I had the pleasure of attending a very informative session Tuesday evening at the Hyatt La Jolla Ca. The Economic Development Corporation (EDC) hosted the event and Mayor Jerry Sanders talked about our beautiful San Diego and the goal to continue helping our city grow and be the best place that it can be. Also the new slogan for San Diego was introduced, “Community First”. One of the challenges that is ever present in any group of people is the lack of cooperation.
There was also a wonderful speech by the keynote speaker, David Gergen, Commentator, editor, teacher, public servant, best-selling author and adviser to presidents for 30 years. David Gergen is currently a professor of public service at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and director of its Center for Public Leadership. He is also editor-at-large for U.S. News & World Report and a Senior Political Analyst for CNN. In earlier years, he served as a White House advisor to Presidents Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton.
Mr. Gergen has a very friendly but poignant message. He said that he loved the idea of San Diego new slogan, community first and that San Diego is truly an amazing city and he can see why this is a world class attraction, not only because of the beautiful environment, but the people. He felt a real sense of community.
Mr. Gergen went on to speak about the United States and the eroding perception that the international community has had over the past 8 years. He said that the recent elections had renewed a sense of faith in to the international community due to the fact that there were three distinctly different people running for President. McCain (A POW), Hilary (A woman), and Obama (An African American), only in America can you see such diversity, and the world is watching with a renewed interest and hope that we will do the right thing, not for just ourselves, but for the world.
David went on to talk about the state of the elections and had some very interesting statistics and facts that he spoke of. The first was that he knows Senator McCain and his wife Cindy personally. He said that he is an outstanding individual. He also, said that the senator’s campaign isn’t catching on like they’d hoped and that the polls show that he’s losing ground. Additionally he said that, historically, when a party has maintained office for 8 consecutive years, the opposite party almost always inherits the new office. This has been the case historically with one exception – Ronald Regan.
Mr. Gergen went on to say that he knows the Professor whom Senator Obama had studied under said that Barack is one of the smartest people he has ever encountered. Senator Obama has also done something that both Senator Clinton and Senator McCain didn’t do; he out organized them by using technology, via the internet and a grassroots approach. Mr. Gergen stated that both Senator’s Clinton and McCain used traditional campaign methodology and that our new America requires more innovative thinking – versus traditional. This denotes someone who is innovative.
One of the most important distinctions that he brought to the table was that in this new America we live in, it doesn’t matter who wins the election, although signs are showing that we’ll have a democratic President. The most important thing that matters is how we are governed. Mr. Gergen said that we face times in America unlike any other in history! Pay attention to this – this is about Country first. Not self, not Republican not Democrat – our country’s immediate future depend on it.
He compared these times to those of the era President Roosevelt, the great depression and WWII, he also said that the issues we face are greater than those times of Roosevelt’s era! He told a wonderful story about Roosevelt’s pride in America’s innovative spirit and suggested that the same level of commitment to our country and innovation would be what is needed in these times.
Mr. Gergen said that we have four MAJOR issues that the new regime will face in its first year of governing that will determine our fate as a super power. The four issues are;
1. Getting our own home in order – energy plan, healthcare, Social Security, and Competitiveness.
2. Nuclear Proliferation – Everyone wants a nuclear bomb for some reason.
3. Climate Change – until recently, the current administration has denied this, but now acknowledges it.
4. The Rise of Asia – China, Japan, and India are emerging super powers.
America has been a super power for a short time and has to manage how we will work with the rest of the world. Our triple A credit is on the line and we can’t afford to lose it. We also don’t want to go into the next couple of decades and fall out of our status – a third world war could be brewing. Mr. Gergen isn’t on tour talking about this type of information to sell books, he’s sharing information that he hopes will resonate to on a deeper level with us – the American people.
I’ve decided to write this email in hopes that many of you will take time to read, ponder and forward. Although many people won’t do anything unless our lives are made uncomfortable, and not even that, unbearable is a better word. You see, most of us have such amazing lives here in San Diego and the United States, that unless bombs are crashing around us, we would prefer going to the beach and enjoying our life. However, the reason I write this email (at the beach) is to stimulate a more proactive thinking. We are truly in a window that has never been seen by America before and have to be very proactive and innovative. We MUST put our difference aside and be one community, one country, one world.
I will end with a Hopi Indian Prayer that I discovered in Maria Shriver’s book – “Just Who Will You Be?” I recommend that you read it.
We have been telling the people that this is the eleventh hour,
Now we must go back and tell the people that this IS the Hour.
Here are the things that must be considered:
Where are you living?
What are you doing?
What are your relations?
Where is your water?
Know your garden. It is time to speak your truth.
Please visit my website, www.TheFriendZone, There are a ton of very good resources here for anyone who is serious about their career or job search!
Hope to see you in The Friend Zone!
Master Career Strategist