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Sept. 9, 2022

BONUS #6 | August 2022 Blog - Where Do You Get Your Energy From?

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Thanks for tuning in for another bonus episode of the Loco experience podcast. My August blog is titled, where do you get your energy from? And I'll be reading it now. I was talking to my mom the other day, detailing all the activities we'd had going on lately among them a birthday camping weekend. Reality is ride and rally and being the volunteer caterer for my next door. Neighbor's wedding weekend in their backyard. And my mom shared an exclamation that I've heard hundreds of times from her going back to my childhood. Where do you get your energy from? Often proceeded by an UTA. This favorite expression of my mothers has become the title for this month's blog. And I'll be examining the topic from various perspectives. Where do we get our energy from as individuals and families as teams and organizations, and as communities, states and nations go. It's an important question to ask ourselves, and I hope that together we can learn as we. Before we really got started with this month's blog. I wanna give some kudos to our low-code next level. Facilitator drew GSK drew came in as a low co-facilitator in the late summer of 2022 years ago this month and took over the next level chapter that was struggling with cohesion dangerously low in membership and not in a great place overall in a few short months, that chapter was stable and growing again. And has now been at full capacity for most of this. Together drew and I launched the next level two chapter in the spring of 2021, which chapter is now also at full capacity and thriving. And the members of these two chapters trusted us enough to recommend their key employees for a new chapter this spring with Allison CBE facilitating the next level catalyst. These three chapters are our premium memberships and this growth has allowed low-code to grow in both revenues and reputation. And I must say I'm. How did drew support this turnaround in fortunes for the next level chapters and their membership to start with, he got back to basics the blocking and tackling that makes up the heart of the game for any team clarify, energize and adapt is a simple framework that drew has worked with over the years. And step one was to clarify, what do we here for? Step two. Which we did by adding new members, creating intentional connection points and developing a culture of obstacle clearing and intentional growth. Step three, adapt is in process. And later this year, we'll be doing group workshops for both chapters to clarify yet again, when drew said he wanted to take on a second next level chapter, I must confess I was a bit reluctant. I served in the role of facilitator for many, a season. And the administrative tasks and relationship tending associated with minding a single chapter is enough for my taste. But drew is absolutely energized by this role. He's much more organized than I am like me. He's driven by its love for the small business community in Northern Colorado. And he absolutely thrives in the presence of these many accomplished business leaders. He's energized by the responsibility and the opportunity and doing a great job as evidenced by the steady membership growth. And so who am I to hold him back from the things that bring him joy? Another of my local facilitators, Brandon Avery falls closer to me than drew on the organizational scale. And isn't energized by the same things that drew is. He's more into ideas, variety and achievement. Brandon was a member of the Loco going back to the early days and became a facilitator. After he sold is insurance business. He gets his energy from the diversity of businesses and personalities in his chapter by sorting through ideas and challenges. And by helping people achieve their goals. And he does the organizational part with less joy. And with more procrastination, I suspect if he's like me, I got acquainted with a near future podcast guest today, a highly accomplished female CEO who was referred with strong recommendation. And she was sharing that perhaps her favorite season in her career was when she was a teacher of students and young nurses. The enthusiasm of youth is energizing to. And we wondered together on our call, where she might get more regular taste of that nectar in her current role, all these short biopics to say different strokes for different vs. We all get our energy from different things. And one of the most important things to do is understand about yourself. Where do you get your energy from? What fills your cup, so to speak within your sphere of responsibility and opportunity in the workplace, where do you find joy in your time, away from the. I meet too many people on a constant March. It seems from one unpleasant, but necessary task to the next. And for the most part, you'd be happier. If you focus more of your time on the things that bring you joy, I know they don't call it work for no reason. And the trash won't take itself out to the bin. But if we can know where we get our energy from, we can schedule it into our daily and weekly routines, unless you get your energy from spontaneity. But if that's the case, you know what to do. Okay. That. We can be energized as individuals by understanding where we get our energy from and making time for those activities. But how can we bring that into a team environment? My first answer is found in the question, bring it teams thrive when each and every team member is bringing their special talent and energy to the team and sharing, and they thrive when there is an appreciation of the diversity of roles and personalities, they make up the team. Knowing how the pieces fit together can make a big difference in engagement level to build a high performing team. And it's not only about the big why, but also about the, all the little hows, how does this work? What about that? How do my efforts contribute to delivering value to our customers and our clients? The day to day of business often seems