3 tbsp (50 mL) light mayonnaise

Build Instructions

  1. Dressing: In bowl, whisk together oil, cheese, vinegar, mustard, anchovy paste, salt, pepper and Worcestershire sauce.
  2. Whisk in mayonnaise until smooth. (Make-ahead: Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 day.)
  3. Tear lettuce into bite-size pieces to make about 20 cups
  4. Place lettuce pieces in large bowl.
  5. Add dresing, croutons and cheese
  6. Toss all ingredients to combine

Servings: 12



Natural Wonders – Have you observed one lately?

Are you a tourist?

I used to live in London, England many many moons ago.  I went to school and did what other normal typical students do.  After I came to live here in Canada, there came a realization that I have not visited many note worthy places or attractions while I was there. Those places that people spend thousands of dollars to go and visit, it was right there and then I did not pay attention to visit.  I heard a saying that “you have to be a tourist to visit places” instead being a local. This lead me to this aha moment that, to appreciate the beauty and meaning in whatever, we have to dedicate our time and energy to such causes.

Here is the fundamental truth:  

‘To appreciate the beauty and meaning in whatever, we have to dedicate our time and energy to such causes.’

For example, when was the last time you looked up into the dark clear sky and appreciate the wonders and incomprehensibleness of the universe.  We practically live under the sky but just that we have not noticed it that much.  Even the smallest things we  perhaps take them for granted – beautiful flowers during warmer weather can not be possible – if not the hard work by pollinators, bees, butterflies…etc.

Or are you a local?

So when you are doing something regardless of how small or insignificant, take a moment to find as to 5 Ws and 1 H – What, Where, When, Who, Why and How.  It will add more meaning and value in whatever tasks you have in mind.  Dare I say, it will make you a better person, husband, wife, child and even pets (they are reflection of the owners).  Until next time. H


Do you have the time?

Out of Time?

No matter whether you are from North Pole, southern Australia, or even “Middle of No where”, we all have the same amount of it.  Regardless of how rich or poor, we all have the same amount of it also.

it’s Time.

It’s been said that the time is the most valuable thing one can spend, when it’s gone we can’t never have it back.  Perhaps due to it’s one directional nature – forward, photography – still images and videos – is one of the few ways to capture times past and it’s ever so popular.

Now, one of my favourite movies of all time happens to be “Back to the Future”, where it introduced me to the fascinating subject of Time – the subject of time travel and its effect on people. Ironically, how time flies, the movie was released more than 30 years ago – 32 1/2 years to be exact – in July 3, 1985. So without further delay, here are some of the fascinating facts about Time.

Time what?

A mind boggling concept of time. 


Icarus, which is located 9 billion light-years away, was visible only because of a technique called gravitational lensing. : NASA, ESA, and P. Kelly (University of Minnesota)

Astronomers have observed a star that’s so far away, its light took 9 billion years to reach us here on Earth — about 4.5 billion years before our solar system even existed. Compared to average human life span is around 80 – 90 years.

Longest Living Mammal on Earth


Bowhead Whales – 
Rasmus Due Nielsen

While talking about the average human life span, the bowhead whale (also known as the artic whale) is one of the longest living mammals on Earth. The oldest known bowhead whale is at least 211 years old, and there are whales swimming around with the tips of 200-year-old ivory spears still lodged in their flesh.

2.5 Billion Beats


Hummingbird – Getty Images

By the time you turn 70, your heart will have beat 2.5 billion times. On average, the heart pumps 377 litres of blood around your body every 60 seconds, and beats more than 100,000 times per day. In comparison, a typical hummingbird’s heart beats around 1200 times per minute.  That translates into 500 billion times in 70 years – but unfortunately hummingbirds do not live that long, only up to 5 years – 7.7 billion times.

Oddball Effect


Andreas Vesalius Fabrica, published in 1543

A new experience will always seem to stay longer in your memory than older ones. This is called the oddball effect, and it is the reason that time seems to speed up as you get older.

Time Slows When You’re Having Fun

According to a psychological study, the old adage “time flies when you’re having fun” isn’t quite true. In fact, it’s just the opposite. When people were listening to music they enjoyed, time seemed to pass more slowly. This could be because people pay more attention to things they like, which slows their perception of time.

Time well spent!

MonkeyThere are thousands of websites dedicated to interesting facts about time.  Just a brief snippet of highlights of time here proves that we should use our time wisely as we only have one chance or limited opportunities to use it!.

Do you have the time?  Yes, we all do. Let’s spend our time wisely and without regrets. 



