Pay it forward

Kennesaw, GA – Pay it forward

Catherine Ryan Hyde wrote a brilliant novel that was based on a middle school student that was given an assignment by his social studies teacher to change the world.

The plan that the main character, Trevor, presented would be to create a flywheel effect of kindness by helping 3 other people in some big way. The 3 disconnected strangers, would each do the same again for 3 other random people and to have this process repeat over and over creating a better world.

We need folks to initiate such a plan today. Challenge yourself and a friend to do a few random acts of kindness this week for strangers that have no reason to expect anything from you.

If they ask why you might want to help them just mention that you are only paying forward kindness that you have been shown by someone else.

I would love to hear any reactions you might receive.




Pursuit of Happiness

Atlanta, GA – Pursuit of Happiness

I believe that the pursuit of happiness is a moral responsibility that we each have as members of our human race. The phrase was written by Thomas Jefferson as found in the Declaration of Independence and was originally written by the English philosopher John Locke in the early 18th century. In order to achieve greatness, we have to be passionate and driven to reach our potential. We need to work toward something. Aren’t we truly happy when we pursue our dreams and reach our capabilities? And happiness isn’t an instant feeling that comes and goes. Happiness is felt inside as you live.

My friend Edwin Luis Mendoza Alvarez writes that even losing while attempting big things can bring happiness. How? By embracing the process of the pursuit. Happiness is not just a present state but a mindset that is determined when you pursue something with your heart, mind and soul.

Now for the secret that I want to share with you. Something so simple to understand that millions of people spend years trying to accomplish but never find the happiness they are seeking. If you follow this simple rule, I guarantee your life will be changed.

In the present, do every little thing well.” That’s it. In other words, “Do good work” or as phrased by Greg Norman’s teacher, “Do it now, do it proper”.

Or found in scripture as, “Do all things decently and in order“. If we consciously perform every action, choice or decision as perfect as possible, we will continually get better at the process of achieving success. You will not fall behind by making good choices. The process gets easier and the rewards will follow. I guarantee it.



Our Sphere of Influence and BLM

Marrietta, GA – Our sphere of influence and BLM

We influence others in many different ways. Some have broad spheres and others have small personal interactions within their reach. As we witness the actions of the Black Lives Matter influencers, remember that their choices will have an impact on society. There will be positive influence and negative influence that will affect the lives of a generation at least.

I think of humble men who have achieved great influence such as Nelson Mandela or Mahatma Gandhi. Actions and accomplishments affect our sphere of influence today. Our leaders today have an opportunity to have a positive impact on our world and encourage meaningful change providing hope and deliberate action.

But even our children have their own spheres of influence. From the moment of birth, children affect the lives of parents, teachers and caregivers. We, as parents and adults have a responsibility to teach civility, and encourage equality while teaching discernment and bias. Yes, we all have bias built into our DNA from thousands of years of human development but race should not be a bias to be embraced or encouraged.

We are God’s children.  We are all unique, and we all have our own sphere of influence. Use your choices and biases wisely, and affect positive change on others.





Courage to dream

Kennesaw, GA – Courage to Dream

Determine what you want and have the courage to act on it!

Sometimes we day dream about this or that but never determine in our mind whether to take action and ASK of ourselves or others to obtain what we want. Are we shy or bashful? Or perhaps lack confidence?

When you determine to have something, put a list together of the steps necessary to have it. Then you will quickly decide whether or not you want to make the effort to obtain that which you desire.



Technology in the age of COVID-19

I would like to share with you this interview from Technology Harmony Podcast by Symphony Technology Solutions. Thank you so much, Katy Galley (podcast’s host) for this awesome interview.

[If you missed Podcast Interview, you can find it HERE]


Topic: How is Covid-19 impacting telecommunication and integrated systems industries?

Katy Galley: We have Executive Deal Lead with AT&T Bryan Wilson. How are you doing Bryan?

Bryan Wilson: Very good, thank you. Thanks for having me Katie.

Katy Galley: Absolutely, thank you so much, Bryan, for stopping by and sharing your story, uhm, you know our, you know our manufactured little studio today.

Bryan Wilson: Happy to be here.

Katy Galley: Awesome. So Bryan, just to kind of get to know you a little bit, can you tell us a little bit about your professional journey and how you got the job that you have today?

