International Men’s Day

International Men's Day

19 November is International Men’s Day (c) R Dennison November 2013

I’m usually on the ball when it comes to noting anniversaries and special days.  However the significance of 19 November – International Men’s Day– slipped by me.

After a quick read of the IMD website I can sign up to the goals for the day.  Those goals challenge men to become better role models and promote gender equality.  Where’s the downside?

Interestingly I only happened to come across a reference to IMD courtesy of Dr Tim Stanley in the Daily Telegraph.

He has shared a 9 item tongue- in-cheek list of ‘manly, masculine and non-girlie’ ways to commemorate the day.

First item on the list is to start the morning with steak and cigarettes.  I think I see what Dr S is saying about truly ‘manly’ men, as he would describe them.   I suspect they aren’t the sort of fellas who would grow facial hair for Movember.

There are other perspectives on masculinity of course (to be fair, some within the Telegraph itself as the related article below shows).  The Mankind Project in the UK also offers one

Hopefully, despite the scorn from some quarters, self-aware guys will take a chance, today or soon, to rise to the challenge and grow.  Who knows, some might even be selfless and  pursue long-term goals that make them better men.

Work In Progress

British Library Business & IP Centre

Good Resources At The British Library (c) R Dennison November 2013

Kudos to the British Library’s Business & IP (Intellectual Property) Centre, for one particular area of work.  They definitely lay on some great business-themed learning and networking opportunities.  Over recent weeks I’ve enjoyed finding out more about:

If one of your goals is to learn more about entrepreneurship the British Library is a good resource to tap into.

Here’s another work related thought, this one courtesy of the Daily Telegraph.  Apparently research from insurance firm LV suggests there are 1.7m home-based sole traders in the UK at present.

Some 11% of those traders – 180,000 – do not have insurance for their business activity.  They may believe that their domestic policies protect them, when in fact they do not.

It sounds like there is a need to signpost some top ten ‘how to’ materials to new entrepreneurs.  In that way the 11% figure may gradually come down and fewer start-ups will miss out on a basic element that helps their businesses get going.


The Things You Learn From The Movies

Screenshot of Paul Henreid, Ingrid Bergman, Cl...

Screenshot of Paul Henreid, Ingrid Bergman, Claude Rains and Humphrey Bogart from the trailer for the film Casablanca. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Happy Birthday Warner Brothers.  This week, courtesy of the Daily Telegraph, I learned that this film studio is 90 years old.  David Grittens’ article suggests that Warner Brothers introduced a grittier sort of realism to the cinema audience of the 1920s and 30s.


For a start their actors – including Ingrid Bergman, Humphrey Bogart, James Cagney, Bette Davis – looked right for their roles, rather than being picture perfect.   You know they have lived a little and will use that life experience, one way or another, as the story unfolds.


Being liberal – and very tongue in cheek – with the concept of realism I would say Warner Brothers offers some personal development pointers too.  Here are three thoughts on the subject.


Casablanca’s Rick would love to rekindle the pre-war romance he had with Ilsa.  However he adjusts what he wants in favour of what the situation (War, Fidelity, Resistance) demands.  He lets her go.  They will always have Paris after all.  That sounds like a simple action to take, but the impact it has for all concerned is huge.


Wile E Coyote will always strive to catch the Roadrunner and will always come to grief doing so.  He doesn’t stop to learn wisdom from the many setbacks he experiences – with or without the help of Acme Corporation products.  He probably needs a coach to support him in identifying realistic options and then to do some effective action planning.


Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight might also benefit from some support, so that Bruce Wayne can look deep underneath the Kevlar body armour and find out what he truly wants.  That might make his life less conflict-prone.