The Ka Makani make history.

I must mark the day with a post of celebration: yesterday we had a wonderful afternoon on a beautiful day in Waimea, at the Hawaii Preparatory Academy campus. It was senior day for my son and his football team: their last home game in the regular season. And this is what happened, a feat unachieved at the school for the last 38 years:

Ka Makani make history: HPA tops Hilo, goes undefeated in regular season for first time since 1966.

The old saying “save the best for last” was definitely appropriate Saturday in Waimea.

After all, it was the first time in years that two undefeated football teams — HPA and Hilo — faced one another on the final day of the regular season. Even though the outcome of the game had no affect on the playoff picture, it had the feel of a championship game as HPA held on for a 24-14 win. Continue reading (free subscription required).

Andrewqueen103004HPA’s Andrew Queen pulls in a first-quarter pass Saturday during Ka Makani’s 24-14 victory over previously unbeaten Hilo. BARON SEKIYA | WEST HAWAII TODAY

Both teams went into the game undefeated, already having secured the top berth in their respective state-wide divisions. It was a good game between two very good teams, and one that I enjoyed immensely because all the parents and spectators behaved well, something that unfortunately, rarely happens in hotly contested games and rivalries here in Big Island football.

So parents, coaches, fans of HPA and Hilo: thank you for a day of sports integrity. Our sons deserve that honor after working so hard at a game they all love.

More on Making Meaning

If you haven’t read it yet, skip down to my post Check Out Art of the Start. Then come back up here.

I read the manifesto again this morning for myself, for the 9th or 10th time, and want to share a bit more with you about No. 1 on Guy’s *GIST List: Make Meaning.

“Everyone should carefully observe which way his heart draws him, and then choose that way with all his strength.” —Guy Kawasaki.

One of the questions I’m asked most often these days, is why, or how I came to write my own book, Managing with Aloha. It’s a story that started in a very practical way, with my behaving in pragmatic fashion true to long-standing habit. However it’s a story that developed (and is still being lived, and written) because it became my way—after years of subconsciously looking for it—to make meaning.

Guy says it took him 20 years to figure it out for himself, and here, well, I’m admitting it took me way longer than that. The point is this: you can beat both our track records and start today.

In the very beginning of Art of the Start, Kawasaki explains that “making meaning is the most powerful motivator there is.” He then asks us to do a very simple exercise:

“Complete this Sentence: If your organization never existed, the world would be worse off because____________________________.”

Here’s how I now finish it “ ” because people need to know all the work they do can be worthwhile, and the business community in Hawaii can lead the way with our values of aloha.”

In the past, as much as I would admire people like Mother Theresa, Martin Luther King, and other humanitarians, I’d have this ache inside wondering if a day would ever come that I had a similar passion to serve that was so strong, so noble. Would I ever work for a reason other than making the money needed to survive? And Guy is absolutely right: once you do know what meaning you are destined to deliver, it is the most powerful motivator there is.

Spend some time with Guy’s manifesto. Do his exercises. Think of them as a gift you give yourself.

One last link to share if you enjoy the ChangeThis manifesto of Art of the Start as much as I did:

Enjoy the rest of your month; we’re days away from a new Ho‘ohana on November 1st.
(Halloween is my husband’s birthday, so we’ll be celebrating at the Say House as we always do!)

*GIST is Great Ideas for Starting Things.

P.S. Did you know that Guy Kawasaki was born and raised in Hawaii?

Post update: Have just learned that Art of the Start is in contention as Fast Company’s Book Club selection for January: Take this link and cast your vote!

“How did Ho‘ohana get to be your mantra?”

I’ve had a couple of people ask me this since Tuesday’s post, and you needn’t ask me twice to talk about it ”

Ho‘ohana is my Hawaiian value for worthwhile work, and in a nutshell, I like to work. I thrive on it. It’s fun for me, and it’s very rewarding. The second chapter of my book is devoted to Ho‘ohana, right after chapter one on Aloha.

To ho‘ohana is to work with intent, with purpose. Work can, and should be, a time when you are working to bring meaning, fulfillment, and fun to the life you lead.

Managers do this for themselves, and they do this for those they manage. They teach and coach people to do it for themselves. And for me, there are few things more rewarding than that.

When you Ho‘ohana, you redefine the word “work” and make it yours. Ho‘ohana urges you to indulge your passion for the pleasures of work by choosing the right work in the first place.

Work in celebration of your natural strengths, talents and gifts.
Work to make your weaknesses irrelevant, for they are.
Work at something you love doing, something that brings you joy.
Work to feel the satisfaction of good hard work, of intentional effort.
Work to break a sweat, and to get dirty and gritty and real.
Work to fulfill your personal mission, or
Work to show your agreement with another’s mission.
Work to make a difference, to feel fulfilled, to “make meaning.”
Work to serve others well, and serve your spirit for giving.
Work to support someone you care about.
Work to help someone you believe in.
Work to learn what you don’t yet know.
Work for a cause you feel deeply about.
Work to leave a legacy.
Work to create a better future.
Work to deliver a gift to humanity.

Do these things, and you Ho‘ohana. You work for yourself. And in the process, I can guarantee you will bring more value to your life, and to your world.

Thus, as you know, Ho‘ohana easily became the name I chose for my monthly Talk Story newsletter too. It’s a name worth living up to, it’s the promise I work to keep in my writing.

It’s my personal mantra and the mantra of my company.

So again, I’ll ask you the same question I asked on Tuesday: what’s your mantra?

And don’t answer for me (although I’d love to hear it). Answer it for yourself.

Campaign strategy: tell the truth.

As Election Day approaches, I again find that I am increasingly annoyed with the voices of candidates for nearly every single office up for reelection. Their commercials get one shot with me: if they blow it, I hit mute on the remote every time it may be repeated.

I try hard to be a good citizen: I educate myself on the issues, and I vote—always. As an employer, I encouraged my employees to do the same. I encourage those I coach to vote. Yet it gets harder and harder to vote intelligently because it gets harder and harder to figure out when someone is telling the truth. There should be a law that automatically disqualifies you from running if you are caught lying. We deserve better.

Then once people are in office, imagine how much they could achieve if lying was forbidden in every single forum they vote in on our behalf!

I’m a fan of the morning news, and today I did listen (my husband is off and kept the remote away from me) to yet another lame conversation between a reporter and two opposing candidates, these for our congressional seat, where one said, “my opponent has voted for _______” followed by the other saying “no I didn’t. However my opponent _______” Aren’t those voting histories public record? How dumb do they think we are?

Then of course the reporter never has enough air time to insist they simply tell us what they are planning to do. Period. We don’t need you to evaluate the other guy: leave that, and the truth of their performance to us. Tell us about you. Or is your own truth too ugly even for you to bear?

The motto of our state is “Ua mau ke ea o ka ‘āina i ke pono,” translated as meaning “the life of the land is perpetuated in righteousness.” If we’re to have any shot at this in our state, and in our country, we need to demand the truth from those we vote for.