to get in the way of bringing people together as a team, giving them space to get to know one another in the various roles within the organiz. But most leaders who take their business from good to great will tell you that these hours among the most important spent I've been writing recently about the halos relational intelligence framework that we've been increasingly using at Loco in part, because I think it's a great foundation for bringing a team together. I've been invited to speak at the disrupt HR event on September 21st. And my topic is about maximizing the power of diversity using Halo's trades. If you want to see me and many. usually more qualified speakers boil their special sauce into the HR space in a five minute presentation. This is your chance, is that the candlelight dinner theater from four to 7:00 PM, more information and registration at disrupt HR Northern Colorado. And if you're intrigued enough by my regular mentions and would like to learn more about getting team assessments or having me in for an in person workshop ping me directly at Kurt Loco, think tank.com. Okay. So back to my topic. We've got these diverse roles and diverse personalities, all powering the entrepreneurial engines. We call small businesses with everyone, bringing their talent and spending as much time as possible, doing what they do best. And it reminds me about how well this concept, scales communities, power their economic engines in a variety of ways as well with the various industries and employers all doing what they do best and consequently powering the payrolls of the workers and the retail spending and the coffers of. In weld county, they have an amazing resource of land and water and agricultural power is much of their economy, not just the farms, but also the multitude of feed lots and processing plants and small food and equipment manufacturing businesses. You know, that smell that comes in when the wind is from the east, it's the smell of money. In addition, they have UNC in Ames, community college, providing education to the young folks and jobs to the smarty PS. And they have a stable and vibrant oil and gas industry, which feed discretionary royalty income into the economy through investment and spending and drives the many high wage jobs that keep car dealerships and electronic stores in the chips. It's a blue collar centric economy, but those blue collar jobs drives a need for bankers and lawyers and digital marketing agencies in Fort Collins. The collars are whiter and the paychecks of the smarty pans are higher from CSU than the neighboring college. research and medicine and education drive a lot of our economy along with remote workers and tourism and small business, only 40 miles, and yet worlds apart, culturally Fort Collins and Greeley may be, but the principle factors hold true. It's good to have a diverse economic base with everyone working hard in doing what they do best this scales to a national level. Also where the different states and regions contribute different things to a national market. In the south, they grow cotton and fruits and vegetables in the Midwest. It's corn and soybeans and pigs and cows in the Northwest it's trees and airplanes. And in the Northeast, they specialize in attracting and employing smarty PS. And in California, they've got a high concentration of noit alls. Well, meaning know-it-alls generally, and they're trying to fix the things they feel are broken. They've developed an economic system that links enormous five and seven lane highways across an incredibly wide expansive land. Idyllic climate off the coast of California, leading the nation in commute times for decades. Now, Californians have been spending two to four hours in their cars, almost daily contributing to the famed Cali SMO, but I'm sure all will be well. Now that California has opted to mandate all electric or fuel cell new vehicle sales by 2035, the highways will be quieter to be sure, but I wonder where Californians will get their energy. California has done a good job of reducing their CO2 emissions overall moving earlier to natural gas and with abundant hydro and solar and wind generation ability. But their energy grid has been stretched thin in recent years with brown out on occasions and fires started by popping transformers overloaded by the strain of electricity demand of a growing population. Recent forecast suggests that the move to. Plus continued population growth could increase electricity demand by 65% or more by 2045. And there just isn't enough room for more windmills and solar and battery storage to cover all that need. They're keeping their one remaining nuclear power plant online for now, but unlikely to build more. And my hunch is that the decreasing availability of water will decrease hydropower over time. And I wonder again, where will they get their energy from? just as with activities and teams and industries, when it comes to energy, there is value in diversity. As people have strengths and weaknesses. So too, do our sources of energy as humans. It's all about cost and availability and energy density in the developing world. Much cooking is done with wood or dried animal done for these folks and electric stove with power generated by the burning of coal is a wonderful upgrade for human. No more smoke in the living space and much less time spent gathering animal done. Coal is dirty and even modern coal plants have been a shocking amount of carbon into the atmosphere and particulates into the surrounding communities. Natural gas by comparison is very clean burning, and it can be revved up and down quickly by comparison to coal filling in the gaps when cloudy days or extended calm, or too high winds take solar and wind off the. and at least in the us, it's highly available almost by a, by byproduct of fracking and drilling for oil to power, the cars and the trucks in Europe. They've elected not to allow for fracking, thus leaving them with very little natural gas of their own to be developed. They've been restarting their coal plants and even burning diesel fuel to generate