Bryan Wilson: Well, I’ve been in Fortune 500 most of my career. I graduated from college and started at GE and then moved to IBM and then Sun Microsystems and then I wound up here at AT&T, about eight years ago. So I’ve been at AT&T with Network Integration for about eight years and we are now moving and transitioning NI into a new group within AT&T called Advanced Solutions.

Katy Galley: Wow, jumps from some big companies in your past got quite the, uh, resume there.

Bryan Wilson: Well it’s- I’ve been very fortunate and they’ve been really great companies to work for and understanding big company processes and the way big companies work it’s been really great, really awesome customers and so it’s been a blessing.

Katy Galley: Absolutely, and so Bryan specifically you said getting into network integrations and in the last couple of years with AT&T.  So what exactly does that mean? What is that space entail?

Bryan Wilson: Well, a lot of people might not understand or realize the AT&T is a very large system integrator and we are very large in the government space and also in the private sector. Mostly with, you know, large fortune type companies, but also with emerging companies that are growing and forming, you know, consolidations with acquisitions and also companies that are, you know, migrating to new technologies. AT&T steps in with their past, with their solutions, their services, and their products to help those customers.

Katy Galley: And so being now, and I mean that’s amazing to learning, of course, the depth of AT&T. I mean you might have if you don’t know a lot about what AT&T does, I mean I’m certain most everybody knows that company name, but then learning about the depth of it and learning too; specifically, how you’re a systems integrator. And so Bryan, specifically now just with what’s going on in the world today and as you’re within your involvement in AT&T I wonder in your industry specifically what do you see as the major impact that Covid-19 is having?

Bryan Wilson: Well. Being a telecom company and having a DNA with our roots being in telecommunications we have really been fortunate to be in an area of the economy where working from home is something that we’ve done, and be felt very comfortable with, and helping companies sort of allow employees to work from home, is something that we’ve done for several years. So, then, the move from analog to digital, the move from voice over IP, and now the move to telecommunications through video conferencing, it really has been a, I guess, a path that we have grown into with our customers lead request, and also our business customers, and our home customers. So it has really been an area where our employees have done it and it’s been easier for us to help other customers and help their businesses- have gone online and worked remotely.

Katy Galley: So, it’s more so, I mean you were already kind of prepared for something, not prepared for something like this, necessarily, but you’re prepared for the capacity working from home, and so now, on the back end, you’re able to help other companies then, who are now starting to learn how to work from home?

Bryan Wilson: Yeah, I think so that’s a good way to phrase it. The technology has been there; it’s maturing it is becoming more mainstream. You know, looking how COVID has affected the education environment. And schools being done remotely, teachers working remotely with students, professors working remotely with their large projects, and then you know managers and their team working remote- it has become almost a maturation of the technology that has been here for a while and COVID has sort of created an environment where we’ve had to use the technology. You know, for example, you know churches have not been meeting for, you know, several weeks and they’re having online services, and they’re having telemedicine with doctors working with their patients using telemedicine, and conference call, and videoconference, so I think the technology has been there and the network has been very resilient and has been stretched, but successfully allowed us to use this new technology to continue doing what we need to do, through, you know, through this COVID situation.

Katy Galley: Yeah, I mean that makes a lot of sense, like you said it’s kind of transcending into churches and educate, the educational sector too, so it’s kind of- it’s not obviously just in the technology space, but then it’s, you said, it’s kind of maturing at a more rapid rate into these other industries that might not have been exposed to this level of technology, I guess technological innovation, before.

Bryan Wilson: You’re exactly right, that-that is it in a nutshell, really.

Katy Galley: Yeah, and I mean but that’s amazing then, too, that AT&T is able to be at the forefront of that, and kind of help them in that- in that guidance, and so then, Bryan, specifically- I know you’ve already touched on this different adaptation that maybe you see as needing to be made in your industry specifically, or as it kind of maybe Covid-19 continues, this maturation of the technology, but what adaptations or more adaptations do you see being needed to be made in your industry, and, more specifically, as it pertains to AT&T as Covid-19 continues?

