One of the most wonderful things about having a blog or interactive website is the ability of others to add to your thinking through their comments.
I received a wonderful comment from Dan Oestreich about The Great Wall of Saskatchewan article and 10 slide story about the great wall. I thought it was so well-written that I wanted to ensure others got a chance to see it as Dan says much about engagement:
What a beautiful story and image. I think we forget sometimes in the apparent complexity of knowledge work about the underpinnings of what is good labor. It’s easier to see the value of the stones that make a wall, and to imagine each one of the stones, how it is placed and balanced; the talent of the wall-maker and that person’s dedication.
Sometimes we forget that each project, each relationship, each moment to moment transaction today is like one of those stones. Perhaps we can no longer drive along a road to see how they’ve accumulated into a monument; yet to my mind they are no less real for being subjective products.
Maybe there’s just a thin file folder someplace lost in a cabinet in the basement, but it represents years of personal work, now more or less invisible. The beauty of such a legacy is that in some way it is like those zen poems written on old pieces of newspaper into which a fish had been wrapped. The poem was sent on its way in the universe with only an expectation of its transience. It dissolved within a few hours of having been written, or was crumbled up and tossed in the fire. In another world, we could build a wall from stones; today, we type words onto a screen — and all that washed away much faster even than footprints next to a wave.
Yet, God love us, we keep making our marks and investing our hearts in our accomplishments, even, perhaps, just delivering the mail. Tomorrow there will be more, and after that there will be more, and so on and so on. And yet we do know the difference between mail delivered well and not delivered so well, and we take pride in it, all of it, because the heart knows good work, and no matter what it is, no matter how evanescent, the beautiful thing is just that we care. And that makes all the difference in the world.
I encourage you to read more from Dan at Unfolding Leadership.