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Life at the Speed of Light

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About a week ago, I was in Boston participating in a conference that I had helped to organize with Peter Senge. For two days, the Summit on the Future of the Corporation explored how to redesign the corporation to maximize its positive effect on society. The conference was one of the most stimulating and exciting that I have been to in a long time – and I go to way too many of them.

There were many wonderful speakers that I had never before met including author and organizational behavior specialist Charles Handy; Business Strategist Arie de Geus; Michael Marx , Executive Director of Corporate Ethics International; Harvard Business School professor Rosabeth Moss Kanter; and corporate governance expert Robert Monks.

The following day I spoke to the entrepreneurs club at New York University’s Stern Business school, followed by a talk at the
Ad Age idea Conference at the Nokia Theatre, where I felt compelled to challenge the industry to exercise some more control over the recent spate of deceptive “green” advertising. (Inkslinger’s post yesterday has a link to a brief video clip of my presentation.)

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Tube Time: Seventh Gen On the Air

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Author: the Inkslinger

For all those whose TV antennas (or satellite dishes or cables or fiber optics or whatever…) are within reach of the signal from Vermont Public Television, we’ve got this Official Media Alert:

A new two-part program called ReGeneration
debuts tomorrow night, April 18th at 7:30 with part two following on April 25th. The VPT program discusses a variety of eco-oriented people, projects, and businesses in our enviro-minded home state. An interview with Jeffrey and a look at Seventh Generation is featured as part of the April 18th edition. Set those Tivos and fire up the popcorn maker…

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Making (Air) Waves

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This is just a quick note to let everyone know about an upcoming radio appearance I've got on the docket this week.

Tomorrow I'll be appearing live on the Louis Free Show on WASN in Youngstown, Ohio. You can listen via streaming audio at the above link. I'm scheduled to be on at 9:00 am, give or take a few minutes. I can't promise I'll say anything profound at that early hour, but I'll try!

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Consumers Union Goes Green

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This weekend Burlington had the privilege of hosting the Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) national conference. There were almost 800 attendees including about 350 reporters. The SEJ is a wonderful group that I want to cover in a separate post. But for now, I’m just going to mention a couple of things while they’re fresh.

I had the opportunity to speak on a panel titled “Sticker Spin: The Murky World of Green Labeling.” Urvashi Rangan, a Senior Scientist and Policy Analyst for the Eco-Labeling Project (see below) at Consumers Union, was part of the panel, and two of her organization’s “green” websites deserve a mention:

The Consumers Union’s Eco-Labels initiative covers a wide variety of products that claim to have environmental benefits. It compares them to those that are conventionally farmed or produced, keeps track of labels recently introduced, and compares everything via an interactive report card that you can easily print to take with you while shopping.

Greener Choices is a CU site that focuses on consumer decisions and the impact (for better or worse) they can have on the environment. Greener Choices covers major environmental issues related to energy, climate change, waste and toxic substances, and connects these larger issues to the things people buy in more than a dozen product categories, including autos, appliances, electronics, home & garden, and food. Find out where your energy dollars go, how the products you buy and use can reduce the trend of global warming, and how they can save you money while they save the planet, Discover new ways to reuse or recycle what you would normally throw away and (this is topic #1 for me) learn how toxics found in everyday products impact the environment and your health. There’s a "green ratings" section for several product categories that features evaluations of a product's energy-, water- and fuel-efficiency, and other attributes.

Both of these sites are extremely helpful guides to navigating today’s consumer waters and making the best choices we can make for our families and the future.

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Radio-Free Jeffrey: Best Boss of the Year On the Air

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Author: the Inkslinger

Congratulations to Jeffrey! He’s been named one of the Best Bosses of 2006 by Winning Workplaces, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping companies create great work environments. Though it’s no surprise to anyone lucky enough to work with him, it’s nice to see the recognition spread beyond our office walls. To celebrate Bosses Day this past Monday and discuss the award, Jeffrey was a guest on the Dave & Bob Show on the Grape Vine Talk Radio Network.

Click our player and you can listen in…


powered by ODEO

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Relentless Caring

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This past Saturday I spoke at the Green Festival in Washington, DC. What I spoke about represented a significant departure from my usual focus on the business case for corporate responsibility or the growth of the natural products industry.

Here are some notes from my talk:

Love, I believe, is about relentlessly caring
That means not just caring when it’s comfortable or easy. Or when you feel like caring. But caring all the time. Especially when you don’t feel like caring. It means that you never stop.

Because the caring is not for you or even necessarily for another. But because it is the only way to be in the world. To love the whole of the world rather that the parts and pieces you choose.

To care relentlessly we must also see what lies within. The unexpressed potential. The wisdom in the most simple things. The essence rather than the outward manifestation. And to care relentlessly you need to be able to generate new patterns in your being because to care relentlessly is not what we are taught to do. Especially at work.

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The Light at My Journey's End

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Monday, September 11th, 2006,
Charlotte, Vermont

I spent yesterday looking out the windows of planes. Looking down on a world I could barely see, feel or touch. For the better part of twelve hours I made the trip from Cortes Island, to Seattle, on to Washington, DC, and then home to Burlington, walking into the door of my home at the stroke of midnight.

Today is a celebration of sunlight, bright green colors, and crystal specks glowing off the lake. This is an amazing place to come back to on a day like today. Well actually it's an amazing place to return to almost any day but today especially. This is a day to decompress, to go slow, to look and listen. A day without phone calls or e-mail. A day to be home.

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The Week After Labor Day

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The expansive time and space of the long Labor Day weekend has faded, almost as if it never happened. Where does the past actually go other than taking up some space somewhere in my mind? I’m 36,000 feet up in the sky generating CO2 emissions that I’ll have to offset. The expansiveness has now moved from my mind to the picture outside my window. The sun just dipped down below the horizon. We aren’t heading West fast enough to keep it in sight as I fly in the late afternoon from Washington DC to Seattle, where I will head out to Cortes Island, off the Vancouver coast, to give a talk at the Hollyhock Institute.

In a few short days I have marched 10 miles in a Global Warming action, met with the head of labor’s largest union, spent 2 ½ days in a Greenpeace Board meeting, and tried to exercise and meditate enough to keep my head in a place that allows me to keep contributing to the creation of a future that my three children will want to live in.

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An Elephant in the Room: Jeffrey's Ethical Corp. Conference Keynote Address

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Author: the Inkslinger

Here are Jeffrey's notes for his keynote address at the Ethical Corporation conference in Philadelphia on June 14, 2006:

I find myself in a challenging situation!

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They Asked, Jeffrey Answered

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Author: the Inkslinger

Just wanted to drop this quick note to say that Jeffrey's Q&A with Grist readers is now on-line as part of his Interactivist participation this week. The questions posed are pretty interesting as are Jeffrey's answers, and it makes for a good snapshot of some things that don't often get discussed. Worth a look if you've got some time this weekend.

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