Bryan Wilson: Well, I think that’s a good way to be seen situation. I guess, what we will look forward to, is to see how society embraces the technology and the means of communicating and how we are just, as a society going to be doing things just going forward. The basis of our society is still interaction and interacting in a different way may be embraced and accepted, but we still, as a community, want to do things together and, you know, for example, looking to see how the sports and entertainment venues are going to be different, how are we going to try to monitor the health of our citizens and our in our users; going forward we have customers looking at, you know, how can they put the safety of their employees and their-and their customers in a-in a primary, I guess, situation so that no one is put at risk, and we keep their health and their safety, you know, as a primary concern. So, things are going to be different, things are going to be a, I guess, adjusting to a new normal and we’re waiting to see what that new normal looks like, but I’m sure that technology is going to be a big part of it. To what extent, we will find out, we’ll see, but it is also allowing us to span internationally and what we’ve sort of, I guess, seen recently is also the international teaming and the video conferencing of working in teams. So it’s an exciting time, and it’s something that we really didn’t see happening as quickly as it has, but something like this pandemic has caused us to fast forward and implement things in a little different and faster paced than we may have anticipated.

Katy Galley: Yep, and I mean that’s, it’s pretty clear and the way you’re describing it and then to how the technology has had to mature much faster, like you said, and even though it was there, it already existed- it’s how it had to kind of catch up with what was going on at a really rapid pace, and so then, Bryan, I’m in that-with that similar vein, I mean, talking about different industries outside of the technology industry, but I mean more specifically to looking inwardly with integrated systems and AT&T in just this technology space, um do you see something that maybe all the players within this industry can be doing to maybe help each other out right now or as we start to kind of look to the future, like you said, I mean, how-we can’t really guess what’s going to happen, of course, but is there something, that maybe you see, that could be how we could start to be doing, or on the backend, begin to help each other out as the corona virus pandemic maybe starts to slow, and we start to really be having this technology- such an integral part of our lives now.

Bryan Wilson: Well, I think that is an excellent lead-in to companies working together closely, and working to satisfy business and technology-needs, working with customers. It’s been really amazing and inspirational to see how the public-private partnerships have come together and we’ve seen communities come together to assist one another, to work together, to embrace the first responders that we have with AT&T, you know, the First Net Initiative that is being rolled out for our first responders the, you know, the health care workers that are really, you know, keeping us safe in a, you know, in a tough environment, and to see communities and companies and even competitors work together, and where we can, to do things to better everyone, and to get us through some of these, you know, very, you know, unknown times, and seeing how things are turning back on and coming and, you know, out of a, you know,  shut down like we’ve had; I think it’s really really, I guess, encouraging, to see how it’s coming together and so with issues of, I guess, change, also creates opportunities and so I hoping that, you know, customers and technologists, such as myself, can understand that change is inevitable, we will get through this, and, with technology, and with communities, and with people wanting to succeed together that we can accomplish, you know, many great things going forward.

Katy Galley: I love that, it’s such an incredibly positive outlook, but then, too, coming specifically- it’s from our practical place to, I mean, you see it being a technology, see yourself, knowing the impact these incredible technologies are having and can have; and so that’s, um, I love that just having that positive forward-thinking. And so, Bryan, for you, now- one, thank you so much for sharing your insight today- if anyone wanted to learn more about you, learn more about AT&T, where might they connect with you?

Bryan Wilson: Well, I’m on most of the social media platforms. Bryan Wilson, Bryan E. or Bryan Eric Wilson and I’m happy to engage in reply and help anyone that might have a question or have a thought that I might be able to help them with and anything I can do I’m happy to assist.

Looking for the Good

Marietta, GA – While Bryan is away, today’s article is written by a special contributor, Kasey Eister.

So far 2020 has been filled with unknowns, a pandemic, and now an international surge in civil rights.  Throughout all of this, it can be hard to focus on what’s going right in the world.  The media has done a spectacular job of shutting down any positive and groundbreaking news in order to feed into the panic felt by millions. 

This is just a small reminder of the good that is still happening.  For example, this past May, SpaceX launched their two-manned Falcon-9 rocket making it the first American manned rocket takeoff since NASA closed its doors on the Space Shuttle Program in 2011.  While chaos seems to grip the world, we are still making discoveries and building new technologies that can promote era-changing outcomes.  This launch proves that, even though mostly hidden, there is still good going on in the world, you just have to go looking for it.

Emotions Run High

Marietta, GA – While Bryan is away, today’s article is written by a special contributor, Kasey Eister.

