Common Outlook Consulting Inc. New Perspectives
March 2014 - Issue # 14-03

Founder's Message


As you read the article below - the second of two contemplating the Olympian-like feats behind the defeat of the political system of apartheid - you won't find specifics about Conflict Management, Negotiation techniques or the Change process.

Those practices helped bring about the end of apartheid, but the rallying call was the spirited man - and the spirit of the man who understood those processes.

In the four months since Nelson Mandela's death, we've come to realize that in addition to his great achievements, one of his greatest legacies is that he lifted a nation using the kind of strength and courage we all possess to varying degrees.

It is a thought that gives pause - and cause for optimism.




We all have damaging thoughts about the practices or habits of others - damaging for us, that is... given that those thoughts mirror what we think of ourselves. How heartening then, to realize we can change the way we think about others.


What's New 


Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well.

This is the title of a great new book published just last week by our close colleagues Doug Stone and Sheila Heen of the Harvard Negotiation Project. It will help you learn and grow from any type of feedback life gives you. We recommend it highly.

April & May
Two-Part Series: The Should or the Good Life?




"One of the most difficult things is not to change society - but to change yourself."

~Nelson Mandela, 1999





The hoopla will be over this Sunday: the victories celebrated; the losses explained. A wild heart-pounding ride indeed, for many of us have been watching the Games as if we were the ones on the slopes and ice. As if we were the Olympians and Para-Olympians.

Spellbinding though they are; the thrills and chills, the pride and frustrations are momentary stories; we take note, we celebrate or mourn... and move on. Nudged to remember Sochi a few months from now, we'll mostly recall a slip, a power-play, a Junio-like moment of grace - moments that reflect our proclivity to take on the odds no matter the outcome.

Why then, four months after Nelson Mandela's death, is our response so much more profound? What is it about his losses - and his ultimate triumph - that takes us beyond recollection and reflection into the stillness of the mind?


Peter Hiddema

Photo of Founder: Peter Hiddema


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