Integrity – A Lost treasure


Lost wallet anyone?

When we were little, you may remember playing ‘treasure hunt’ with our friends.  Probably some insignificant item was buried or hidden somewhere.  And once it was found especially if you were the one who found the treasure, you felt that it was the most important thing you have ever set your eye on in your life!

We live in a result oriented society.  We hear often about making decisions based on data.  No matter what happens to others as long as I am ahead, it would be just fine – by the way its for me and my family.

It seems like we have lost certain sense of personal integrity, yes identity of who we are or what we are.

Integrity has been defined as:

  1. the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles; moral uprightness.

We have become, group thinkers, populist and we go wherever the wave takes us. No one seems to stand up for what you believe in, rather we are more concerned about somehow what we say and what we do will result in some type of offence to someone.

What we need is then we need to strike a balance, we need to honestly respect others opinions and actions. At the same time we have to have the courage and personal integrity to stand up for what we believe in.

The question is ‘Are we willing to keep personal integrity even under life’s challenges and difficulties inevitably, as most of us will go through a few in our life time?

I would appreciate your comments. H




Setting Priorities – A “Red Bull” drink to super charge your day

Super Charge Your Day!


How many of us would like to have another hour or two added in a day, just so that you can finish whatever you have set out to do daily?  Unfortunately we know that we can’t add more time to our day or even borrow from someone, the time just don’t work that way.  So what can we do to super charge your day – to increase productivity and getting things done? By following a simple two steps – “Identity what is more important” and “Make time for it”.

1. Identify what is most important to you

Identify.jpgIt’s been proven that multitasking does not work, it’s actually counter productive to do many things at the same time.  In order to super charge your day, first we must identify what is most important to you.

Let’s do a quick exercise, grab a pen and paper and as much as possible try to write down every actionable things you have done today.

How many hours have you slept? How long did it take you to get to work? How many hours did you spend at work? How much time did you spend to do less important things such as watching TV, surfing on the internet and other activities?

Once you have them listed, add them all up and see how much time is being spent on various activities.

Does that surprise you?

Based on what you have found in this quick exercise, you can see you may have something to think about or at least you can determine what is important or perhaps what you can do away with in your daily activities.

2. Make Time to do what is most important

Make Time.png

Now we have identified what is most important to you, the next step is to make time for it.  It’s been said that time is the most precious resource we have.

How can we make time for what is most important then?

  1. Muscle memory – yes, having a routine will help you to make time easier.  When you get up in the morning, what is the first thing you do?  Most likely go to bathroom or perhaps have a breakfast.  We don’t put too much thought into these activities we just do.
  2. Create a Mental Picture – solidify your list in your head what is needed to be done for the day.  Some say that writing them down on a piece of paper or on your smart phone can also help as well.
  3. Create Fear – it’s not to create stress unnecessarily, but fear is a very strong emotion. So creating a fear toward failing to do what is important will help motivate you to make time for them.

Would you like to super charge your day? I sincerely hope that following these two simple steps would help you to accomplish what is most important to you.

Note: I found the subject of Time fascinating.  Perhaps I would like to delve deeper into this subject in the near future, stay tuned.





Book Review Part 2 – Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook – How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World – Gary Vaynerchuk

Book Review Part 2 – Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook – How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World – Gary Vaynerchuk

Previously on….. Book Review Part 1 – Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook – How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy Social World – Gary Vaynerchuk

Book review by Hyo Lee


  1. It leverages pop culture – “Create content that reveals your understanding of the issues and news that matter to them…Integrate your content into the stream, where people can consume it along with all their other pop culture candy.”
  2. It’s micro – “Jab at people, all the time, every day. Talk about what they’re talking about. …Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.”
  3. It’s consistent and self-aware – “…no matter how you tell your story, your personality and brand identity must remain constant, too. When you know your message, it’s easy to keep it consistent in every setting.”

After having the foundation of six rules of “great content and compelling stories” set, the author goes in depth on good and bad uses of various social media while embracing each of the unique social media platform’s strength. For example, Facebook – its ability to excel at storytelling, whereas Pinterest is great at show casing visuals to customers. The book contains plenty of examples and pictures to keep the audience engaged and entertained.  As the author points out that in order for a business to be successful in the business, the marketer must “…fully excavate these platform’s secrets”. Combined with enthusiasm and occasional humour sprinkled throughout the book, it’s a joy to read and it is easy to recommend it to other aspiring marketers and students. Yes, the author has delivered a “knockout punch” with this book, highly recommended.