electricity. If you're in the wood stove business in Europe right now, my hunch is that you're seeing brisk sales, this season bringing the population back to the same fuel source used for cooking in the developing world. It's one of the beautiful strengths of oil in its derivatives. As energy sources, the transportability, there are many ports across Europe that can handle an oil tanker, although not too many that can handle super tankers. And once it's off the boat, oil and gasoline and diesel kerosene jet fuel, et cetera, can be transported by truck or rail to anywhere the trucks and rails can go. It's of a much higher energy density than natural gas, but dirtier plus you can make all kinds of products from oil, everything from fabrics to plastics, to manufacturing, compounds, and chemicals is derived from oil. Solar entered the energy game in the 1980s, mostly with poor performing roof funded systems and some subsidized solar farms here. And. But advances in solar technology really accelerated the industry through the early two thousands. And it's an important part of our energy mix. Today. I looked into solar from my house, but have too many trees and I'd love to see solar on more roofs in our community and every community. I have solar on my camper van and it's great free electricity and no emissions, but I don't want a solar farm in my backyard. And it turns out nobody else does. Even in the Mojave desert, there are graffiti signs with slogans like solar kills written on the fences, around the farms and to observe the landscape, it seems fairly accurate also, concerning is China's dominance over solar manufacturing, which is energy and rare mineral intensive and accomplished mostly using energy derived from dirty coal. Here's a side note for you as Europe and America were patting themselves in the backs over their reductions in greenhouse gas. The Chinese and Indians and others were happily becoming our outsourced manufacturing partners, moving those energy intensive and pollutive industries to far away lands where the poor people live. I hate to break it to you though, but it's the same air and moving the problem far away does not remove the problem. It takes energy to do stuff and make stuff and people selfish as they are like to do stuff and have stuff. So moving on through the energy options, we come to wind. I like wind power and having grown up in North Dakota, perhaps the windiest state in the nation, because Minnesota sucks and Montana blows. Haha. It seems like what could be the clean energy source the world has been looking for, but wind turbines are also mineral and energy intensive to manufacture and they don't have the service life of a coal or gas or nuclear plant. And the wind doesn't always blow, which leads to the need for expensive and inefficient battery storage or supplementation with gas, power generat. But gas plants don't like to set idle for when the wind doesn't blow. So it's an economic challenge to rely on wind at scale. And wind has two other major downfalls, only one of which are allowed to know about first they're ugly. And no one really wants them in their backyards either. And really, I don't even like seeing them ugly up the landscape in Nebraska or North Dakota or wherever I'm traveling through. And I especially don't wanna see them in scenic places like mountain ranges. And that's where the second factor really comes into. I've come to believe that too many wind turbines change the weather, they chop up air currents and result in significant wind speed declines in the caring capacity of the water in the mountains, off California in the shores off Europe, there are vast numbers of wind turbines, and I believe they're beginning to alter the flow of water in both cases. And in the case of Europe, the wind has seemed to be reluctant even to blow. Could it be that installing wind turbines leads to the wind. Quote unquote, changing its mind about where it wants to blow. I'm not a scientist, but I don't think wind is the free lunch it is advertised to be. And I've found several people that have put together thoughtful examinations of this topic. So anyway, we've still got hydropower, which requires water flows from the Pacific to reach the Rockies of Colorado, at least in our country and nuclear, which I've always been a fan of, but have now become more of a champion of. Hy is pretty sweet, but it does require large amounts of infrastructure and fish killing dams. And it's also variable. We have dry years and wet years and always have the energy density of nuclear power is off the charts, even compared to oil or refined oil products. And it can be spooled up and down with ease. And there's no greenhouse gas issue. Uranium is abundant in our nation and in many places around the world and the waste te can be reused for many other purpose. but if you've got a nuclear power plant in your nation, you can use some of the byproducts to build a nuclear bomb. And even the spent fuel can turn a conventional bomb into a poison spreading terror device. Plus the memory of Fukushima is still fresh though, that disaster killed almost no one and left fuel lasting effects. So while I do love nuclear it too has drawbacks all this to say it's a diverse and wonderful world. Embrace it. In my honest opinion, the best way to deal with the climate challenge is to create a simple carbon tax and dividend system. No bureaucracy, no deciders of which technologies are acceptable and which ones are dirty, just a simple tax, a small one. The magic is in the dividend. Everybody gets it in equal measure. So if you're a rich dude, who's flying around in planes and driving a big truck, you can subsidize the person who lives a simple life and walks to work tax. What you want, less of subsidize what you want more. And it's the same with you and the same with your team, make space for the things that energize you, make it part of your routine, bring your special sauce and share it. Clarify the why, understand the, how tax, what you want less of and subsidize what you want more of and make it a great day. Thanks for reading.