There is a lot going on in the world right now.  On top of the still underlying pandemic, there are now riots in the streets against racial inequality and injustice.  During this time it is easy to become wrapped up in confusion and anger as the world seems to turn against you.  It’s easy to become emotional in the face of everything and demand to know where the fairness is in all of this.

Emotion has its time and place, there’s no doubt about that.  However, being able to make rational decisions and thoughts becomes skewed when high emotions are involved.  In this time when tensions and emotions run high, I urge people to not make decisions based solely on emotion.  Put your phone down or step away from the computer and take some time to encourage better thought processes without the social stream of emotionality.

Understanding Our Future

Marietta, GA – While Bryan is away, today’s article is written by a special contributor, Kasey Eister.

The youth of today are our future tomorrow.  How that future looks depends on the choices that our youth make from very young ages, impacting them in their own futures and consequently impacting those around them.

In an article published by Nordstrom and Dackis (2011), there is discussion involving a survey given to 850 randomly selected students ranging from first to seventh grade and asked them questions involving such topics as psychological aspects, substance use, and violence in order to gather a wide range of information related to all three and to see if there was in fact a connection between these issues.  After 6 years, the students were surveyed again and the results showed a connection between crime and violence in relation to substance abuse.  The study concluded that drug use at an early age may cause violence, in which early involvement in violence might cause drug abuse as someone gets older.

Such studies as the one above seek to understand and research the youth in America in order to prohibit new waves of crime rising up.  Young children are often recruited into gangs and then introduced to violence and substance abuse in a never-ending cycle.  The youth of today are our future tomorrow and therefore need to be understood and engaged in the right activities as they grow.

For more information on the article where the study was discussed, please review the following:

Nordstrom, B. R., & Dackis, C. A. (n.d.). Drugs and crime. Journal of Psychiatry and Law, 39(4), 663–687

When Confidence is cool

Marietta, GA – When Confidence is cool

We all know who the cool kids in school were. I remember a guy in my school was just “cool”. I won’t mention his name, I will just call him “Howie”.

Howie had an older brother, who was also cool. Everyone know who Howie was. The teachers all knew him and candidly respected him and the girls all swooned when he walked down the hall. Younger guys like me wanted to be just like him. The coaches wanted Howie on the team roster. Not because Howie was the best player on the team but because the team just performed better with him on the field or court. He lifted the confidence of the best players to up their game.

Years later I understood why Howie was so cool. He had a confidence about him that gave him a certain authority. An air of invincibility that followed him. It was a trait that was learned and practiced. We all have an area in our life where we can practice and acquire confidence in something that will define us. Malcolm Gladwell referred to the 10,000-hour rule where anything that we commit 10,000 hours to will make us an expert in whatever the area of concentration is. Want to be an awesome, world-class musician? It’s easy. Just surround yourself with a compatible peer group and commit 10,000 hours or 5 years of your life.

In business we call this person a Subject Matter Expert or “SME”. What would you like to be known as an SME in? If you could be the absolute best in something, what would you like to be known for? Go ahead, dream big. Begin or complete your path to 10,000 hours now. What better time to begin? Don’t limit yourself. You can be confident and “cool” in whatever field you want. I encourage you to take that step. Just begin. Just do it.



Impact of the Labeling Theory

Right now, you are a reader.  This label momentarily dictates an action that you are currently fulfilling.  Now, what if that label was not so generic?  You are a thief.  You are a criminal.  These are titles given to countless people every day that have an impact on their actions and mental state.

In the 1960s, a theory was formed with the help of numerous sociologists and named the labeling theory.  This theory defines that the behavior and character of an individual can become influenced and even determined by the labels set in place to describe that individual.  Close cousins with the concept of self-prophecy, an individual is more likely to act out on the label given to them, be it the label of thief, criminal, useless, etc. 

The idea that words are powerful has been proven many times.  It can influence the psyche and define a person. The labeling theory takes a look at the negative connotations of giving someone a title that they then believe to be true.  While maybe a label is not always given in harsh circumstances, the act of being labeled is one that can cause an individual to act out on that label since they now view themselves as being what they have been labeled.

Just like the labeling theory, our own words can impact who we are as a person.  The more we work to produce positivity in our thoughts and actions, the more likely we are to achieve that positive growth.

By Kasey Eister