A Leadership Mantra For Modern Times: “I Failed!”

“The trick is to get back on the horse (or motorcycle) and try again. And again, and again.” Photo by Abigail KeenanCourtesy of Unsplash

Somewhere around third or fourth session of the beginner’s improv class I teach at The Unified Scene Theater, a brick-and-mortar improv space located in the Bloomingdale Neighborhood of Washington, DC, I make the entire class stand up, raise their hands, and yell, as loud as they can “I FAILED! I FAILED AT IMPROV! I FAILED AT MAKING CRAP UP! HOORAY!”

Because, I tell them, they will. Failure is built into this medium. Not everything is perfect the first time out. Even seasoned veterans have bad shows. The now syndicated show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” airs for 22 minutes. But how long did it take to record the shows for the producer and directors to cherry-pick those segments? Hours. Why? Because not everything works. People who have shared the stage for decades sometimes have miscues, moments that don’t always result in brilliance and magic. It’s the nature of the beast. The trick is to get back on the horse and try again. And again, and again.

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Walking with the Bible & Constitution, Where Faith and Politics Converge: A Conversation with Congressman Emanuel Cleaver

Congressman Emanuel Cleaver

In this episode of Suite Talk we sit down with U.S. Representative Emanuel Cleaver of Kansas City, MO for a serious, yet at times playful, conversation about faith, family, creative expression and social justice.

Congressman Cleaver has worn many hats during the past four decades—City Councilman, Mayor, radio talk show host, husband and father—all while pastoring the St. James United Methodist Church in Kansas City.

Like his hometown standing at the confluence of two powerful rivers, Congressman Cleaver has spent his life navigating mighty forces at the intersection of secular and sacred worlds. He offers a unique perspective our current social and political landscape.

Some of what we learn include: what he does to relax (get ready for this one), how to talk God and what it’s like to watch your son come into his own.

Lean in, lean back and enjoy!

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