Creating Connected Culture, Never Give Up & KINDness Matters!


This week:

Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast!” – Peter Drucker

3 Things You Need to Create a Connected Culture:
UC San Diego just celebrated Alumni Weekend where at a Leadership Luncheon, I was afforded the opportunity to contribute to the conversation.
As what I shared is relevant to all connected cultures, I include my remarks here…
Content is King but Context is God, and a culture of philanthropy- defined as love of human kind and rightly considered- must incorporate the following:


Whether as alumni, students, faculty, staff, community-members, it must become an institutional imperative and meta-competency of the entire ecosystem to “show me you know me”. For those who were in the room or if you are reading this for the first time, please know how much you matter. Thank you for your personal contributions of your discretionary energy, first and foremost, and if/when/as appropriate your discretionary income to causes that matter to you.

If we are committed to creating a genuine culture of connection, we must pay attention to matters of self-efficacy, worthiness, a sense of belonging, building affinity and fostering agency. This holds true for underrepresented minorities, for all students, for all of us. We all have a deep yearning to feel valued, heard, and understood at the deepest levels of our personhood and fundamentally to believe that we matter. This is common sense, but uncommon practice and can get lost in the institutionalizing effect of education and other enterprise.

Do your stakeholders know they matter to you?

  1. What matters most to YOU matters MOST!

If our work is authentically relational and not simply transactional, we must take the time to listen to and learn from our stakeholders.

Prescription without diagnosis is malpractice.

Instead of practicing the Golden rule (do unto others as you would have done unto you) we need to practice the Platinum rule (do unto others as others would have done unto themselves).

With all the talk and effort around “Engagement” which I have been studying and advancing for well over a decade, global data from Gallup has shown that engagement stats have not fundamentally changed worldwide for over 20 years. Most orgs have 50% of their stakeholders that are neutral about their work. Around 30% are engaged or hyper-engaged. Between 18 to 20% are toxically disengaged. The only antidote for this global pandemic that we know of is PURPOSE. Bringing meaning and purpose to our work, paid or pro bono, turns a job or even a career into a calling!

“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born
and the day you find out why.” —Mark Twain

Strategic purpose drives sustainable profit. This is not some touchy feely woo woo notion. This is 2,500 years old and an integral part of the wisdom traditions. This is also the latest thing backed by damned good social science…

  1. Finally, for those of us like me who have “imposter syndrome” surrounded by all these brilliant minds, accomplished leaders, inspiring teachers, & scary smart students whose entry level GPAs today would preclude the likes of us from even being eligible for admission at UC San Diego, I offer a counter-intuitive suggestion. We need to be “C” students.

We have B school (business). We even have D school (design). It is time for C school.  C school is about Culture and includes a culture of philanthropy. We need Cultural Competency and Cultural Literacy and I am not talking about how low you bow when you receive a Japanese business card, or which fork you use to eat your salad.

Being a C School affirms our notion of (the Triton) brand as culture not marketing campaigns. This orientation foregrounds:

    1. Collective Wisdom- not just smarts or intelligence
    2. Compassion- inviting the Dalai Lama to commencement is signaling we care about this most divine of human qualities. Human-centered design is vital to architecting a better future
    3. Civility- Today, we need more than civic engagement we need civil engagement now more than ever. Institutions of higher education committed to preparing us for a future that doesn’t exist yet, can model and mentor this for our whole society
    4. Co Curricula- It is about way more than what happens in the classroom. Less than 5% of our time over the course of our life is spent in the classroom, so we must pay attention to the other 95% of our live-long learning experience
    5. Connection- We all have a deep desire for connection. But connection is what our stakeholders through the law of reciprocity return to us by the way we treat them, not the other way around. Sequencing this properly really matters or we have it back-asswards
    6. Courage- All this requires a great deal of courage to fly in the face of countervailing trends and counterfeit correlations or unconscious biases that hold us hostage to a mind set and world view that might be in dire need of a refresh.

This world needs you. This community needs you. This campus needs you. There are students-in-waiting; the next generation through the promise, power and possibilities in front of us, and with our help will in turn be supported, activated, and yes LOVED to make our world better.

Hearts and Scholars:
Here is vid from a couple of years ago speaking to the power & promise made possible through scholarships. I am sure this holds true at all institutions…
Scholarship is an annuity that keeps on giving! You touch a life. They touch a world…
Love, Neville

Persistence in the Face of Overwhelming Odds:
I am guessing you didn’t know this part of Colonel Sanders story…Never, NEVER Give UP!

America’s KINDest Region?
Nominations for National Philanthropy Day close this week and here is a KUSI TV segment from this week inviting all of us to shine light not just by being the candle, but also by serving as the mirror…

Thanks this week go to educators everywhere, progressive parents like the Parenting 2.0 group, and all of us that extend our selves in loving kindness
Hope to see some of you at the Dalai Lama event!

Pay it forward!
Baby Neville


Kids for Peace Pledge
I pledge to use my words to speak in a kind way.
I pledge to help others as I go throughout my day.
I pledge to care for our earth with my healing heart and hands.
I pledge to respect people in each and every land.
I pledge to join together as we unite the big and small.
I pledge to do my part to create peace for one and all.
 Visit our Kids for Peace website

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“The two most important days in your life are the day you are born
and the day you find out why.” —Mark Twain

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